The new Land Rover Defender poses as one of the market’s most off-road capable vehicles available new, so it’s only natural to see it going against the likes of the Jeep Wrangler and Mercedes G-Class.
While the three models don’t necessarily fight for the same target audience, it’s certainly interesting to see how they compare in an off-road test. Autocar took them to an abandoned quarry to see which one complete the course with the most ease and the results were surprising.
It’s difficult to determine which off-roader does the absolute best job when the pavement stops as there are so many different types of surfaces out there, not to mention the importance of tires. The off-road community is pretty wide and includes anything from rock-crawling to desert dune bashing, and from trail driving to green laning, so picking a clear winner here is understandably not the case.
Instead, the review focuses on testing things like the approach, ramp, and departure angles of all three models, as well as their axle articulation and ground clearance. Every off-roader here is capable of completing the course, but some did it without even scraping their bellies on the dirt.
Out of the three, only the Defender comes with an air suspension, as the Mercedes G350d and the Jeep Wrangler Rubicon sport steel springs. The Jeep is also the only vehicle here with a solid front axle, which means that ground clearance will remain constant when the suspension is under load.
There’s no question that all three off-roaders can cope with pretty much everything you can throw at them, but in the same conditions, on the same day, the Jeep Wrangler Rubicon is no longer the clear winner.