Entry level Side by Side / UTV - Chevy Colorado & GMC Canyon
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-25-2017, 04:09 PM Thread Starter
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Entry level Side by Side / UTV

On our honeymoon in Aruba my wife and I did one of those excursions in a UTV (it was a Yamaha but not sure of any specifics) around the island and we had an absolute blast. A couple years later we visited a buddy up north and he let us drive his Polaris RZR (not sure which year or model) and again we had such a great time we started looking into getting one of our own. Problem was we both had cars and there are no ORV trails in SE Michigan so we gave up.

Fast forward to present day and I have a Canyon itching to do "truck stuff" and what better truck stuff than hauling a side by side up north to ride some trails? I don't want to get blasted into the stratosphere for asking such a vague basic question on an ATV forum so I thought I'd start here since it needs to fit in the bed of my truck.

I don't know how long our attention span is going to be for this hobby so is there something reliable but basic we can pick up for around $5k used that will get us through the woods? I know I'm looking for one of the 50" trail models to fit in the bed but otherwise what other features should I be looking for?

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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-25-2017, 04:39 PM
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I've owned many UTV's over the years, and use one daily for ranch work so I'm obviously a fan. You'll have a hard time finding one that fits your requirements. If you want to stay with one of the major manufacturers you're limited to something like the Polaris RZR or ACE or the Honda Pioneer 500. The smallest of these is the Polaris ACE. Still, it will be very large to fit in the bed of your truck. The weight (about 900#) won't be a huge problem, but you'd need to carry it with the back tires on the tailgate. Not many of them on the used market, but you might be able to find one in your price range.
There are a number of cheaper imports (Kymko, CF Moto, etc) but I don't trust them because lack of parts and service support. Just my $0.02.

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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-25-2017, 04:58 PM
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I've been looking at the UTVs myself and have kinda narrowed down my list to these two:

Polaris Razor 570

Honda Pioneer 500

The Pioneer is a little cheaper, but, the Razor seems to be better equipped. The reviews I have come across seem to favor the Razor, but, again, it's about $2k more. I've been looking specifically at the 50" UTVs because they are allowed on more forest service trails than the bigger UTVs are. I hadn't thought about putting it in the bed as ultimately I want to tow a toy hauler to accommodate this and my Harley (separately, of course).

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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-25-2017, 06:00 PM
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Polaris ACE is a 1 seater. I have a 2016 Polaris RZR 900 EPS Trail and it was not cheap, list price was $14,799. This past fall I seen new 2015 & 2016 RZR 570's selling for less than $7,000 at dealers in Wis. They were on Craigs List.

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Last edited by Z15_34396; 01-25-2017 at 06:05 PM.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-25-2017, 06:05 PM
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Have you considered a 2 up ATV. Certainly would fit in the back of your truck and your price point. I trailer my UTV. I bought a CFMOTO and very happy with it. They have an established dealer network and it has been reliable. Very feature rich compared to other major brands.

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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-25-2017, 06:09 PM
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I carried a Rzr 900 Trail (50" wide) in the bed of a Ram 2500 Crew Cab short bed, that had a bed that was 6' 4" long, and it barely fit. The rear tires had 2/3 of the tire on the very end of the tailgate, and 1/3 of the tire overhanging the end of the tailgate. Over time the tailgate bent from carrying the weight. The bed of a long bed Colorado is 2" shorter than the Ram truck I used.

Fortunately, the older Rzr 800 Trail (50" wide) UTVs have about a 2" shorter wheelbase than the Rzr 900s, so maybe the 800 would fit if you reinforced the tailgate.

I just looked at the local on line classifieds UTV section. Out of 24 pages of UTVs (about 12 UTVs per page) the better prices I saw were a 2009 Rzr 800 for $6400, and a 2015 Rzr 570 also for $6400. So you may be able to find what you are looking for, but it will take a little looking around. I would go with a newer 570 over an older 800 if it were me.

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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-25-2017, 06:40 PM Thread Starter
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It seems like $5k is pretty low for a budget based on the local CL listings. I'm seeing a number of 2008-2009 RZR 800s for around $6-7k and then 2011-2013 for $8-9k so maybe I'll have to set my sights a little higher. No 570s around here at the moment but I'll keep an eye out. It seems like Polaris has one of the most solid followings in the category so I imagine parts and mods would be easiest to find.

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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-01-2017, 02:43 PM
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The other thing to consider, is the ground clearance, and the suspension travel.

I had a Kaw mule 610 (now called sx). It worked well. No problems with it, and would go pretty much anywhere. Speed was limited to 25 mph. Only issue was the suspension. After a day riding in it, you felt very tired. Had 3 inches suspension travel Up graded to a Polaris ranger 900XP, 2014. That won't fit in the bed of the truck, however, it felt like I was driving a Cadillac in the field and not tired at all after a days ride. Speed was limited to 65 mph. So, pull that on a trailer.

The pioneer 500 has 6 inches suspension travel and the Polaris 570 has 9 inches with a better ground clearance as well, so I would go for that machine (Polaris) based on the ride alone.

The Polaris 800 (I never owned one) main complaint that I heard was the position of the engine would tend to heat the cab area more than the later models (900 and 570), but I can't say that was that bad since I never experienced it myself.

Whatever you end up getting, at least get a lower half windshield. Keeps the wind off your face.

The full windshields alone tend to suck dirt back into the cab area, so if you go that route you might what to get a full cab.

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