Nitto Grappler Ride ‘N Drive Day

Prescription for fun: six Jeeps, a racing V8 Ultra4 off-road machine, and a chance to test Nitto Tires new Grappler all-terrain tires for ourselves. Given our new editorial expansion into the Mopar truck market, when we got the call to come test new tires on Jeeps off road and trucks on the road, we were all over it. We ventured out to an amazing ranch in Calabasas, California which is really Malibu adjacent. There, Nitto went all out to give us the technical details on the new tires, provided Alex Rogeo with a terrific ride in an Ultra4 race buggy and turned us loose on the off-road trails in new Jeeps with Grappler tires.

The new Grappler comes in two flavors, the Terra Grappler G2 and the EXO Grappler AWT. Both are unusually quiet on the highway for their segment and extremely capable off the road. There’s magical alchemy in both, the G2 is very good over a variety of off-road terrain, is smooth and quiet on the highway and, brace yourselves, comes with a 50,000 or 60,000 mile warranty (depending on size). The AWT is more aggressive and supremely competent off-road and only a little noisier on the road than the Terra G2—both tires are very quiet for their segment. The EXO Grappler AWT’s alchemy is in how well it works in full winter conditions and in the summer as well. Eat your cake and have it too.

A whole lot of Jeeps. They were a blast to drive in the hills of Calabasas. We love Mopars, and their high performance on the street (HEMI!) and in the dirt (JEEP!) are well known. We got to drive off road with both the Terra Grappler G2 and the EXO Grappler AWT as well as on the highway with both.

A mud hole leading to a hill climb was part of the test course. Richard Kratz was able to complete almost the whole test circuit in two-wheel drive with these EXO Grappler AWT tires. 4-wheel was only needed on a long, steep sandy hill and to get up the hill here out of the mud bog.