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  • Jeep -vs- ATV?

    I want to get a "trail vehicle" for my family of five. So, I 've been using those "build-it" programs on both the Jeep and Polaris websites and the results are actually quite similar. (using MSRP to keep everything as apples-to-apples as possible.)

    A basic Jeep Wrangler Unlimited prices out at just under $30,000 MSRP.

    The Polaris Ranger Crew 900 starts out a lot lower in price. But, by car standards, it comes with almost nothing: no roof, doors, windshields or windows, heater, etc. By the time you add all the things to the ATV, that come "standard" on a Jeep, you're up into the mid-$20K's range. And because it's not road-legal, you also have to buy at least a flat-bed trailer to get it out to the trailhead. So, MSRP for the complete package will be nipping at the heals of the Jeep.

    For that same amount of money, you get:

    Jeep Wrangler Unlimited: seats 5 / 260HP / 10" clearance / 116" WB / 5100# gvwr / 3500# tow / 32x10" tires (255x75R17)
    Polaris Ranger Crew 900: seats 5 / 60HP / 11.3" clearance / 113" WB / 3321# max / 2000# tow / 26x9"&11" tires (12" rims)

    Which would you rather have?

    Thanx, Dave.
    26
    Wrangler Unlimited
    34.62%
    9
    Ranger 900 Crew
    65.38%
    17
    "Luckily, enforcement reads these forums, and likely will peruse this one...Especially after a link of it is forwarded to them....." - AlaskaHippie.

  • #2
    Option three build my own buggy or track rig thank you
    Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming-----WOW-----what a ride!
    Unknown author

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    • #3
      I have had both at the same time. And I can say I loved my jeep, but theres places I wont take it compared to a 4 wheeler or side by side. With that said, you can buy and awesome used rubicon jk setup for the trail for the price range you mentioned. I wouldn't get a ranger crew anyway, if your kids are old enough I would get two 2 seat sxs or a wheeler and a side by side. Two is one and one is none! Good luck and let us know what you get!

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      • #4
        I went jeep. I bought an 06 LJ. 103.4 wb and only 3600#. 190hp. 3500# towing. If the road/trail get to wet, take the canoe off the top of the jeep.
        "Equipped with his five senses, man explores the universe around him and calls the adventure science"

        Edwin Hubble

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        • #5
          Upfront costs don't show the whole picture. I'm assuming you will be getting a new jeep if you are building one online. Picture cruzing on down the trail, you come to a narrow spot where the alders are overgrown and ARE GOING TO SCRATCH THE CRAP out of your pretty new jeep's paintjob....does that make you cringe? It wouldnt in a ranger, i'm postitive. Then theres maintenance costs. Ya roll a ranger, meh, a few scratches/dents are no big deal. Ya roll your jeep, that can be one hell of a bad day for the pocketbook. Blow a tire out on a ranger, we're talking what - 175 bucks? blow out a 32 inch tire on your jeep, what we talking there? The examples are endless, and favor the ranger in the end I believe.

          edit- and something to add, I can get muddy and bloody in a ranger and not think twice about it, something about crawling into my 30K jeep muddy and bloody puts my heart in my throat.
          The Second Amendment.......Know it, love it, support it.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by GrassLakeRon View Post
            I went jeep. I bought an 06 LJ. 103.4 wb and only 3600#. 190hp. 3500# towing. If the road/trail get to wet, take the canoe off the top of the jeep.
            that's a sweet rig. The LJ's are my fav.

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            • #7
              another thing to consider, if you went jeep, it most likely needs to get your family home. If your out tearing it up in the swamps, trails, and creeks theres so many ways to make it where you wont be able to drive it home... I have been there.. if you are on wheelers or sxs literally a 350 3 wheeler could help pull you back to your truck. A jeep is to heavy and only a truck/jeep can pull you back. And like was pointed out, maintenance is far cheaper on the wheelers.

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              • #8
                Over the years we have had Jeeps (1975 CJ, built for hunting) 4 wheelers and UTV's. While all had their places and jobs to do, we stuck with 4 wheelers and UTV's. Depending on where/when one goes four wheeling, they all need to be gotten to the starting point, which means that one will need a tow vehicle. Get a 4 wheeler/UTV stuck someplace and it is not a big deal to get it unstuck. It might take a little time but, for the most part, not a big deal. Get a Jeep stuck and one could have an issue on their hands. We have found that there are places that we take the UTV's, that I would not be taking a Jeep of any sort. Something else to consider is who will you be going out with? With a Jeep, one would need to be going with others that have similar vehicles and who all has them? With 4 wheelers/UTV's, there are lots of people out there that are always looking to go for a ride.
                While Jeeps are nice, I beleive that the OP would be better off with a UTV and 4wheelers depending on the ages.

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                • #9
                  I'm not looking for a "recreational" vehicle as much as a "utility" vehicle. I'm not going wheeling/mudding just for the sake of getting dirty. I want reliable transportation for my family, beyond the pavement. Just need to get us and our gear, away from the road and most (not all) of the crowds.

                  I wish that I could afford two ATV's, but, the difference in base price between a 2/3-seater and a 5/6-seater is only about 10%. Two basic vehicles, plus two of everything else beyond the base-line, is much more costly than one of everything.

                  Factoring out the "recreational" use, how much more territory is accessible with a Crew-sized ATV, than with a Wrangler Unlimited: 25%, 50%, twice as much, ten times as much?

                  Thanx, Dave.
                  "Luckily, enforcement reads these forums, and likely will peruse this one...Especially after a link of it is forwarded to them....." - AlaskaHippie.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by BluNosDav View Post
                    I'm not looking for a "recreational" vehicle as much as a "utility" vehicle. I'm not going wheeling/mudding just for the sake of getting dirty. I want reliable transportation for my family, beyond the pavement. Just need to get us and our gear, away from the road and most (not all) of the crowds.

                    I wish that I could afford two ATV's, but, the difference in base price between a 2/3-seater and a 5/6-seater is only about 10%. Two basic vehicles, plus two of everything else beyond the base-line, is much more costly than one of everything.

                    Factoring out the "recreational" use, how much more territory is accessible with a Crew-sized ATV, than with a Wrangler Unlimited: 25%, 50%, twice as much, ten times as much?

                    Thanx, Dave.


                    to get to those places you want to go always mud. And personally from experience, I wouldn't venture off the beaten path with one rig and my family. If you can afford 20k+ in a rig, I would look at 2 used sxs of some sort. Or a regular ranger and a 6x6. Check out the new can am 6x6!

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by shayno View Post
                      to get to those places you want to go always mud. And personally from experience, I wouldn't venture off the beaten path with one rig and my family. If you can afford 20k+ in a rig, I would look at 2 used sxs of some sort. Or a regular ranger and a 6x6. Check out the new can am 6x6!
                      I didn't mean to say you want to go mud, I meant to say there is only mud when you get away from the crowds.

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                      • #12
                        A Jeep with proper recovery gear and some common sense driving can go a long ways. When in doubt- get out and look about! I do agree with comments about one rig and family- much safer to have 2 vehicles just in case. Regardless of what you decide- make sure to let someone else know where you are and your expected time out. Sat phones are awesome too... If only money was not an issue!

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                        • #13
                          Having ATV'd around this state for many years, I would say that you could only access 20% of the available trails with a highway legal jeep that you could with a Ranger Crew (and that might be generous). On some of my favorite trails, a Jeep like you are looking at could only go the first mile of a 20 to 30 mile trail.
                          Bunny Boots and Bearcats: Utility Sled Mayhem

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                          • #14
                            I bought an 01 wrangler new out of Wa State. Was 7K less than buying it in Fairbanks....Sold it the next year and got my money back out of it...Will never buy another as long as Chrysler is making them... You don't mention where you are trying to off-road to, I have always preferred going lightweight, compared to the big bog machine...Getting something big bogged down is a whole bunch more work than winching a smaller atv out...Floatplanes or Cubs on tundra tires are popular for good reasons also....

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                            • #15
                              1946 Willys Jeep vs John Deere Gator! - Dirt Everů: http://youtu.be/fgGm0mA1FLY
                              "Equipped with his five senses, man explores the universe around him and calls the adventure science"

                              Edwin Hubble

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