Budget Honda thowdown!
With engine sizes and price tags racing to see which can get higher, the mid-size ATV market is actually flourishing with vehicles that are extremely capable and have price tags that don’t have near the same “pain factor” as the big-bore class. Honda, the longest running manufacturer of ATVs and a brand associated with quality, has two rides that fall right in the sweet spot of being both budget-friendly, and capable performers. Let’s take a look at what separates the 2017 Honda Foreman 4×4 from the 2017 Honda Rancher 4×4, by the numbers.
|2017 Honda Foreman 4×4||2017 Honda Rancher 4×4|
|Engine||475cc Single||420cc Single|
|Driveline/Differential||Direct front and rear driveshafts with TraxLok and front differential lock||Direct front and rear driveshafts with TraxLok and torque-sensitive front differential|
|Transmission||Five-speed with reverse||Five-speed with reverse|
|Wheelbase||49.9 in||49.9 in|
|Overall Dimensions (LxWxH)||82.8″ x 47.4″ x 48″||82.8″ x 47.4″ x 46.2″|
|Weight||630 lbs||608 lbs|
|Front Tires||25 x 8-12||24 x 8-12|
|Rear Tires||25 x 10-12||24 x 10-11|
|Ground Clearance||7.5 in||7.2 in|
|Fuel Capacity||3.9 gal, including 1.3-gal reserve||3.9 gal, including 1.3-gal reserve|
|Front Suspension||Independent double-wishbone; 7.28 inches travel||Independent double-wishbone; 6.69 inches trave|
|Rear Suspension||Swingarm with single shock; 7.28 inches travel||Swingarm with single shock; 6.69 inches travel|
|Front /Rear Brakes||190mm Dual hydraulic disc / 160mm Sealed mechanical drum||190mm Dual hydraulic disc / 160mm Sealed mechanical drum|
The Foreman runs on a 475cc liquid-cooled OHV, longitudinally-mounted, single-cylinder four-stroke engine. It has a bore and stroke of 92mm x 71.5mm and is fed through a Keihin 36mm throttle body electric fuel injection system. It is available with or without Honda’s Electronic Shift system. With the way the engine is mounted, the crankshaft is directly in line with the drive system. This makes the Foreman feel like it has a bigger engine than it does.
The Rancher is powered by a 420cc liquid-cooled, fuel-injected, OHV, wet-sump, longitudinally-mounted, single-cylinder, four-stroke engine. It has a bore and stroke of 86.5mm x 71.5mm. It is fed through a Keihin 34mm throttle-body fuel-injection system. There are several versions of the Rancher available, including models with the electric shift system, and Honda’s amazing DCT dual clutch transmission.
To get the DCT system on the Foreman, you have to step up to the Foreman Rubicon model, a simply amazing machine and one of our favorites.
Both the Foreman and the Rancher come with four-wheel drive (it’s an option on the Rancher). Electronic power steering is optional with both models. Both machines come standard with a solid rear axle and swingarm rear suspension setup. The Foreman has 7.28 inches of rear wheel travel, to the Rancher’s 6.69 inches. The Rancher is available in an independent rear suspension system model, as is the Foreman, you just have to step up to the Rubicon model.
Both have Honda’s Traxlock differential locker, and locking front differential. This locks in all four wheels for ultimate traction.
The Rancher is available with the DCT system, which allows you to select your gears through electronic shifting. You can also use the auto transmission selection, which shifts for you. This feature is nice as you get all five gears plus reverse in high and low range.
A few CCs and…
The differences between the two models, besides 55cc, are a few small things than can be big depending on your needs. The Foreman has a handlebar-mounted headlight to go along with the two frame-mounted lights. It also has a little more extensive brushguard front bumper. The Rancher can be had in a two-wheel drive version for less cash, if you really don’t need four-wheel drive. But who doesn’t need 4WD?
The Foreman starts out at $7,299 and goes from there. You can find more information about it here. The Rancher 4×4 starts at $6,399 and runs up as you add more options. Learn more about the Rancher here.