Following annual tradition, the Motor Trend staff rounded up every all-new or significantly updated vehicle for the 2002 Sport/Utility of the Year competition. The eclectic group this year ranged from a car-based sport/cute to a military-derived uber-machine. All were put through the paces on Los Angeles-area roads and at the track before the all-important group drive that had the staff caravanning to Death Valley for days of highway running and good-ol' off-roading.

Between the magazine, radio, and television show, you've seen the beauty shots, heard the expert sound bites, and seen the rehearsed action. Online, we invite you to ride along with the team through this piece, in an exclusive Web-only video (coming soon), and take in the scenery and adventure behind the scenes of the SUV of the Year drive. Buckle up, it's time to get dirty...