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The Jeep Trail Rated badge is not given. It’s earned. Trail Rated means confidence to overtake challenges. It’s a commitment to realize opportunities, and push past your limits to discover the world beyond Waterloo Region! 

We all know that Jeeps with the Trail Rated badge are meant to travel off the beaten track, but what exactly does Trail Rated mean, and why is it so important?

The Trail Rated badge is not for every vehicle. It’s meant to identify vehicles which Jeep identifies as trail-worthy according to Jeep’s specifications. Jeep started using the badge in 2004, giving it to certain Jeep vehicles that had the ability to tackle the many challenges of off-roading.

The Trail Rated badge indicates that the vehicle has successfully completed the Nevada Automotive Test Center (NATC) off-road testing, which evaluates vehicles for traction, ground clearance, off-road articulation, maneuverability, and water fording.


Jeep Trail Rated 4x4 vehicles have exceptional traction, with the ability to handle the most unpredictable driving conditions. Trail Rated Jeeps possess enough traction to climb hills that no other vehicle would attempt. A variety of 4x4 systems are available to suit all types of terrain and driving conditions.

Ground Clearance

Ground clearance refers to the amount of room between the underside of your vehicle and the terrain. It allows you to drive over rocks and other large obstacles without underbody damage. You don’t need much proof that Trail Rated vehicles can climb over ridiculously large obstacles but check out THIS VIDEO if you’ve ever questioned Jeep’s climbing ability. It’s INSANE! There’s no other way to put it!

Off-Road Articulation

You could drive around things, but that’s no fun! Jeeps must meet a certain articulation standard in order to earn the Trail Rated badge. When one of more wheels are elevated, Jeep’s legendary four wheel drive system helps the other tires stay on the ground longer, so that you can keep moving. Off-road performance is enhanced by special off-road suspension that maximizes flexibility, wheel travel, and axle articulation. Check out THIS VIDEO to see just incredible Jeep articulation is!


With exceptional wheel flexibility, precision steering, and optimized wheelbases, Trail Rated Jeep vehicles can handle the tightest trails and respond rapidly in emergency situations. You can be confident that your Trail Rated Jeep can dodge obstacles and swerve around narrow gaps!

Water Fording

Want to take your Jeep swimming?! All jokes aside, Trail Rated capability allows you to traverse bodies of water that other SUVs would never make it through. All electrical connections and body openings are sealed to prevent water damage. An All Weather Subwoofer is even available so you can keep the tunes on, no matter the conditions! Check out THIS VIDEO to see just how well Trail Rated Jeeps perform in the water!

If you’re the adventurous type, a Trail Rated Jeep is clearly the vehicle for you! With a legendary 4x4 system, incredible off-road capabilities, and the ability to drive through deep water, you can be confident that your Trail Rated Jeep can get through pretty much anything!

Here at Bustard Chrysler in Waterloo, we have TONS (literally!) of pre-owned and new Jeeps on the lot, including a number of 2018 Jeep Wrangler and Jeep Grand Cherokees that just rolled in. Check out our Used Jeep Inventory, 2017 Jeep Inventory, and 2018 Jeep Inventory on bustard.com. If you want to drive without limits, call us at (519) 884-5888, or email us at waterloosales@bustard.com to book your test drive today!
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