Truck Trend Web producer Melissa Spiering took the Equator out to Johnson Valley for the King of the Hammers off-road race-"in the middle of nowhere, California"-and found the Suzuki to be "fun to drive on the washed-out dirt roads. As soon as the race rigs left the starting line, spectators jumped into their vehicles and headed to the trails. I followed the line of Jeeps up into the hillsides from location to location. Although I left the steep hills to the big guys-the lifted Jeeps, Broncos, ATVs, motorcycles, and rock crawlers-the Equator took to the trails like a pro. I was really impressed that I avoided getting stuck and equally impressed as to how the truck took care of me while I ventured off the path a few times to get photos of the race. I can't wait to take it off-roading again."

2009 Suzuki Equator
Months/miles in service 12/19,950
Avg econ/CO2 16.3 mpg/1.19 lb/mi
Unresolved problems None
Maintenance cost $342 (2 - oil change/inspection/rotate tires, replace engine and cabin air filters)
Normal-wear cost $0

Click here to read more about our adventure in Johnson Valley for the King of the Hammers off-road race.