— Testing a new UTV for younger drivers —
Polaris invented the youth UTV market with the first RZR 170. However, it didn’t take long for the competition to come out with their own youth UTV. The first was Pitster Pro with a decent machine called the Double X. The latest youth model to arrive is the Massimo Gunner 150S, and our pint-sized test driver had a chance to test it out.
WHAT DOES IT COST?
The Gunner 150S starts at $3799. The Gunner 250 sells for $4749.
WHO DOES IT FIT?
Kids 12 and over as small as 4 feet tall and adults up to 6 feet tall riding shotgun will fit. The driver’s side has an adjustable seat that moves a good 8 inches. Inside the cabin there is an adjustable passenger grab handle and a glove box. What’s unusual is that this machine has turn signals and hazard flashers. No, the Gunner is not street-legal, but it does give parents even more tools for teaching youngsters how to drive at an early age. We think an early start on this vehicle before hitting the road at 16 is a great idea.
WHAT ENGINE DOES IT USE?
A fuel-injected, air-cooled, single-cylinder four-stroke with 150cc and an electric start mated to a transmission with forward, neutral and reverse. This machine is two-wheel drive. We have yet to see a youth machine with four-wheel drive. There is a keyed ignition that easily gets the machine running, and the key can be kept by parents when not in use.
HOW IS THE POWER?
The specs show 16 horsepower out of this mini, and it’s plenty of punch for the suggested 12-and-older drivers. On the right surface, kids can break the tires loose and have lots of fun on the trails. It’s not intimidating power but enough to put big smiles on their faces. Top speed with a good tailwind is 40 mph.
HOW ARE THE BRAKES?
Hydraulic disc brakes are used at both ends, but it does take a strong leg to lock them up. Kids have no problem slowing the machine down; it’s just tough for them to get the machine in a slide under braking.
HOW IS THE SUSPENSION?
It’s good compared to all other youth UTVs. Up front, Massimo gives the Gunner dual A-arms and a swingarm-style setup in the back. Both systems provide a stable platform with very little body roll. Suspension travel numbers are unpublished, but we measured around 6 inches at both ends. Small bumps in the trail and little ruts can be crossed without upsetting the car. Small jumps are okay, but bigger ones should be taken with caution and with parents’ approval. Our pint-sized testers did bottom out the Gunner a couple of times, but that happens with all youth cars. The Gunner seemed to take the punishment very well and didn’t miss a beat. The 22-inch tires provide a little more cushion and have held up great.
Massimo gives all machines a one-year parts and labor warranty. The Gunner’s 3.5-gallon gas tank will help provide hours of outdoor entertainment for all the neighborhood kids. The Gunner 150S is a blast, and if the UTV bug has hit your family, the Massimo Gunner will let every member join in on the fun. See www.massimomotor.com.
2019 MASSIMO GUNNER 150S
Engine type Air-cooled, 4-stroke
Lubrication system Wet sump
Additional cooling Auto fan
Starting procedure Turn ignition switch w/ brake on
Type Paper pleat
Transmission High-range CVT w/ reverse
Reverse procedure Move range selector to “R”
Drive system 2WD
Final drive Chain
Fuel capacity 3.7 gal.
Overall length/width/height 87.8”/48.1”/55.9”
Ground clearance 7.9”
Claimed dry weight 467lb.
Bed weight limit 100 lb.
Towing limit None
Frame Steel tube
Front Dual A-arm w/ preload-adj. shocks/6”
Rear Dual shock swingarm w/ preload-adj. shocks/6”
Front Hydraulic discs/left-side pedal
Rear Hydraulic discs/left-side pedal
Parking Park in gear
Lighting Turn signals, horn
Front Daytime running lights
Rear Brake/tail lights
Instrumentation Digital speed/odo/trip/hour/rpm/fuel/
Colors Red, yellow, white
Minimum recommended operator age 12
Suggested retail price $3799