Video: Car vs. Truck — Which Is Better Off-Road?

It's one of those age-old questions, and we take a crack at answering it here

It’s an age-old question that’s been around practically as long as vehicles themselves have existed in their modern form. Car vs. truck: Which is truly better off-road? In this video, Roman and Tommy take a crack at answering that question, mainly by demonstrating the capability of our Toyota FJ Cruiser and our Chevy Silverado Trail Boss.

When it comes to the car vs. truck fight, both are marketed as capable off-road rigs. Toyota evoked the spirit and rugged reputation of the legendary FJ40 Land Cruiser in this modern interpretation. For its part, General Motors carved out a new off-road trim for the Silverado 1500 to take on the likes of the Ram 1500 Rebel and Ford’s F-150 FX4. Our Silverado has already proven its salt in TFLtruck’s No Pavement Needed series, but this is the first time we’ve had the FJ out on the trails.

The wild card in this off-roading trip

Both the Toyota FJ Cruiser and Chevy Silverado pack fairly stout powertrains for this sort of service. A 4.0-liter V6 in the Toyota managed 260 horsepower, mated to a 5-speed automatic transmission. However, it also packs the automaker’s advanced traction control system (A-TRAC) and a selectable low-range transfer case. It also has a locking rear differential. The Silverado uses a 5.3-liter V8 under its hood, mated to a 10-speed automatic. In the truck, there’s an Eaton G80 differential that automatically locks the differential when needed, but there’s no button to select it from inside the cab.

Ultimately, what decides this car vs. truck challenge isn’t so much the car or the truck. Instead, Mother Nature has her thumb on the scale, as winter weather is setting in for the season here in Colorado. As such, the guys weren’t able to make it all the way up Webster Pass due to a growing amount of snow and ice. In fact, these roads are closed seasonally from November through late May, around Memorial Day, as the weather makes them inaccessible no matter what you’re driving.

Check out the video below to see our impressions along the way, and stay tuned for more off-roading coming soon! As the season wraps up, we’re getting in as much as we can, so you can expect to see quite a few more videos in the near future.