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Written by Nick Versaw
Updated April 29th, 2022
Driving an electric vehicle off the road may not seem like a great idea – after all, don’t you have to stay pretty close to civilization so you can plug it in? And aren’t most EVs tiny little hatchbacks that don’t have the ground clearance to drive on rough terrain?
The truth is that EV technology has come a long way in recent years. Not only can you find electric cars with battery packs that can last for over 200 miles on a single charge, but some EVs are designed specifically for off-road driving and come with multiple drive modes and advanced driver-assist features.
Whether you’re a casual off-road enthusiast or are planning an epic overlanding trip, here are our picks for the best electric off-road vehicles of 2022.
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Best Electric Off-Road Vehicles of 2022
For this list, we’re focusing primarily on street-legal vehicles that are suitable for both everyday driving and off-road use – that means no ATVs or UTVs. You’ll find everything from electric SUVs to electric pickup trucks, including brand new vehicles on the way from major automakers like Jeep and Tesla.
The key is that they all have an electric motor instead of an internal combustion engine, as well as an electric powertrain and four-wheel drive. That means you’ll get all of the horsepower you’d expect from an off-roader without the emissions.
All of these vehicles can get 250 miles or more on a full charge, so you can drive for hours before having to plug in. But if relying entirely on charging stations makes you nervous, you may want to check out one of these hybrid and plug-in hybrid vehicles instead.
Now, here’s our list of the best electric off-road vehicles of 2022:
Manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP): $67,500
Range: 260 to 400+ miles
Rivian made a name for itself as the up-and-coming startup that put more established rivals like Tesla on their guard. The R1T doesn’t disappoint, with eight driving modes, a towing capacity of 11,000 pounds, and a driving range of 260 to 400+ miles.
Rivian calls it an “electric adventure vehicle,” although it’s fair to say that it’s basically a pickup truck designed to be taken off-road. At $67,500, the Rivian R1T isn’t cheap, but you’ll get 14.9 inches of ground clearance, and it can wade through three feet of water. The interior has Wi-Fi and Bluetooth capabilities, six USB outlets, and other features to keep you comfortable and connected on your long-distance drives.
Rivian offers a battery pack and drivetrain warranty that lasts for eight years, or 175,000 miles, and a limited corrosion warranty with unlimited miles.
If you need room for the whole family, the Rivian R1S is a 7-seater SUV with similar performance specs that starts at $72,500.
Ford F-150 Lightning
Range: 320 miles
The Ford F-150 Lightning is an electric pickup truck that can double as an off-road vehicle. It’s much less costly than the Rivian R1T, with a starting price of $39,974. But with a towing capacity of 10,000 pounds and a maximum payload of 2,000 pounds, you’ll get plenty of bang for your buck.
The dual-motor powertrain can produce up to 774 lb.-ft. of instant torque, and the battery pack provides an impressive 320 miles of range.
Plus, the F-150 Lightning is great for setting up a workspace or campsite, with 11 outlets that can produce up to 9.6 kW of power. It can even serve as a backup power source at home.
Ford is also expected to release an electric version of the off-road-focused Bronco, but pricing and other details haven’t yet been announced.
GMC Hummer EV
Range: 329 miles
Hummers are a popular choice among off-road enthusiasts, and with the introduction of the GMC Hummer EV – available as an electric pickup truck or SUV – you’ll have even more options. This electric off-road vehicle has some impressive features, such as 18 cameras for detecting obstacles and a diagonal drive mode called CrabWalk, so you can navigate around rocks or uneven terrain when a multi-point turn isn’t possible.
The Hummer EV has a price tag of $108,700, so it’s definitely an investment. But with a maximum ground clearance of 15.9 inches (in Extract Mode) and a range of 329 miles, it can get you into – and out of – some of the most hard-to-reach locations.
Other features include an infinity roof with modular sky panels, a power swing gate for easy loading and unloading, and a power eTrunk which offers extra storage space where the internal combustion engine would ordinarily be.
Upcoming Electric Off-Road Vehicles
In addition to the electric off-road vehicles available now, there are a few upcoming models that are worth a mention.
The Vanderhall Brawley is the only car on our list that isn’t suitable for everyday driving, but it’s great for off-roading. Produced by a company that specializes in three-wheelers, this four-wheel-drive model starts at $34,950 and seats up to four people. It has four motors that support multiple driving modes, including eCrab and eCrawl.
The Tesla Cybertruck is an upcoming electric off-road vehicle with a distinctive futuristic look. The Cybertruck’s stainless-steel “exoskeleton” will open up to reveal 100 cubic feet of cargo space, with a payload capacity of 3,500 pounds. The Cybertruck is expected to be released in 2023, with a starting price of $39,900, which will make it the cheapest Tesla model on the market.
Jeep Magneto 2.0
Jeep is hard at work on several electric off-road vehicle concepts, including the Magneto 2.0, which sports 40-inch mud-terrain tires and can provide 850 lb.-ft. of torque. For now, off-road enthusiasts can hit the trails with the Jeep Wrangler 4xe hybrid, which starts at $53,795 and comes with access to a network of solar-powered charging stations.
Land Rover EV
Not to be outdone, Land Rover is also updating its lineup for the electric car age. The first fully electric Land Rover will be available in 2024 – although if you can’t wait, the Range Rover Plug-in Hybrid is available now, starting at $104,500. This PHEV has a fuel economy of 42 MPGe and gets up to 19 miles of all-electric range.
How Do You Charge Electric Off-Road Vehicles?
Range anxiety is a big concern for everyday EV owners, so it may feel impossible to take your electric car on an overlanding trip. But even though it could take a little extra planning, it’s easier than ever to find charging stations on the road. You can take the guesswork out of your road trip by using EV charging apps to locate your next fueling station.
Automakers are doing their part, too: Ford offers an “intelligent range” estimate that can take your payload and driving conditions into account, while Rivian is bringing chargers to remote routes in the U.S. and Canada with their Adventure Network. Of course, you can always install a charging station at home and carry along a portable charger.
Choosing an electric off-road vehicle can present some challenges, but it can also be a money-saver due to lower fuel and maintenance costs. You’ll also benefit from instant torque and advanced drive modes that aren’t available in conventional off-roaders.
Choose the Right Electric Vehicle for You
Because of their powerful motors and heavy-duty exteriors, electric off-road vehicles tend to be a little pricier than other EVs. And since most of these models have been released very recently, it can be hard to find them on the used car market.
Still, electric off-road vehicles have a lot of advantages compared to gas cars, including lower maintenance costs and lower emissions. Many off-road enthusiasts find that the combination of instant torque and all-wheel drive provides a better driving experience, while high-tech sensors and cameras protect you from obstacles.
That said, if you only head outdoors occasionally, you may be better off with an electric hatchback with all-wheel drive. They aren’t nearly as heavy-duty as these off-roaders, but they’re just fine for road trips and camping.
Check out our electric car guides to explore our options, then enter your ZIP code here to compare them side-by-side:
Find Used EVs Near You
Find Used EVs Near You
Nick Versaw Managing Editor
Nick Versaw leads Compare.com's editorial department, where he and his team specialize in creating educational content about insurance and other related topics. As an award-winning writer, Nick has seen his work published in countless renowned publications, such as the Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, and U.S. News & World Report. He graduated with Latin honors from Virginia Commonwealth University, where he earned his Bachelor's Degree in Digital Journalism.
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