Both machines in this shootout are available with or without power steering.
Yamaha calibrated the Grizzlys perfectly for all conditions. The Honda’s is a little on
the light side at higher speeds.
Honda sells itself short when it comes
to recommended rack capacities. They
can haul more than advertised. The
Grizzly is just about maxxed out han-dling-wise when fully loaded.
More aggressive footpegs are found on
the Honda. The higher floorboards on the
Grizzly help with ground clearance. If we
had our choice, we would build a rider
platform that was between these two.
Single, front-fender-mounted storage
compartments were found and utilized
on both machines. They are so handy,
we wish the manufacturers would put
them on both sides. We would find a
use for them, for sure.
Recommended rack capacities on the
Honda are 66 pounds for the front and
133 for the rear.
Yamaha supplied the Grizzly with
one left front fender-mounted storage
box big enough for a smaller sack
lunch and a small bottle of water. On
a positive note, Yamaha gave the
Grizzly very generous rack capacities, with 88 pounds up front and 176
pounds in the rear. There is also
another storage cavity under the seat
for items you don’t mind getting wet or
dusty. We use it for items like tow
ropes, extra water and miscellaneous
tools. Keep in mind this storage area
ends up getting hot because it is situated so close to the muffler. Don’t
expect to keep anything cold in it.
On the ranch, the Honda’s straight-axle rear suspension made hauling
big loads much easier. Even though
rack capacities are higher on the
Yamaha, when loaded down, the
machine is top-heavy, while the
Honda is much more stable.
Under towing situations, the feeling
is repeated. The Grizzly squats, while
the Honda stays more level and pulls
This was a tough test. Not only was
the terrain hard, but choosing a winner was as well. On the trail, the
Grizzly gave a much smoother and
more comfortable ride, although