FIRST REVIEW of HONDAS new SIDE x SIDE. “Talented hawks do not hide their talons.” -Soichiro Honda
There have been rumors, spy photos, and years of speculation about when and even if Honda would build a high-performance Side x Side.The biggest surprise is there are two of them and we dug deep to learn all we could about the new Honda Talon 1000R and Talon 1000X.They’re likely the most important new models in a decade.
"Starting 19th we knew we had our work cut out for us, so we pushed the car hard to run down our Can-Am teammate, Phil Blurton, and to come out on top — still feels like a dream,"
“It’s really 99% stock, aside from the all the aluminum and mandatory BITD changes. By stock, I mean we run a stock drivetrain, stock clutch, stock ECM and even the frame underneath everything is stock,” he said. “It’s just so competitive and reliable, always giving us a chance to finish.”
Earlier this year, Textron Specialized Vehicles introduced a game-changing, high performance vehicle, the all-new Textron Off Road Wildcat XX
The Wildcat XX’s DNA is from racing so its early arrival on the podium over higher-powered turbo vehicles is no surprise. Designed in collaboration with off-road racing legend Robby Gordon, the Wildcat XX shined in the varying terrain of the Sand Hollow track due to its race-inspired suspension. Its 125-horsepower engine had plenty of power on tap to muscle through the sand and rough sections with ease.
You’ve got hunting buddies, work buddies, and riding buddies but nobody is ever going to be as important to you as the buddy who has your back when a dedicated enemy is shooting at your front. In military terms they’ve got your six and what it means is you can depend on your buddy at all times, every time. It’s a lifelong bond like no other.
The 2016 High Lifter Products ATV Mud Nationals is in the books and it seems this annual event is becoming a pilgrimage for the mud faithful. Year after year, for the last 14, the largest off road mud riding event held in the USA rolls into the sleepy little town of Jacksonville, Texas. It was a simple gathering started by High Lifter Products to get some friends for a fellowship ride. It was organized to experience the joys of riding together in the trails of Mud Creek Off Road Park.
Fuel injected ATVs are becoming the norm on showroom floors these days. We have to admit that it’s awful nice to not have to babysit a choke knob for the first few minutes of your morning warmup, and to know that our EFI equipped engines will always be running in their sweet spot regardless of temperature or elevation. Still, many riders prefer a good old carburetor for a variety of reasons, and some have even removed their EFI components to go back to a carbureted engine.
A Year in the Saddle of the Polaris Scrambler XP 1000
Holeshot Ace, Pete Bengel
I’ve often questioned the logic in large displacement ATVs - especially ones close to or north of 700lbs. on the scale. Yeah, we all like to have bragging rights when it comes to having the most horsepower, but when does it just become too much of a good thing? When Polaris released their Scrambler 1000, it was no exception to those thoughts. And even though initial ride impressions were that it was extremely nimble and forgiving for a one-liter titan of an ATV, it was still a heavy, extremely fast monster.
Yamaha Updates Our Favorite Sand Blaster, The Mighty Raptor 700R
As much as we enjoy climbing up a rocky trail or slogging through a muddy pond on a utility ATV, we’ll always be sport riders at heart. The challenge of shifting up through the gears, pitching your machine around a corner, or sailing off a jump is more intense on a sport machine, and we really like how a great sport machine can challenge your skills as much as the trail. Nothing else can match the power to weight ratio and acceleration, especially if you’re on a healthy 450cc machine, or better yet, Yamaha’s Raptor 700.
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that Side-by-Sides are taking over the off road vehicle industry. Everywhere you look on the trails, the dunes, and even on the road, you see big, wide wheelbases and roll cages. In fact, SxS sales are carrying some manufacturers through tough financial times, and the manufacturers with the most going for them right now, not coincidentally, have at least one SxS model in their lineup.
As much as we like climbing over obstacles, exploring trails, and swimming through mud on a utility ATV, nothing gets us back to the roots of why we began riding in the first place like spending time on a great sport ATV. It’s riding just for the sport of it. There is no hitch for hauling around work or racks for toting hunting gear, but it is riding for no other purpose than to enjoy the moment. No company understands that better than Yamaha.