For us city dwellers, the thought of owning an off-road vehicle was once nothing but a pipedream. It’s hard to find the justification to outright buy a Jeep Wrangler when the majority of your driving exploits are of a conventional nature. But, the fact remains, off-road driving is still a heap of fun. Off-road excursions have been some of my fondest adventures to date. Besides, why should you let the small matter of a road stop you from getting where you want to go, anyway?
With a little bit of time, effort and initiative, you can turn your regular economy car into an off-road force to be reckoned with. If you get your kicks out of customising your car and want to experience the thrill of off-road driving first hand; keep reading. We’re about to give you all the information you’ll need to transform your car into something fit for off-road purpose. Warning: this article is not suitable for those that have grown too fond of their car’s paintwork.
Choosing the Tyres
The tyres are by far the most important part of any car. Remember the good old days when all you had to worry about was making sure they were well inflated and not balding? Not anymore. Now you’ve got more unforgiving terrain to contend with, you’ve got to think bigger. Quite literally. The tyres that came equipped with your Ford Escort aren’t going to cut it; I’m afraid. Things that you need to take into consideration now are grip, traction and resistance to punctures.
You’re probably going to want to look at a brand more commonly associated with an SUV, like General Grabber tyres. Provided you can get it to fit your car, a tyre known for its power and tread pattern is going to make for a compelling option. Remember, you’ll need to check whether the tyre can fit your existing wheel trim. And without compromising your suspension performance. The Tire Size Calculator is an invaluable tool for this purpose.
Removing the Back Seats
Before you ask us why you’d ever dream of doing something so drastic, allow me to paint you a picture. Imagine being the envy of Instagram with your #cargoals sleeping space. The whole point of an off-road adventure is to explore. Sometimes that means sleeping under the stars in the middle of nowhere. Talk about total freedom. Or, better yet, all that space in the back is about as close as you can get to an authentic pickup truck experience without actually owning a pickup truck.
If you don’t particularly like the idea of going to town on your back seats with a socket wrench, you could try folding them down flat instead. Just keep in mind that the goal here is to create as much interior space as possible. However, make sure you leave enough space for a couple of essentials. You’ll need to keep a set of jump leads somewhere just in case your battery dies, as well as all the usual breakdown essentials.