2011 Ford Expedition
With seating for five to eight, the full-size 2011 Ford Expedition in 4WD XL and XLT models are grand enough to be comfortable and agile enough for some mild off-roading. The fully-boxed frame Expedition features standard four-wheel drive, OWL on/off-road tires, and reverse sensing system, SYNC and premium sound on XLT. For off-roading, select the optional ControlTrac 4-Wheel Drive system. Power comes from the 310-horsepower 5.4-liter V-8 engine (flex-fuel capable) mated with six-speed automatic transmission. The Ford Expedition 4WD XL starts at $41,170, the 4WD XLT at $42,710.
2011 Toyota Sequoia
The eight-passenger Tundra-based 2011 Toyota Sequoia large SUV offers families upscale luxury and the ability to venture beyond paved highways. Standard equipment on the 4WD SR5, Limited and Platinum models includes skid plates, multi-mode 4WD with Torsen limited-slip center differential with locking feature, roof rack and moonroof. Ground clearance is 10.0 inches. Toyota offers a choice of a 310-horsepower 4.6-liter or a 381-horsepower 5.7-liter V-8, either paired with a six-speed electronically-controlled automatic transmission. Maximum towing capacity is 7,100 pounds. Base price for the Sequoia SR5 4WD with 4.6-liter V-8 starts at $44,155, with 5.7-liter V-8 it's $44,780. The Limited and Platinum 4WDs begin at $54,265 and $61,305, respectively. Of course, you can always go even more upscale and choose the 2011 Toyota Land Cruiser for better off-road capability, but you’ll pay considerably more for the pleasure.
2011 Nissan Armada
Carrying eight passengers in three rows plus considerable off-road ability in 4WD models, the 2011 Nissan Armada full-size SUV proves you don’t have to suffer when taking the family in the great outdoors. Four-wheel drive is available in any trim (SV, SL and Platinum) and the ladder-frame Armada is considered a good value as well as being sized right for family outings. Maximum towing capacity is 9,000 pounds. The Armada has standard rear sonar parking aid, adjustable pedals, a CD changer and plenty of power in the 317-horsepower 5.6-liter V-8 engine. There’s also 10.4 inches of ground clearance for taking this big ‘ute off the trail. You won’t be climbing over big boulders, however, as there’s no locking rear differential available. Pricing for the 2011 Nissan Armada 4WD SV begins at $44,090.
Missed part one of this story? Check it out here.