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2023 Can-Am Defender HD10 Limited Test



Table of Contents

The Can-Am Defender H10 Limited is designed to provide a controlled environment whatever the weather. It will surprise you with its range of original equipment, such as automatic heating and air conditioning, and color-matched doors with power front windows. There’s also a full three-position tilting glass windshield with wiper/windshield washer kit. The list goes on and on.


The Defender Limited 2023 from Can-Am is a luxury side-by-side vehicle in terms of the comfort it provides on the move. No matter what the conditions outside, nothing will stop you from getting to your favorite hunting or fishing spot, dry and cool. And you’ll enjoy absolute comfort inside the cabin.

The Defender HD10 engine:

Can-Am has equipped the Defender with a powerful 82 hp, 976 cm3 V-twin engine. With 69 lb-ft, it’s designed for pulling power that will help you get through the worst terrain. The ITC intelligent throttle will manage this power smoothly. On the drive side, we’re talking about Turf, 2 x 4 and 4×4 modes, with Visco-lok self-locking front differential.


The Defender is primarily designed as a working UTV. As a result, the suspension will be beefier and stiffer. For the front, we rely on double-arched A-arms with stabilizer bar. It provides twelve inches of travel. At the rear, Can-Am uses a TTA suspension with external stabilizer bar. Its travel is also twelve inches. Twin-tube gas-charged shock absorbers front and rear.



Can-Am’s transmission is the PRO-TORQ CVT with Quick Response System (QRS). This high-performance ventilation system features electronic belt protection. The PRO-TORQ has proven its worth in the Defender Line up and works incredibly well for this application.

Defender HD10 Limited highlights:

Can-Am’s Defender Limited comes fully equipped, with a truly luxurious interior cabin. Here’s a glimpse of what the rider will have at hand during a ride. First, a heated and air-conditioned cabin. Then there’s a full hardtop with interior lining and dome light, color-matched doors with power windows at the front. There’s also a full three-position tilting glass windshield with wiper/washer assembly. Can-Am has also equipped the Defender Limited with a glass rear window and panoramic rear-view mirror. The Versa-Pro booster seat with reinforced Limited seat cover and adjustable driver’s seat. Also on the menu: a brake-holding mechanism, 7.6″ digital display with keypad, LED signature, 4,500-lb. winch. In short, the list of accessories continues to grow, proving that everything is included with the Limited.

First contact with the Defender H10:

To be honest with you, contrary to UTV Planet’s habit of receiving our test models directly from the manufacturer or a local dealer, the Defender HD10 Limited 2023 was loaned to us by a Friend of us. When Dany arrived at my home, I was impressed by the quality of assembly and attention to detail. As I climbed aboard, I noticed the quality of the Can-Am components and the luxurious feel of the cabin.

The driving position is perfect, and everything is within easy reach of the controls. The vision seems perfect, apart from the junction of the cabin and the windshield. We’ll know more during the trail test, to see if this affects the rider’s vision. When it comes to storage, Can-Am has equipped the Defender with two boxes that can easily be transported outside to carry our gear. The interior is spacious, which will please both rider and passenger for maximum comfort.

Here are our trail impressions:

First observation: you can tell the Defender has been solidly built, because you can feel the beast’s 2,000 pounds. The result is a feeling of security at the controls and comfort on the trail. The discussion inside the cab takes place in a normal way, thanks to good soundproofing. On this outing, I saw just how perfect the cabin air-conditioning was. The outside temperature that morning was 33 degrees, and the temperature inside the vehicle was well regulated.

In terms of roadholding, it handles curves and bumps well on the trail. Another sign that its weight is not a nuisance on the move. The twin-tube gas shock absorbers absorb every bump encountered along the way in an exemplary manner without disturbing the occupants too much, in almost perfect comfort. As for tires, the choice of 30-inch XPS Trac Force is a judicious one.

The drivetrain reacts perfectly, regardless of whether you choose 4×4 or 4×4 with locked front differential. I was equally satisfied on HI and Low. Despite 220 mm disc brakes on all four wheels, there’s a real lack of power to stop this behemoth. That’s when you feel the inertia of this UTV’s heavy mass. The braking maneuver is still very effective, but with an extra pressure from your foot. The two-cylinder, 82 horsepower engine is perfectly calibrated for the tasks at hand behind the wheel of the Defender. I never felt any loss of power whatsoever on or off the trail.

In conclusion:

Although this test took place over just one day, compared with a few weeks for a normal test, I can still tell you that the Defender HD10 Limited 2023 gave me great satisfaction. Having already driven the Defender in the past, I was able to get a good idea of this machine. If you’re looking for a luxury utility vehicle for your next hunting or fishing trip, or for work, the Limited will give you satisfaction in all conditions. It’s agile and powerful, so it performs well.

The Defender is a utility vehicle designed for heavy-duty work, but still manages perfectly well on the trails. One negative point about the Defender: on winding trails, the tubular frame of the cab and the windshield frame on the driver’s side obstruct the driver’s vision. This creates a significant blind spot. What’s more, the doors don’t lock, and when maneuvering in tight spaces, the weak turning angle of the wheels can become irritating .

What we liked:

  • Cabin interior comfort
  • Soundproofing that lets us converse without raising our voices
  • The interior and exterior storage capacity and the possibility of adding a multitude of accessories.

What disappointed us :

  • The blind spot and loss of vision caused by the cab on winding roads
  • Lack of brake power
  • Rubber seal around door windows

We’d like to thank Dany Gaudreault and Marie-Daniel Perron for lending us their personal vehicle for our test drive.

Enjoy the ride