POLARIS RZR XP 4 1000 EPS

— Testing the most cost effective Polaris 4-seater —

Polaris has many irons in the fire, and one of them is the Polaris Adventure subsidiary we’ve reported on previously. Contributors Jack and Shane Trittler have invested in Mojave Adventures (760-495-2474) with a small fleet of 2019 Polaris RZR XP 4 1000 EPS units in Black Pearl, so we have spent many days and gone many miles with them. On one particular tour, we got a chance to ride with Damon Bradshaw, multi-time AMA Motocross and Supercross champion and Monster Energy Monster Jam champion. Although not a UTV champion (yet), Bradshaw is definitely a wheel man. Here is what he—and we—think of the 2019 Polaris RZR XP 4 1000.

A Lock & Ride half windshield (#2883109) for the XP 4 1000 is $179.99, and it does a great job of channeling air up and over occupants’ heads in cold weather. Bradshaw puts our shock settings to the test with a big slider.

WHAT’S NEW FOR 2019?

For 2019, all RZR XPs got new, more-aggressive front and rear fascias and grills, with Turbos and Special Editions getting LED eyebrows and 1000s getting highlight inserts. They also go the new dash from the Turbo S with new center storage bins on the top and bottom, with the top bin replacing the Turbo S Ride Command screen, plus a new cubbyhole with rubberized mesh above the adjustable T-bar and large glove box.

The XP 4 also gets the same analog/digital instrument panel as the Turbo S, but it doesn’t tilt with the steering wheel like the RZR RS1 unit does. Large analog needles on each side indicate speed and rpm, while the center LCD readout can be set to show engine temperature or other parameters with red or blue backlighting.

Rear seats get the T-Rail adjustable top seat-belt mount, and only the driver’s seat has fore-aft adjustment via a slider frame.

Polaris Adventure XP 4 1000s also get accessory lower-door insert kits with tubular frames (#2879942, $849.99) for more comfort and confidence. Being rental UTVs, they also get GPS tracker units.

We like the new dash from the Turbo S with its new top storage bin and cubbyhole for gloves and such with the rubber-mesh retainer. The new instrument pod is much easier to read and tunable, and we like the shape and size of the over-molded tilt steering wheel and passenger T-bar.

HOW DOES COST COMPARE?

The 2019 RZR XP 4 1000 EPS is $20,499. The RZR S 4 1000 goes for $19,599, and the RZR XP 4 Turbo is $23,699. Can-Am’s 2019 Maverick Max Sport 1000 DPS is $18,999, and the base Maverick X3 Max is $21,999. The Maverick Max X3 X ds is $27,899, and the Max X3 X rs is $29,899. Textron discontinued the Wildcat 4X 1000, while the Polaris General 4 starts at $21,799 and jumps to $23,999 for the Ride Command Edition.

Twin-piston hydraulic calipers squeeze perforated 248mm brake rotors at each corner. The stock Maxxis Bighorn 29-inch tires are decent but wander in deep sand and are more prone to flats than eight-ply aftermarket alternatives.

HOW FAST IS THE PROSTAR 1000?

Plenty fast. While it doesn’t have the yank of a Turbo or two-seat XP1K, the XP 4 is torquey enough to be fun from turn to turn and up hills. The 110-horsepower ProStar twin has 11.0:1 compression and great throttle response with two 48mm EFI throttle bodies. It will propel the 1,659-pound machine up to 77–78 mph in high range. More power can be easily extracted with a performance exhaust and ECU flash, too.

WHAT ABOUT THE CVT/AWD DELIVERY?

It’s also quick yet predictable. Polaris does a good job tuning the CVT clutch for rapid, aggressive engagement, yet it isn’t too aggressive for delicate rock-crawling situations. The CVT engagement is well matched to the EFI throttle map, and the front diff also engages smoothly when sensors detect one or both rear wheel(s) losing traction. The XP 4 1000’s diff isn’t as stout as the XP 4 Turbo’s higher-grade unit, though, and neither are the 1000’s CVT and belt.

The ProStar twin 1000 puts out 110 horsepower and has a cooling duct for the CVT clutch. Notice how the shock top spring is almost coil bound at ride height; a true dual-rate spring kit includes longer top springs and cross-over rings.

HOW AGILE IS THE XP 4’S HANDLING?

Good for a four-seat UTV. With a wheelbase of 117 inches, compared to 90 inches for the two-seat XP1K, the handling is a lot more sedate at speed, yet it turns better than a Maverick X3 Max. Bradshaw said, “We pre-ran XP 4s in Baja, and the longer wheelbase is much better for the high speeds and rough terrain.” Aggressive driving pays off in the XP 4, as drifting the rear end out to set up for turns is a smooth and efficient technique; otherwise, the front wants to push. Polaris’ On-Demand 4WD system rewards this driving style and lessens the 4WD push compared to Can-Ams and other UTVs with all-time 4WD.

The two-into-one exhaust is tucked in well and nicely shielded, and it has a pleasant growl for long rides. With an aggressive driver, the XP 4 needs a frame brace around the rear torsion-bar mount; Shock Therapy has them for $199.99 a pair.

HOW ABOUT THE WALKER EVANS SUSPENSION?

It’s dated. When the Walker Evans Racing 2.0 front and 2.5 rear needle shocks were first released, the ride was considered good, but Can-Am and Arctic Cat surpassed the XP 4’s ride quality with true dual-rate springs and longer travel. The RZR’s short top springs are ineffective without the proper length and cross-over rings, making the fronts, especially, top-out springs. Ride quality can be improved relatively cheaply with true dual-rate spring kits from Shock Therapy, Eibach or Hyperco. With spring rates and cross-over heights dialed, the WER 16-position, compression-damping adjusters can fine-tune the ride and fight bottoming. We backed off the compression clickers all the way in the back and to four out up front for a plusher ride without too much front-end dive; dual torsion bars fight body roll in turns. 

Width is 64 inches. Front travel is 16 inches, and ground clearance is 14 inches with 29×9-14 Maxxis Bighorn tires. The new grill supplies more cooling airflow to the radiator, but only high-end Turbos and Special Editions get the LED accent lighting around the grill.

HOW STRONG ARE THE BRAKES?

They’re good but not the strongest. The XP 4 1000 has twin-piston hydraulic calipers squeezing 248mm rotors at all four corners, but the XP 4 Turbo has triple-piston front calipers. Braking power is decent with these brakes and 29-inch Bighorn tires. They have to be good, because there is no Engine Braking System (EBS) or Active Descent Control (ADC). And trailing throttle only slows the rear wheels on steep hills due to the On-Demand AWD system.

The Turbo S also gives the 2019 RZR XPs a new rear end with new LED taillights and an accent piece, but there are fewer tie-down points in the new bodywork. Rear travel is 18 inches with the WER needle shocks and long trailing arms with two stabilizing link rods.

WHERE IS THE XP 4 HAPPIEST?

Seeking adventure at speed. The XP 4 is much more stable over rough terrain than the XP1K and carries more people. Many people prefer the longer wheelbase for rock crawling, too, as it offers better traction on really steep rock faces. It’s also a great duner with the WER needle shocks cranked in to handle the G-outs.

WHAT ABOUT TRAIL COMFORT?

The RZR XP 4 1000 is an off-road limo, especially with the Pure Polaris lower-door kit. All four seats provide a secure seating position and are high on comfort. The adjustable passenger T-bar, driver’s seat and T-Rail rear seat belts add comfort, too. The new dash adds convenience, and the new driver-side instrument pod is much easier to read. The Polaris Adventure XP 4’s roof and half windshield also add comfort, especially on cold and rainy days. Vibration and noise levels are low in the cabin. While the dated suspension can be improved, it’s possible to coax good ride quality out of the piggyback needle shocks.

Polaris Adventures outfits 2019 RZR XP 4 1000s with sport roofs and lower-door kits for rentals and tours, and the XP 4 1000 is an awesome mount for finding off-road adventures in the desert, dunes, mountains, forests, and trails across the country.

WHAT’S OUR FINAL ANSWER?

The 2019 RZR XP 4 1000 EPS is the most cost-effective way to have family fun for up to four people, but it also has a lot of other advantages over the two-seat XP1K. Fitted with a roof and the lower-door kit, the XP 4 is more than ready for any adventure with a great engine and CVT transmission, good turning and stability, and a very comfortable cabin. There are faster machines and ones with better suspension components, but they also cost a lot more. Besides, with Polaris Adventures having franchises across the country and planet, family adventures can be had in a different XP 4 and location every week, with an army of experts doing the machine prep!

SPECS:

2019 POLARIS  RZR XP 4 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 11.0:1

Lubrication system Wet sump

Additional cooling Auto fan

Induction 48mm EFI (x2)

Starting/back-up Electric/none 

Starting procedure Turn ignition switch

Air filter:

  Type Paper pleat

  Access Tool-less, undo 4 clasps

Transmission Dual-range CVT w/ reverse

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 117.0”

Overall length/width/height 146”/64”/73.75”

Ground clearance 14.0”

Claimed dry weight 1,659 lb.

Bed weight limit 300 lb.

Hitch No

Towing limit N/A

ROLLING CHASSIS

Frame Steel round tube

Suspension/wheel travel:

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

shocks/16”

  Rear IRS Trailing-arms w/prel./comp.-adj. 2.5 WER 

shocks/18”

Brakes/actuation:

  Front Hydraulic discs/left-side pedal

  Rear Hydraulic discs/left-side pedal

Parking Lever on console

Tires:

  Front AT 29×9-14 Maxxis Bighorn

  Rear AT 29×11-14 Maxxis Bighorn

ELECTRICAL

DC outlet Console

Lighting:

  Front 2 LED hi/lo headlights

  Rear Dual LED brake/taillights

DETAILS

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

clock/2WD-4WD

Colors Black Pearl, White Pearl, Sky Blue 

Minimum recommended operator age 16

Suggested retail price $20,499

Contact Polaris, (800) POLARIS

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