2017 Honda Foreman 4×4 vs. Honda Rancher 4×4: By the Numbers

Derrek Sigler
by Derrek Sigler
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 4×42017 Honda Rancher 4×4
Engine475cc Single420cc Single
Driveline/DifferentialDirect front and rear driveshafts with TraxLok and front differential lockDirect front and rear driveshafts with TraxLok and torque-sensitive front differential
TransmissionFive-speed with reverseFive-speed with reverse
Wheelbase49.9 in49.9 in
Overall Dimensions (LxWxH)82.8″ x 47.4″ x 48″82.8″ x 47.4″ x 46.2″
Weight630 lbs608 lbs
Front Tires25 x 8-1224 x 8-12
Rear Tires25 x 10-1224 x 10-11
Ground Clearance7.5 in7.2 in
Fuel Capacity3.9 gal, including 1.3-gal reserve3.9 gal, including 1.3-gal reserve
Front SuspensionIndependent double-wishbone; 7.28 inches travelIndependent double-wishbone; 6.69 inches trave
Rear SuspensionSwingarm with single shock; 7.28 inches travelSwingarm with single shock; 6.69 inches travel
Front /Rear Brakes190mm Dual hydraulic disc / 160mm Sealed mechanical drum190mm 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.

Honda Foreman Studio Red

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.

Honda Rancher Swingarm Suspension

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.

Honda Foreman Switch Diff Lock
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?

Honda Rancher Studio Camo

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.

Derrek Sigler
Derrek Sigler

Derrek's love for all things ATV started when he was a mere 11 years old, growing up on his family farm. His mom gave him and his sister a choice - get a horse, or a three-wheeler. The sister wanted the horse, and Derrek wanted the ATV. Luckily he won out, and was soon burning up the trails on a Yamaha Tri-Moto 200. By the time he was 14, he had saved enough of his own money by working on the farm and in his folks restaurant to buy a new 4-wheeler. That happened the day he and his mom were driving past the dealership and saw 1987 Banshee. His mom had no idea what he was buying, and he never looked back. He's been riding ever since, and been writing professionally for many years. He has ridden all over North America and been behind the controls of just about every machine out there. And yes, he still has his 1987 Yamaha Banshee.

More by Derrek Sigler