Getting stuck comes with the territory when you go off-road. And even if you aren’t the one stuck, there is a lot of trail karma to be gained by helping someone else who needs a tug. You never want to wrap a strap around suspension or axle components though, for fear of damaging them. Recovery points that tie into the frame are the safest way to recover a vehicle, but not every rig has them. You might have to get creative when pulling a commuter car out of a snowy ditch, but fortunately all of our 2019 SUV of the Year and Pickup Truck of the Year entries had legit recovery points on them.
The Ram Rebel has enclosed towhooks in the front bumper that are tied into the framerails. They protrude far enough to get a soft shackle through them while having a minimal impact on approach angle.
The GMC AT4 has enclosed bright red tow points that tie into the front framerails. They are the only upright tow points in the test, making them easy to pass a rope or strap through. We appreciate the large bumper openings that give us plenty of room to work with.
The Toyota Tundra has low-profile enclosed towhooks below the bumper, rather than in it. These sacrifice a little approach angle, but the trade-off is that you are less likely to damage your bumper when performing a recovery at an angle.
The Chevy Silverado Trail Boss has bright red recovery points with large bumper openings that make it simple to attach a rope or strap. Like all the other trucks in the test, there is no dedicated recovery point in the rear, but the truck does have a receiver hitch to perform extraction tasks.
While several vehicles proudly proclaim their recovery points with bright red paint, Range Rover hides its center-mounted recovery loop under the plastic front façade. There is a similar plastic cover in the rear that hides a threaded frame mount that an included eyelet threads into.
The Toyota 4Runner uses closed hooks on each side of the skidplate that tie into the frame. They are recessed to have a minimal impact on approach angle, but could be difficult to reach if you are buried in the sand or snow. Out back a receiver hitch can be used for recovery with a hitch pin or receiver shackle.
The Trailhawk model of the Jeep Cherokee adds a host of features, with the bright red towhooks front and rear being the most noticeable. The hooks are coated in a bedliner-like material and are open so you don’t need a shackle or any other gear to attach a strap with eyes at the ends.
The Jeep Wrangler Rubicon has bright red hooks front and rear. These open hooks make it easy to attached a rope or strap, but since they are located upright and curve back upon themselves the strap is securely attached and has little chance of falling off.