We received an invitation from Polaris and had the opportunity to attend the 2014 Polaris ATV and Ranger Press Ride, which took place in Altoona, PA. Since my partner Steve Maillet wasn’t able to attend, I took one of our contributing writers along for the ride, Martin Horik. Martin also happens to be the host of a Quebec based television show called “Octane”. Well actually to tell you the truth I just didn’t take Martin along for the ride. The idea behind bringing Martin along was not only to showcase the Polaris 2014 ATV and Ranger line-up, but also to film the actual experience in a behind-the-scene look at to what a “Press Ride” is really all about. The show aired a few weeks after the event and received great praise from Octane’s viewers.
Polaris presented us its new 2014 ATV and Ranger line-up at the Rock Run Recreation Area. The Rock Run trail system provides over 225 kilometers of marked trails at its 6,000-acre facility, which overlooks the Allegheny Mountains. Rock Run has worked with multiple volunteer groups from the Off-Highway vehicle (OHV) community and developed a trail system that provides enjoyment and challenges for the everyday driver to the most extreme OHV’s fanatic.
Although the complete 2014 Ranger utility line-up was presented to us, we really only had a few hours of seat time in the new Polaris Ranger Crew 900.
The Polaris Ranger Crew 900 is the all-new, multi-passenger vehicle to join the ranks in Polaris’s full size utility product line-up. It is powered by the ProStar 900 engine and features an all-new rigid chassis with increased torsional stiffness. The vehicle offers an increased wheelbase of 12.7 cm, 2.5 cm more rear suspension travel and 28.7 cm of ground clearance. The Polaris Ranger Crew 900 is available with or without electronic power steering and features a new high capacity battery and stator.
The redesigned cockpit offers comfortable seating for five occupants: two upfront and three in the back. The vehicle ergonomics have been revamped; a new center storage console has been added. This console has close to 15 liters of storage capacity and also features a comfortable armrest for the driver and passenger. Upfront under seat storage has also been added and you will also find additional cup holders for the driver and passenger.
For the back passengers Polaris has done some nice work here. Not only do you find comfortable seating for 3 full size adults, but with improved ergonomics they have not only increase leg room but foot room as well. Cup holders have also been added for the rear passengers, a nice touch from a consumer’s standpoint.
What immediately catches the attention when you turn the key on the Ranger Crew 900 is how remarkably quiet this unit is. Polaris accomplishes this by coupling the ProStar 900 engine and transmission, and positioning it behind the rear seated area just below the dumpbox and mounted it on a much stiffer chassis along with rubber isolation mounts.
Throughout the entire unit’s presentation, the Polaris representative keep putting emphasis on “how quiet” the unit actually was and essentially challenged us to put it to the test. So obviously we did! After spending a few hours with the unit, at various speeds and on diverse terrains, the unit actually is “remarkably quiet”. We could easily hold conversations with one another and not shouting matches. If you’re in the market for a multi-passenger vehicle, I presume having the ability to easily communicate with your passengers and not be overwhelmed by engine noise would be a definite nice to have.
The ProStar 900 engine produces an impressive 60hp and has great power throughout the RPM band. The Polaris Ranger Crew 900 has a very efficient driveline and most important it puts the power to the ground where it’s important. The Rock Run trail system provided an exceptional playground for our first look at the Polaris Ranger Crew 900. The vehicle offers an exceptional plush ride at slow speeds and small bumps, we were as equally impressed with its great performance at higher speeds in the chop.
To grasp what this unit could actually deliver we tackled various trail conditions. Narrow passages, rocky trails, swampy terrain and water traverses and the Ranger Crew 900 did not disappoint as the unit handled wonderfully under all conditions. The combination of the 60hp produced by the ProStar 900 engine, the suspension travel and the extended wheelbase all contribute to make this unit a pure pleasure to drive.
With the limited seat time we had with this unit, our first impressions are very positive. The Ranger Crew 900 delivers impressive power, provides an exceptional quiet and smooth ride plus can seat 5 adults and ample room for storage. If you are in the market for a full-size multi-passenger utility vehicle, the Ranger Crew 900 maybe for you. Visit your local Polaris dealer and take one out for a test drive; the vehicle is well worth your consideration.
For vehicle options, specifications and pricing for the Polaris Ranger Crew 900 . Please visit the Polaris website at www.polaris.com