Today we’re going to shake down this brand-new 2022 Coleman UT400 UTV. That’s right – Coleman – the company known for its massive line of camping products also has a Powersports division and they make a kick-ass lineup of Powersports machines! Stick around – you’re watching UTVUnderground!
If you guys have been following us for the past ten years you know that we pride ourselves on not just reviewing the top-of-the-line most expensive machinery – but also the stuff in the middle of the pack and for those on a budget. Not everyone has $40K to drop on a decked-out Ranger or Defender…frankly most of us don’t. So it only makes sense that we take a look around at some of the other interesting offerings in the market. Back in 2008 when UTVUG was born there were only 5-6 OEM’s in the space and obviously, that has doubled or tripled now. The Powersports lineup by Coleman represents yet another well-known American company getting into the UTV and SXS market and that’s a GOOD thing. But before we dive into the UT400 let’s take a quick look at Coleman the company.
Coleman was founded in the year 1900 by William Coffin Coleman, who began selling gasoline lamps in Kingfisher, Oklahoma. Yeah, that’s right – this company is over 122 years old! Today Coleman is a subsidiary of Newell Brands which owns Rubbermaid, Ball, Stearns, and Marmot…heck even Mr. Coffee! They still manufacture the most recognizable (green) gas and propane camp stove on the planet, in addition to hundreds of other camping products. The company is 4,000 employees strong – and the Powersports division is based out of Tempe, Arizona.
What’s important to understand about the Coleman Powersports division right off the bat is that they have a different sales model than most of the big UTV makers. They DO sell all their Powersports products next to the big boys at Powersports dealerships. BUT they have also been extremely successful with selling Powersports machines to “Big Box” retailers or other non-dealer accounts. As I sit here and write this you can search Walmart.com for “UTV” and the Coleman UT400 comes up for $12,322.92. They’re also available from Camping World, Lowes, Sam’s Club, and a slew of other places. Tractor Supply has this Coleman UT400 listed at $9499.99 and even offers financing right on the product page. So keep that in mind. Smaller and lighter doesn’t always mean less quality – it can simply make it easier to sell.
So what’s the downside of buying a UTV from a big box chain? There are a few to be aware of. These units don’t ship assembled. Any of them. So the assembly process and importantly the pre-delivery inspection process is critical. When you buy from a Powersports dealer they are vouching for the proper assembly and inspection of the machine. If stuff goes wrong, you take it back to the dealer and talk to the mechanic that put it together. They have parts on hand to fix things and they proactively communicate about recalls. None of that happens with Sam’s Club. “Joe” the guy “in the back” might be in charge of assembly and he’s certainly not going to know much about pre-delivery inspections – not to mention replacement parts or recalls. If you are mechanically inclined and can read the manual you’re likely not going to have any issues with that. But if you’ve never replaced a spark plug or changed the oil of a motor – well you might be better off with a dealership. There’s no right way – just go into it informed.
A few months ago Coleman shipped us a pair of brand-new, zero mile UT400’s. Compared to the other machines we have on the ranch these units initially felt pretty small. They are 52” wide and just over 100” long – so their footprint is more like a golf cart than our other larger utility UTV’s – but depending on your situation that might be a good thing. Bigger isn’t always better. What we noticed and liked right off the bat was the solid metal dump bed with slide latches, as well as the included roof, side view mirrors, a two-piece removable windshield, and a winch. Those five features right off the bat piqued our interest because we routinely talk about them being missing as standard items from other OEM’s for much more expensive machines. How do you sell a $25,000 UTV with no roof, mirrors, winch, windshield, and flimsy plastic tailgate? They’re out there! So kudos to Coleman for getting the RIGHT at a fraction of the cost, right out of the gate.
The UTV400 sits on 25” 2-ply tires and pretty plain-looking aluminum wheels that aren’t going to win any design awards. But it does come with 5-position adjustable shocks and has a decent 12” of ground clearance. That’s actually more clearance than a lot of the other bigger OEM machines in this category. And it has a double wishbone suspension. So the UT400 is more than capable of performing some medium-duty work around the shop, yard, farm, or factory. The dump bed has release latches on both sides and has a gas strut to help lift it up to dump. And the tailgate latches are actual metal latches that actually stay locked or open by lifting them and sliding them left and right, easily. NONE of the current OEM’s have figured out how to make a proper tailgate latch so this feature alone is worth noting.
The winch is made by Songpeng and is rated for 3,500 pounds. At this price point that is a really nice addition that many other lower-cost UTV OEM’s will simply skimp on. Neither the Ranger 500 or 570 come with a winch for example and cost thousands of dollars more. And there’s a decent front brush guard and front bumper protecting standard-looking headlights. It’s also worth noting that this machine has a full skid plate on the bottom and mudguards. That’s another example of Coleman not cutting corners.
The detachable two-piece windshield is a really nice addition. It uses heavy-duty velcro roll bar clamps for a large upper windshield and then there’s a lower dust windshield that can be left on or removed. Again a really nice touch at this price point. The roll cage itself looks well-designed and the welds look good. It’s also got what looks like a Rhino Lining-type coating that we’re betting is chip resistant and therefore going to help keep the cage looking nice. Can’t go wrong with the poly roof as well. Shade should be mandatory on every UTV, period. Selling a machine with no roof is lame in our opinion. Should be standard. And as mentioned the side mirrors are a nice touch. There’s no dedicated rear-view mirror but with the side mirrors, you’re covered in most situations.
The units came with a netted half door. We hate net doors. They really aren’t likely going to keep you inside the vehicle in the event of a rollover but it’s nice that Coleman added them from the factory. That said, we removed them right away. Overall this is a pretty solid-looking machine on the exterior. The all-metal dump bed and included roof, windshield, mirrors, and winch really make the functionality of this unit pop right off the bat. The gas cap even has a cable on it to keep it from getting lost. That’s a nice touch. One of many on this supposedly “cheap” unit.
MOTOR + TRANS:
The Coleman UT400 has a 392cc, 4-stroke engine with single overhead cams. It’s a tried and true electronic fuel injected 28 horsepower motor that Coleman has had great success with this past decade. It has a very basic CVT transmission with a single fwd gear and reverse. That’s right, there is no high and low gear. It does have a push-button four-wheel drive, which you can access with a dedicated switch, and it has limited slip and complete differential lock modes to help get you in and out of most sticky situations. But it should be said this is not a machine that is set up to carry big loads, uphill, for hundreds of miles a day, at high speeds. It’s not a heavy-duty UTV – but the cost isn’t heavy-duty either. So if you’re looking for a machine to haul logs or tow 3K worth of cargo this is not the right tool. The hydraulic brakes feel responsive and adequate for the size of the machine and there is a tow hitch.
As mentioned above the UT400 comes with 5-position adjustable shocks and has 12” of ground clearance, with a double wishbone suspension in each corner. That’s suitable for two adults and a decent load of gravel in the dump bed. That’s not a great choice if you’re bushwhacking with two of your buddies and carrying your camping gear, and rifles, and hoping to nail a few hundred-pound bucks. So just keep that in mind. It’s a perfectly decent suspension for medium to light-duty work.
The cockpit of the UT400 as you might imagine for a machine this size is svelte. That said, our crew of 20 all fit just fine – and many of us are over 6’ tall and pushing 250 lbs these days (thanks covid). The dash and instrument cluster is one of the biggest areas of stripped-down savings on these units. There is no “Ride Command” or touchscreen wizardry here. Just a very straightforward analog instrument cluster. One thing we’ll give Coleman credit for though is the horn, aforementioned mirrors, blinkers, headlights, brake lights, and power outlet. THAT and there’s a proper license plate holder with a light. Smart. In many states, you can register a vehicle like this for driving around certain areas so long as it has a few key items like seat belts and turn signals. The UT400 has all of that, which makes it easier to register than many of the major OEM machines that have none of those features. Again – this little red UTV isn’t going to win any design awards and there’s not a lot of storage other than a tiny glove box. But that’s fine – it’s not supposed to be a minivan. Also noteworthy is the parking brake and release lever. It’s not the most robust feeling mechanism but useful when parking on hills for sure. Just be aware that when you put the unit in drive or reverse with the parking brake on you get a lovely alarm!
We’ve been using these two machines for several months now both here on our ranch and out in the wild to suit a whole variety of needs. Everything from hauling soil, mulch, hay, and wood around the yard to loading it up with crew and gear to get our guys out to film spots in the woods and desert. Do you know what we love? Because these machines have limited power the guys don’t hot dog them. They just drive them like normal adults instead of trying to do donuts and crash them on the ground. I’m serious. These are basically heavy-duty golf carts and that’s fine. We love them for being just that. We’ve loaded them to the hilt with luggage, coolers, camera gear, and all kinds of coursework equipment – and driven them for hours through dirt, silt, sand, and more.
So what else is out there that compares with the +/- $10K UT400? Well, Massimo sells a very similarly equipped Buck 450 for $9,399 MSRP…with a plastic bed, not a metal bed. Polaris has the Ranger 500 at just under $11K – no roof, windshield, winch, or metal dump bed, and 2” less ground clearance. Can-Am has the Defender at just under $12K, but add in “transport and preparation” fees, $400 “commodity surcharges” whatever that is – oh and there’s no roof, winch, windows or metal bed…. John Deere has the XUV560E – same thing $12K, no roof, winch, and it’s all plastic… Now Tracker has the 0X400 which is only $8K and has very similar engine specs. But no windshield, winch, or metal bed… And that’s really true no matter where you look. Coleman’s UTV400 just has this particular $10K nice really well covered. They are sold as the Realtree UT400 on Home Depot by the way. The same machine, don’t be confused. It’s the “Coleman Powersports gas-powered Realtree UT400-RT” and just look at the reviews. People love them.
So what’s the verdict on the Coleman UT400? We love these machines. They are absolutely solid contenders in the $10K price range. Coleman has found a really nice niche here that includes a well-established motor and transmission package, some traditional analog tech, and lots of standard features that many UTV makers are forcing us to pay extra for. Kudos to these guys for acknowledging that a roof, side mirrors, windshield, winch, horn, turn signals, and brake lights aren’t accessories and shouldn’t cost $2K – $3K above the sticker price. From some of the other reviews, we’ve watched and read it looks like the general consensus is these machines really hold up well on the farm, ranch, warehouse facility, and as groundskeeping vehicles. We’re excited to use them both – throughout the rest of 2022 and into 2023. Two machines for (almost) the price of what one normally costs these days! Special thanks to Coleman for providing these test units. We’ll be reviewing some of their other Powersports products soon including their BT200X Mini Bikes so stay tuned!
- Inexpensive but well-built UTV.
- Comes with loads of standard accessories; roof, mirrors, windshield, winch, horn, and more!
- A metal dump bed with slide latches is best in class for sure!
- The Interior is simple and functional – not much can go wrong.
- Single FWD speed – no high/low gear.
- Load and towing capacity lower than the competition.
- May be underpowered for large jobs.
The Coleman UT400 is the perfect option for those looking to buy an excellent 400cc base model machine in the Utility UTV category. It comes exceptionally well-equipped for the price and has plenty of power and utility. It’s a well-built machine that is fun to drive in the sand, mud, and rocks and has a good load capacity. This is the perfect UTV for a small to medium-sized farm, ranch, or warehouse. You can pick these up direct from major box stores like Home Depot and Sam’s Club. This is by far one of the best “value for price” 2-seat utility UTV’s on the market right now. Coleman is winning big in this category.
Appearance – 4
Interior – 4
Ride Comfort – 4
Power – 4
Reliability – 5
Functionality – 5
Value for Price – 5