A rider’s report on Redline

Blaine King, sales manager for Bangor Motorsports in Bangor, Maine, has a special edge when he talks to customers about the Redline 800 Revolt snowmobile. He’s one of the few who’ve tested it. King, along with other select Redline dealers, were invited to try the 800 Revolt in early April in Lowville, N.Y.
And, after taking the prototype unit down the trail, King said he found some hits — and shortcomings — to the machine. “Overall, it was good, but some areas didn’t quite fulfill what I expected,” he said.
“The suspension works really well. It’s unlike anything else — all other suspensions are basically the same,” he said. “The whole machine is appealing to the eye, because it’s different.”
On the flip side, he was disappointed in the machine’s power, and said it sounded louder than the average snowmobile. “It has the sound of a two-stroke dirt bike,” he said.
King’s observations echoed those of Snow Goer magazine editor Eric Skogman, who also tested the 800 Revolt prototype in early April. Snow Goer is a sister publication to Powersports Business.
“The first impression was that it was loud,” Skogman said. “Redline officials said it meets Snowmobile Safety Certification Committee guidelines on noise requirements and passed the noise test.”
Skogman found the engine disappointing, but was told that the jetting had not been corrected for altitude and temperature. “Given that, the engine seemed peppy and strong enough for some decent corner-to-corner speed,” he said.
He also noted engine vibration transferring through the footwells and floorboards and up through the handlebars. “It was tolerable and not overly annoying,” he said.
The seating, he said, is a conventional style but with narrow handlebars, tight footwells and thin-cushioned seat. “The seat’s horseback-type slope puts riders at a low position in the saddle. The sightline over the hood was good, although the handlebar pad obscured the lower quarter of the gauges,” he said.
Skogman also noted the machine’s strength was its front and rear suspensions. “The suspension systems were the shining components on the snowmobile,” he said. “The machine kept a straight line through small and large bumps and inspired more confidence in those conditions. If the sled came down crooked off a bump, it righted itself in a smooth and controllable manner. “
Changes To Come
Redline CEO Kent Harle and Chris Rodewald, vice president of sales and marketing, said to expect some changes between the production unit and the prototype tested.
Production exhaust pipes will be different and won’t stick out as far as the prototypes; handlebar controls will change; the welds will look smoother; and the production unit will have a sway bar on the front suspension.
The T-15R rear suspension will use one rear shock, a remote-clicker Walker Evans, now located within the rear suspension rather than under the hood.
The seat may come with more padding, and engineers are addressing an overly stiff throttle pull.
Standard on the machine are USI Project X skis. The analog speedometer has a yellow face with black numbers with a digital odometer/tripmeter readout, while the tachometer has a white face with black numbers.
Redline’s own 800cc liquid-cooled twin-cylinder two-stroke engine produces 135 to 140 HP, according to the company. The engine is reverse-mounted, giving it a forward-facing intake and a rear facing exhaust. The exhaust system runs under the seat and exits under the taillight.
Other components include two 44mm Mikuni round slide carburetors; a Comet drive and TEAM Industries driven pulley on the right side of the engine compartment; and a proprietary Clutch Isolation system.
On the other side of the sled is the 10 gallon fuel tank with a sight gauge. About 80% of the fuel tank is mounted above the left footwell; the remaining 20% is mounted under the seat.
Coming Soon
There is an 800 Revolt, with a $12,200 price tag, on the showroom floor at Bangor Motorsports. It arrived in mid-April, and King said its sale is currently pending. It’s been a draw for some customers, he said. “It catches a lot of people’s eye and they’re coming in now that they know we have it,” he said.
Redline officials said they’re aiming the Revolt at riders ages 40 to 60 years old, and believe the $12,000 retail price fits well for that age range.
Dennis Mott, general manager at Hacker’s Yamaha in Houghton Lake, Mich., is expecting a special delivery: a Redline Revolt 800 snowmobile.
“The trucking company actually called me and I think it’s coming,” he said.
Mott — and the seven customers who’ve pre-ordered the new machine — have been waiting, but “It’s been one of those things.”
The machine that’s coming is a demo unit, but Mott expects the consumer units to arrive soon, too. Interest in the machines have ebbed and flowed in accordance with media coverage, he said. He’ll also soon place an order for fall-delivery machines.
Dan Thomson of Fort Fremont Marine, in Fremont, Wis., is also waiting for delivery, but expected his display machine by the end
of April.
At one time, he had six machines pre-sold, but is now down to one.
“The response [to the Redline] has been fantastic,” Thomson said. “It’s just too bad they couldn’t get shipped. This has been going on for at least three years for us; and, with our original customers, there’s only one left.” psb

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