2019 ATV.com Utility UTV of the Year

Derrek Sigler
by Derrek Sigler
When it comes to getting things done, it's hard to top the 2019 Polaris Ranger XP 1000

The Utility category of UTVs doesn’t always get the respect it deserves. While it leads all other categories in terms of sales every year, the go-fast machines are always the ones on the magazine covers as the “sexy” picks. For 2019, there are a lot of truly amazing Utility machines that are not only amazing workhorses capable of getting the job done, but also quite a bit a fun to drive, too. While there are a couple of new entries into the mix this year, and some refinements to others, the machine sitting at the top of the utility mountain for 2019 is the Polaris Ranger XP 1000. The Ranger’s horsepower, increased capabilities and smooth ride combined to make it the ATV.com 2019 Utility UTV of the Year.

What is the Best Utility UTV?

That is a question we hear a lot and the reason we selected our machine of the year. For the Ranger, it is a combination of power, capability and comfort that propelled it to the top of the list for the best Utility UTV of the Year for 2019.

What is the Most Powerful Utility UTV?

2019 Polaris Ranger XP 1000 Studio

The Ranger got a complete overhaul last year and usually that means the competition catches up by the following year. That hasn’t happened quite yet. The latest Ranger has a powerful 999cc ProStar Twin engine that produces a serious 82 horsepower. However, it is just shy of being the most powerful Utility UTV in the industry (see the honorable mentions below to find out which one comes out on top). Polaris’ ProStar Twin is a quiet engine, too. That quietness also makes the Ranger deceptively smooth. You don’t always realize just how much power the machine has. That’s part of what makes the Ranger XP 1000 a lot of fun to drive. Hunters have fallen for the XP as well, thanks to the combination of power and lowered sound levels.

What is the Most Capable Utility UTV?

2019 Polaris Ranger XP 1000 Towing

The chassis is the real star of the show when it comes to working and helps push the Ranger up the rankings of the most capable Utility UTVs around. The Ranger has an all-new single spar frame that made the XP 1000 much more rigid structurally than the previous models. This bumped towing capacity up to a staggering 2,500 pounds. The cargo bed can carry 1,000 pounds and having tested this, it is safe to say that the Ranger can be maxed out for capacity and not flinch. Suspension is handled by dual A-arms at all four corners and travel is a smooth 11 inches all the way around. Beefy 27-inch Maxxis tires give the Ranger an aggressive footprint and help boost ground clearance up to 13 inches.

What is the Most Comfortable Utility UTV?

2019 Polaris Ranger XP 1000 White

Another big plus for the Ranger is comfort. The engineers at Polaris made the Ranger easier to use with five additional inches of space for getting in and out of the machine. That’s pretty handy for farming and other jobs where you’re getting in and out of the machine a lot. The steering wheel and dash have been revised and are more driver-centric and easier to reach the controls. There is also more cargo space within the cab, with a dual-level glove box and additional cargo space. The seats are thicker and more comfortable than ever, and this wasn’t something the Ranger lacked in before. Special Edition models are available, such as the Northstar Edition that adds a full cab enclosure with heating and air conditioning, for the ultimate in climate control. Add it all up and it’s easier to see why we selected the 2019 Polaris Ranger XP 1000 as Utility UTV of the Year.

Honorable Mention – Arctic Cat Prowler Pro XT

Arctic Cat Prowler Pro

Arctic Cat designed the Prowler Pro as a serious work machine. It has an 812cc automotive-style, three-cylinder engine that produces 50 horsepower and is very quiet thanks to superbly-designed motor mounts and baffling. The Pro will tow 2,000 pounds, haul 1,000 pounds in the cargo bed and is very easy to drive and comfortable to ride in. It is the most capable Prowler Utility model to date and is a solid platform for all your utility needs.

Honorable Mention – Mahindra Retriever 1000

Mahindra Retriever 1000

Mahindra partnered with Intimidator to develop the extremely capable Retriever lineup. The 1000 has an 83 horsepower, 1000cc, twin-cylinder engine making it the class leader in power. It can tow 2,500 pounds and haul 1,200 pounds in the hydraulic-dumping cargo bed. Look for big things from Mahindra as it works to increase its market share in the UTV area.

Honorable Mention – Kawasaki Mule Pro-MX

Kawasaki Mule Pro MX LE Action

The engineers at Kawasaki developed a mid-sized version of the tough-as-nails Mule Pro, and it is a seriously nice Utility machine. It is powered by a 695cc single-cylinder engine and can tow 1,500 pounds. The steel-reinforced cargo bed can handle 700 pounds and the machine is built for getting things done. Period. It comes with selectable two- and four-wheel drive with a diff lock. The MX gives Kawasaki a Mule for all applications.

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.

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