TEST: POLARIS RZR S 1000 EPS

To most UTV enthusiasts, a RZR 1000 is the RZR XP 1000—the 110-horsepower, 64-inch-wide, high-performance beast. There’s another RZR 1000 you need to know about—the 100-horsepower, 60-inch-wide RZR S 1000.

Front and rear sway bars and a 79-inch wheelbase give the 60-inch-wide RZR S 1000 quick turning with very little body roll.

 

WHAT’S NEW FOR 2017?

—Front and rear sway bars minimize body roll. The 2016 had a rear sway bar only.

—2-inch Walker Evans piggyback front and rear shocks offer tool-less compression-damping adjustment and needle-type bottom-out control.

—A new seat angle places the driver’s upper body closer to the steering wheel for less arm fatigue.

Piggyback-reservoir Walker Evans shocks are used front and rear. Knob-type compression-damping adjusters don’t require tools.

 

HOW MUCH IS IT?

The RZR S 1000 EPS is $17,999. Can-Am’s 100-horsepower, 60-inch-wide Maverick XC is $15,699. The Maverick XC DPS is $16,599 and the Maverick X XC is $18,599. Arctic Cat’s Wildcat Sport XT EPS is $14,599, the Wildcat Sport LTD EPS is $15,999 and the Wildcat Sport SE EPS is $16,499. The RZR XP 1000 is $19,499.

WHAT POWERS IT?

A 999cc, double-overhead-cam, eight-valve inline twin, much like the RZR XP 1000’s, but it’s tuned for 100 horsepower rather than 110.

The RZR S 1000 has double-A-arm rear suspension rather than trailing arms like the RZR XP 1000. It works well with the S 1000’s shorter travel.

 

WHAT KIND OF TRANSMISSION DOES IT HAVE?

A belt-type, fully automatic, continuously variable transmission. It’s the easiest type to use. Unlike most other RZR models, the RZR S 1000’s transmission provides engine braking in continuous zero-throttle situations.

WHAT KIND OF 4WD SYSTEM DOES IT HAVE?

Selectable 2WD/4WD with an automatic-locking front differential. Even when you select 4WD, the system remains in 2WD until the speed-sensing front differential detects rear-wheel slip, then it locks.

The S 1000 has the same roomy cabin as the XP 1000. The quarter doors are sturdy and work well, but inserts or full doors would keep the riders cleaner in muddy terrain.

 

HOW FAST IS IT?

Seriously fast. The 100-horsepower, 1,235-pound RZR S 1000 actually has a slightly better power-to-weight ratio than the 110-horsepower, 1,369-pound RZR XP 1000. It’s 12.35 pounds per horsepower versus 12.44 pounds per horsepower. The RZR S 1000 delivers XP 1000-like acceleration when you stand on the gas pedal, but the less highly tuned S isn’t as brutally quick as the XP.

HOW IS THE POWER DELIVERY ON THE TRAIL?

It’s aggressive but controllable. A hundred horses is a lot of power for tight woods work, but the RZR’s power delivery is responsive without being too abrupt. It has the tractability you need for rock steps and slippery trails, and strong acceleration for covering ground in a hurry. Low range is good for 40 mph, so on tight trails you can rocket from turn to turn. The S 1000 has that great, fun feeling of always having plenty of power in reserve.

The S 1000 jumps with good control, and its suspension takes jump landings in stride.

 

HOW IS THE SUSPENSION?

It’s an excellent woods setup. The RZR S 1000’s suspension has a firm, sporty feel, and it handles aggressive driving with great control and no excessive bottoming. With 12.25 inches of travel up front and 13.2 inches in the rear, it’s able to take G-outs and jump landings in stride. It can even maintain an impressive pace in whoops, though it can’t devour whoops at XP 1000 speeds. Tool-less, knob-type compression-damping adjusters on the shocks make it easy to take advantage of the suspension’s adjustability.

With 100 horsepower, the double-overhead-cam, eight-valve inline twin gives the RZR S 1000 serious acceleration.

 

HOW DOES IT HANDLE?

It’s very agile and well planted. Front and rear sway bars and high-end suspension give the S 1000 flat, direct cornering. It’s impressively stable on steep or off-camber trails, and it slides predictably. Power steering gives the RZR S 1000 a light, easy-to-handle feel, and it damps the feedback bumps try to send through the steering wheel.

HOW IS IT ON HILLS?

It’s a confident climber. With 100 horsepower, power isn’t an issue when taking on big climbs with the RZR S 1000, and the 4WD system gets the power to the ground efficiently. The GBC Dirt Commander tires find plenty of traction in soft, rocky and hard terrain. Unlike most RZRs, the RZR S 1000 has engine braking, which adds a measure of security on steep downhills. It only acts on the rear wheels, even in 4WD, but having engine braking when you’re off the throttle makes steep terrain easier to tackle.

The RZR S 1000 has the power and stability to slide around turns with ease and very good control.

 

HOW IS IT IN MUD AND WATER?

Mostly great. As with many sports UTVs, the bodywork and the quarter doors don’t offer much splash protection, but the S 1000 is otherwise well suited to wet and muddy riding conditions. Door inserts or full doors can help keep more mud and water outside the cabin. Plenty of power, an effective 4WD system and 12.5 inches of ground clearance make muddy, rutted terrain just another fun feature on the trail for the RZR.

HOW ARE THE DETAILS?

Impressive. The RZR S 1000 comes with power steering, painted bodywork, aluminum wheels, and compression and spring preload-adjustable piggyback-reservoir Walker Evans shocks. It also has quarter doors rather than nets and a roomy, comfortable cabin with good seats. Engine braking makes this RZR one of the easiest RZR models to drive in hilly terrain.

A hatch in the bed makes getting to the air filter and oil-fill cap easy.

 

WHAT IS OUR FINAL ANSWER?

The RZR S 1000 gets you the arm-stretching power and acceleration that makes 1000cc machines so much fun with the crisp, agile handling and added trail access of a 60-inch-wide machine. It’s also much more affordable than the RZR XP 1000.

POLARIS RZR S 1000 EPS

ENGINE/TRANSMISSION

Engine type Liquid-cooled, 8-valve, DOHC 4-stroke twin

Displacement 999cc

Bore x stroke 93mm x 73.5mm (x2)

Compression ratio 11:1

Lubrication system Wet sump

Additional cooling Auto fan

Induction 48mm EFI throttle body (X2)

Starting/back-up Electric/none

Starting procedure Turn ignition switch

Air filter:

  Type Paper pleat

  Access Tool-less, remove engine panel & undo

2 straps

Transmission Dual-range CVT w/ reverse &

engine braking

Reverse procedure Move range selector to “R”

Drive system Selectable 2WD/4WD w/ auto diff-lock

Final drives Shafts

DIMENSIONS/CAPACITIES/WEIGHTS

Fuel capacity 9.5 gal.

Wheelbase 79.0”

Overall length/width/height 106”/60”/71.5”

Ground clearance 12.5”

Claimed dry weight 1,235 lb.

Bed weight limit 300 lb.

Hitch No

Towing limit N/A

ROLLING CHASSIS

Frame Steel round tube

Suspension/wheel travel:

  Front Dual A-arms w/ prel./comp.-adj. Walker Evans

2.0 shocks/12.25”

Rear Dual A-arms w/ prel./comp.-adj. Walker Evans

2.0 shocks/13.2”

Brakes/actuation:

  Front Hydraulic discs/left-side pedal

  Rear Hydraulic discs/left-side pedal

Parking Lever on console

Tires:

  Front AT 27×9-12 GBC Dirt Commander

  Rear AT 27×12-12 GBC Dirt Commander

ELECTRICAL

DC outlet Console

Lighting:

Front 2 halogen 55/60W hi/lo headlights

Rear Dual LED brake/taillights

DETAILS

Instrumentation Speed/odo/trip/hour/rpm/fuel/gear/

clock/2WD-4WD

Colors Indy Red, Stealth Black, Spectra Orange

Minimum recommended operator age 16

Suggested retail price $17,999

Contact Polaris, (800) POLARIS

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