Ford F-150 Raptor Vs. Honda Pioneer 1000-5: What’s More Fun Off-Road, a Truck or a UTV?

In which we try to pass off playing around in the dirt as a comparison test.

byWill Sabel Courtney|

Let's face it: The Ford F-150 Raptor really doesn't have any true competitors. The Ram Rebel may look the part, but it's not nearly as badass as the Baja-bred Blue Oval; on the flip side, while the Chevy Colorado ZR2 may be able to keep up off-road, it's at least one size too small to truly take on the full-sized Ford. 

No, to find something really capable of keeping up with the Raptor, you need to go outside your comfort zone a little bit. Or, in the case of the  your humble author's recent experience at facing off at Monticello Motor Club's off-road course against an F-150 Raptor driven by TV's Mike Spinelli, as we like to call him around the office, you have to go reeeeeeeally far outside of it. 

Because the Honda Pioneer 1000-5 Limited Edition utility vehicle I was driving was distinctly lacking in windshield.

Of course, being a side-by-side, it was also distinctly lacking in quite a few other features found in the sorts of motor vehicles we usually feature here at The Drive: a radio, climate control, a roof. (It did, however, offer front and rear cupholders.) But the lack of glass in front of the passenger compartment proved the most notable omission while stuck in the Raptor's wake while hitting the ol' dusty trails behind MMC, even without going anywhere close to the Pioneer's nearly-highway-worthy top speed. 

Still, the capable little Honda proved, in its way, one of the best competitors to the Raptor. As Spinelli notes early and often in the above video, trying to compare a $60,000 pickup truck to a $20,000 side-by-side is, well, inherently ridiculous. Nobody would cross-shop the two; while they may be able to hold their own against one another on the vast stretches of planet Earth lacking in paved roads, the price differential alone is enough to disqualify them from any honest comparison—let alone the lack of windows in the Honda. But both vehicles, at their core, are toys meant to screw around with off-road... can you blame us for doing just that?