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Smooth, Easy-to-Drive UTV

12/18/2013 @ 12:56pm

"The noise is well controlled on the Ranger, and many people will be happy with the easy-to-drive, bump-absorbing suspension, light steering, and large payload,” says John Lumkes, ag engineering professor at Purdue University. Evaluators also appreciate the machine’s off-road and power capabilities.

“The Ranger is a great off-road vehicle,” says Ed Meredith, evaluator at Little Goose Ranch in Sheridan, Wyoming. “It holds back well on steep downhill slopes.”

“This machine has lots of power,” adds Joe Greving, co-owner of Cedar Rapids Tire in Iowa.

One thing Lumkes notes about this machine is that the power steering is a little light. “The Ranger is a great low-speed utility vehicle, but it can be a handful at higher speeds because of the power steering,” he notes.

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"I like the fact that inspecting the engine is easy when the bed is tilted, and that there are grease zerk fittings on all suspension joints,” says Lumkes. “If maintained, this should allow longer bushing life and better performance.”

The Polaris, unlike many of the machines evaluated, does not have a parking brake. “I like that park is incorporated into the gear shifter,” says Laurie Bedord, Successful Farming magazine’s advanced technology editor. “Also, I like that the seats adjust.”

The Ranger has adjustable shocks that make a huge difference on its load-handling capabilities. With a load and the rear shocks adjusted to their stiffest setting, “body roll is less pronounced, it handles better, steering authority is improved, and I enjoy the machine a lot more,” says Lumkes.

 




Evaluators rated each machine on a scale of 1 to 5 (5 as the best rating) on 12 performance criteria. The machines were evaluated unloaded and loaded by each evaluator.




 

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