The Suzuki is excellent in difficult con-
Polaris gave the 570 a surprising number of premium features.
cess behind the Suzuki goes back to
the first four-wheel ATV back in 1983.
It was a product of Suzuki’s motorcycle division and still shows some
two-wheeler thinking in controls, rider
position and construction. The motor is
a single-overhead-cam, liquid-cooled
four-valver. The KingQuad has four-wheel independent suspension using
double A-arms all the way around.
Polaris is an American company,
and the motor is made in Wisconsin.
Assembly and chassis construction
for Polaris products now comes out
of several different plants, includ-
ing ones in Wisconsin, Iowa and
Monterrey, Mexico. But the thinking
behind the Sportsman is distinctly
American and comes from Polaris’
roots in snowmobiles and the compa-
ny’s proximity to the U.S. automotive
industry. The Sportsman is kind of
car-ish, with its unified brakes and
MacPherson-strut front suspension.
The engine starts with the key like
a car, and even the stick shift is on
the right like a car. The 570 motor
is a breakthrough for Polaris. It’s a
high-tech motor, with fuel injection,
double-overhead cams and four
valves, but it’s used in several of the
company’s more affordable vehicles.
What’s most interesting about these
two machines is that they seem to
have learned from each other. The
Suzuki has a belt-and-pulley-style CV
transmission, which is a feature that
comes directly from the snowmobile
world. And the Polaris motor looks
like something that would power a
Polaris actually has two mid-sized
4x4s. The 570 is the more price-con-scious of the two. The 550 EPS, which
has a larger chassis, double-A-arm
front suspension and a longitudinally oriented motor, carries a price of
$8699. The 570 starts at $6499. The
power steering version we tested is
$7299. Ours also was the camo model,
which adds another $400. The Suzuki,
on the other hand, starts at $7899, then
goes up to $8599 for power steering.
Don’t get the idea that Suzuki is out
of line with that price, either. Both
the Yamaha Grizzly 550 EPS and the
Honda Rubicon are priced at $8699.