WINNER: Polaris Outlaw 525 IRS
We were among the first in the ATV press to identify the Outlaw with IRS as a significant ATV.
We stand firm on this assertion again in MY 08. If you need to ride a Pure Sport and want to not just endure but actually enjoy the ride there’s simply nothing currently available (we haven’t ridden the just announced Honda 700XX) even close to the 525 Outlaw with IRS.
Able to clear 11.5 inch obstacles and comfortable in deeply rutted two-tracks at insane speeds the amazing IRS Outlaw would be great if all it had was a weed whacker engine for motivation.
Of course, the Outlaw uses something significantly more potent than a string trimmer for movement. The most revered, most respected piece of off-road 4-stroke muscle is located right between your knees on the Outlaw.
If you haven’t squeezed the trigger on a 525 KTM in an IRS chassis you simply haven’t experienced the best in this class.
RUNNERS-UP: Yamaha Raptor 700 EFI, Can-Am Renegade 800
Yamaha has refined the Raptor into what is likely the highest form of this species – a trail worthy Big Bore Pure Sport.
The original 660 Rap was a fave around here and the arrival of the 700 EFI cemented this platform in our hearts.
Impeccable finish quality, anvil-like reliability, suspension calibration and seamless, imposing thrust make this ride impossible to overlook. Here’s what we’re hoping for – a 700 Raptor with IRS.
If we hadn’t produced our “incomparable comparison” earlier this year we wouldn’t be expounding the validity of the Can-Am Renegade 800 in this rather loosely defined category.
Able to run with the others in this segment but fully qualified to perform Sport Ute workaholic activity like towing a trailer or plowing snow, Pure Sport definitions are bent by the Renegade 800.
This Can-Am trades a smidge of sportiness for utility and in doing so becomes one tough-to-overlook competitor in this segment.