The fastest 4×4 in the woods
Sport ATVs may take up a far smaller segment of the off-road industry than they did in their heyday, but these fun-first machines are how ATVs first gained popularity.
The original 1970 Honda ATC was designed specifically for recreation and it spawned an entire industry as people the world over lined up to ride a three-wheeler with balloon tires.
While Utility ATVs and Side-by-Sides gradually took over market share, Sport ATVs remained extremely popular right through the first decade of this century. At one point, pretty much every manufacturer had a 450cc Sport ATV with a racing program built around it.
Today, the classic Sport ATVs with a manual transmission are few and far between, but many ATV enthusiasts hold a soft spot in their hearts for these machines. The very idea of a Sport ATV has evolved in recent years to include more powerful models with fully automatic transmissions and massive engines.
Let’s take a look at every Sport ATV currently available today.
2020 Yamaha Sport ATVs
If there is one manufacturer left that is firmly supporting the Sport ATV business, it is Yamaha. In fact, the Yamaha YFZ450R is the last remaining 450-class Sport Quad with a manual transmission still in production. Ready for the motocross track or your local trail, the YFZ450R has won a long list of checkered flags and relies on a 5-speed transmission with a wet multiple-assist slipper clutch, fully adjustable front and rear shocks and measures 48.8 inches wide and 70.7 inches long with a 50-inch wheelbase. A special edition version is also available with a GYTR front grab bar and unique graphics. Prices start at $9099.
Perhaps the most popular Sport ATV available today is the Yamaha Raptor 700. Thanks to a powerful and torquey 686cc single-cylinder engine and more relaxed gear ratio, this ATV makes for a super comfortable trail machine and is the unquestioned king of the sand dunes. Three different models are available – the base Raptor 700, along with the Raptor 700R and Raptor 700R SE. Prices start at $8099.
2020 Honda Sport ATVs
Outside of Yamaha, the only other brand that makes a traditional looking Sport ATV is Honda. The Honda TRX250X is a great entry-level machine as it offers an attractive $4949 price tag and Honda’s SportClutch, which gives riders the control of a manual shift and clutch while eliminating potential shift-induced stalling. A reliable 229cc single-cylinder engine provides enough go-power for smaller adults. Other features include an electric starter, keyed ignition, lightweight aluminum wheels, and independent front suspension with 5.9 inches of travel.
2020 Can-Am Sport ATVs
When you think of modern day Sport ATVs, the Can-Am Renegade might be the first that comes to mind. Available with three different engines (570, 850, 1000), the Renegade features a fully automatic transmission, double A-arm front suspension, torsional trailing arm rear suspension, and selectable 2WD/4WD with Visco-Lok auto-locking front differential. You can pick up the Renegade in three different packages – the base Renegade with either the 570 or 850 engine, the race-focussed Renegade X XC with the 850 or 1000 engine, the mud killing Renegade X MR with 570 or 1000 engine. Prices start at $8349.
Another option from the Canadian manufacturer is the Can-Am DS 250.This is an entry level ATV designed for riders 14 and older. It features a 250cc engine, continuously variable transmission, chain drive, and double A-arm front suspension. Prices start at $4199.
2020 Polaris Sport ATVs
Polaris and Can-Am go head-to-head in virtually every ATV and UTV category and Sport ATVs are no different. The Scrambler is Polaris’ version of the Can-Am Renegade and it is available in two different models. The Polaris Scrambler 850, though an impressively powerful machine, is the little brother of the Scrambler family. It features an 850cc engine that produces a claimed 78 horsepower, along with 26-inch tires, 11.5 inches of ground clearance, front brush guard, and front and rear dual A-arm suspension. Prices start at $10,299.
The flagship of the family is the Polaris Sportsman 1000 S, which is powered by a 952cc engine that produces 89 horsepower. Features include an industry-leading 55 inches of width, 14.5 inches of ground clearance, and premium suspension with 12.5 inches of front travel and an incredible 14 inches of rear travel via Walker Evans shocks. Prices start at $14,999.
2020 KYMCO Sport ATVs
KYMCO doesn’t offer any adult-sized Sport quads in its ATV lineup, but there is one transitional model designed to fill the gap between Youth ATVs and full-size models – the KYMCO Mongoose 270. Designed for riders aged 14 and up, the Mongoose 270 features a 270cc engine, fully automatic CVT transmission, dual A-arm front suspension, swing arm rear suspension, lightweight sport aluminum wheels, and Maxxis Razr tires. Prices start at $3899.
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