You don’t often see major ATV manufacturers blatantly ripping on products from competitors, but that’s precisely what Yamaha has done with a video comparing the new Grizzly 450 with EPS to the Honda Rancher.
“They call it the Rancher, but it just seems to fall short of that rugged name in so many ways,” Yamaha says in the video, which is available on Yamaha’s website and YouTube. You can check it yourself in this post below the jump.
That is a fairly harsh criticism from one OEM to another. In fact, it’s a lot more reminiscent of a mud slinging political ad than anything we’ve seen in the ATV industry before. Of course, the video doesn’t stop there – It goes on to take digs at a variety of features on the Foreman, including Honda’s transmission
“What we found is really a five-speed manual with a computer that’s supposed to make the gear shifts for you. And what we experienced was a jumpy transmission that seems to constantly search for the right gear. And when it can’t find it, you’re stuck. That’s why many riders choose to disable the supposedly automatic transmission and opt for this button-operated thumb shifter. So much for automatic.”
Honda’s power steering was also under fire.
“On the Honda, we found the EPS sometimes didn’t seem to engage when turning from a stop and changing directions after stopping – making the steering feel extra heavy.”
Yamaha also took a shot at Honda’s four-wheel drive mode.
“The way they tell it, their system is supposed to provide more torque to the wheel with the most traction. But we found the opposite to be true. Go figure.”
The Foreman’s engine braking, tires, front and rear rack capacities, and tow rating were all under fire from Yamaha in the video.
We have yet to ride the new Grizzly ourselves, but after seeing the video we’d sure like a chance to pit these units against each other in a middleweight shootout to see who would take the prize.
The big question is, will Honda respond? We sure hope so. Nobody wants to see the manufacturers act all lovey-dovey. We’d like to see a whole lot more of this type of thing. Yamaha fired the first salvo, so it’s time for Honda, Polaris, Kawasaki, Arctic Cat, Suzuki, and Can-Am to step up and join the party!
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