TEST: CAN-AM MAVERICK X3 X rs TURBO R

— In the world of high-performance sport UTVs, what’s amazing today can be topped just days later as new machines come on the scene. Can-Am’s Maverick X3 X rs Turbo R is a different animal. More than a year after its introduction, nothing has come along to top the outrageous 72-inch-wide, super-long-travel sport machine. Since the 2018 model boasts 172 horsepower, the X3 X rs Turbo R has the most power and the most travel available on a production UTV.

This machine’s power is unreal, but its agile, stable handling is just as impressive.

WHAT’S NEW?

The 2018 Can-Am Maverick X3 X rs Turbo R uses a more efficient intercooler and fan with a higher-volume fuel pump to push peak power to 172 horsepower from the 2017’s 155 horsepower. Retractable four-point harness-type seat belts are new too. Platinum Satin is a new color choice. Red/gold and Triple Black are also available.

HAVE YOU MET THE WHOLE X3 FAMILY?

The X3 X rs Turbo R and the new trail- and rock-crawling-ready X3 X rc Turbo R are the only 72-inch-wide machines in the X3 family. The others are 64 inches wide with 20 inches of travel front and rear. All the Turbo R models have 172 horsepower. The X3 X rc Turbo and the base X3 Turbo have 120 horsepower.

You want easy-to-read instrumentation on a car this fast. The X3 has it.

HOW DOEST COST COMPARE?

The 2018 X3 X rs Turbo R is $26,899 and the X3 X rc Turbo R is $28,999. The X3 X ds Turbo R is $24,999, the X3 Turbo R is $22,999, the X3 rc Turbo is $23,999 and the base X3 Turbo is $19,999. Polaris’ RZR XP Turbo starts at $19,999.

WHAT POWERS IT?

An intercooled, turbocharged, 900cc, 12-valve, double-overhead-cam, inline triple with 172 horsepower.

WHAT KIND OF TRANSMISSION DOES IT HAVE?

A fully automatic, dual-range, belt-type continuously variable transmission.   High horsepower sport machines can be hard on drive belts, so Can-Am engineered a high-performance cooling system for the transmission. The range selector has smooth, positive action too.

For now, the Can-Am’s 172-horsepower, turbocharged, three-cylinder 900cc engine is the UTV horsepower king.

WHAT KIND OF 4WD SYSTEM DOES IT HAVE?

Selectable 2WD/4WD with Can-Am’s Visco-Lok Quick Engagement (QE) front differential. Tough, rocky climbs and rock crawling can cause the fluid-coupled Visco-Lok differential to slip, so Can-Am’s new X3 X rc has a true locking front differential.

HOW FAST IS IT?

This thing is a monster. You really need some space to deal with what happens when you press the gas pedal to the floor on the X3. The good news is, you’ll get everywhere you want to go faster than you ever thought possible. The bad news is, the X3 has a way of making riding areas suddenly seem smaller. You can reach 80 mph easily, and the Can-Am can hit 85 mph in places where there’s enough traction to hold all that power.

Square-section double A-arms with fully adjustable Fox 2.5 piggyback reservoir front shocks provide 22 inches of travel.

HOW IS THE POWER DELIVERY?

It’s solid but smooth. Turbo lag is not a problem with the X3. The power comes on the moment you hit the gas, and the engine keeps pulling hard right to the rev limiter. For a machine with so much power, the X3 is easy to manage on tough, obstacle-filled trails. If you want to mellow out the Can-Am, you can click to the Eco-mode throttle curve; it provides more gradual throttle progression and limits maximum throttle opening. If someone’s driving who isn’t ready for the X3’s full performance, you can use the gray key rather than the standard key.

WHAT KIND OF SUSPENSION DOES IT HAVE?

The front double A-arms provide 22 inches of travel with Fox Podium 2.5 RC2 shocks with bypass, dual-speed compression and rebound adjustments. In the rear, trailing arms offer 24 inches of travel using Fox 3.0 Podium RC2 remote-reservoir shocks with bypass, dual-speed compression and rebound adjustments. Front and rear sway bars resist body roll.

Trailing arms with Fox 3.0 remote reservoir shocks generate 24 inches of whoop-eating travel.

HOW DOES THE SUSPENSION WORK?

The X3 X rs handles bumps and whoops at high speed better than any stock two-seat UTV we’ve driven. Its ability to swallow impacts from square-edged bumps, ruts and jump landings is remarkable. The suspension action is sporty and firm without being harsh, ad the ride quality at lower speeds is remarkably good too.

HOW DOES IT HANDLE?

This machine’s combination of stability and agility is outstanding. The 102-inch wheelbase is a foot longer than a RZR Turbo’s, so the X3 feels more settled at speed. Thanks to the low seating position, good weight distribution, and front and rear sway bars, it also corners quickly and without excess body roll. The X3 also slides predictably without being too tail-happy.

The Can-Am MaverickX3 X rs Turbo R’s performance envelope is an oversized package. For now, for dunes and open desert conditions, it’s the ultimate two-seat sport UTV.

WHERE DOES IT WORK BEST?

Because of its 72-inch width, the X3 X rs is most at home in open desert and dunes. The 64-inch-wide X3s offer the same incredible 172 horsepower in a more compact package.

HOW IS IT FOR HILLS?

Nearly unstoppable. The X3 X rs’ massive power, broad stance and effective 4WD system let it conquer tall dunes and difficult hills on the trail with impressive ease. The transmission doesn’t offer engine braking in continuous off-throttle conditions, but the brakes offer excellent control on downhills.

The Can-Am has excellent seats, four-point harnesses and a comfortable cabin.

HOW ARE THE DETAILS?

The X3 X rs’ cabin and seats are sporty, roomy and comfortable, and the seats have height adjustment, as well as moving back and forth. The four-point harnesses keep riders securely in place. The D-shaped steering wheel and passenger hand-holds have a comfortable, natural feel. Big, clear analog and digital instruments are located in front of the tilt wheel. The X rs comes nicely equipped with doors, a rear-view mirror, painted bodywork, 30-inch tires on beadlock wheels and a roof.

CAN THE X3 BEAT THE XP TURBO? We drag-raced the 2018 X3 X rs against our Dynamix RZR XP Turbo, and more aggressive clutching gave the Polaris the win every time by half a second. The base Maverick Turbo R would be a little faster with less weight and smaller tires. However, in roll-on drags, the X3 wins every time.

WHAT IS OUR FINAL ANSWER?

Compared to typical sport UTVs, the Can-Am Maverick X3 X rs Turbo R’s performance envelope is an oversized package. For now, for dunes and open desert conditions, it’s the ultimate two-seat sport UTV.

SPECS:

CAN-AM MAVERICK X3 X rs TURBO R

ENGINE/TRANSMISSION

Engine type Turbocharged, liquid-cooled, 12-valve,

inline triple

Displacement 900cc

Bore x stroke 74mm x 67.9mm (3)

Compression ratio 9.1:1

Lubrication system Wet sump

Induction 46mm EFI

Starting/back-up Electric push-button/none

Starting procedure In any range, brake engaged

Air filter:

  Type Paper mesh/screen

Transmission Dual-range CVT

Drive system Selectable 2WD/4WD

Final drive f/r Shaft/gear

DIMENSIONS/CAPACITIES/WEIGHTS

Fuel capacity 10.5 gal.

Wheelbase 88”

Overall length/width/height 132”/72”/67”

Ground clearance 15”

Dry weight 1589.4 lb.

Rear rack capacity 200 lb.

Storage capacity 2.5 gal.

ROLLING CHASSIS

Frame Dual-Phase 980 steel tube

Suspension/wheel travel:

  Front Dual A-arms & shocks w/ adj. high- & low-speed

compression, rebound, preload/22”

  Rear Trailing arms & shocks w/adj. high- & low-speed

compression, rebound, preload/24”

Brakes:

  Front Twin-piston hydraulic 262mm discs

  Rear Twin-piston hydraulic 248mm discs

Tires:

  Front 30×10-14 Maxxis Bighorn 2.0

  Rear 30×10-14 Maxxis Bighorn 2.0

DETAILS

DC outlet Auto-style waterproof plug

Lighting:

  Front LED headlights

  Rear LED tail/brake lights

Instrumentation Speedo/odo/tach/trip/hour/fuel/

gear position/diagnostics/clock

Colors Gold and red or Triple Black

Minimum recommended operator age 16

Suggested retail price $26,899

Contact .Bombardier, (877)4-MY-RIDE or www.brp.com

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