Polaris refines ATV lineup

Since ATVs became the biggest seller in the stable of Polaris Industries powersports mix six years ago, the Medina, Minn., company has not let up. It continues to innovate , and this is especially true in 2004, when the line of ATVs gets some refinements and additional functionality.
Polaris also looks to the racetrack in 2004 with a kit that will make its Predator sport quad legal for the track. In addition, the utility ATP machine goes into full production in ‘04, and Polaris is banking on it to be a hit with outdoorsmen and people who use their machines for work-related projects.
With the growth of the sport market, the impressive Predator four-stroke continues to improve. This year, the 500cc thumper receives changes to its driveline, suspension and looks. In the driveline, the swingarm is all new, with additional anti-squat performance built in. The change should keep the front better planted when riders are hard on the throttle.
New valving in the front and rear Fox shocks keep the tires anchored when needed, and absorbs big impacts off jumps. Suspension travel remains the same at 11 inches in the rear and 10 inches up front.
New aluminum Douglas wheels are 9 inches in back, down from the 10-inch wheels of last year. Wheel hubs are also smaller and lighter.
In the looks department, the rear fenders are modified and the graphics are updated. This year, the Predator is available in silver or black/orange with Troy Lee Designs graphics.
For racers, Polaris recently introduced a factory 440cc kit, making the Predator legal for Pro Production -class ATV racing. The kit consists of a : cylinder; cylinder head; piston; intake and exhaust valves; CDI system; gaskets; and all the hardware necessary for complete installation. It will be available in November for $1,170
The 440 kit is offered to “provide a factory backed platform for racers,” according to Polaris’ Tim Erickson. As for whether there will be a factory team, the answer is “not yet.” Polaris has looked to the racetrack on an ongoing basis, but at this time, there won’t be contingency dollars available to Polaris ATV racers.
Scrambler 500 and Trail Blazer 250
Two additional full-size quads fill out the sport category: the four-stroke automatic 4WD Scrambler 500 and the two-stroke Trail Blazer 250.
Based on the same chassis, the machines share most of the 2004 updates. Both machines get a stronger chain that is more durable than its predecessor. Other changes include a new seat that is reshaped for additional comfort and to provide improved control. Riders who appreciate convenience features will like the mechanical fuel gauge, too. Finally, the machines change colors this season — the 500 goes black, with a new graphics scheme, and the 250 is Sonic blue with flame-job graphics.
Polaris offers a lifetime limited belt warranty on both models
With a line of five Sportsmans, two Magnums a Trail Boss and two new All-Terrain Pickup (ATP), Polaris utility line is as complete as ever.
The Sportsman 700 and 600 twins receive wider, turndown fender flares, a new light pod and heavy duty racks. It also sees a paint change with a more aggressive look. Colors for the 600 are yellow/black, green/black and blue/silver. The 700 has the option of Mossy Oak New Breakup camo.
Both machines have upgraded cooling, thanks to a new radiator and fan. A VDO LCD instrument panel offers
riders a host of information, including speed, RPM, gear, service notifications and fuel gauge.
Finally, the 600 and 700 twins make the switch to Carlisle Badlands XTR radial tires.
Smaller Sportsmans share many of the upgrades that are present on the bigger-engined units. The same fender flares, along with reshaped light pod and racks complete the body styling. In the transmission, a new in-line shifter makes it possible to shift from low to revers and back in a single move, which is ideal for plowing or agricultural work.
Sportsmans 400 and 500 H.O. models are available in yellow, green blue, with the 500 also available in Mossy Oak Break-Up.
For the real workhorse applications, the Sportsman 6×6 returns with its 500cc engine and on-demand all-wheel drive. The rear cargo box has a capacity of 800 pounds and has gas-assisted dumping. New for 2004 is a maintenance-free sealed battery. Otherwise, the green unit is unchanged from last year.
All-new for 2004 is the ATP. This versatile machine is a utility vehicle disguised as an ATV. Rather than go with traditional front and rear racks, the ATP utilizes integrated front storage box, two fender storage compartments and a rear dump box. The front box has a carrying capacity of 90 pounds, while the rear cargo box holds up to 400 pounds (250 pounds on the ATP 330). The fender storage units each hold up to 20 pounds
Both models feature three transmission settings for optimized traction in different conditions: Turf offers 20 percent tighter turning and minimizes damage to soft terrain; 2WD locks the rear differential for riding off road; and AWD maximizes traction.
In the competitive price-point models, Polaris offers three models: the Magnum 330 2×4 and 4×4 and the Trail Boss 330.
The Magnum 330 models arrive complete with a front cargo box that can hold up to 90 pounds of gear. The cover is a composite material, as is the rear rack for strapping down loads to bulky to fit inside. Also new are speedometer and mechanical fuel gauge. For color, the Magnum 2×4 is green and the 4×4 is available in green, silver or Mossy Oak camo.
The Trail Boss 330 is largely the same as it was in 2003, sans a new mechanical fuel gauge and color scheme.
The Predator youth model expands to two for 2004 with the introduction of the Predator 50. Designed for riders 6 years old and up, the Predator 50 features a two-stroke, 50cc engine. The machine also features adjustable floorboards, allowing parents to adjust machine ergonomics as children grow.
Two models feature the 90cc fan-cooled engine: the Predator 90 and the Sportsman 90. Both are styled after the full-size models and have 4.25 inches of suspension travel at the front and rear of the machine.
For safety, all youth models require a key for starting, so machines don’t leave the garage unsupervised. Starting also requires application of the brakes. A safety horn is standard, as is a consolidated chain and brake guard that prevents contact with moving parts. Finally, Polaris offers a safety flag, speed limiter, tether switch, training video and DOT-approved helmet standard with every youth model.

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