Testing a Toyota Sequoia for Off-Road Driving and Back-Country Camping.
Can you have one vehicle that can do everything? Take the kids to school, commute to work, off-road through snow and rivers and be loaded with camping gear? We sold our commuter, Toyota Rav 4, and bought a Toyota Sequoia. Can I take a Toyota Sequoia off road? Can I 4x4 in a Toyota Sequoia? We asked ourselves these questions then put them to the test.
Toyota Sequoia did great on our numerous ski trips through 1000’s of kms of snow and ice
We recently purchased a 2013 Toyota Sequoia Limited to replace our ‘family’ vehicle now we are asking can it also replace our adventure vehicle (our Land Rover Discovery 2)? The Sequoia is the largest vehicle we have ever owned. The trunk space is a spacious capsule ready to be filled with gear, which is a main reason we bought it. Also it’s a “newer” Toyota so reliability is likely better than a 20 year old Land Rover…oh I know many people are smirking or laughing at the comparison.
I’ve seen people online modify Toyota Sequoia’s into overland vehicles but do we have to rig this vehicle up to get it off-roading or can we make a few adjustments and still get it to mountainous back-country areas? I see the Sequoia largely as a vessel that takes my kids and their friends to school and activities but will it also take us to remote rock climbs and camping?
Winter Test: The Sequoia was impressive for winter highway driving. Our highway conditions are often extreme in both ice, snow, slush and temperatures. We used the tires the Sequoia came with, Bridgestone Blizzaks 275/55/R20 and they were pretty good. They seem to be wearing out fast. We will upgrade to Nokian Studded Tires when we need to replace them. Nothing beats a studded tire during winter, especially Nokians.
Spring Test: Again we used the tires the previous owner had, Michelin XLTs 275/55/R20 which is about a 32 inch tire. We are thinking about putting on a 33 inch tire, preference again is Nokian. The Sequoia feels great with the roof-top tent, hitch mount bike rack and new Thule awning. It has been on forest service roads and our only concern was ground clearance. We haven’t pushed the ground clearance at this time. A lift will need to be put in for peace of mind and we’ll have to get out to do more visual checks before we drive over things than we would with our Land Rover.
Sequoia Camping Set-up in Back-Country Setting
I wrote this to help process what we need to do with our vehicles, maybe you are in a similar situation. For now we will keep the Land Rover, the time and money invested into it to make it exactly what we wanted will possibly not be regained in selling. It’s safe to say we love our Rover, it’s fun and gets us to wild places. For more aggressive off-road adventures we plan to bring our regular tent in the Land Rover. With that said we have put the roof-top tent on the Sequoia thinking it will get us into 85% of the places we like to play.
Expect to see more Sequoia info here, we are excited to share our journey with this vehicle.
Since this article we did a lift and tire upgrade. It is now more off road capable. Learn more here.