2015 Can-Am Outlander 6×6 1000 XT Review
For the 2015 model year Can-Am introduced an Outlander with the familiar fuel injected Rotax Twin cylinder 976cc powerplant and belt driven transmission, but with an extra axle in the back and a dump bed to make it an even harder working machine. The 2015 Can-Am Outlander 6×6 1000 XT is a mouthful to describe, but this hard-charging workhorse is ready to take down any tough job you need help with. We were able to get our hands on one of these magnificent machines and immediately put it to work on a few big jobs around the property.
The advent of six-wheeled ATVs started a new way to haul more and it now gives the off-road capable Can-Am Outlander even more capabilities when traversing rough landscape. Just sitting on the new 2015 Can-Am Outlander 6×6 you really do not feel that your riding a longer machine. Our impression was that it feels like riding a Can-Am Outlander MAX, but with a bed out back instead of a seat.
All of your controls are in the same position as the standard Outlander and the seating is very plush, just as we have come to expect from Can-Am ATVs. Under the seat you will find very conveniently placed serviceable items such as the air filter access, battery, and rear brake fluid container. Foot wells are spacious and have plenty of grip for when the trails get sloppy.
COMPARISON: Read our review of the Polaris Sportsman Big Boss 6×6 800 EFI
Reaching forward and taking control of the bars is easy and feels natural with the most common controls at our fingertips. Our Outlander 6×6 XT has the very nice Tri-Mode DPS, or Dynamic Power Steering, which allows the rider to tune his or her steering assistance preference. Being able to add a little steering help when the bed of this machine is loaded is a plus, but when you lock the six wheels together and have it loaded, your work day will be much more comfortable with all the power steering you get in the DPS Max setting.
During our testing we loaded the bed with pavestone, which we relocated from one section of the property to another. The weight didn’t even phase the engine and the suspension still seemed to soak up the rough parts along the way.
You can haul up to 700 pounds in the cargo bed of the Outlander 6×6.
You can haul up to 700 pounds in the bed of the Outlander 6×6, which is saying a lot for the chassis construction underneath. The machine also boasts a two-inch receiver hitch, which is capable of towing up to 1,650 pounds. We are not sure you’d want to carry 700 pounds while towing another 1,650, but knowing this beast can do it is astonishing.
When the road gets rough and you need all six wheels to churn up the towing strength, a simple right handlebar-mounted switch will get your wheels rolling. Can-Am’s Visco-Lok QE front differential seems to know when it is needed and doesn’t seem to weight the steering down much at all.
With six-wheel drive at your disposal, the Outlander can take you just about anywhere.
One thing we did notice, and it seems to happen on some machines, is that we could not use the receiver hitch from our truck in the hitch on the Outlander 6×6. The typical Reese hitch is too long for the pre-drilled holes in the Outlander’s receiver. We would need to either cut material off of the receiver insert or drill a secondary hole in it in order for the piece to fit our Outlander. This is not a deal breaker, but it is kind of a pain when we are working and need to worry about other things.
COMPARISON: Read our review of the Can-Am Outlander 1000 XT
BRP smartly built the bed of the 2015 Can-Am Outlander 6×6 1000 XT with the ability to dump and is assisted by a single hydraulic shock. The bed dump lever is located just to the right rear of the driver and is locked in place by a cotter pin. This keeps you from dumping the content of the bed accidently. We found the bed to be large and durable. Neither logs nor pavestone left any real damage to the interior, but we were careful not to haphazardly throw these pieces inside.
Located behind the rider on the right side is the lockable dump lever, which lifts the cargo bed for dumping.
A long center cover hides even more storage and though this section is not watertight, you can purchase a lower storage dry box that simply slips into the location. This makes a great place for a cooler as it is far enough from any engine heat and out of the way when working. This bed is also a chameleon of sorts as it can transform into a flatbed with just a few minutes of work. The bedsides simply pull off and Can-Am has a few bed accessories designed for special use applications.
COMPARISON: Read our review of the Polaris Sportsman X2
Hauling all of the capable weight and still getting down the trail was obviously a concern for Can-Am. To help control the load, the Outlander 6×6 has 11 inches of ground clearance, which will most likely shrink a bit when loaded. Suspension travel up front is geared to nine inches and a double A-arm style setup, while the traditional Independent Torsional Trailing arms make up the rear and give it 9.3 inches to work with. And that is a multiple of two out back due to the extra axle. Gas charged shocks that have preload capabilities and what seems to be a dual rate single spring system to dampen the ride.
A hydraulic shock makes lifting the dump bed a snap.
During testing we did have a chance to take the rig unloaded to a little higher speed through the trails around home and found that this machine can be just as fun to trail ride as it is useful to work the hell out of. You really forget that you have six wheels rolling out the trails and the massive power of the fuel injected Rotax mill steps up the game when the revs high higher.
Some other notable features include high-mounted air intakes that service the engine and CVT. These intakes have been installed as high as possible in the machine for that time when the creek rises or the mud gets a little deeper than you like. The heavy-duty front bumper on our Outlander 6×6 held a 3000-pound WARN winch that is included in the XT package for these rigs. As well, the 26-inch Carlise ACT radial tires ride on 12-inch cast aluminum wheels that are also part of the “XTras” package. This 6×6 not only works well but it looks great too.
Whether he is in Mexico covering the Baja 1000, building ATVs for local racers, or out enjoying the trails, Rick’s passion shows in his stories. Learning to wrench his own machines from his grandfather, Rick also has an undying appreciation for the mechanics of off-road vehicles. Do not let the dirt and mud fool you, though, as Rick also has a deep love for street cars.
More by Rick Sosebee