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2017 UTV Evaluation: Textron Stampede 900
One company that has begun an all-out march to gather market share in the UTV market is Textron. The company, known for producing jets, purchased Arctic Cat in early 2017.
Experience with the Textron Stampede 900 during our UTV Ultimate Test was pleasantly surprising for a machine that has only been available for a few months at the time of the February evaluation. Being similar to other utility-based machines on the market today, the Textron Stampede gives a working rancher or trail rider the tools to do either effectively.
In 2017, Successful Farming magazine conducted its third extensive UTV evaluation to provide you with information about how UTVs perform in ag applications. During the evaluation, we put seven of the newest utility vehicles through four rigorous tests.
There are a couple of unique aspects of the Stampede, including the extended cab section right behind the front passenger compartment. This gives you room for a small cooler or tools. Keeping this area under the roofline means that you have a greater chance of not getting heated by the sun or drenched by a sudden downpour.
Seating inside the Stampede is comfortable, and the three-point harness kept us secure in the seat during the ride. Getting from one side of the machine to the other is also easy with a low flat floor and no other obstructions blocking our way. The embossed floors as well as the extra grip on the brake and gas pedals helped provide traction in our wet and muddy conditions down in the bottoms around the mud and during creek crossings.
A digital dash in the Stampede gives you a great view of any information you would need to keep an eye on, as well as other items like fuel, speed, and a clock. Overall, the layout in the cab is welcoming, and with a custom tilt steering wheel, you should be comfortable behind the wheel.
As in any testing, we discovered things we wished we could change. One thing about the Stampede is the in-cab noise. The Stampede gets loud, and with a trailer behind the workhorse, it gets even louder.
The engine in this Stampede is an 846-cc., and we found the power output of this engine to be adequate in all aspects of our testing. The low-end grunt and mid-range pulling power gave us what we envisioned a great power plant should be like. Textron claims this engine produces 80 hp., and it was evident during our fully loaded testing, as the motor never grumbled but kept on pulling. The tow rating for the Stampede is 2,000 pounds. Although our trailer and load might have been closer to 1,500 pounds, it’s clear that the power output would handle that without issue. The Textron Stampede does also have 2WD/4WD and 4WD differential locks. When engaged, the traction for tough hill climbs as well as swampy muddy bottomland seemed to be on par with most of our other utility vehicles.
Overall, our findings with the Textron Stampede 900 were in line with its competitors. As with any new machine coming into this market, it does need a little refinement to grasp the handle and pull up to the top-tier rides. As we mentioned, Textron has purchased a major ATV/UTV brand, and I am sure with a couple of years under the company’s belt, the finer touches will begin to shine.
About the Author: Rick Sosebee is an ATV/UTV journalist and was one of three evaluators during the UTV testing.