TMW Off-Road
Factory UTV
Axia Alloys


Sport UTVs:
Polaris RZR XP 4 1000
Polaris RZR XP 1000
Arctic Cat Wildcat
Can-Am Maverick
Polaris RZR XP 900
Can-Am Commander
Yamaha Rhino
Kawasaki Teryx FI 4x4 Sport
Polaris RZR S


Sport UTV Comparison

Arctic Cat Wildcat  Polaris RZR XP

Polaris RZR XP vs. Arctic Cat Wildcat

In the pure sport UTV market, there are only three competitors.  Polaris used to completely dominate this market with the RZR S and then the RZR XP, but now Arctic Cat has entered the market with the Wildcat 1000.

In the dunes, there are a few factors that make a vehicle perform well:

  • Power
  • Suspension Travel and High Quality, Adjustable Shocks
  • Lightweight
  • Wheelbase - longer wheelbase tends to help in the whoops
  • Width - wider platform is more stable
  • Low Center of Gravity

Polaris RZR XP vs. Arctic Cat Wildcat

Suspension

The Wildcat boast some incredible wheel travel at 17" in the front and 18" in the rear. This will be a huge asset in the dunes. Head to head, the RZR XP and the Wildcat look to have similar horsepower numbers. Based on the weight difference, we believe the Wildcat would lose in a straight line, smooth terrain hill shoot. But where the Wildcat may shine is when you toss in some whoops or rough terrain. With  13.5" more wheelbase and 3" - 4" or more wheel travel, the Wildcat should be able to keep the available power to the ground better.

Arctic Cat Wildcat Rear Suspension  Polaris RZR XP Trailing Arm Suspension
Trailing Arm Suspension - 5-link vs. 3-link

The Wildcat and RZR XP both feature rear trailing arm suspension.  Arctic Cat has opted for a 5-link and Polaris for a 3-link. The Wildcat has 2 inch adjustable Walker Evans Racing shocks with piggyback reservoirs.  The RZR XP has 2 inch adjustable Fox Racing Shox with piggyback reservoirs. Both of these suspension types have a long history in off-road racing and provide improved performance over typical a-arms when it comes to high speed and rough terrain.

One area where the Wildcat has an advantage which helps performance in the whoops is wheelbase. The Wildcat is not only 11.5" longer overall, but the Wildcat's 90 inch wheelbase is 8.5 inches longer than the RZR XP. The only downfall to this extra length is getting it to the dunes. Many duners have tight circumstances in their trailers and another foot can be a big deal.

 Wildcat - 950cc, EFI, SOHC 4-stroke, 4-valve, V-Twin, liquid-cooled engine. Polaris RZR 900 XP Twin Cylinder EFI with 88 HP
Wildcat 951cc v-twin vs. RZR XP 875cc twin

Engine

The heart of the new Wildcat is a 951cc V-Twin, SOHC 4-stroke with Electronic Fuel Injection (EFI) has proven itself on the Prowler XTZ. On the Wildcat, the 1000 H.O. has been tuned to deliver even stronger acceleration thanks to the extra torque and horsepower provided by heavy-breathing 50mm throttle bodies, a new 2-into-1 ceramic coated exhaust and an all-new air intake system.

At the heart of the RANGER RZR XP 900 is the all-new, 88 horsepower ProStarô 900 Twin EFI engine that was built specifically for an extreme-performance Side x Side. The engine features Dual OverHead Cams (DOHC), four big valves per cylinder and a 180-degree crankshaft for balanced performance and fast throttle response for groundbreaking acceleration.

Engine placement is also key in the design of the chassis and seating.  Both of these vehicles place the engine behind the seat  which helps in a few ways.  It allows the seat position to be lowered for a much better center of gravity and also helps produce a better front-to-rear weight ratio. Off-road vehicles tend to handle rough terrain better if the rear of the vehicle carries a little more weight than the front (e.g. 60-40 ratio).

Power Steering

Arctic Catís Variable Assist Electronic Power Steering (EPS) on the Wildcat delivers even greater steering control and ease. The EPS system is a managed electronic control unit (ECU) that measures steering input force, tire resistance and vehicle speed, and then provides the appropriate assist to the steering column through an electric motor.

The RZR XP does not come standard with power steering, but it available as a PURE Polaris accessory and also from Wicked Bilt.

We love power assist steering for UTVs and think that it is great that it is available for both of these vehicles.  If you are a fan as well, factor that into your cost comparisons since you would need to add that to the RZR XP.

Weight

When you are looking at a vehicle that has less than 100 horsepower, more weight is a performance killer. The claimed dry weight of the Wildcat is 115 lbs. heavier than the RZR XP.  Both vehicles have enough horsepower to push the cars nicely through the dunes, but if the horsepower of these vehicles is nearly equal, the RZR XP will win the straight-line race.

Videos:

Polaris RZR XP 900

Arctic Cat Wildcat 1000

Specification Comparison

  Polaris RZR 900 XP Arctic Cat Wildcat V-Twin 1000 H.O.
  Polaris RZR XP Arctic Cat Wildcat
Dry Weight 1190 lbs. 1305 lbs.
Ground  Clearance 13" 13"
Length 108.4" 120"
Width 64" 64"
Wheelbase 81.4" 95"
Travel 13.5/14" 17"/18"
Seat Height 31" 26.5"
Engine Twin - 875cc Twin - 951cc
Bed Capacity 300 lbs. 300 lbs.
Tilt Wheel Yes Yes
Center of Gravity Rating 9 10
Power Steering No Yes
MSRP $15,999 $16,599

Conclusion:

Competition is a good thing! We are thrilled that another manufacturer has entered the pure-sport UTV market with a vehicle that makes duning fun. There is a HUGE market for sport UTVs, and Kawasaki, Honda, Yamaha and Suzuki should take note.

Crowley Offroad has a Polaris RZR XP demo unit that we use for testing and reviews.  We hope to have an Arctic Cat Wildcat in the stable soon so we will be able to bring more details and comparisons forward.


Long Travel:
Can-Am Commander Long Travel Kits
Kawasaki Teryx Long Travel Kits
Polaris RZR Long Travel Kits
Arctic Cat Prowler Long Travel Kits
Yamaha Rhino Long Travel Kits


Favorite Sites:
UTV Guide
SxSNews.com
Crowley Offroad
UTV News
Facebook
UTV Models



 

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