Form, Function & Fun ... UTVs ease farm life chores
Published on Mon, 08/07/2017 - 7:30am
We all have single-purpose tools around the acreage—hammers, shovels, mowers, combines—that do one only thing, but they do it well and that’s why we keep them. The tools we use the most, though, are the ones that do many things. This accounts for why Utility Task Vehicles (UTVs) have caught on. Their side-by-side seating, power, gearing, and cargo carrying capacity means you can get chores done in places where the pickup can’t go, and still haul hundreds of pounds of tools, gear, and work crew.
Best of all, when the work is done you can load up your friends and head out for fun in the countryside. Hunting, fishing, or just bombing around the acreage in search of fun is the UTV’s hidden virtue.
Maybe they ought to be called Unexpected Thrill Vehicles. No? Utmost Therapy Vehicles? Umm, how about vehicles for Undertaking Tremendous Vacations?
Whatever you call them, we present some of 2017’s—and a few 2018s—best UTVs running.
NEW HOLLAND AGRICULTURE / TEXTRON SPECIALIZED VEHICLES
New Holland recently debuted an all-new UTV, in partnership with Textron Specialized Vehicles, the Rustler 850, which features a rugged 62 hp EFI engine, electronic power steering, and four-wheel double A-arm suspension. On-demand 4WD and beefy front and rear sway bars ensure handling off-road. Built with 11 inches of ground clearance, the Rustler 850 has a 1000-pound bed capacity, and a towing capacity of 2000 pounds. Available in New Holland blue only, standard features include 9.5 gallon fuel tank, headlights and brake lights, and front-mounted steel brush guard.
New Holland Agriculture: newholland.com
KIOTI’s MECHRON 2200PS features hydraulic power steering with the widest cargo bed in its class. With 4-wheel, fully independent, rear dual A-arm suspension and front MacPherson type suspension, the 2200PS has over 12 inches of ground clearance. Powered by a 22 hp diesel engine through a 2 speed CVT transmission, operators can tow 1300 pounds; overall payload capacity is just short of 1600 pounds. The front limited slip differential gives both wheels powered rotation, while also offering four-wheel hydraulic disc brakes for control.
KIOTI Tractor Division, DAEDONG - USA, INC: kioti.com
Viking VI EPS
With room for six passengers, the Viking VI EPS’ long 115-inch wheelbase offers plenty of room and off-road comfort. Automotive-style door latches, a parking brake warning buzzer and two-stage transmission make it feel even more car-like. The rear cargo bed—large enough for a full pallet—is now steel reinforced with additional mounting points and a capacity of 600 pounds. Powered by a torquey 686cc four-valve engine, the Viking VI EPS has 11 inches of ground clearance and a steel skid plate for protection.
Kubota’s RTV-X1140 has the unique K-Vertible cargo conversion system—transforming the vehicle from two passengers with a large cargo bed to four passengers and a cargo bed. Powered by a proven 24.8 hp Kubota diesel engine through a variable hydraulic transmission, comfort items include tilt steering, simple inline shifting, lockable storage, and four-wheel independent suspension for off-road conditions. A new five-point ROPS improves overall looks, while giving more cargo volume and side loading. RTV-X1140 also comes standard with hydraulic dump bed.
Kubota Tractor Corporation: kubota.com
This made-entirely-in-America UTV is also an industry price leader. American LandMaster’s LSC4 is has a 4-stroke 674cc Kohler Command Pro engine with a continuously-variable transmission. It is capable of 24 mph and a range of up to 90 miles. The LSC4 offers double A-Arm front suspension with adjustable shocks and articulated rear swing arm suspension with more than nine inches of clearance. Haul 400 pounds of cargo and pull up to 1200 pounds on the rear hitch. Four-wheel drive is standard. Available in red, green, white, black or RealTree camo.
American LandMaster: americanlandmaster.com
John Deere’s Gators can be found on farms all over, and for good reason—they’re reliable, hard working, and offer utility…in a familiar color. The XUV855D is powered by a 50 hp 3 cylinder 12-valve engine, has on-demand 4WD, and dual A-arm front and rear suspension to provide a smooth ride over challenging terrain. The XUV855D has minimal noise, vibration, and harshness and the quietest diesel in its class. This UTV has 1500 pounds of towing capacity, 1400 pounds of payload capacity, and a novel cargo box that can easily convert into a flatbed.
John Deere: deere.com
Defender XT CAB
For 2018, Can-Am redesigned the XT Cab package for its popular Defender, available with either the 72 hp Rotax HD10 or 50 hp HD8 engines. Now with a fully enclosed cab, a full glass tilt-up windshield with optional wiper and washer; full-protection sealed doors with electric opening windows; rear glass with sliding opening for access to the cargo bed, integrated heater kit, and hard roof with liner and dome light. With all that extra comfort “go big or go home” is no longer a choice.
Can-Am Off-Road: Can-am.brp.com
MULE PRO-FXT Ranch Edition
The Kawasaki MULE PRO-FXT series features a 812cc three-cylinder fuel injected gasoline engine powering through a CVT with an electronically selectable 4WD system with a dual-mode locking rear differential. Kawasaki’s Trans Cab seating system changes seating from three- to six- passengers quickly and easily. The MULE PRO-FXT has a diamond-plate steel cargo bed floor with a gas-assisted tilt feature and walls designed with slots for bed dividers. Cargo capacity is up to 1000 pounds (600 in California) in the three-passenger mode and up to 350 pounds in the six-passenger configuration.
Kawasaki Motors Corp.: kawasaki.com
UTV cargo boxes are handy, but sometimes you need more space. Mahindra’s Flexhauler fold-down cargo box converts to a flatbed, giving 50 percent more cargo volume when needed. In addition, the XTV 750S comes with an electric power cargo box life for easy unloading. A full 12-inches of ground clearance and 3-person seating with storage means hours in the rough with friends. Power comes from a 747cc fuel-injected Kohler gas engine gives speeds up to 33 mph, yet still hauls 1200 pounds or tows 2100 pounds.
Mahindra North America: mahindrausa.com
UXV 700i LE
KYMCO’s UXV 700i LE is powered by a 695cc fuel-injected 4-valve engine, with push-button, on-demand 4WD, driven through an automatic CVT transmission with differential lock. Independent dual A-arm suspension all around, and hydraulic dual-disc front and shaft-mounted disc rear brakes gives control in rough terrain. The UXV 700i LE has a 440-lb.-capacity hydraulic tilting cargo bed, 1,200-lb. towing capacity, two-inch receiver hitch, and a 3000-lb. front winch standard. An EPS version with electronic power steering is available.
KYMCO USA: kymcousa.com