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I am considering buying a new ATV and am looking for suggestions. I looked at and drove a Polaris Sportsman 570 EPS today and was not overly impressed. That's about the size ATV and price range I'm looking at. Honda? Suzuki? Opinions and suggestions please. In advance, thanks.
My Polaris 500 is 15 years old. I feed it gas and elk blood, love it.
I wouldn't own anything but a Honda.
Only Hondas for me too. If you get a Polaris be sure to have a good tool box and a tow strap....
I have a Honda 350 and a Polaris 570. I had an old Polaris 500 for 12 years. Never a breakdown just routine maintenance.
I think my Polaris has a much better ride than the Honda. I love the Honda because I know my great grandkids will probably be riding it some day. Never an issue with it in 10 years.
My Polaris 500 is 18 years old still runs strong, never done a thing to it but change the oil.
I know Honda’s are good, but I’ve been a Polaris sportsman’s guy for a long time. Absolutely love my 850. Either way I don’t think you can go wrong.
My Polaris 500 is 20 years old. It's been a good machine over the years, with never an engine problem, but the past year or so it has ruined a lot of trips for me because of annoying little problems on a regular basis, including the trip I'm on now! I was looking at the same two options. What didn't you like about the 570? Which current Honda model in that size range do you guys recommend?
I have had both, prefer the Honda for reliability.
I have a friend that is a dealer. He’s bought, sold, rode and traded for every brand of ATV and UTV a 100 times over. Honda still has a great engine but has lagged far behind everyone else on all aspects of performance. Yamaha and Suzuki are far ahead of them. Polaris, what I have, is in the mix and a working mans machine. It’s a value priced option. The absolute undisputed king is Can-Am. Best in ride! Best in mechanical reliability! Best in power! And you pay for what you get. But go ride a new one and you will be shocked at the power, ride and fit and finish. Good luck on your search!
I was in your same situation a couple of years ago. I had only owned Honda's but got to the point my back couldn't handle their rough ride anymore and wanted power steering. I looked at the Can Am Outlander 570 and the Honda Rubicon 500 with power steering and independent rear suspension.
I ultimately went with the Can Am because it was $1500 cheaper and I could get 0% APR for 3 years. I also wanted to put tracks on my new ride and was assured that the Can Am had way more horse power for spinning the tracks.
Since then, I have second guessed myself a few times. It takes almost 2.5 hours to change the oil in the Can Am because you have to remove so much plastic. Most Handas take maybe 20 minutes to change. The ride is awesome on the Can Am, but the clearance is horrible. I hit alot of rocks I would never hit with a Honda. Lastly, there's always the potential of having to deal with the belt on the Can Am which I've heard is a real pain to change. No belts on Honda's.
My Polaris Sportsman 500 is 17 years old and has been flawless so far.
I got a great deal on an older Polaris Sportsman, too good to pass on. But, my first choice would be Honda.
Tried them all and always but once owned Honda. No regrets ever with a Honda. Choice 2 was Can Am.
I’ve got a 1987 Honda. It had it’s first trip to the shop for carburetor cleaning last year. 33 years of reliable use speaks to Honda reliability.
Had a nice ride today with my granddaughter she loves our Polaris 570 midsize.
Had a couple Polaris. Good but had 400! grease fittings and electric issues on both, same with friends that had them. Have a Can Am now. Second one. Superior ride without a doubt. Friends that have other brands are impressed at the ride. Change oil without the issue JohnnyRingo has. Not sure what that's about. Oh, had a Honda too. Very good.Now adays I think they are all good and have various issues worked out. Just a matter of what you like and the deal you can get. I have found there isn't much dickering on price of the machine, just on accessories. My Can Am is 570. Plenty for this old boy. Oh, and get hand warmers and a removable windshield if you use it in the North country.
I have owned Honda,Suzuki,Kawasaki and Yamaha.Last three have been Yamaha's.Very dependable and the best 4WD system and CVT in the business.Honda's motors are great but the rest of the machine not so much;lots of problems (up North) with the electric shift.
Honda or Kawasaki - avoid Polaris like the plague if you want dependability/reliability.
I own two. The Honda let’s me ride. The Polaris taught me mechanic’s. You’ve been warned.
Thank-you to all for the comments and opinions. I should have said this in my opening post.....I bought a Polaris Sportsman 500 new in 1999 and it has been very dependable even thought I worked it fairly hard for 21 years. Since I had little to no trouble with that Polaris, that's why I test drove the current Polaris model first. The Polaris 570 EPS I test drove was OK...I expected to be "wowed!" and wasn't. It was somewhat disappointing not to be. I think I'll give Can Am and Honda a hard look. Again fellows, thanks for the opinions & experiences.
Got a Polaris Sportsman 400 for fathers day in 2001. Still have it and it has never let me down. Rides great and all I've done is normal maintenance but I did just pay to have new Tie-rods put on. No regrets and I would recommend them to anyone. I also had a 2005 Ranger 500 I just sold last fall and got a Polaris General 4 1000. Polaris has been very good to me and never let me down. By the way, all my machines have been garage kept, regular scheduled maintenance performed by me, used in rugged AZ conditions but never abused.
I had Honda's for a long time and really liked them but they never kept up with ride and features. Can_Am's are a mother to work on or do basic maintenance. Ask any mechanic. Good luck on your quest.
I’ve got a 2003 Polaris Sportsman 400. Never done anything to it but change the fluids.
I bet most people that have a Polaris can pull a trailer down the road without wrecking.
Mine is a Honda Rancher 425. It has power steering and independent rear suspension. I certainly agree with the guys saying it lacks the frills and lacks a bit in ride quality, but the IRS closes the gap a bit. But that is exactly why I bought it, I want no frills reliability and long term dependability. Hard to go wrong with Honda IMO, but it doesn’t have the “wow factor”. My second choice was Can-Am as well.
I don't own a Polaris, but have friends who do. From what I can determine, a Polaris is like an old Dodge Powerwagon- you either got an indestructible "tank" or a piece of "undesired piece of trash".
I have owned Honda, Suzuki and Arctic Cat. Ive had good luck with all three brands. Of the three however, the Honda was the best. Ran it for 25 yrs and sold it for almost my initial purchase price.
I bought a new Honda Foreman 20 years ago,,,, to be used for trapping and hunting. It is bullet proof and never had any issues, other than routine maintenance. Just put new tires on it. I am in remote spots, need to know its going to start....
When my wife got into trail riding, she had the Yamaha Grizzly, and now the Polaris 700. Both have been excellent machines, and are very comfortable to trail ride with. My Honda Foreman is a working machine, not a good trail rider, and of course I am now 70, not 50, so comfort is now more important......
However with the UDT craze in Wis and the UP, there are great deals on used machines. I just found a Polaris 700. 4wd, automatic with a warn winch, with 190 hours on it. 4 additional tires with rims, cabelas hard box, in the front, and a tool box in the rear, plus its a 2 up, with stirrups for the second passenger, and I got it for 2000.00
now its a great trail rider, but not a woods machine, so depends on what you need it for,,,,, my foreman I can throw around, tough as nails, and has hauled a lot of animals and equipment,,,,,,,,,, Yeah I like the Honda for that.....
So Case my question to you, is what are you buying it for?
OK GH, here goes. It has to be a working machine for my hunting property. Gotta be four wheel drive. I use it to pull loads, do trail work, haul wood and drag out a deer or two. My hunting land is up and down,...the Baraboo Bluffs of Sauk Co., WI if you know what I mean. Some trails are groomed others are almost through the brush. Don't think I ever abused the Polaris I had but I certainly pushed it to the edge a few times.
FWIW....I've had my camo 2010 Yamaha 550 Grizz since 2011. I got it from a young couple in western WI on the border. They only had it for a short time and had to sell it. It came with a new 5' plow to boot....which I don't use. I think it had 20 hours on it. I think it's got about 1200 miles on it now. It is parked and stored inside. I put a 2" hitch on it and use it around the house to tow the boat (16' CC) and utility trailers around. It has the EPS and EFI on it which is very nice. The property I hunt on has the highest elevation in lower MI so there are alot of hills and valleys there. It does well on those. It has 4WD plus a traction lock that actually spins all 4 wheels. It's very fast too. I really can't think of anything negative to say about it. If the opportunity was there I would have gotten the 700 Grizz but the 550 does everything I need and then some. So my vote goes with the Yamaha Grizz......
I have only owned one, bought it new. 2004 Suzuki 400. No complaints at all. GL.
Case, then buy a Honda. Its also lower to the ground, and in the hill country, it will handle better. My friend lives in Cortez Colorado. He told me, once do not bring out those Polaris 500 here, their too high of center, for mountain riding. They all own only Hondas....................... Good luck, you will not regret it..... Mine is full time 4wd. I also have chains for my tires,,,,,,
Suzuki kings are one of the best if no the best all around atv's
2002 Yamaha Big Bear 400. Bought it new. Has almost 5000 miles on it, plowing snow, yard work and riding Mtn trails with zero problems over the years.
Hell, one time I lent it to buddy and it fell off his trailer doing 60. And survived just fine.
Definitely a Ford vs Chevy thing when you ask this question. But I will say that I’m hooked on Honda. I own two ranchers that have been amazingly reliable for ten years and I bought them used. Parts are easy to find and they are relatively simple to work on yourself. I just got a Kawasaki mule through a real estate sale and you can have that thing.
Pat, Can I pick it up from you when I am in Ohio next?
Really have had great luck with my Yamahas Good luck Lewis
Love my Polaris 570, on it everyday here at the farm.
I have a 2003 Yamaha big bear 400 and it's been very dependable. Although after every usage I dream of having 4 wheel independent suspension!
Yamaha, Honda, or Kawasaki. I would not buy a Can Am or Polaris.
I have a 2001 Yamaha 400 Big Bear, bought it used. I ride it on rough trails and plow snow with it. The thing is a beast and I abuse it and lag on maintenance. Still running as strong as the day I bought it. My wife has a Yamaha Grizzly 350 she got new in 2008ish, no issues, she is gentler on her machine. My brother got a used Kawasaki and uses it hard, no issues with his machine either.
I see a thread full of fellers who haven't operated a yamerhammer grizz 700eps, an older yam Kodiak, or the simple and reliable big bear. ;) Bulletproof is about the only term that comes to mind for the yams. Honda's are good too, we had a lot of trouble with the electric shifters over the years. Several buddies have Polaris and admit their rigs need considerably more maintenance than the yams. Whatever you get, ride it safely, many deadly ATV accidents every year.
Depends somewhat on your riding and terrain conditions. For me, I won’t have a machine that doesn’t have an actual front diff-lock. Independent rear suspension is another big plus for rough trails and keeping the corners in the ground. And now that I have it on my latest machine, power steering. I spend quite a bit of time on slow twisty, rutted trails and it sure reduces fatigue and increases maneuverability.
I’m a Yamaha fan after three machines and no issues. I’m currently running a 2012 Grizzly 700. Except for no power steering, my 450 Kodiak was definitely my favourite ATV to ride. An older 400 Big Bear was trouble free but it was all work and not much fun to play.
Yamaha made a couple of dumb engine mistakes some since 2015, and let the great little 450 down by not including diff lock anymore which is really too bad.
I sold a couple of solid axle Hondas in 2018, a '02 Rubicon 500 and '08 Rancher that I'd had 9 years each and had zero problems with either machine and got almost what I'd paid for them after the 9 yrs of use. Good machines that hold their value.
I bought a used 2013 Yamaha Grizzly 550 two years ago. It has independent rear suspension, power steering, heated grips and excellent (soft) seat making it much more pleasant to ride than the Hondas. The diff lock, clutched belt drive that holds you back going down hill and Warn winch are excellent features. About the only drawbacks I can note on the Yamaha versus Honda are poorer fuel economy and a bit noisier muffler. The Yamaha does have a larger fuel tank to compensate for the poorer mileage making it a trade-off for day riding, but on extended trips you have to carry more fuel in. Good luck!
I own a 2017 Polaris 570 and a 2015 Yamaha Grizzly 550.
If you are only riding for recreation the Polaris is a much better ride. The rest of the comparison stops there. You can’t strap anything on the Polaris racks, the battery compartment is under the machine, the plow kit is overpriced and bent to hell. For utility the Yamaha is definitely a superior machine. I owned Honda’s for many years and they were also bulletproof but seemed to lag behind in innovation compared to other brands.
Nobody has mentioned artic cat. I owned a 700efi for 10 years. It had power and good utility value but absolutely the Biggest piece of junk I ever owned mechanically speaking! Avoid those!
Can't strap anything on the Polaris racks?
Works great for pushing snow as well but I don't have the Polaris plow kit so can't comment on that. Never needed any chains, either.
This reminds me of diesel truck threads, ford specifically and how they fall apart. My suggestion is, if your atv or truck is falling apart, whatever brand, learn how to drive it.
I strap Elk to my Polaris rack with regularity and also have had the snow plow for the last 16 years. I just leveled 24 yards of #1 fill this weekend with that blade and plow snow every winter.
Has Polaris fixed the problem they were having with the top end on the 570. I owned a Polaris 500 that was the bomb! I have Can Am that I love, but is out of your stated price range now.
Well, I'll mention Arctic Cat. I have a 2008 700 efi that I bought new and it has been a great machine and I use the hell out of it. It's fast with lots of power, locking differentials independent suspension and I believe the highest ground clearance on the market.
I use it to disk food plots, pull heavy loads of firewood, move trailers etc.
It's been to Wyoming a couple times and over 11,000 feet in Colorado. It's hauled out a few elk and numerous deer and never let me down.
I've only done basic repairs on it in 12 years such as a couple CV axle boots, front drive shaft u-joint and I did replace the voltage regulator once.
I will probably always buy Polaris. Both my ATVS have been near indestructible. The outfitters I've hunted with in CO and Canada swear by them. A rancher friend of mine bought a Arctic Cat UTV and had to have the engine rebuilt on it twice. He bought a Polaris after that.
I have a 2017 Can Am Outlander 570. My wife uses it for barn work. The fuel pump quit in less than 100 miles. They wanted $800 for a new one. Can Am would do nothing for us. I replaced it myself. I promised them I would pass on my dissatisfaction at every opportunity that I could.
Cat is now owned by Textron. I see that as a positive, the company has big money behind them now. I look for future improvements. I own land in several states and have ATV's at site on all of them. I have owned Polaris and Can-Am. I have neighbors though that have JD, Honda and Yamaha as well so I have experience with all of these for comparison. My oldest Polaris (Sportsman 500) was bought new in '99 and has plowed 2000' of driveway and climbed steep hills since then without an issue. I have had good luck with my other machines too, but that one is a tank. I ride things real hard and baby nothing, it's been indestructible. I personally favor American made/owned or Canadian made/owned on anything I buy, especially machines. I admit I have a number of European made guns, but that's another story. Majority of guns for personal use are American made though.
I have a 2002 Honda 350 Rancher bought new. Use for hunting and farming, currently has over 6,000 miles and still on the original battery. (prob die on me tomorrow now that I have said that).
Had a Polaris 500... nothing but problems. My buddy also had Polaris the same problems. Bought a Honda 650 several years ago... It's been outstanding! You will not go wrong with a Honda.
Here’s my 570. The front rack/compartment sucks for strapping something onto it. The gun scabbard is bungeed down tightly because of the crappy design. It flops out on the trail if I don’t use the bungees. As I said, the Polaris is a superb ride but the accessories d utility value don’t compare to the Yamaha.
i had a Polaris that I loved. It was stolen right out of my yard. My grandson is parts manager for John Deere and he fixed me up with a Gator. I love it and can drive around in the rain and snow and stay nice and dry. I can get three deer in the bed. The Polaris was faster but the Gator goes fast enough for me, especially since most of my riding is in the woods. My grandson used to go to competitions and he traveled all over the East cost competing with motor cycles and four wheelers. He liked Yamaha for the four wheel completions and did very well.
Can-am absolutely if you can afford it.
Honda. Belt drive machines aren't work machines.
I currently ride a 98 Polaris Sportsman 500. Been a great machine. Gave $500 bucks for it. Owner said it needed a starter, got it home and cleaned wires on relay hasn't missed a beat since. Awesome suspension and awesome ground clearance. Case, don't ditch your old one if you buy something different, especially if its been a good one. (You will thank me later) The power steering is nice on new ones tho.
Polaris and don’t look back
This thread is a hoot! We should all get drunk and fight like mountain men at the Green River rendezvous!
CPA, yeah, that front rack looks dumb. The older models were much better.
Good idea Lou, let’s start the evening off with you vs Midwest! Sounds like fun!
Midwest that’s why I posted the pic. It’s a small storage compartment but impossible to strap a cooler on! Before you buy, look where the battery is located! Center of frame on the bottom where you can’t access and as soon as you go thru a mud hole it’s under water. Stupid design!
Yeah the Polaris 570 battery is in an impossible spot to reach if you have to put cables on a dead battery or hook up to trickle charger.
No way I'm taking on Lou! He knows yoga!
I think they're an option but most dealers out here put real racks on them before they hit the floor.
I'm also running a Grizzly 700 with EPS. Fantastic machine. I plow and hunt with it. No problems. It's great.
Packed out an entire bull plus camp with it.
FWIW.....here is my Grizz with some cargo boxes I made for it on one of my bear trips to Canada. I only planned on a one-time use but ended up liking them so much I kept them on and get alot of use out of them in my travels. I attached them to the factory Grizz racks with u-bolts. I put eye bolts on the sides so I can use a ratchet strap to secure anything that needs securing while riding. You can get creative with different size boxes, installing lids and so forth. I added a pic showing I cut a slot in the back box to allow the metal bar on the Grizz rack to slide thru.
“No way I'm taking on Lou! He knows yoga!”
No kidding!! Besides the slippery Lulu’s he wears, he has his famous Tripod maneuver.
Wish I could have gotten the limited edition purple camo like Bob's.
That was an awesome spot.
Yamaha Grizzly 550 with EPS. Mic drop!
I think we have gone beyond answering the OP's question and turned this into everyone's ATV adventure. Ha Back in 1998 I bought a used 250 2 cycle Polaris ATV (don't recall the year). It was good when it ran but I loved having an ATV. I traded it in on a 2003 700 Sportsman. That thing ran awesome and was a beast. I never did anything but oil and one CV boot. My wife and I got tired of riding on an ATV and bought a 2015 Polaris Ranger ETX. I sold the 700 for 2.5k which surprised me but the guy wanted it. The ETX was not a popular UTV because it is only 325cc but it makes 31HP, they only made them for one or two years. 31HP is plenty for me on my place. It has done a bunch of work, hauled my trailer full of brush, salted and snow plowed my driveway just to name a few jobs. I am just looking for working machines I guess.
I found I didn't want to take the Ranger into the woods and mess it up so last year I bought a smaller sized ATV. It was a used 2004 Polaris Sportsman. This thing is a blast and runs great.
I never set out to be a Polaris guy but the last 3 I have had were great. That 2 cycle ATV was so old it needed the motor rebuilt when I bought it so can't fault it.
Here is a pic of my ETX and the 400 Sportsman.
These things are of great help to us hunters and land owners.
I've only owned one. Honda. Zero complaints. But I would have bought any of the Japanese Honda, Yamaha, or Suzuki that had 10+" of clearance and independent rear suspension and a true diff lock. That was my qualifiers, past that I was looking for a good deal on a reasonably new Japanese non-carbed machine in the 450ish class. Didn't want a big rig.
^...My humble 2 pennies...I would add EPS to your qualifiers.
I went with Can-am, the 450 Outlander (2017)....Worked great in WY and continues to now!
I like my 2012 500 HO. I use it for plowing, food plotting, and fun.
I have no regrets buying a Polaris.
If you were looking at UTV’s I then would say Yamaha wolverines. 2000 industry leading towing capacity and a 10 year belt warranty. Also the best value in a SxS.
I see on the positive comments about Polaris that most are older machines with the old style racks. The newer rack/compartment system sucks for utility use. I stand behind my negative comments about the battery location is just asking for trouble when going thru water. For $1,400 the plow system is hardly worth that much. Catch one stump, rock, or block of ice frozen to the ground and it bends the steel frame. Polaris is hands down a softer ride but for how I use an atv the Yamaha is better built.
Bought this 2010 800R LTD in 2015. It has EPS, fox shocks and on board air. The original owner replaced all of the under carriage plastic with aluminum stamped with Can-Am. With the EPS, its a breeze to drive and it really makes those long bumpy roads easier on the shoulders. This is my last bike.
Honda Rancher 350. 2001. Had to do carb rebuild for the first time this past winter. Otherswise nothing other than tires and oil changes. Runs so well I can’t imagine changing. My dad bought a new one two years ago with power steering and that is a stellar option.
^...carb?....what is a carb? ;-)
Recently bought a Polaris 570 EFI. Nothing fancy. Can't wait to put it to the test in CO very soon.i found out I'll be working in CO very soon and the job site is only 30 minutes to the Elkwoods
Not sure if it means anything or not, but looking on Craigslist there are tons of Polaris ATV's list and very few other brands.
Owned a 2005 400 artic cat. Never had a problem with it untill some POS white trash family of cheeseheads stole it from the archery club 2 years ago. Worked it hard change the oil every now and then.
Im gonna go Honda whore right here,, op has waayy too much beta...ill jus say this,, flat wet soft,no mucky,but you know wat i mean..i got my ford f250 2 wd WITH A 6000 LB dump trailer (empty) stuck... 2013 Honda 500 foreman 4x4. Pulled um out... no fxxing kidding,,,.all i got...