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2012 UTV BUYER'S GUIDE

 
(1/5/2012)
Forget the wild stock market swings, ignore the occupy Wall Street crowds. Business is booming. More specifically, the UTV industry is going full speed ahead with new models, technological innovation and aggressive marketing. Last year recorded the biggest sales number so far in the short history of side-by-side models, and that spawned a bounty in choices for the consumer. Last year’s sensational Polaris XP900 is back, along with the new Arctic Cat Wildcat. Kawasaki has a new four-seat Teryx and there’s even a mid-size RZR. Here are the highlights of the four-wheel-drive UTVs offered for 2012, listed in order of base-model price.
 
CONTACTS
Arctic Cat … www.arctic-cat.com …(218) 681-9851
Can-Am … www.canamoffroad.com … (715) 848-4957
CF Moto … www.cfmoto-us.com … (888) 823-6686
Honda www.powersports.honda.com … (310) 783-2000
John Deere … www.deere.com
Kawasaki …www.kawasaki.com … (949) 770-0400
Kymco … www.kymcousa.com … (888) 235-3417
Polaris … www.polarisindustries.com … (888) 704-5290
Yamaha … www.yamaha-motor.com … (714) 761-7300
 
ARCTIC CAT WILDCAT 1000 ($16,599)
This is the center attraction for 2012. Arctic Cat has trumped the new “extreme performance” category with a Razor-style side-by-side that’s virtually all sport with the barest hint of utility afforded by a small bed. Some 18 inches of suspension travel highlight the package along with standard power steering and a 951cc V-twin motor.
Motor type … SOHC, liquid-cooled V-twin
Displacement … 951cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … shafts
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/17.0”
R. suspension/travel … Trailing arm/18.0”
Length/width/height …120.0”/64.0”/65.8”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 8.8 gal.
Towing capacity … NA
Bed capacity … 300 lb.
F. tires … 26x9-14
R. tires … 26x11-14
Claimed weight … 1305 lb. (dry)
POLARIS RANGERRZR XP900 ($15,999)
Polaris did its homework on this one. The 900 hit the market in 2011 with mind-blowing performance. The centerpiece is the double overhead cam, twin-cylinder motor. The chassis is equally stunning with its Fox shocks and 14 inches of travel. The XP comes in two special editions that sell for $16,599 each.
Motor type … DOHC, liquid-cooled parallel twin
Displacement … 875cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … shaft
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/13.5”
R. suspension/travel … Trailing arm/14.0”
Length/width/height …108.4”/64.0”/73.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 7.3 gal.
Towing capacity … NA
Bed capacity … 300 lb.
F. tires … 27x9-12
R. tires … 27x11-12
Claimed weight … 1190 lb. (dry)
ARCTIC CAT PROWLER 1000i XTZ ($15,599)
Even though the Wildcat is Arctic Cat’s new star, the big Prowler still has impressive credentials. The motor is a huge 90-degree V-twin with fuel injection, and the machine has a long list of standard features, like power steering, aluminum rims, gas shocks and LED lighting. The bed is full sized and the towing capacity is 1500 pounds.
Motor type … SOHC, liquid-cooled V-twin
Displacement … 951cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … shafts
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/10.0”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/10.0”
Length/width/height …118.8”/61.5”/79.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 8.2 gal.
Towing capacity … 1500 lb.
Bed capacity … 600 lb.
F. tires … 27x9-14
R. tires … 27x11-14
Claimed weight … 1315 lb. (dry)
CAN-AM COMMANDER 1000X ($15,099)
The X version of Can-Am’s big Commander comes decked out for going fast. Fox Shox are standard with a front sway bar, 12-inch aluminum beadlock wheels, Maxxis Bighorn tires and a long list of stuff. Under it all is an 85-horsepower Rotax V-twin motor. The Commander is sporty but maintains decent utility credentials with a large bed and a hitch.
Motor type … SOHC, liquid-cooled V-twin
Displacement … 976cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shafts
F. suspension/travel … TwinA-arm/10.0”
R. suspension/travel … Trailing arm/10.0”
Length/width/height … 118.3”/58.6”/72.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic disc
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 10.0 gal.
Towing capacity … 1500 lb.
Bed capacity … 600 lb.
F. tires … 27x9-12
R. tires … 27x9-12
Claimed weight …1295 lb. (dry)
CAN-AM COMMANDER 1000XT ($14,699)
Can-Am’s XT package starts off with a 976cc, 85-horsepower Commander, then adds a long list of extras that includes a 4000-pound Warn winch. The XT also gets 14-inch alloy wheels with Maxxis Bighorn tires, upgraded instruments, and a lot more. There’s also a Limited version, which adds Fox Shock, a GPS and more. Its price is$19,199.
Motor type … SOHC, liquid-cooled V-twin
Displacement … 976cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shafts
F. suspension/travel … TwinA-arm/10.0”
R. suspension/travel … Trailing arm/10.0”
Length/width/height … 118.3”/58.6”/72.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic disc
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 10.0 gal.
Towing capacity … 1500 lb.
Bed capacity … 600 lb.
F. tires … 27x9-12
R. tires … 27x9-12
Claimed weight …1295lb. (dry)
POLARIS RANGER RZR 4 800 ($14,499)
Polaris was first to offer an ultra-high-performance model with four seats. The RZR 4 800 has an extended wheelbase and is a full 60.5 inches wide. The suspension is beefed up with Fox Podium shocks that produce 12 inches of travel all the way around. A limited edition Robby Gordon models gets power steering and more for $17,599.
Motor type … OHV, liquid-cooled parallel twin
Displacement … 760cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … shaft
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/12.0”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/12.5”
Length/width/height …130.0”/60.5”/75.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 7.3 gal.
Towing capacity … 1500 lb.
Bed capacity … 300 lb.
F. tires … 26x9-12
R. tires … 26x12-12
Claimed weight … 1255 lb. (dry)
POLARIS RANGER CREW DIESEL ($13,999)
Polaris is exploring every corner of the UTV business. The four-seat niche and the diesel niche come together in a very specialized machine here. The Ranger Crew Diesel is essentially the 800 Crew chassis with an in-line, three-cylinder Yanmar diesel motor. It offers one-ton towing capacity with a half-ton in the bed.
Motor type … OHV, liquid-cooled diesel triple
Displacement … 904cc
Fuel delivery … Indirect injection
Transmission … CVT hi/lo/rev
Final drive … shafts
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.6”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.0
Length/width/height …145.0”/60.0”/76”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 9.0 gal.
Towing capacity … 2000 lb.
Bed capacity … 1000 lb.
F. tires … 26x9-12
R. tires … 26x10-12
Claimed weight … 1660 (dry)
ARCTIC CAT PROWLER 700 I HDX ($13,499)
The HDX is more utility oriented than the other ’Cats, with a transformable rear cargo box. The bed has a half-ton capacity and sides that fold down to form a flatbed platform. It has great standard features like Fox coil-over chocks, a three-passenger seat, power steering and side storage compartments.
Motor type … SOHC, liquid-cooled single
Displacement … 695cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shafts
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/10.0”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/10.0”
Length/width/height …129.8”/60.0”/79.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 8.2 gal.
Towing capacity … 1500 lb.
Bed capacity … 1000 lb.
F. tires … 27x9-14
R. tires … 27x11-14
Claimed weight … 1363 lb. (dry)
CAN-AM COMMANDER 800R XT ($13,399)
The platform for the 800XT is the 800cc, Rotax-V-twin-powered Commander, which produces 71 horsepower. The XT package is highlighted by a genuine Warn winch, rated at 4000 pounds. It also includes a heavy-duty front bumper, cargo box rails, a front mud guard, 14-inch alloy wheels, 27-inch Maxxis Bighorn tires and upgraded gauges.
Motor type … SOHC, liquid-cooled V-twin
Displacement … 800cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shafts
F. suspension/travel … TwinA-arm/10.0”
R. suspension/travel … Trailing arm/10.0”
Length/width/height … 118.3”/58.6”/72.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic disc
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 10.0 gal.
Towing capacity … 1500 lb.
Bed capacity … 600 lb.
F. tires … 27x9-12
R. tires … 27x9-12
Claimed weight …1287 lb. (dry)
KAWASAKI TERYX4 750FI 4x4 ($13,399)
Kawasaki is the most aggressive of Japan’s UTV makers. The new Teryx4 is a four-person version of the V-twin-powered Teryx. In addition to the standard version, Kawasaki offers a power-steering Teryx4 for $14,399 and a Limited Edition that sells for $15,199. The L.E. has power steering, automotive paint and aluminum rims.
Motor type … SOHC, liquid-cooled V-twin
Displacement … 749cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shafts
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/7.8”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/8.3”
Length/width/height … 125.2”/62.0”/77.3”
F. brakes … Hydraulic disc
R. brakes … Sealed multi-disc
Fuel capacity … 7.9 gal.
Towing capacity … 1300 lb.
Bed capacity … 249 lb.
F. tires … 26x9-12
R. tires … 26x11-12
Claimed weight …1616 lb. (curb)
YAMAHA RHINO 700 FI SPORT ($13,399)
The Sport Edition of the Rhino 700 starts off with the same 686cc liquid-cooled four-valve motor as the standard Rhino, then adds a long list of bonuses. The suspension is upgraded with piggyback shocks, the wheels are cast aluminum, it has a sun top and a front carry bar. The Rhinos are assembled in Newnan, Georgia.
Motor type … SOHC, liquid-cooled single
Displacement … 686cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shafts
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/7.3”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/7.3”
Length/width/height … 113.6”/56.6”/73.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic disc
Fuel capacity … 7.9 gal.
Towing capacity … 1212 lb.
Bed capacity … 400 lb.
F. tires … 25x8-12
R. tires … 25x10-12
Claimed weight …1199 lb. (curb)
ARCTIC CAT PROWLER 700 I XTX ($12,999)
Arctic Cat doesn’t skimp on standard equipment. The Prowler 700 comes with power-steering, alloy wheels, automotive-style paint and tilt steering. Under it all is a 695cc single-cylinder motor. Official accessories include things like a genuine Warn winch (not an Asian copy) and suspension high-back seats.
Motor type … SOHC, liquid-cooled single
Displacement … 695cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … shafts
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/10.0”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/10.0”
Length/width/height …118.8”/61.5”/79.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 8.2 gal.
Towing capacity … 1500 lb.
Bed capacity … 600 lb.
F. tires … 26x9-14
R. tires … 26x11-14
Claimed weight … 1251 lb. (dry)
CAN-AM COMMANDER 1000 ($12,999)
Can-Am’s big Commander is powered by a Rotax V-twin that produces 85 horsepower. That much power and a full 10 inches of suspension travel automatically make the Can-Am very sporty. But it also keeps a grip on its utility mission, with a dual-level bed that can carry a total of 600 pounds and a hitch that can tow 1500 pounds.
Motor type … SOHC, liquid-cooled V-twin
Displacement … 976cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shafts
F. suspension/travel … TwinA-arm/10.0”
R. suspension/travel … Trailing arm/10.0”
Length/width/height … 118.3”/58.6”/72.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic disc
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 10.0 gal.
Towing capacity … 1500 lb.
Bed capacity … 600 lb.
F. tires … 27x9-12
R. tires … 27x9-12
Claimed weight …1295 lb. (dry)
POLARIS RANGER DIESEL ($12,999)
There are a lot of very good reasons for a diesel-powered UTV, especially when used in an equipment yard or on a worksite. Chief among those is that it eliminates the hassle of having two types of fuel on hand. The Ranger Diesel is powered by a three-cylinder Yanmar motor that is isolation-mounted and built with fuel economy in mind.
Motor type … OHV, liquid-cooled, diesel triple
Displacement … 904cc
Fuel delivery … Indirect injection
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shaft
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.6”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.0”
Length/width/height … 114.0”/60.0”/76.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 9.0 gal.
Towing capacity … 2000 lb.
Bed capacity … 1000 lb.
F. tires … 25x10-12
R. tires … 25x11-12
Claimed weight … 1435 lb. (dry)
 
POLARIS RANGERRZR S 800 ($12,699)
In the west, the S is a big hit. The additional width and suspension travel make it faster and better handling than the more trail-oriented, 50-inch-wide RZR models. For 2012 it gets subtle upgrades like a rattle-free passenger grab bar and a thicker skid plate. The LE versions have upgraded suspension, tires, rims, paint and seats with a price of $13,999.
Motor type … OHV, liquid-cooled parallel twin
Displacement … 760cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … shaft
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/12.0”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/12.0”
Length/width/height …104.0”/60.5”/70.5”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 7.3 gal.
Towing capacity … 1500 lb.
Bed capacity … 300 lb.
F. tires … 27x9-12
R. tires … 27x11-12
Claimed weight … 1000 lb. (dry)
POLARIS RANGER HD800EPS ($12,699)
This is the pack mule of the Polaris line. It has a number of utility oriented features like the new engine braking system, which makes a fully loaded machine more controllable on steep downhills. It also has a massive dump box, self-leveling Nivomat shocks and electric power steering as standard equipment.
Motor type … OHV, liquid-cooled parallel twin
Displacement … 760cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shaft
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.6”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.0”
Length/width/height … 114.0”/60.0”/76.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 9.0 gal.
Towing capacity … 2000 lb.
Bed capacity … 1000 lb.
F. tires … 26x9-12
R. tires … 26x11-12
Claimed weight … 1262 lb. (dry)
POLARIS RANGER 6x6 800 ($12,599)
Six-wheel-drive is the new 4WD. The 6x6 is all about getting more work done, and it has 50-percent more wheels for that purpose. Each wheel gets its own independent suspension with up to 9.6 inches of travel. The bed capacity is the current record holder at 1250 pounds and the towing capacity is a clean ton.
Motor type … OHV, liquid-cooled parallel twin
Displacement … 760cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shaft
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.6”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.0”
Length/width/height … 137.0”/60.0”/76.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 9.0 gal.
Towing capacity … 2000 lb.
Bed capacity … 1250 lb.
F. tires … 25x10-12
R. tires … 25x11-12
Claimed weight … 1551 lb. (dry)
POLARIS RANGER CREW 800 ($12,399)
Take your friends along for thrills. Take your enemies along for revenge. The Ranger Crew 800 is the most popular multi-passenger UTV on the market, and is capable of carrying six very friendly people, not including any heavily sedated house pets you might secure in the bed, which can carry a half-ton. A power-steering version sells for $13,999.
Motor type … OHV, liquid-cooled parallel twin
Displacement … 760cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shaft
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.6”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.0”
Length/width/height … 145.0”/60.0”/76.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 9.0 gal.
Towing capacity … 2000 lb.
Bed capacity … 1000 lb.
F. tires … 26x9-12
R. tires … 26x11-12
Claimed weight … 1495 lb. (dry)
CAN-AM COMMANDER 800R ($11,699)
This is the “base” model in Can-Am’s Commander line, but it’s not very basic. It has a 71-horsepower Rotax V-twin motor, 10 inches of suspension and 11 inches of ground clearance. Can-Am doesn’t offer power steering but the steering ratio is a very quick 10.2:1. Below the tilt bed is a secret compartment that can carry 200 pounds.
Motor type … SOHC, liquid-cooled V-twin
Displacement … 800cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shafts
F. suspension/travel … TwinA-arm/10.0”
R. suspension/travel … Trailing arm/10.0”
Length/width/height … 118.3”/58.6”/72.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic disc
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 10.0 gal.
Towing capacity … 1500 lb.
Bed capacity … 600 lb.
F. tires … 27x9-12
R. tires … 27x9-12
Claimed weight …1287 lb. (dry)
HONDA BIG RED ($11,699)
Honda deliberately focused on the utility side of the UTV market with the Big Red. And even though most of the market is getting sportier, Big Red seems more focused on work than ever. Last year it got a boost in payload, towing and bed capacity. It still has a nearly indestructible hydraulic transmission that has no belts to burn.
Motor type … OHV, liquid-cooled single
Displacement … 675cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … Hydraulic 3-speed auto, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shafts
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/5.9”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/7.1”
Length/width/height … 114.7”/64.0”/76.9”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 7.9 gal.
Towing capacity … 1500 lb.
Bed capacity … 1000 lb.
F. tires … 25x10-12
R. tires … 25x10-12
Claimed weight …1433 lb. (curb)
YAMAHA RHINO 700 FI ($11,499)
Here’s where it all began. The Rhino has evolved over the years since it founded the UTV world, but the market has evolved too. Now the Rhino seems much more utility oriented than it once did, but only by comparison to the new crop of machines. The 686cc motor is a blood relative of the Raptor and Grizzly 700s.
Motor type … SOHC, liquid-cooled single
Displacement … 686cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shafts
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/7.3”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/7.3”
Length/width/height … 113.6”/56.6”/73.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic disc
Fuel capacity … 7.9 gal.
Towing capacity … 1212 lb.
Bed capacity … 400 lb.
F. tires … 25x8-12
R. tires … 25x10-12
Claimed weight …1199 lb. (curb)
JOHN DEERE GATOR XUV825I ($11,399)
John Deere has the only three-cylinder gasoline motor in the UTV world. The big 812cc DOHC in-line triple is fuel injected and produces 50 horsepower. Top speed is said to be 44 mph. The bed is massive, with a half-ton of capacity and 16.4 cubic feet of space. It converts to a flatbed platform in minutes.
Motor type … DOHC, liquid-cooled triple
Displacement … 812cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shafts
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.0”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/8.0”
Length/width/height …119.0”/62.0”/75.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic disc
Fuel capacity … 5.3 gal.
Towing capacity … 1500 lb.
Bed capacity … 1000 lb.
F. tires … 26x9-12
R. tires … 26x11-12
Claimed weight … 1640 lb. (curb)
JOHN DEERE GATOR XUV855D ($11,399)
It only makes sense that a company like John Deere would offer a diesel version of its top-of-the-line UTV. The XUV855D has three cylinders like its gasoline-powered twin, but has pushrod-driven overhead valves and produces 25 horsepower. Top speed is 32 mph. The 855D has the same large, convertible cargo box as the other big Deeres.
Motor type … OHV, liquid-cooled, diesel triple
Displacement … 854cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shafts
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.0”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/8.0”
Length/width/height …119.0”/62.0”/75.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic disc
Fuel capacity … 5.3 gal.
Towing capacity … 1500 lb.
Bed capacity … 1000 lb.
F. tires … 26x9-12
R. tires … 26x11-12
Claimed weight … 1650 lb. (curb)
POLARIS RANGER XP 800 ($11,399)
The XP is the flagship of the Ranger line. This year it gets the benefit of the new engine braking system, which gives the operator more control during descents. It still features a 50 horsepower pushrod motor, 2000-pound towing capacity and a 1000-pound bed capacity. The power steering version costs $12,299. Limited editions are $12,999.
Motor type … OHV, liquid-cooled parallel twin
Displacement … 760cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shaft
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.6”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.0”
Length/width/height … 114.0”/60.0”/76.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 9.0 gal.
Towing capacity … 2000 lb.
Bed capacity … 1000 lb.
F. tires … 25x10-12
R. tires … 25x11-12
Claimed weight … 1237 lb. (dry)
POLARIS RANGER RZR 800 ($11,299)
What continues to make this one of the most popular machines in the UTV world is its width--or lack of width. The RZR is 50 inches wide, making it safe and legal for many trail systems in the U.S. It’s still very strong with 50 horsepower. Several limited editions are available for $11,999, and a blue LE with power steering is $12,899.
Motor type … OHV, liquid-cooled parallel twin
Displacement … 760cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … shaft
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.0”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.5”
Length/width/height …103.0”/50.0”/69.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 7.3 gal.
Towing capacity … 1500 lb.
Bed capacity … 300 lb.
F. tires … 25x8-12
R. tires … 25x10-12
Claimed weight … 945 lb. (dry)
POLARIS RANGER EV ($10,999)
There’s nothing quite like the EV. It has an electric motor, but it’s no golf cart. It has true all-wheel drive. It has the electric equivalent of 30 horsepower and can crack the 25 mph barrier. Polaris claims its has the longest range in its class, but we aren’t clear exactly what that range is. It can be recharged through any 110 outlet.
Motor type … 48-volt AC induction
Displacement … NA
Fuel delivery … NA
Transmission … NA
Final drive … Direct drive
F. suspension/travel … MacPherson strut/8.0”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.0”
Length/width/height … 108.0”/56.5”/73.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 9.0 gal.
Towing capacity … 1250 lb.
Bed capacity … 500 lb.
F. tires … 25x9-12
R. tires … 25x9-12
Claimed weight … 1700 lb.
KAWASAKI TERYX 750FI 4x4 ($10,599)
Kawasaki has positioned the Teryx as half utility, half sport. The V-twin motor is powerful, but the bed is large and the towing capacity is 1300 pounds. A Sport version sells for $12,199 and includes lighter cast aluminum wheels and upgraded suspension. An LE has a half windscreen, a roof and automotive-style paint. It starts at $11,399.
Motor type … SOHC, liquid-cooled V-twin
Displacement … 749cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shafts
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/7.5”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/7.5”
Length/width/height … 116.3”/58.5”/75.8”
F. brakes … Hydraulic disc
R. brakes … Sealed multi-disc
Fuel capacity … 7.9 gal.
Towing capacity … 1300 lb.
Bed capacity … 500 lb.
F. tires … 26x8-12
R. tires … 26x10-12
Claimed weight …1402 lb. (curb)
POLARIS RANGER CREW 500 ($10,299)
This is one of the most affordable four-seaters on the market. The Crew 500 has a slightly smaller chassis than the Crew 800 and MacPherson strut front suspension. The 500 has a turf mode while in two-wheel drive, so the rear differential is unlocked and won’t tear up the grass. The Limited Edition has upgraded wheels, paint and seats for $10,999.
Motor type … SOHC, liquid-cooled single
Displacement … 498cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shaft
F. suspension/travel … MacPherson strut/8.0”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.0”
Length/width/height … 140.0”/58.0”/73.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 9.0 gal.
Towing capacity … 1250 lb.
Bed capacity … 500 lb.
F. tires … 25x10-12
R. tires … 25x11-12
Claimed weight … 1288 lb. (dry)
ARCTIC CAT PROWLER 550 I XT ($10,999)
Arctic Cat’s “entry-level” UTV would be a premium model for many other companies. The 550 has a fuel-injected, liquid-cooled motor that isn’t far from that of a Wildcat with one cylinder removed. Standard equipment includes alloy wheels and real paint. Like all the bigger ‘Cats, the 550 has on-the-fly 4WD and diff-lock.
Motor type … SOHC, liquid-cooled single
Displacement … 545cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shafts
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/10.0”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/10.0”
Length/width/height …118.8”/61.5”/79.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 8.2 gal.
Towing capacity … 1500 lb.
Bed capacity … 600 lb.
F. tires … 27x9-14
R. tires … 27x11-14
Claimed weight … 1230 lb. (dry)
 
JOHN DEERE GATOR XUV625I ($10,199)
The Gator XUV625 is clearly designed with work efficiency in mind. The cargo box has 16.4 cubic feet of space with 20 tie-down hooks. The bed also has factory applied spray-in liner and power lift for its half-ton cargo capacity. Four-wheel drive is on-demand but the Gator also has a turf-friendly unlocked rear differential mode.
Motor type … OHV, liquid-cooled twin
Displacement … 617cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shafts
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.0”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/8.0”
Length/width/height …119.0”/62.0”/75.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic disc
Fuel capacity … 5.3 gal.
Towing capacity … 1500 lb.
Bed capacity … 1000 lb.
F. tires … 26x9-12
R. tires … 26x11-12
Claimed weight … 1220 lb. (curb)
POLARIS RANGER RZR 570 ($9999)
Polaris came out with a new DOHC, 567cc motor this year to get the RZR under the $1000 mark. Like the 800, it is 50 inches wide, enabling access to many trail systems in the U.S. The 570 is also lighter than anything in its class, which gives it an excellent power to weight ratio. Polaris claims it reaches 35mph in four seconds flat.
Motor type … DOHC, liquid-cooled single
Displacement … 567cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shaft
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.0”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.5”
Length/width/height … 103.0”/50.0”/69.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 7.3 gal.
Towing capacity … 1500 lb.
Bed capacity … 300 lb.
F. tires … 25x8-12
R. tires … 25x10-12
Claimed weight … 945 lb. (dry)
JOHN DEERE GATOR XUV550 S4 ($9299)
The Gator line has come a long way recently, with improved suspension and ground clearance. The S4 is the multi-passenger model in the line with two bench seats. The V-twin air-cooled motor is carbureted and produces a modest 16 horsepower at 3800 rpm. Top speed is limited to 28 mph.
Motor type … OHV, air-cooled V-twin
Displacement … 570cc
Fuel delivery … Carburetor
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shafts
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.0”
R. suspension/travel … H-arm/8.0”
Length/width/height …146.0”/56.5”/74.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic disc
Fuel capacity … 4.9 gal.
Towing capacity … 1100 lb.
Bed capacity … 400 lb.
F. tires … 25x8-12
R. tires … 25x10-12
Claimed weight … 1455 lb. (curb)
POLARIS RANGER 500EFI ($9299)
The Ranger 500 is a mid-sized UTV designed to fill a price-point position in the Polaris line. In other words, it’s inexpensive. But the 500 still has a fairly sophisticated liquid-cooled OHC motor with fuel injection. It makes use of fairly simple MacPherson strut suspension. A Limited Edition version has many upgrades and is still only $9999.
Motor type … SOHC, liquid-cooled single
Displacement … 498cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shaft
F. suspension/travel … MacPherson strut/8.0”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.0”
Length/width/height … 108.0”/56.5”/73.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 9.0 gal.
Towing capacity … 1250 lb.
Bed capacity … 500 lb.
F. tires … 25x8-12
R. tires … 25x11-12
Claimed weight … 1055 lb. (dry)
CF MOTO Z6 ($8999)
We tested the Z6 in 2011 and came away impressed with the quality and the finish. For 2012, most of our complaints were addressed with larger wheels and new steering geometry. The Z6 still comes with a winch and alloy wheels as standard equipment, along with an impressive list of creature comforts.
Motor type … SOHC, liquid-cooled single
Displacement … 594cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shafts
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.5”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.1”
Length/width/height …103.5”/52.0”/70.9”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 7.1 gal.
Towing capacity … Not specified
Bed capacity … Not specified
F. tires … 27x9-14
R. tires … 27x11-14
Claimed weight … 992 lb. (dry)
POLARIS RANGER 400 ($8299)
The Ranger 400 is a North American answer to increasing competition from Asia. It has most of the features of the premium Rangers at an incredible price. The motor is carbureted, but otherwise perfectly modern and produces 29 horsepower. The reduced overall size of the 400 allows it to be carried in the back of a pickup truck.
Motor type … SOHC, liquid-cooled single
Displacement … 455cc
Fuel delivery … Carburetor
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shaft
F. suspension/travel … MacPherson strut/8.0”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.0”
Length/width/height … 108.0”/56.5”/73.0”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic discs
Fuel capacity … 9.0 gal.
Towing capacity … 1250 lb.
Bed capacity … 500 lb.
F. tires … 25x8-12
R. tires … 25x11-12
Claimed weight … 1050 lb. (dry)
KYMCO UXV500I ($8799)
Kymco is based in Taiwan, but makes products for some very big names, including Kawasaki and BMW. The UXV500 got fuel injection this year for its DOHC liquid-cooled motor. There are three versions; the SE comes with alloy wheels, a roof and windshield for $9329 and the LE adds a winch and more and sells for $10,199.
Motor type … DOHC, liquid-cooled single
Displacement … 499cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shaft
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/7.5”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/7.5”
Length/width/height … 113.0”/59.0”/72.8”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic disc
Fuel capacity … 8.5 gal.
Towing capacity … 1200 lb.
Bed capacity … 420 lb.
F. tires … 25x8-12
R. tires … 25x10-12
Claimed weight … 1157 lb. (dry)
JOHN DEERE GATOR XUV550 ($8199)
The mid-sized Gator XUV550 will just barely fit into a full-size pickup truck. The V-twin motor produces 28.6 foot-pounds of torque and 16 horsepower, is air-cooled, breathes through a conventional carburetor, and is capable of pushing the machine to 28 mph. The Gator’s price is excellent.
Motor type … OHV, air-cooled V-twin
Displacement … 570cc
Fuel delivery … Carburetor
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shafts
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/9.0”
R. suspension/travel … H-arm/8.0”
Length/width/height …115.0”/56.5”/73.5”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic disc
Fuel capacity … 4.9 gal.
Towing capacity … 1100 lb.
Bed capacity … 400 lb.
F. tires … 25x8-12
R. tires … 25x10-12
Claimed weight … 1220 lb. (curb)
CF MOTO 600 UTV ($7999)
CF Moto offers incredible value. This year the company’s rather basic utility UTV got upgraded with a new liquid-cooled, fuel-injected motor. What really makes it stand out is the long list of standard equipment. Every CF Moto UTV comes with a winch, alloy wheels, a roof and other goodies that make it a bargain.
Motor type … SOHC, liquid-cooled single
Displacement … 594cc
Fuel delivery … EFI
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shafts
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm
Length/width/height …113.5”/56.3”/74.8”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic disc
Fuel capacity … 7.1 gal.
Towing capacity … Not specified
Bed capacity … Not specified
F. tires … 25x8-12
R. tires … 25x10-12
Claimed weight … 1221 lb. (dry)
KYMCO UXV500 ($7699)
Kymco actually lowered the price of its standard UXV500, from $8099 to $7699. With the fuel-injected version now in the line, the original carbureted model is offered as a budget model, but it still has surprisingly good quality. The DOHC motor is rated at 36 horsepower and it has 7.5 inches of suspension travel all the way around.
Motor type … DOHC, liquid-cooled single
Displacement … 499cc
Fuel delivery … Carburetor
Transmission … CVT, hi/lo/rev
Final drive … Shaft
F. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/7.5”
R. suspension/travel … Twin A-arm/7.5”
Length/width/height … 113.0”/59.0”/72.8”
F. brakes … Hydraulic discs
R. brakes … Hydraulic disc
Fuel capacity … 8.5 gal.
Towing capacity … 1200 lb.
Bed capacity … 420 lb.
F. tires … 25x8-12
R. tires … 25x10-12
Claimed weight … 1157 lb. (dry)
 

Topic: UTV Tests

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WARNING: Much of the action de­pict­­ed in this magazine is potentially dan­gerous. Virtually all of the riders seen in our photos are experienced ex­­perts or professionals. Do not at­tempt to duplicate any stunts that are be­­yond your own capabilities. Always wear the appropriate safety gear.
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