2021 KAWASAKI TERYX S TEST

2021 KAWASAKI TERYX S TEST

WHAT’S NEW FOR THE TERYX S?

In one word, suspension! Kawasaki’s goal was to increase cab comfort without designing a whole new machine. Kawasaki achieved this by widening the stance, extending the wheelbase and increasing wheel travel slightly in all areas. Our 2021 Kawasaki Teryx S test tells how well this new machine performs.

2021 Kawasaki Teryx S test
Both the two- and four-seat models received the “S” designation, giving them a wider stance and increased wheel travel. For desert and mountain trails out west, it is a welcomed addition for sure.
2021 Kawasaki Teryx S
Kawasaki’s downhill engine braking has always been stellar. During the 2021 Kawasaki Teryx S test, we found it continues to work well, saving brake-pad wear.

HOW DOES THE COST COMPARE?

Compared to the standard Teryx models, the “S” designation only commands an extra $500 at the dealership. So, if you compare that to a long-travel kit from companies like HCR ($3500-$5000) or SuperATV’s 1.5-inch forward A-arms ($830), the new Teryx S is a bargain. The two-seat Teryx S LE model we tested is $15,699; the four-seaters start at $15,999.

2021 Kawasaki Teryx S
This illustration shows the advantages of the new “S” stance versus the standard model. You can also see the new bottom shock placement.
2021 Kawasaki Teryx S
The 2 inches of extra wheel travel, along with 2.5 inches of added wheelbase combined together, helped suspension action tremendously. Approach angles are improved as well, making the Teryx even more capable in the nasty stuff.

HOW FAST IS IT?

Just fast enough for a vehicle with this much travel. The 783cc V-twin tops out at 50 mph. It’s still peppy enough to be fun on any trail. The 2021 Kawasaki Teryx S test revealed the clutch tune is great for the stock tires, and it never feels like the machine is slow, like with some long-travel-equipped UTVs.

The dash is very sparse yet functional. There’s room for adding switches and more, but not much else. We wish the little pockets had a netted front on them to keep small items from falling out.

HOW TOUGH IS IT?

It’s as strong as ever. Kawasaki installs very robust axles, drive lines and differentials, and backs them up with a good warranty automatically. You can extend that warranty as well.

Furthermore, Kawasaki goes above and beyond in terms of protecting the machine’s vital components and occupants. This machine has full steel skid plates below the chassis, as well as steel kick panels up front to keep sticks from intruding into the cockpit.

One of the best features of the two-seat model is the huge amount of storage space behind the seats.
The new S models are only $500 more than the standard issue, and they are available in green or red. The four-seater is also available in tan or gray camo.

HOW DOES IT HANDLE?

It’s really impressive at slow-to-medium speeds on a choppy trail. Washboards totally disappear, as do embedded small rocks and ruts. The seating position is very upright, and the driver can see over the dash well. This fact makes you feel like you’re driving even faster than you are. On our test ride, we aimed for the bigger bumps, and the Teryx took them well—to a point. You are not going to blitz a big desert whoop section, but you will have fun everywhere else.

Two-inch Fox shocks offer 10.7 inches of travel. They are low-speed compression adjustable via a dial at the top of the shock.
We have always liked the plushness of the Teryx seats. They work perfect for this style and speed of the machine.

IS IT WORTH THE EXTRA COST?

Definitely. We can only think of one reason you wouldn’t buy the S over the standard model, and that is size. Overall, the S gains a couple of inches of width, and if you have 60-inch-wide trailhead gates or bridges where you ride, this machine might not fit; however, if your riding is on completely smooth terrain, you can surely save that $500 and put it towards gas.

An even 10 inches of wheel travel is found at the back end. The Teryx A-arms and drivetrain components have proven to be virtually bulletproof.

WHAT IS OUR FINAL ANSWER?

When Polaris made the first S-version RZR, it set the UTV world on fire and changed the sport UTV game. Is the Teryx S going to do that? No. But, it will keep the machine relevant and competitive with machines like the Yamaha Wolverine, Polaris General and Can-Am’s new Commander. And at $3000–$5000 less than most of those, it’s going to fit into more customers’ budgets—and Kawasaki is banking on that.

SPECS:

2021 KAWASAKI TERYX S

ENGINE/TRANSMISSION

Engine type Liquid-cooled, V-twin, 4-stroke

Displacement 783cc

Bore & stroke 85mm x  69mm

Lubrication system Wet sump

Additional cooling Auto fan

Induction EFI

Starting/back-up Electric/none

Starting procedure Turn ignition switch w/ brake on

Type Paper pleat

Access Under hood, tool-less

Transmission Dual range w/ reverse

Reverse procedure Move range selector to “R”

Drive system Selectable 2WD/4WD w/ locking

diff-lock

Final drives Shafts

DIMENSIONS/CAPACITIES/WEIGHTS

Fuel capacity 7.9 gal.

Wheelbase 88.2”

Overall length/width/height 118.1”/62.6”/78.5”

Ground clearance 11.2”

Claimed wet weight 1600 lb.

Bed weight limit 600 lb.

Hitch 2” receiver

Towing limit 1300lbs

ROLLING CHASSIS

Frame Steel tube

Suspension/wheel travel:

  Front Dual A-arm w/ prel./comp.-adj. 2.0”

Fox shocks/10.7”

  Rear Dual arm w/ prel./comp.-adj. 2.0”

Fox shocks/10”

Brakes/actuation:

  Front Hydraulic discs/left-side pedal

  Rear Hydraulic discs/left-side pedal

Parking Park position on range selector

Tires:

  Front 27×9-14 Maxxis Big Horn

  Rear 27×11-14 Maxxis Big Horn

ELECTRICAL

DC outlet Console

Lighting:

  Front 8 LED hi/lo headlights

  Rear Dual LED brake/taillights

DETAILS

Instrumentation Multi-function digital meter

with speedometer, fuel gauge, clock, hour meter,

odometer, dual trip meter and parking-brake

indicator, R/N/P/4WD, water temp and

low-oil-pressure indicators

Colors Lime Green, Persimmon Red

Minimum recommended operator age 16

Suggested retail price $15,699

See the 2022 Kawasaki UTVs here: 2022 KAWASAKI UTVS – UTV Action Magazine

Contact www.kawasaki.com

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