— More power and performance being added to the Utility category —
There’s a performance war going on in the utility recreation side of the UTV market that’s a lot like the one in the world of sport UTVs. Power, suspension, comfort and refinement are high-priority targets in both battles, but utility machines need a different kind of each. Polaris’ all-new Ranger XP 1000 was designed to raise the bar in every area.
IS IT REALLY ALL NEW?
Yes. The 999cc, double-overhead-cam, eight-valve inline twin is essentially the same, but it is re-tuned to put out 82 horsepower, the most in its class. The 2017 Ranger 1000 had 80. Can-Am’s Defender HD10, for example, makes 72 horsepower. The rest of the vehicle from the frame up is completely new. Silence, comfort and storage were all improved in the three-seat cab. The seats feature an extra inch of padding in the seat bases, and there’s storage everywhere, including dual glove boxes, six cupholders, a space under the flip-up passenger seat that can swallow a cooler or a 5-gallon bucket, a storage tray under the center seat, and, you guessed it, more storage under the driver’s seat.
HOW DOES COST COMPARE?
The base Ranger XP 1000 EPS starts at $15,299. With 27-inch tires on aluminum wheels, painted bodywork and two-tone seats, our test machine is $16,299. The Northstar Edition includes a full cab with heating and air conditioning for $23,999. Can-Am’s Defender HD10 DPS is $15,999. Honda’s Pioneer 1000 Limited Edition is $20,299. Textron’s 80-horsepower Stampede X is $13,999.
WHAT KIND OF TRANSMISSION DOES IT HAVE?
A fully automatic, dual-range, belt-type continuously variable transmission (CVT). The transmission uses an all-new clutch and the strongest belt Polaris has used in a Ranger. The transmission was designed with smooth low-speed control in mind. The dash-mounted range selector operates easily.
WHAT FEATURES DOES THE 4WD SYSTEM HAVE?
Every one you can think of. The Ranger has selectable 2WD/4WD. The front differential locks automatically as needed in 4WD. The rear differential locks for more traction or unlocks for turf or tighter turns with the flip of a switch.
HOW POWERFUL IS IT?
It’s seriously strong. If you want it, the Ranger XP 1000 is capable of sport UTV-like acceleration. Its abundant power makes big chores simple and high-speed cruising effortless.
HOW IS THE POWER DELIVERY?
It’s up to you. You can select from three throttle-control modes with a switch on the dash, performance, standard or work to tailor the power delivery to your needs. Each one gives the Ranger a different feel. Performance mode gives you quick throttle response and all the 1000’s available muscle. Standard is somewhat less aggressive, but there’s still plenty of power on tap, a good choice for all-around trail and work use. Work mode gives you the smoothest, most manageable throttle progression. Regardless of what mode you’re in, the Ranger’s refined clutching provides excellent control for low-speed maneuvers. Predictable throttle response and power delivery make the Ranger very controllable for chores and on the trail.
WHAT KIND OF SUSPENSION DOES IT HAVE?
Double A-arms and spring preload-adjustable shocks with 11 inches of travel front and rear. Front and rear sway bars resist body roll.
HOW DOES THE SUSPENSION WORK?
Eleven inches of suspension travel give the Ranger ride quality and bump-handling ability that’s almost sport-UTV-like. The Ranger’s suspension is tuned more for comfort than speed, but this vehicle stays comfortable and in control in rougher terrain and higher speeds than most utility UTVs can cope with. At the sensible speeds the Ranger will see most of the time, the Ranger’s ride is truly luxury-car-like, even in bumpy terrain.
HOW DOES IT HANDLE?
Long-travel suspension keeps the 1000 calm and steady over ruts and holes, so straight-line stability is excellent. Front and rear sway bars and a strong chassis keep the tall suspension from hurting the Ranger’s cornering precision; the machine has a sure-, easy-cornering feel.
HOW IS IT ON HILLS AND CHALLENGING TERRAIN?
The 1000 is exceptionally well-prepared for steep hills and other difficult terrain. Incredible power that’s easy to control and the 4WD system’s automatic locking front differential make climbs a breeze, even when the machine is carrying or towing loads. Engine braking makes downhills less work for the driver, even though it only acts on the rear wheels. The four-wheel disc brakes are easy to control and offer the kind of extra power needed on hills when the machine is moving heavy loads. Thirteen inches of ground clearance make negotiating rocky, rutted or muddy trails snag-free, and the engine and transmission intakes are snorkeled high under the hood.
HOW ARE THE DETAILS?
Most are so well done, this machine is going to school some utility UTV manufacturers. The seats are so comfortable, you may like them better than your truck’s. Great steering feel makes the Ranger a pleasure to drive. The Ranger is outstandingly quiet and roomy, and the dashboard layout with the big clear instruments, dual glove boxes and extra storage works well. The vehicle is pre-wired for some accessories, and there’s more accessory power accessible under the hood. We’d rather have doors than nets, and the nets have a support rod and a buckle that make them more of a hassle than some, but you can add doors if you like.
WHAT IS OUR FINAL ANSWER?
No utility recreation UTV we’ve driven so far combines power, hauling and towing ability; convenience; and luxury like the 2018 Polaris Ranger XP 1000.
POLARIS RANGER XP 1000 EPS
Engine type Liquid-cooled, 8-valve, DOHC inline twin
Bore x stroke 93mmx73.5mm (2)
Compression ratio 10.5:1
Lubrication system Wet sump
Induction EFI 48mm throttle body
Starting procedure In any range, brake engaged
Type Paper mesh/screen
Transmission Dual-range CVT
Drive system 2WD/4WD w/ locking diffs
Final drive: f/r Shaft/shaft
Fuel capacity 11.5 gal.
Overall length/width/height 120”/62.5”/77”
Ground clearance 13”
Dry weight 1565 lb.
Bed capacity 1000 lb.
Hitch 2-inch receiver
Towing capacity 2500 lb.
Frame Round steel tube
Front Dual A-arms & preload adjustable shocks/11”
Rear Dual A-arms & preload adjustable shocks/11”
Front Hydraulic discs
Rear Hydraulic discs
Front 27×9-12 Maxxis MU51
Rear 27×11-12 Maxxis MU51
DC outlet Auto-style waterproof plug
Front 55W low/60W high headlights
Rear LED taillights
Colors Sunset Red, Suede Metallic,
Matte Titanium Metallic, Camo
Minimum recommended operator age 16
Suggested retail price $16,299
Contact .Polaris, www.polaris.com