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Old January 1st, 2010, 11:33 AM   #1
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Default Utility/4wd Quads

How big of a motor do you really need?

I'm getting an itch to get a 4wd utility quad, I've always wanted one for working around the yard, some mudding/trailriding, pulling the kids around the yard/lake on a sled, plowing the driveway, etc.

The ONLY 4wd utility quad I have ANY experience with is a Suzuki Vinson that I used while working at for a quad/sled/dirtbike/dealer. I used it to tow sled trailers around, landscaping, etc. I have no idea what it was, that was 7 years ago.

I'd like reasonable power, I'd like something that can turn some nice mud tires, top speed is not a major concern, nor is acceleration really, this would be more of a work horse/trail rider.

My experience with quads consists of banshee's, blasters, warriors, and a yzf750 thing. So it's been all 2wd sport quads.

I sat on the new arctic cats at basspro yesterday and they are pretty badass, but do I really need a 700?
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Old January 1st, 2010, 11:39 AM   #2
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I had a 2004 Arctic Cat 650 4x4.

It had enough power but with the bigger tires (29") the steering was scary at higher speeds. It would pull some wheelies too. I am missing it this time of year, it had a 60" plow too.

I wouldn't waste my money on a smaller motor unless you plan on keeping stock size tires.

I did see a 600 Honda 4x4 do very well in stock form. Went through some pretty deep snow and amazed me a bit.

If I had a bunch of money to do it again I think I would go for a Bombardier 800 Can Am.


If you like the Arctic Cats look here www.arcticchat.com
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Old January 1st, 2010, 12:00 PM   #3
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If ya want to get a wide range of the feel of quads, your close enough to me if you want ride my yamaha grizzly 350 around. Its forsale too But it will tell ya if you will really want a 700 or not.
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Old January 1st, 2010, 12:05 PM   #4
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500 polaris will take you everywhere
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Old January 1st, 2010, 12:06 PM   #5
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I made the fatal mistake of under buying. I had a 325 magnum 2wd. it was ok for around the yard. it was helpless in the sandy trails. its the worst quad I ever saw in the trails. it also didn't help that it had the infamous one lever braking that Polaris is famous for...thats what flipped me after getting used to another machine then switching back for a day. I have 650 Prairie and a 750 Brute Force that have done me fine since then. the 650 is a little better on fuel in the trails. I can go 4 hours and only burn about 3 gallons
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Old January 1st, 2010, 12:17 PM   #6
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my kodiak 450 yamaha has plenty of power to do all sorts of tasks and it doesn't ever feel underpowered. i have 27" super swamper vampires on it and those tires have so much traction i don't need to spin them to get through mud. my quad has a low range that makes it possible to pull a 1800 lbs boat and trailer without effort. i've even used my quad to tow a broken down 1500 from the back of mounds all the way to the parking lot.
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Old January 1st, 2010, 01:00 PM   #7
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a 450cc quad would be the smallest I would consider. I had an 06 Yamaha bruin 350 4x4 a few years back, and it was underpowered. My girlfriend rode it at the dunes, and it was fine for her...but it wouldn't get my big ass up Test hill most of the time. I used it to plow my driveway, and it would get the job done...but I would need a running start to get the big piles moving. I had it out at the mounds when I first bought it, and it didn't have enough power to get the tires spinning when it was in deep mud....it would just bog out and not move at all. A lot of that had to do with the clutching, but even with a clutch kit it wouldn't do much better.

I also have an 06 wolverine 450 4x4 (basically a Yamaha grizzly/kodiak 450 with different plastics and no racks), and that is a much better quad. It doesn't have low range, but it still has enough power to move me around with no problem and get the tires spinning in the mud. I have a little bit of work done to it now (pipe, clutch work, jetted and filter) and it really moves well for a 450cc 4x4.

But, if I were to buy a new one today...it would be a grizzly 700 for sure. As far as speed as concerned, they aren't much faster than my wolverine...but it is so much more comfortable, and has enough power to spin big tires in any type of mud. The power steering on them is awesome too, if you have them locked in 4x4 or have a plow on the front, they normally are a pain to turn...not with the EPS, they turn easy as heck. They have fuel injection, 4 wheel independent suspension, and a seat that feels like a couch...out of everything I have rode and seen, it is the best all around utility quad on the market IMO.

Yamaha also makes a grizzly 550 which is identical to the 700 (same frame, suspension, block, etc), just a smaller bore...but for the price difference, it is useless in my opinion. You can never have too much power, but I have been in the situation quite a few times when I didn't have enough and it sucks.

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Old January 1st, 2010, 02:29 PM   #8
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what ever you do dont buy a polaris. belt driven transmissions yuk. ive had nothing but bad luck with these and about blew the guy that bought them from me. id liked my kodiak alot seemed to do everything i wanted it was a 4x4 quad but was still small enough were i could toss it around a bit and feel sporty. but if your gonna buy one buy big leave stock. my .02
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Old January 1st, 2010, 07:18 PM   #9
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I've got a 06 Can-Am outlander 400. I love it, for a small motor has plenty of get up and go. I use it also at home to move my car hauler around the yard. I like it cause its a utility quad that has a sport feel to it. On tight trails it handles nice, mud I don't know never played in it, it is also a blast in the snow.
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Old January 1st, 2010, 07:49 PM   #10
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X2 on the wolverine, I have a 2007 Yamaha 450 Wolverine and a 2007 Polaris Sportsman 700 efi, The wolverine is funner for me, but the Polaris is extremely fast and rides like a Cadillac,but too heany if you were to get it stuck you would be screwed its heavier then hell. If I were to buy new today I would look real hard at the Honda Rancher 420 efi with independant rear suspension, plent of power, good in trails(exploring and normal rides), and great work horse.
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Old January 1st, 2010, 07:59 PM   #11
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If it helps your choice at all I was talking to one of the guys at Town & Country Power in Cement City about why he didn't sell anything but the Polaris Victory cycles? his exact words were " I would have to add another building just to do the service work". he said they could sell 300 units a year back about 5 years ago when I talked to him, he said they were so prone to warranty issues he wouldn't be able to keep up with his current man power and shop. I bought my sons Suzuki Ozark from him, good folks out there
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Old January 1st, 2010, 08:01 PM   #12
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By the way " B " on the board sells Arctic cat & Kawasaki quads, he always has a bunch listed around here
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Old January 1st, 2010, 08:14 PM   #13
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I've got a '99 polaris sportsman 335. Close to 6000 miles on it now and still going strong. Cant break it. She tops out at about 45. It has plenty of power to spin the tires in the mud. Does great in the snow. Ive never had it in sand. It pulls an 18' utility trailer just fine in low range.
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Old January 2nd, 2010, 12:50 AM   #14
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x2 on "b" brian i dealt with him several times when he was at bright kaw. down by me.


and a reminder polaris = turddddddddddddddddddddddddddddd junk
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Old January 2nd, 2010, 01:13 AM   #15
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ive always wanted a yamaha grizzly 700. those are good quads
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Old January 2nd, 2010, 02:03 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mclovin View Post
500 polaris will take you everywhere
\x2 sportsman 500 will be plenty enough...also you can get a 2 up model with a small box on the back and you ould have alot more flexibility with it
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Old January 6th, 2010, 01:32 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yetti View Post
By the way " B " on the board sells Arctic cat & Kawasaki quads, he always has a bunch listed around here
Quote:
Originally Posted by unclebeaner View Post
x2 on "b" brian i dealt with him several times when he was at bright kaw. down by me.


and a reminder polaris = turddddddddddddddddddddddddddddd junk
Im with these guys Yetti has 2 good choices in quads!



I have a 700 prairie now and even back when i worked at bright and we sold almost every brand thats still the one i went with. I like the v twin quads for the low end torque, and you can pick up a 04-06 700 for a good price, and they are good reliable quads with plenty of power.
Im an arctic cat / kawasaki / kymco dealer now, for what i see in service i would stick to kaw out of the 3. Yamaha is also a very reliable product, but no v twins, X2 on the Can am 800 thats a vtwin but you cant find them cheap yet they are too new.

Edit: Some of the older AC's that used the 650 kaw driveline were a better product than their newer stuff (a lot of their newer units are made by a company called kymco)

btw the suzuki vinson is a 500cc if your making a comparison.

Last edited by B; January 6th, 2010 at 02:08 PM.
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Old January 6th, 2010, 01:52 PM   #18
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For the most part- any of the bigger utility quads will be "belt driven" so don't let that drive you one way or the other.
I've had 3 - 2000 Polaris 500, 2003 Kawasaki KFX700 v-twin (a sport bike, but great driveline!!!) and my current ride is a 2005 Arctic Cat 650 v-twin (Kawasaki powerplant).

I'd get another 650 or bigger V-twin all over again if I was in the market for another one.They are much smoother, have a more controlable powerband, and TONS of touque.

Great for plowing, pulling, ect. Also, after running all differnt types of quads on trails, mud, snow, and sand, the utilities definately run out the smoothest and beat you up the least.
On a 50 mile trail near Kalkaska, I actially made better time on my Arctic Cat than my older Kaw 700 just because I could fly over the woops without having to slow down and wasn't the least bit sore the next day!!!

Just my $.02
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Old January 6th, 2010, 02:30 PM   #19
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My Polaris 500 has gone everywhere I've taken it - as fast as I wanna ride a 700 lb thing on tires with <10 psi in them. Power has never been an issue, even remotely. Like any offroad vehicle, it's more about gearing and traction than straight-line power.

A Polaris 800 is crazy powerful - kinda like a TJ with a big block. But is it worth the extra $ and increased gas usage (in the sense that there are few gas stations on the trails and the 16 mpg my buddy gets on his 800)?

On a trail ride, it's easy to run a 4-5 gallon tank dry at 16 mpg. My 500 gets about 25 mpg in real-world usage, which gives me nice range with some reserve. I typically carry an extra 4 gallons in a flat pack.

Also the older style Polaris Sportmans (not the "XP" models) have a wonderful dry storage box in the front rack. It's convenient and priceless.
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Old January 24th, 2010, 10:06 AM   #20
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well loved my 680 honda rincon 2nd to none in worry free riding but my outlander 800 is a rocket rides like a cadillac
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