7 Off-Road Vehicles We Need in North America

Nov. 21, 2014 By Jaime Hernandez, Photos compliments of the Manufacturers

When looking for an off-road capable vehicle in North America, it's hard to ignore the exotic global models that so feverishly taunt us, with their wide international appeal and earth-roaming ruggedness. Many of these models have standard equipment that most would give a left wheel for—like portal axles, diesel-powered engines, stout chassis and dirt-proven platforms. These machines are reliable, field serviceable and sold around the world—except in the U.S.

So why can’t we have these amazing off-road vehicles? Many of the same manufacturers are already building trucks and sport utilities for the U.S. market. There are also stricter automotive safety regulations in U.S. and Canada, import tariffs, emission, and in many cases, manufacturers don’t want global models to compete with their best-selling North American trucks and sport utes.

The good news is that if you really want one of these forbidden rigs, they can be had with the right connections and appropriate funds. For the rest of us, we just need to create enough demand so these ultra cool off-road vehicles trickle down to a dealership near you.

To help get the wheels rolling, we’ve put together a list of 7 off-road vehicles we need in North America NOW!


Arguably one of the most iconic 4x4s in the world, the Land Rover Defender has been in service around the world for over 65 years. The Land Rover Defender combines superb capability, ruggedness and dependability trusted both by civilians and military. The British four-wheel drive was available in the U.S. and Canada up until 1997 when strict car safety regulations mandating passenger air bags ended Defender sales in North America. The Land Rover Defender is still available in the United Kingdom and several countries outside of North America. Reports that 2015 will be the last model year for the Defender make the diesel-powered icon even more desirable.


The Ford Ranger may be out of production in the United States, but it’s alive and well around the world. The global Ford Ranger, also known as the T6, was first introduced in 2010 at the Australian International Motor Show, the same year that the last North American Ford Ranger rolled off the assembly line in Minnesota. Although the Ranger T6 is sold in 180 countries, it’s currently not slotted for Canada or the United States.  Some speculation is that the larger T6 platform is too close in size to the Ford F-150.  The global Ranger looks great – now if we could only convince Ford to bring the T6 to America. 

Update: Not only is the Ranger coming back to North America in 2019, there's a really good chance there will be a Raptor version sold in the US. Read about the new Ranger Raptor by clicking right here.

Next Page... 7 International Off-Road Vehicles We Need in the U.S.

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