Volcon invited us out to Austin, TX to test their coming Volcon Stag, and all-electric UTV. Having previously driven one of the early electric UTVs from another manufacturer that was basically like driving a limo with lead weights in it I was curious to see how technology had evolved. After we arrived at the hotel we had a briefing on the Stag specs and capabilities all of which you can find on Volcon’s website. The next morning we were shuttled out to Rally Ready which is a fantastic facility where you can go lean how to drive rally cars.
Volcon had two of their Stag’s for testing. One was fully set up with tuned Elka suspension and the other one was stripped of all plastics “Naked” so we could see the mechanics of the vehicle. The first thing I noticed is how compact the Electric engine and battery array were. It took up less than a third of the overall chassis which is honestly one of the smallest EV drive train packages I have seen. Additionally, these cars were currently only set up as a 2-wheel drive, with power only to t the rear wheels. The final production models will have 4-wheel drive as well as the ability to switch back and forth like most UTV platforms.
I climbed into the Stag, put my helmet on, strapped in, and crushed the pedal and man was the immediate torque awesome! Besides the 0-30 acceleration I was also surprisingly impressed by the handling of the vehicle, which is the Achilles heel of most EV platforms because of the weight necessary to carry a battery array. With and rejected range of 100+ miles on a charge and plenty of horsepower ranging from 125HP – 140HP.
Overall I am impressed with the stag. It handles way better than any other electric UTV I have driven. Their choice of partnering with GM to integrate their drivetrain was smart. The size and weight of the GM drivetrain and batteries is less than a third of the car whereas some of the competitors have a battery array that runs the entire length of the chassis creating more weight and handling issues. The Stag’s acceleration off the line is nothing short of remarkable, in fact, it’s addicting. The immediate power actually takes some time to get used to. The vehicle really straddles the line between utility and performance leaning more toward the sport category than the utility category. Considering the average UTV ride is around 20 miles, The Stag fit a perfect emerging category, Utility UTV owners who want a bit more performance out of their vehicles.
We can’t wait to get our hands on one of the production models to properly shakedown for hundreds of miles!