Honda Rolls Out Pioneer 500
With the addition of the all-new 2015 Pioneer 500, Honda adds a heavy dose of fun to its line of side-by-side vehicles. The 500 carries two people to off-road adventures or to complete chores on the farm for an affordable price of $8,499.
“My first drive in the Pioneer 500 was an eye-opener,” says Lee Edmunds, Honda. “It’s really fun to drive, and the paddle shifters bring a whole different kind of experience that helps make it a blast.”
Only 50 inches wide, the 500 fits on narrow trails, as well as in the bed of a full-size truck. A modest 73-inch wheelbase helps return responsive handling and provides a tight turning radius of only 13 feet.
The Pioneer 500 is powered by Honda’s 475-cc. four-stroke engine. This powerplant pumps out plenty of low-end torque along with a smooth, fun-to-use powerband. The five-speed gearbox with reverse uses an electric shift system featuring paddle shifters mounted on the steering column.
“Paddle shifting is a lot of fun for recreation,” says Wayne Lambert, Honda. “With the quick shifts, you feel like a racecar driver. But it also has some practical benefits for work. It allows you to hold whatever gear you need for the situation you are at.”
Thoughtful touches include a door/net setup that opens together as one unit. Inside, there’s a roomy and comfortable bench seat for the driver and passenger.
In the front and rear, the Pioneer features an independent double-wishbone suspension with 5.9 inches of travel. Ground clearance is rated at 9.6 inches.
The hauling and towing capabilities for the 500 are smaller than the Honda Pioneer 700, but you can still tow 1,000 pounds and haul 450 pounds on the steel cargo rack.
There are more than 40 accessories that allow you to configure the Pioneer 500 for your specific needs.