What Is The Advantage Of Body On Frame Construction?

There are so many vital elements that are overlooked by car buyers. You may find many lingo terms that you don’t necessarily understand such as RMP, PHEV and torque. Even without getting into the in-depth details of such words, you must know the basic principles since they affect the car’s overall performance. When it comes to design, you mainly hear about the car’s construction and the term body-on-frame may be thrown around through your discussions.

What Is The Advantage Of Body On Frame Construction?

Body-on-frame construction positively affects almost ever component of your vehicle, but the primary advantages are that it allows for increased all-terrain performance and hauling capacity as well as a simpler frame that’s easier to modify and repair if it becomes damaged.

But what does the term “body-on-frame” really mean? To understand the advantages of such types of frames, which is the vehicle’s chassis, you need to understand what it entails and how the design affects your car’s overall performance. The design also impacts the car’s overall style and all the vital elements that go into the car. 

The following is comprehensive information for you to understand the facets of a body-on-frame vehicle and its advantages.

What Does It Mean To Have A Body-on-Frame Vehicle?

First of all, when you hear someone talking about the frame of a vehicle, think about the car’s backbone; it is the main structure that supports everything else or the skeleton of the entire vehicle. It dates back to the 19th-century auto manufacturing featuring construction using two significant components. The frame has a ladder-like design and construction of an independent body that is later mounted on the frame.

The frame is where the engine and the drivetrain are attached before everything else is put in place. When cars started getting manufactured, the frames were relatively modern, but modern structures became more complicated. The complexity is due to advancements that have come up to make cars better and better in several ways.

The body-on-frame design has been the pioneer of vehicle frames for decades and is still employed to date. The designs are mainly found on many SUVs and trucks manufactured for the United States automobile markets.

Advantages of Body-on-Frame Designs

If not for the advantages that body-on-frame construction has, the design would be a thing of the past. But it remains popular for a lot of vehicles that need it to be efficient. Cars which have body-on-frame construction tend to have a higher ground clearance and also taller.

The advantage of this is that the vehicle can offer true off-road capabilities since their designs are robust enough to deal with many different terrains all over the world. They can withstand harsh off-road conditions such as mud, snow, dirt and rocks due to their high mount.


Most of the body-on-frame vehicles have a lot of flexibility which runs through the entire vehicle. The advantage is more applicable where the terrain is uneven. The whole car can easily flex its way through these terrains as individual tires can accommodate different heights depending on the type of terrain you are in.

Hauling Capacity

When it comes to heavier loads, the frame design can tow most of the loads that a standard unibody frame can’t. You can use them to haul campers and even pull other vehicles if they are stuck on an off-road terrain that they cannot maneuver. These capabilities are mainly due to their high torsional flexing tolerance and sturdy foundations.


Most car manufacturers do prefer body-on-frame construction because they can quickly redesign or make modifications when necessary. You can also make other body changes using the same frame repeatedly with no damage to its structural integrity.

Since these changes can easily be made, the manufacturing costs are always lower, and so manufacturers have an advantage and can get more affordable vehicles in the market. Manufactures can also cut cost since they can subcontract some of the work making their manufacturing process more efficient.


When it comes to repairs, the body-on-frame cars ha a lot of advantages to them. Since you can easily make modifications in the vehicle, repairs are always relatively cheap. This could be a case where there has been an accident, and the frame is still intact with minimal damages.

It is even possible to replace the chassis and used one that is not damaged or not used for a long time from another body-on-frame car. It can be restored cheaply and get it back on the road as soon as possible. 

It is also vital to note that vehicles than have on-body-frame construction are less noisy on the road. They have rubber pads on the attachment bolts that create a separation between the chassis and the frame. Since it is higher elevated, the vehicles are less susceptible to moisture present on the road so getting rust is hard.

What Does the Body-on-Frame Construction Mean for Uou as a Driver?

Now that you understand the advantages of body-on-frame construction, you can now know what to look for when purchasing a car. The body construction directly impacts your buying process. 

The first thing you should not look at is the design. Most body-on-frame vehicles tend to be boxy. Other unibody frames are more dynamic than body-on-frame cars. You may notice they have high ground clearance; their stance is wide, and their build is extensive and squared in many sections.

The boxed proportions are due to the chassis design and come with its performance advantages. You will also realize that you will get information about your body-on-frame vehicle’s towing capacity, which might be more than you can think of. The performance is different for all body-on-frame vehicles as other brands employ their unique techniques to make the cars the best they can get. 

What are Some of the American SUVs that still have a Body-on-Frame Construction?

Body-on-frame cars have always been common in the last two decades, but times have changed, and you can only see a limited amount on the road today. Even with new technologies employed for unibody designs, manufacturers in the automobile market still embrace body-on-frame construction. Below are some of the cars you can always buy which use body-on-frame construction technology.

1. The Cadillac Escalade

Ever wondered why the Cadillac Escalade is big and boxy? Well, one of the main reasons is because it has body-on-frame construction. It is still one of the most popular SUVs in the market today across the world due to its luxurious look. It is high and features a cabin with so much space for both your family and cargo. The cabins also feature high-end designs from its furnishings and integrated internal control features.

Due to its body-on-frame construction, this vehicle can hold a 6.2-liter V-8 engine with about 420hp and 460 pounds of torque. 

2. Jeep Wrangler

Just looking at its size, you can tell it has a unique frame construction rarely seen in today’s cars. It is one of the few jeep models that still have a body-on-frame design and construction. The body-on-frame gives it its heavy-duty features making it able to take on many off-road terrains in any environment.

It has a 3.6-liter v-6 engine that gives up to 285 horsepower and 260 pounds of torque. The towing capacity for this Jeep Wrangler goes up to 2000 pounds which is more than you would have expected. The 2000-pound hauling capacity is only for the two-door model, but the four-door model can haul up to 3,500 pounds of load. 

This is even more than most hauling trucks on the market to date. One of the reasons why you might buy this car is due to its off-road capabilities. IT was made primarily for this purpose hence the use of body-on-frame construction.

3. GMC Yukon

The GMC Yukon is one of the only large SUVs competing with a Cadillac Escalade in any market. Its reputation for its multitasking capabilities is also linked directly to its body-on-frame construction. It stands out since it can haul up to 8,100 pounds at a time.

Its 5.2-Liter V-8 engine is no exception. It has a maximum horsepower of 420 and 460 pounds of torque on the bigger unit. You get a lot of interior space more than you may need.

Some of the other cars with a body-on-frame construction include The Ford Expedition, Chevy Tahoe and Chevy Suburban. If you prefer body-on-frame vehicles, the above list is a great place to choose from. In case it is hard to find a body-n-frame car, you can inquire from your local manufacturers to advise you on the best one to start with.


The body-on-frame construction is not going extinct anytime soon. It is still a foundation to the automobile industry, and it may even see a comeback in the future. Since it features a different frame from the body, cars are still better constructed this way since the advantages outweigh the disadvantages. It has its fair share of cons but will always remain a good option even as technology advancements impact the future.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *