For decades, off-road vehicles, SUVs and Jeeps were strictly all-terrain vehicles with rugged mechanics. Not luxury cars, they had the driving dynamics suited for crossing deserts and climbing mountains. However, somewhere along the road, SUVs became strictly on-road cars, losing their off-road capabilities. Even before today’s SUV craze, there were several popular models that drivers couldn’t take off the pavement.
So here are 30 useless SUVs that are not exactly what you expected. They may have the looks, powerful engines, big wheels and bumpers, but they are not off-road monsters people tend to believe. They didn’t engineer some of them as such and in fact, some have disappointing characteristics. Others are just plain road cars with an off-road body kit on them. Also, some concentrate more on luxury, comfort and performance to be proper all-terrain vehicles.
The car that started the modern SUV craze in America was inarguably the infamous Ford Explorer. After years of the classic body on frame chassis architecture, the new Explorer is a modern unibody car with on-road manners. However, no Explorer owner is going to want to go on those serious off-road courses.
In reality, the percentage of SUV owners who drive off-road is so small, that nobody noticed this. The regular Explorer is a fine example of a modern SUV with lots of space and an up to date design. However, the Sport version is more of a muscle car than an off-road vehicle since it delivers 356 HP with a 0 to 60 mph time of 5.8 seconds.