Should You Take the 2021 Ford Ranger Off Road?

When equipped with 4WD, the 2021 Ford Ranger can take on some tough trails, but outfit it with the Tremor Off-Road Package, and you have a trail-tackling beast.
Written by Sarah Gray
Reviewed by Jessica Barrett
Updated on Nov 21, 2022
2021 Ford Ranger
models are pretty competent on the trails, but if you’re really hoping to get out into the wilderness, you need a Ranger outfitted with the Tremor Off- Road Package. 
If you’re looking for all the off-road fun of a full-size truck without the full-sized price tag, the 2021 Ford Ranger is a perfect option. But how can you be sure it’ll meet all your on- and off-road needs?
To make sure you have all the answers you need about your 2021 Ford Ranger,
, the
super app
that loves saving drivers money on
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, has put together the definitive guide for the 2021 Ford Ranger’s off-road specs. We’re covering everything from ground clearance to approach geometry, and we’ll even show you how the Ranger stacks up against the competition. 
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Can the 2021 Ford Ranger go off road?

Absolutely! Whether you choose a base-model XL or the top-of-the-line Lariat, all 2021 Ford Rangers have the available equipment to head off-road. If you’re really looking for the best off-road experience, though, go for the Tremor Off-Road Package.
2021 Ford Ranger XL
starts at about $25,070, and outfitting it with the four-wheel-drive needed to leave the asphalt will cost you around $3,000. But the Tremor Package is only available on the XLT 4WD and Lariat 4WD trims. That means your base Tremor model will start around $31,295, with $4,290 added for the Tremor Package—but it’s well worth the expense if you really want to leave the asphalt behind.
Let’s take a closer look at the specs that make the 2021 Ford Ranger a great option for getting off-road.

Ground clearance

Ground clearance becomes important when you’re looking to take your truck off-road or over rough terrain. Put simply, ground clearance is the distance from the lowest point on your truck’s chassis to the ground. The more ground clearance you have, the easier it will be to navigate uneven terrain, and the less likely you’ll be to damage your vehicle’s undercarriage if you’re taking things off-road.
2WD Ford Rangers sit at 8.4 inches, while 4WD Rangers sit at 8.9 inches of ground clearance. Adding the FX2 or FX4 off-road package kicks your suspension-quality up a notch and adds off-road tires, but it does nothing for your ground clearance—not to mention the FX2 is for 2WD trucks, so you won’t get very far off the road before you’re stuck.
For the best off-road Ranger experience, you need either the
2021 Ford Ranger XLT
or Lariat with 4WD and the Tremor Off-Road Package, which gives you 9.7 inches of ride height. This sets you up well above the ideal ride-height-range  experts recommend for off-roading, which is from 8.8 to 10.8 inches.


When you’re looking for speed, you want horsepower, but when you need power to push through muck and over obstacles, torque is where it’s at. Specifically, you need a vehicle that produces a lot of torque at low rpm, or low-end torque
All 2021 Ford Rangers, regardless of trim or off-road options, are powered by the same 270-hp 2.3L turbo 4-cylinder that develops 310 lb-ft of torque at a low 3000 rpm. Not only does this make the Ranger a perfectly powerful off-road option, but it also makes it a towing and hauling pro. It has enough grunt to pull 7,500 pounds, more than any other mid-size truck not equipped with a turbodiesel.


Tires are pretty important when it comes to your vehicle’s off-road capabilities. If you plan to go hiking, you don’t put on a pair of slick-soled dress shoes—you get out the heavy-duty boots with the deep tread, right? When it comes to taking your truck off the road, it needs the same deep treads that can only be found on
all-terrain tires
For 2021, all Ford Rangers come standard with 30-inch Hankooks’ Dynapro HT all-terrain tires, but FX4 and Tremor optioned trims get the more off-road oriented 32-inch Dynapro AT-m all-terrain tires. 


If you’re heading off the asphalt, you need power going to all your wheels. That means either AWD or 4WD. 4WD is available on all 2021 Ford Ranger trims, but the Tremor Off-road Package adds a few additional bells and whistles to sweeten the deal:
  • Reworked and lifted suspension 
  • Terrain Management System for negotiating challenging terrains like mud and ruts
  • Trail Control—low-speed off-road cruise control that automatically accelerates and brakes, allowing the driver to focus on steering
  • Electronic locking differential
  • Full underbody skid plates for the radiator, electric steering, transfer case, and fuel tank.
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When you’re off-roading, everything comes down to angles. It doesn’t matter how much ground clearance you have if your front end collides with a steep grade before your tires even get close, right? This is why angles of approach and departure are so important:
  • Approach angle refers to the maximum angle at which a vehicle can climb without interference. 
  • Departure angle is the maximum angle at which a vehicle can descend without interference.
Here, again, the 2021 Ford Ranger really excels, especially when outfitted with the Tremor Package. When equipped with 4WD, your angles of approach and departure will be 28.7 and 25.4 degrees respectively. Tremor boost this geometry up to 30.9 and 25.5 degrees respectively.

Off-road rating: Trail Boss

Time for the bottom line: let’s see how the 2021 Ford Ranger rates on
super-technical DIRT rating system, broken down in the table below: 
Don’t Try It
Vehicles better suited to highway conditions
In a Pinch
Vehicles that can handle off-road conditions in certain circumstances
Rough and Ready
Vehicles designed for casual off-roading
Trail Boss
True off-road vehicles capable of tackling a range of terrain
The 2021 Ford Ranger earns a T rating. Even in the base model, the 2021 Ford Ranger is capable of tackling just about anything you put in front of it. Or behind it for that matter. 

The best off-road alternatives to the 2021 Ford Ranger

The 2021 Ford Ranger is a solid option for anyone looking to hit the trails. But maybe you need something with a bit more room, or even stronger off-road chops. Here are a few options for you to check out:
Best spacious alternative
It doesn’t have quite the off-road chops of many competitors, but the Honda Ridgeline gets the job done without cramping taller people’s style.
Best extreme off-road alternative
The master of the slow-speed crawl, the Colorado ZR2 navigates tricky terrain, like steep inclines and even rocks with ease.
Best rugged alternative
Opt for the off-road oriented

How to find affordable car insurance for off-road vehicles

Insurance companies often charge higher premiums on trail-ready vehicles because of the potential for damage associated with off-roading. But when you shop for coverage with
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