The Best Electric Off Road Vehicles

And Everything You Need to Know About Taking EVs Off-Roading

By now, it’s apparent that electric vehicles—or “EVs” as they are more commonly known—are here to stay. Whether it has two wheels or four, electric vehicles are playing an increasing role in the off road marketplace as more of them land on the showroom floor purpose-built for off-roading and overlanding. In the following feature, we present the pros and cons of tackling off road terrain in an EV, share some of the top EVs on the market for off-roading, and provide a helpful tip for planning your first trip in an EV using the onX Offroad App.

Plan ahead so you’re never caught off guard

With the onX Offroad app, you can plan your off-roading trip with your electric vehicle so you are never caught without power.

Are Electric Vehicles Good for Off-Roading?

Although many are not specifically designed for off-roading, electric vehicles are quickly becoming more common in an off-highway setting thanks in part to the increasing popularity of overlanding. The same can be said about EVs in the two-wheel and four-wheel power sports spaces, where we see a range of electrified dirt bikes, ATVs, and UTVs coming to market. These off road worthy EVs allow one to hunt, fish, and recreate in the backcountry with minimal noise, emissions, and environmental impact. But are EVs suitable for off-roading? 

The answer is yes, with some important Pros and Cons to consider:


Added Torque – EV motors provide massive torque, which is extremely helpful when navigating rugged terrain where quick bursts of acceleration are necessary.

Low Center of Gravity – Depending on where the battery is placed in the vehicle, EVs can have a lower center of gravity that helps stabilize the vehicle on rough terrain.

Less Environmental Impact – No CO2 emissions when driving, riding or idling.

Less Noise – EVs tend to be quieter than a traditional internal combustion engine (ICE), making them an ideal choice when off-roading in areas with wildlife or nearby populations.


Range – EVs have a more limited range than ICE vehicles and require additional trip planning, especially to remote locations with limited access to charging stations.

Charging – EVs require time to charge and, even when a charging station is available, it takes longer to recharge an EV than fill up a fuel tank.

Battery Life – Rough terrain and extreme temperatures can affect battery performance, especially in hot and cold environments.

The Best Electric Off Road Vehicles

Although “best” is subjective when considering electric vehicles for off-roading, there is an informal consensus of brands and models that stand out as customer and media favorites. A few of the more popular brands and models include:


An electric vehicle off roading on a trail

Rivian R1T – With up to 400 miles of range, impressive ground clearance, dedicated off road mode, and an abundance of standard features designed to enhance the user experience, the R1T is a serious off road EV built for exploring the backcountry.

Ford F-150 Lightning – The EV version of Ford’s ever-popular F-150, the F-150 Lightning is the brand’s full-size EV truck offered in multiple configurations and options. With an impressive standard range of up to 230 miles, massive torque, and high towing capacity, the Lightning is one serious off road EV.

Tesla Cybertruck – With production scheduled to begin in fall 2023, the Cybertruck is expected to be an EV capable of some serious off-roading. With three models—one, two, or three motors—and an expected range of 250+ miles with the single motor model, expect the Cybertruck to be a formidable off road EV.


An electric side by side off-roading vehicle on a trail

Polaris Ranger XP Kinetic Premium – With a 110 HP electric motor and a range of up to 80 miles, this Polaris UTV offers impressive torque, 14 inches of ground clearance, as well as clean and quiet performance in the backcountry.

HISUN Sector E1 – With a torquey and whisper-quiet 48V single motor that puts out roughly 30 HP, the two-person Sector E1 is an excellent option for an entry-level electric UTV.

Volcon Stag – Volcon’s Stag UTV produces massive torque and instant acceleration using General Motors’ electric propulsion system. The four-passenger model achieves 125 HP with 265 foot-pounds of torque for exceptional performance.

Dirt Bike/Motorcycle

An electric dirt bike on an off road trail

KTM Freeride EX-C – Thanks to its small size, low seat height, nimble handling, long-travel suspension, and torquey power delivery, it is one of the most versatile electric dirt bikes on the market.

Stark Varg – The Varg is a much-hyped EV dirt bike with a claimed output of 80 HP. With more power than a traditional 450cc ICE dirt bike, a low center of gravity, and linear power delivery, the Stark Varg will allow one to ride nearly any terrain.

Energica Experia Green Tourer – Focused on the dual sport and ADV segments, the Experia Green Tourer is one of the first dedicated adventure-touring EV models. It is purpose-built for environmentally-friendly travel on the highway, back roads, and two-track trails.

Planning an Off-Roading Trip with an Electric Vehicle

Planning ahead is critical for any off road trip. When planning a trip with an EV, the most important factor to consider is the location of charging stations. Finding charging stations when off-roading in a remote location can be challenging. Knowing where you will recharge is key to a successful EV off road adventure. 

A great place to begin the planning process is with onX. A prominent feature of the app is planning out a trip with each trail length and sharing this trip with each individual in the party. For those with electric vehicles, using waypoints to mark where charging stations are located within a trip can be a critical feature of a successful trip.

As EV off-roading becomes more popular, the technology to support it is improving. In 2020, Jeep announced new investments in solar-powered charging stations at off-roading trailheads across the country. Stay tuned for more developments that will enhance the experience of going offroad with an EV. 


Are electric motors good for off-roading?

Yes. Electric motors have many helpful characteristics for off-roading: low-end torque, a low center of gravity, and they are ultra-quiet.

Does Tesla make an electric off road vehicle?

Yes. Tesla’s Cybertruck is scheduled to begin production in fall 2023.

What is the range of an EV UTV?

Electric UTV models currently have an average distance range from 30 to 60 miles, with some models exceeding 100 miles on a single charge. Range factors include vehicle weight, terrain difficulty, level of acceleration, and payload.

Is there an electric vehicle that can pull a camper?

Yes. Many electric vehicles can tow heavy loads. The important thing is to be sure the towing capacity meets or exceeds that of what you will be pulling. Review your vehicle’s towing capacity and hauling recommendations before proceeding.


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Dale Spangler

Dale Spangler is a lifelong motorcycle enthusiast introduced to two wheels at the age of eight and began racing motocross at 12. After chasing his dream of being a professional motocross racer through the mid-90s, he moved on to a career in the powersports industry, where he’s spent the last 28+ years as a marketing specialist, writer, and content creator.