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2018 Polaris Ranger XP 1000 Ups the Ante

When you’re No. 1, well, you still keep trying to get better. That would be true of the new Polaris Ranger XP 1000 utility vehicle.

The Ranger got the top ranking in Successful Farming’s 2017 Ultimate UTV Evaluation. Then recently, Polaris unveiled a new 2018 model Ranger with even more “soup.”

Chris Judson, the Ranger product manager, says each of the more than 100 innovations to the 2017 model are user-inspired after Polaris engineers spent hundreds of hours with dealers and customers, including many farmers.

Here are some of the key upgrades to the Ranger, according to Judson.

  • More engine power. It’s still the Polaris ProStar 1000 (999 cc.) engine, but various engineering tweaks have bumped it to 82 hp., and 62 ft-lbs of torque, the most in its class.
  • Enhanced clutching system. The Pro PVT clutch allows for smoother engagement and take-off in low gear.
  • Bigger drive belt. There’s also more air flow around it, allowing it to run cooler, quieter, and longer.
  • Enhanced engine braking. The Ranger has a unique belt pinching system that engages whenever the machine is slowing or going downhill.
  • More overall “umph.” With the enhancements to the engine, clutch, and brakes, the new Ranger has a 25% greater towing capacity at 2,500 pounds. The box capacity is still 1,000 pounds.
  • Sits higher. With bigger 10-ply tires, the machine now has 13 inches of ground clearance, the most in the industry, and better for clearing such things as rocks and corn stubble. It also has 11 inches of suspension travel.
  • More skid plate. It’s 50% larger than before, covering nearly the entire underside of the machine.
  • Tighter turning. Steering has been made more responsive with standard power steering and 15% tighter turning radius (13 feet).
  • Overall quieter. With the quieter clutch, under-hood air intake, and quieter tires, the Ranger runs quieter than ever, allowing for easier cab conversation even under load or at full-throttle.
  • Bigger tank: The Ranger fuel tank is now 16% larger than previously, at 11.6 gallons capacity.
  • Inside the cab. There are lots of refinements here, says Judson. The entry door is five inches wider; seats have an extra inch of foam padding; it has six cup holders and two water bottle holder; it has more overall cab storage with 50% more glove box space; and the flip-up passenger seat gives a lot of under-seat storage .
  • Bigger box. It’s one-inch deeper, allowing for 10% more capacity. In addition, there are eight stake holes around the edge of the box, allowing you to expand the box upward.
  • Under-hood bus bar. The multi-outlet electrical bar, called the Pulse system, allows you to add electrical accessories, such as lights or a winch, with a simple plug-and-play connector system. The wiring is already in place.

Top new accessories

In addition to enhancements of the basic Ranger, there will soon be over 70 new accessories, and over 200 total accessories, available for it, says Mike Strong, Polaris accessories manager. Here are his top four accessories:

  • Doors. The basic Ranger has semi-rigid mesh doors, but many farmers like to add a premium cab. Called the Ranger Pro Shield system, it now comes in three styles: power windows, crank windows (full roll-down), or a half door poly version. Other add-ons include heated seats, rear view mirrors, and a heater/defrost system.
  • Lights. Polaris is partnering with Rigid Lights to bring new light packages to the Ranger. One is a 32-inch LED light bar that will mount over the cap; they soon will have a 10-inch light bar called the Adapt Bar, which can be either a flood light or a spot light, and “anything in between,” says Strong.
  • Audio. The Visor Speaker System can be maxed out to 10 speakers, Apple Control, and auxiliary AM-FM stereo. This system competes with the best car or pickup audio systems, Strong adds.
  • Winch. Of course, this is the top-selling add-on for Rangers. It has wireless control, and comes in 4,500 pound or 6,000 pound models. The Ranger is already wired for it under the hood, allowing for 20-minute installation, Strong says.
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