Inc. - http://www.opencube.com)****
Sport UTV Comparison
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:
Suspension Travel and High Quality, Adjustable Shocks
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
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.
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 951cc v-twin vs. RZR XP 875cc twin
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).
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
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.
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
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.