Back in October of 2019, Kawasaki dropped the new Teryx KRX 1000 – and we’ve been happily ripping ours all over Ocotillo, Havasu, and Moab for the past three months. Not sure how anyone can write a proper review of a machine with a few miles on a single terrain, but we’ve put hundreds of miles on ours in every kind of scenario. The consensus? We love this vehicle. The overall value for the price is fantastic, it’s very very well designed as a moderate speed multi-use sport UTV, and there are now lots of aftermarket goodies appearing for extra tweaking. Here’s the skinny – like many of the other reviews you may have read, we agree, this is likely the top non-turbo 2-seat contender off-the-lot right now. And Kawi has just raised the bar significantly on value for dollar. Let’s get into some of the other details…

Comfort & Seating Position

This UTV is big and comfortable. Everyone at the shop is either wide or tall, some of us both. This machine just feels comfortable to climb in. It’s exceptionally roomy and has clean lines that reveal well thought out molding and compartmentalization. Kawasaki did a phenomenal job on the ergonomics. The stock steering wheel and stock steering position are easily adjustable, feel comfortable in your hands whether you’re going fast or slow, and the seat felt very comfortable on the longer rides when we were grinding it out on the trail.

Power & Top Speed

We loved the power of the new Teryx, and new CVT transmission. It feels smooth and the power is predictable as you climb up through the gears and get to the higher speeds…and it stops on a dime. The breaking is amazing. So even though it’s a wider and longer two-seat vehicle compared to say the Polaris RZR or even the Can-Am, it doesn’t feel like you’re losing nimbleness. We loved ripping through the washes on our private test ground out in Ocotillo. Very rarely did we ever bottom out. Yes the factory speed is limited to 68MPH by the ECU but in 90% of the settings we drove in that was plenty. This is not the lighting fast turbo drag car setup. This machine is designed to be more of a Swiss Army Knife UTV.

Tackling Moab with the 2020 Kawasaki Teryx KRX 1000
Tackling Moab in our Kawasaki Teryx KRX 1000

The Price

Kawasaki has made it very easy to jump into the platform at a very affordable price. We’re hearing about $19K out the door at many dealerships bone stock, but you’re gonna want to put a roof, stereo and few other important add-ons in your cart and in that department Kawi really shines. The sheer number of accessories and accessory packages for the new Teryx is very impressive. There’s a full windshield kit, beefed-up alternator kits, racks, winches, plows, you name it… all part of a comprehensive vehicle program. Not an afterthought.

We love that this car shipped with 31 inch Maxxis tires. That to us is a sign of respect. Kawasaki understands that most of us want to be on 31 or 32-inch tires. Anything less than that is just a throw-away. It’s one of many categories the Teryx has the RZR, Talon and YXZ beat including Wheelbase, Ground Clearance, Wheel Travel, Bed Capacity, and even Fuel Capacity.

Tackling Moab with the 2020 Kawasaki Teryx KRX 1000
Rock Crawling in the Kawasaki Teryx KRX 1000 in Moab, UT.

Dual Power Mode

One of the cooler features of this new machine is the dual power modes – which allow the driver to select the ideal engine map for varying terrains and conditions: Full Power Mode for responsive high-speed performance, and Low Power Mode for superb throttle management and low-speed control. The traction control also allows switching between 2WD/4WD and front differential lock On-the-Fly with electrically selectable drive modes. That’s a LOT of control for a machine with no belt to worry about breaking. The new Teryx CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission) delivers very smooth acceleration and precise throttle control to help you maintain traction in tricky technical sections. Smooth engine braking provides consistent holdback on downhills. It’s just a joy to drive this machine compared to its belt-saddled compadres.

Tackling Moab with the 2020 Kawasaki Teryx KRX 1000

Advanced Frame Geometry

The frame on the Teryx is also a huge step forward in UTV design and has advanced geometry similar to Unlimited Trucks. The integrated 8-point Rollover Protective Structure (ROPS), large-diameter A-arms and trailing arms utilize an arc shape for greater ground clearance, also allowing the long-travel suspension to soak up more terrain. Steel and composite skid plates provide class-leading coverage while steel floorboard guards help protect the vehicle from rocks and other trail debris. NICE.

The only complaint we have

Our only minor complaint right now would basically be the noise of the motor at low speeds. We’re used to that at higher RPM’s. It’s not a big deal, especially with the helmet on, but at low speeds, there’s a lot of wine in this engine, so if you’re going to do that slower rock crawling stuff, especially in places like Moab, it is a little bit annoying after a while to hear that, but that’s a pretty minor complaint.

Is it worth it?

If you’re in the market right now for a mid-winter two-seat machine give the Teryx a very close look. Especially if you’re content to top out at a very respectable 68MPH. After hundreds of miles in a multitude of terrain conditions with zero mechanical issues we are all in agreement this is a 4.5/5 star machine. In fact, we’re simply not going to give ours back! Also, think of this new Teryx as the perfect option for a first-time UTV owner. It’s built like a tank and because of the CVT there are zero issues about broken belts slowing down new drivers. Get out to a factory Kawasaki dealership, get in one of these things and take it for a test drive. See you all out on the trail!

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Kendall

There’s a still belt