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Thread: Polaris vs. Honda

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    Default Polaris vs. Honda

    Hondas have a great reputation up here, and I have ridden them for years, but their one drawback has always been a lack of independent rear suspension. Now that they have included that feature on the new Ranchers, I feel like that is the way to go. But I have also read great things about the Polaris Sportsman, and it seems like their 550 model includes the same features as the Rancher AT w/ Power Steering. The honda engine is smaller, and it also has less ground clearance, while the Polaris is more money. What do you all think is a better machine?

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    Member AKHunterNP's Avatar
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    My polaris 550 w/eps


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    No question about it in my mind. Having owned both, Polaris.
    NRA Life Member since 1974

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    Member AKsummit's Avatar
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    Polaris x2...great machines just keep the water below the top of the seat.
    Boondocking & Bowls of Deep Fresh Powder !
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    no question in my mind Honda
    Honda x4 Polaris x1 Yamaha x1
    when we sold our 88 and 89 Honda 350's they were still going strong
    Anchorage Ak

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    Member 907pride's Avatar
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    I have had quite a few machines and have also rented machines in the past. I have seen allot of abuse to many wheelers and have seen all of them break. With that said, I also know that Polaris parts are typically cheaper than any other brand. Try to go with Hatchers Pass Polaris for parts- There are others that have a large markup.
    I for one also like the clearance. Where I go, the clearance really does help. The 500 and 550 EFI motors have more than enough power to pull a moose out of the woods and another wheeler at the same time(I'll save that story for another time). The other thing that you can't overlook is that Polaris is made in the USA. That is a large determining factor for me. I have been more than pleased with the Polaris wheelers. I have had multiple brands and I still like them over all others. I can't lie and say that they have never broken down, but I can also say that I am very rough on my wheelers. I can say that I have never had a motor go bad on me. Here are some photos.

    IMG_0426.jpgIMG_0637.jpg

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    Thanks for all the great responses. I didn't even know that Polaris was made in USA. Cheaper parts are nice too. Overall, it maybe a little more money, but with a larger engine and more ground clearance, I think my choice is obvious.

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    I would have to say w/o a doubt Honda for me. Almost bullet proof, reliability is second to none. I'm not up on the latest on Polaris machines, but they used to be belt driven and we would loose Polaris riders in the creeks due to belt slippage. Had to wait around to dry off to hit the trail again. Just my 2 cents...

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    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Birdman2012 View Post
    What do you all think is a better machine?
    Honda.
    .....
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    Honda is my vote, will pull anything a polaris can also use less fuel. Bigger engine more fuel. In alaska all part are costly.

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    Member blasterak's Avatar
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    Honda for me. My rancher 350 is an absolute horse, never lets me down! Fits through any little opening in the brushy areas I hunt where a bigger ATV would not. Just used it the other day to do some land clearing around the property, pulled the big logs no issue in low gear and its a sipper on the fuel. I only wish they offered the new IRS rancher in the manual transmission rather than the AT but I really dont mind the solid axle. Plenty of clearance with my taller mud tires and lift kit.

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    Quote Originally Posted by blasterak View Post
    Honda for me. My rancher 350 is an absolute horse, never lets me down! Fits through any little opening in the brushy areas I hunt where a bigger ATV would not. Just used it the other day to do some land clearing around the property, pulled the big logs no issue in low gear and its a sipper on the fuel. I only wish they offered the new IRS rancher in the manual transmission rather than the AT but I really dont mind the solid axle. Plenty of clearance with my taller mud tires and lift kit.
    Amen brother! I've been researching a new rancher and can't bring myself to buy an AT or even an ESP for the matter. Less trouble w/ manual, plus you always pick the right gear. I'm looking hard at manual, 4wd with power steering

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