Posted 25 December 2008 - 07:18 am
Many moons ago, I was an off road driving instructor in the Lake District, with a company that is no more.(Unfortunately)
I have done most, if not all types of offroading for work and pleasure, I still off road for pleasure. (when the kids let me)
In my opinion the most important things on an of road vehicle are the tyres, ground clearance and the driver.
I have tried all most all the off road vehicles on the market, not all, in the extreme situations that i have put 90's or 110 's through though.
I did miltary testing for Torsen differentials, I trained most of the utility companies inthe North of England in off roading and recovery in the eary 90's. I did the Uk Jeep launch when they first came in the country, I nurse maided 'countless' off road journalists in their Japanese 4x4, on proper off road courses. Not just mud plugging pits (you can tell a journalist, he the one with a rope slung over the bonnet of his vehicle to ease the unsticking process) he's also the one that doesnt understand the principles off roading, like crossing rutts at right angles) I assisted in the training of the support crews for the Camel Trophy. I dont class my self as an expert though.
My personal choice is still a Landrover 90.!!
But that isnt to say there aren't some very good other vehicles out there. It may be I have to have a compromise vehicle instead of my defender, based on space and running cost. These crewcab vevicles make great family trucks, whichare capeable of off roading in 90 % of the situations that a 90/110 can cope with. If i were going down south on a motorway..for sure.. i'd take the land Cruiser ever time, but when i got there, i want my landy back.
Stick me up Sca Fell though, it would be a 90 on Mud Terrains over anything else.
It is under extreme conditions that things lke approach angle, departure angle, articulation etc,etc come in to play.
I have a lot of respect for stuff from Suzuki..They do what they say on the tin..With the least complication.