Innovative UTV converts from two to four seats
Honda has just unveiled an innovative four-seat UTV – the 2014 Honda Pioneer 700-4. It’s certainly not the first four-seat UTV on the market, but it is the first we’ve seen that quickly converts from four seats to two.
Unlike other four-seat UTVs that feature long wheelbases, the Pioneer 700-4 is sized like a two-seat model. Exactly how close the Pioneer is in size to the two-seat Big Red is still unknown. Full vehicle specs and other information is coming in May. In the meantime, Honda says the Pioneer will replace the Big Red rather than be sold alongside it.
It’s the convertible seating, however, that is the Pioneer’s most notable feature. The two rear seats fold away into the bed when not in use, allowing owners to opt to use the Pioneer with two-seat, three-seat or four-seat configurations. According to Honda, the rear seats fold quickly and easily without the need for tools, and once folded away the Pioneer’s tilt-bed space can be fully utilized. Of course, that means when the seats are being used the bed is unavailable for storage. In some ways, it’s the UTV version of the Polaris Sportsman X2 550 ATV.
Powering the Pioneer is Honda’s fuel-injected 700cc-class liquid-cooled OHV single-cylinder four-stroke engine that features an automotive-style automatic transmission with hydraulic torque converter, three forward gears and reverse.
As for front and rear independent double-wishbone suspension, the Pioneer offers 7.9 in. of travel up front and 9.1 in. in back, compared to 5.9 in. and 7.1 in. in the Big Red. The Pioneer can haul 1000 pounds inside or two 1500 pounds. It will be available in three colors – Red, Green, and Honda Phantom Camo. A full line of more than 50 accessories will also be available when the Pioneer hits Honda’s dealer network later this year.