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Hello. My son and I are looking to purchase our first ATV and I've got a few questions. First, our application for riding is going to be on wooded, mostly flat - muddy trails behind our house. There's at least 100 acres of land that had 8 foot wide trails all through the back property and the land-owner has told us to feel free using the land for 'shooting', hunting, and general purpose.

We are both grown men over 200lbs each and I want to get what I would call a 'full-size' 4x4 ATV.

With that said, the ones I've researched are the Polaris Sportsman, Honda Ricon, and the Yamaha Grizzly.

My first question is, for the above models, they all come in various model numbers (engine size); such as 350, 400, 500, 700, etc. Is there a rule of thumb on how low the model number can be, and the unit is still the same, full size chassis/tire/clearance?

How do I find out what the actual models are that fit that description?

My next question is, are there other brands/models that you recommend I look for along with the above 3?

I plan on spending around $2,500 to $3,000 on a used unit. There's a 2008 Polaris Sportsman 500 that I can get for $3,000 if I move quickly on it, for example.

I'm sure I'll have more questions. For now, that's probably enough.
Thanks!
 

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Disclaimer: I do not like Polaris for anything they make. I've had nothing but bad luck with them. Thin metal, the CV joints break easily.

That said, the one you left out up there is the Suzuki. King Quad of just about any year past 1992 is a great machine. Has true differential lock and ultra-low gears range.

I've been a fan of Honda, however, I do not like the way the newer ones (~2010 and later) go into reverse. The push this lever and hold that lever while pushing a button is a pain in the rear.
Other than that, I still do like the reliability of a Honda.

I don't have personal experience with the Yamaha, but do have a friend that loved his for years until he sold it and "upgraded" to a Suzuki King Quad. But to the Yamaha's defense, he was going from a 1990's machine to a 2010, so he may have had the same opinion if he went to a newer Yamaha.

Consistently, the Suzukis are lighter weight than the others. Which puzzles me because they seem to be more solidly built. I was amazed to find out that a Sportsman 425 weighed more than my King Quad 500.
 
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