Here they go again! By they, we obviously mean Polaris. UTVUnderground.com is proud to introduce you to the new 2014 Polaris Sportsman Ace! I think many of us could say that we saw this coming at some point. A single seat UTV is something we all could have predicted, but as is the case so many times with Polaris over the last few years, I don’t know that many of us thought we would see it this soon.
Polaris is enjoying a hefty share of the UTV / SXS market right now in pretty much all segments. So its no surprise that they would once again try to stake their claim and not only be the first to market, but create an entirely new segment. The new 2014 Sportsman Ace is a cross breed between a UTV and a Polaris Sportsman ATV. There are hints of the RZR in the ACE but its certainly more ATV as you begin to examine it. Let us make one thing extremely clear; this machine is NOT supposed to be the single seat sport machine RZR XP that most of us have envisioned. Instead, its Polaris’ way of furthering growth of the sport by truly introducing an affordable entry level machine for either the off-road newcomer or novice trail rider. Its also a clear statement by Polaris that the Southwest sport market is not the only thing on their minds. (As if their astounding addition to the Ranger lineup in 2013/14 wasn’t enough!)
So what exactly is the Sportsman Ace then if its not an ATV and its not a UTV and its not a sport machine? I don’t know how to answer that. Polaris thinks its more of an ATV, I seem to think its more UTV, but one thing I am sure of, its fun as heck once you start wheeling it. Now, ok, would I take it over a RZR XP1000, or even a RZR 570? For me, NO. BUT, I would feel completely confident in allowing my growing 10 year old daughter (no one under 16 is allowed to operate this machine by law aka Polaris’ dashboard sticker) or my older 67 year old grandmother to take the Sportsman Ace out on a trail ride with us in it. Its got enough power to get you into trouble, but not so much that a beginner or novice couldn’t handle it. The Sportsman Ace utilizes the all new Pro-Star 32 engine that I am left to assume is in the neighborhood of 300cc’s. Polaris would not confirm that number. They did confirm that this 4-valve DOHC EFI engine puts out 32hp. Now I know what you are thinking, 32hp is kinda weak, and it is if we are still comparing to those other RZR machines, but think about it. We used to think we were hot stuff running around in the dunes with 27hp Rhino’s that were heavy as heck compared to the 830lb Sportsman Ace! So while 32hp isn’t going to wow you a ton, when you compare power to weight its easy to see why you could have some fun.
UTVUnderground.com was once again fortunate enough to get an opportunity to be one of the first to actually test and drive this new machine. What surprised us the most was how much room this little sucker actually has. I am not kidding you when I say that I have more leg room in the Sportsman Ace then I do in the Polaris RZR. It has adjustable seats and an adjustable steering wheel which allows for people of all shapes and sizes to be able to climb in, with ease and operate the machine. There is no big hump in the floorboard to climb over like an ATV, and it has all the standard features of a UTV such as key’d start, selectable 4wd, H-L-N-R-P gear selection and even a cup holder right next to the RZR styled seat. Once buckled in we took off on a ride around the Hidden Falls Adventure Park outside of Marble Falls, TX.
Acceleration is nothing to write home about, but one thing I did really appreciate it is the smooth ramping of power as you started to push into the accelerator. There is no hurky-jerky feel when taking off and once you’re up to speed its hard not to get a sense of feeling like you are actually in a small single seat RZR. At about 40mph the machine got really fun for me as we blasted through some really tight and twisty trails. The Ace is only 48″ wide so it will fit on just about any ATV trail in the US and while it doesn’t utilize EPS (electronic power steering) it does still feel nimble and responsive. The Sportsman Ace runs a 25″ tall tire set, 8″ wide in front, 10″ wide out back and sits with about 10″ of total ground clearance. The machine runs 8.25″ of wheel travel up front and 9.5″ of travel out back. Wheel base is short at 61.5″ so its not going to be the machine you want to have if long whoop sections are in your future! What was really impressive was the fact that Polaris utilized Polaris RZR 570 axles and Cv’s, Transmission and Brakes on this little sucker.
While our ride allowed for it to be easy for us to get caught up in the recreational aspect of the Sportsman Ace, the utility functions of the machine are not to be ignored. I can easily see this machine taking the place for many ranchers and property workers who don’t want to hop over and wheel an ATV / Quad any more. The 18″ x 35″ rear cargo bed and 3 gallons of front under hood storage will certainly help with getting the work done, and yes, Polaris did include a trailer receiver / hitch location on the back of the frame! With a 5 gallon fuel cell and this machines high-tech EFI system I see drivers going a long way on a single tank of gas in the Sportsman Ace.
Overall, we enjoyed the Sportsman Ace. If Polaris treats the Ace like they did the Ranger and RZR then we can’t wait to see what future versions will involve. But for now, this $8,000 +/- MSRP, entry level machine we hope will help grow our sport and bring new riders and enthusiasts in. We congratulate and at the same time thank them for being forward thinking and willing to take chances by introducing new machines and new platforms. Its a great sign that our sport is growing and we should all be excited about that. Polaris plans to include the Polaris Sportsman Ace as part of their 2014 RZR Experience tour at stops all throughout the mid-west, south and east coast. We highly recommend that you get out and take a ride to see what this machine is all about.
Until next time…
Polaris Introduces Revolutionary New Off-Road Vehicle Sportsman® ACE
Confidence-Inspiring and Fun to Ride
Minneapolis, January 22, 2014– Polaris® Industries Inc. (NYSE: PII), the leading manufacturer of off-road vehicles, today announced the company is defining an entirely-new type of off-road vehicle with the introduction of the Sportsman® ACE. The vehicle’s architecture is completely new to the industry and features a revolutionary, sit-in chassis that is nimble and comfortable to operate. The design of the new Sportsman ACE provides a confidence-inspired ride, all while being trail-capable, offering an all-new off-road experience.
“The introduction of the Sportsman ACE is part of our strategy to remain the leader in the powersports marketplace by introducing innovative products that define their categories,” said David Longren, vice president of Polaris’ Off-Road Division. “In creating the Sportsman ACE, we wanted to not only appeal to current off-road enthusiasts, but develop a vehicle that brings new customers to off-road recreation. We accomplished this by coupling an easy-to-use, nimble platform with a confident and secure ride that, together, provides drivers of all experience levels a new way to experience the outdoors.”
The revolutionary, new design combines the size and nimble handling of the Sportsman All-Terrain Vehicle (ATV), and the confidence and comfort of the RANGER and RZR side-by-sides, in a rider-centric design with a trail-capable and easily-transportable 48 in/121.9 cm width. A comfortable and confidence-inspiring centralized seating position connects the driver directly with the machine for a new off-road riding experience. To ensure a low center of gravity, Polaris positioned all the major components, including the driver, centralized between the four wheels for an incredibly responsive ride. Along with this low center of gravity, the Sportsman ACE boasts 10.25 in/26.04 cm of ground clearance and 9.5 in/24.1 cm of rear travel due to its fully independent rear suspension (IRS) outfitted with performance, twin tube shocks featuring adjustable preload. Seasoned riders will appreciate the overall vehicle performance, handling and smooth riding suspension, while novice riders will enjoy the secure riding position and the right amount of power to get them down the trail.
Powering the Sportsman ACE is an all-new 32 horsepower ProStarTM Electronic Fuel Injected (EFI) Engine featuring an internal counter-balance shaft for smooth, vibration-free power. The dual overhead camshafts and a 4-valve cylinder head work with the advanced engine management system to precisely deliver the fuel charge for impressive power and instant, predictable throttle response; while the lightweight efficient transmission captures every ounce of power to deliver it to the ground. The engine is designed to reduce internal friction which dramatically reduces noise and significantly increases efficiency making it the most fuel-efficient engine Polaris has offered. This coupled with the 5.25 gal/19.87 liter fuel tank provides the vehicle with excellent range for long trail rides.
For a confidence-inspiring and comfortable ride, the Sportsman ACE has a unique ROPS cab frame to deliver peace of mind only previously found on side-by-sides. The secure, high-backed, adjustable bucket seat is paired with an adjustable steering wheel to give the driver unmatched flexibility when it comes to comfort in the machine. It’s also equipped with a 3-point seat belt, and has side bolsters to keep the operator properly positioned in the center of the machine. The steering wheel offers 3.5 in/8.9 cm of tilt adjustment and the driver’s seat slides back and forth by 4 in/10.2 cm to customize the fit for the rider. For added comfort, an integrated dead pedal gives the driver a place to perch their left foot while the right nests in the integrated heel pocket and throttles the powerful ProStar engine. The cockpit’s flow-through design also makes ingress and egress easy, and new side nets feature a metal rod to easily secure them both for clipping and positioning the nets to the back of the vehicle while exiting. The vehicle also is equipped with powerful halogen lighting so the fun doesn’t stop when the sun goes down.
For the utmost confidence on the trail, the Sportsman ACE is equipped with the same legendary On-Demand True All-Wheel Drive (AWD) system found on all Polaris Off-Road Vehicles. The system eliminates the guesswork by automatically engaging when the rider needs more forward traction and then reverts back to two-wheel drive automatically when the AWD is no longer needed. While zipping down the trail, the driver also has assured stopping power from the linked, four-wheel disc brakes with braided stainless steel brake lines that provide optimum response and minimal fade.
For added protection on the trail, accessories such as doors, front and rear brushguards, rock sliders, and a variety of custom wheel and tire packages not only protect the vehicle but add a more customized look. To protect the driver from the elements, a Lock & Ride roof, windshield and rear panel
install in seconds to offer a quick solution for all climates.
Polaris off-road vehicles have built an unprecedented reputation for helping owners get work done and the storage capability of the new Sportsman ACE is no different. With an integrated 2.8 gal/10.6 liter semi-dry, front storage compartment, and a high-capacity Lock & Ride® cargo box with rack extenders and rear tie-down rails, that also accepts the accessory Lock & Ride cargo box for additional dry storage, the vehicle can carry up to 575 lb/260 kg of gear. The Sportsman ACE is pre-wired for the installation of a winch with up to 3,500 lb/1587 kg of capacity, and the hardest-working DNA of Sportsman was further instilled with a 1,500 lb/680 kg towing capacity, for capability whether it’s time to work or play.
Polaris will also offer more than 25 accessories for Sportsman ACE including doors, winches, cabs and storage to suit their needs. The Sportsman ACE is available in White Lightning and will be in dealerships in February.
Polaris is a recognized leader in the powersports industry with annual 2012 sales of $3.2 billion. Polaris designs, engineers, manufactures and markets innovative, high quality off-road vehicles, including all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) and the Polaris RANGER® and RZR® side-by-side vehicles, snowmobiles, motorcycles and small vehicles.
Polaris is among the global sales leaders for both snowmobiles and off-road vehicles and has established a presence in the heavyweight cruiser and touring motorcycle market with the Victory and Indian motorcycle brands. Additionally, Polaris continues to invest in the global on-road small vehicle industry with Global Electric Motorcars (GEM), Goupil Industrie SA, Aixam Mega S.A.S., and internally developed vehicles. Polaris enhances the riding experience with a complete line of Polaris and KLIM branded apparel and Polaris accessories and parts.
Polaris Industries Inc. trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “PII”, and the Company is included in the S&P Mid-Cap 400 stock price index.
Information about the complete line of Polaris products, apparel and vehicle accessories are available from authorized Polaris dealers or anytime at www.polaris.com
|2014 Sportsman Ace 4×4
|4-Stroke DOHC Single Cylinder
|Electronic Fuel Injection
|Automatic PVT P/R/N/L/H; Shaft
|On-Demand True AWD/2WD
|Engine Braking System
|Active Descent Control
|MacPherson Strut With 8.2″ (20.8 cm) Travel
|Dual A-Arm, Anti-Sway Bar 9.5″ (24 cm) Travel
|4-Wheel Hydraulic Disc with Dual-Bore Front Calipers
|Park in Transmission
|Tires / Wheels
|25 x 8-12; 489
|25 x 10-12; 489
|Dimensions / Capacities
|Overall Vehicle Size (L x W x H)
|90″ x 48″ x 68″
|Front/Rear Rack or Box Capacity
|120 lb (55 kg)/240 lb (110 kg)
|575 lbs (261 kg)
|Hitch Towing Rating
|Unbraked Trailer Towing Capacity
|Lock & Ride
|Halogen, 55W low/ 60W high
|Electronic Power Steering
|Digital Gauge, Analog Speedometer, Odometer, Tachometer, Tripmeter, Gear Indicator, Fuel Gauge, AWD Indicator, Hi-Temp/Low-Batt Lights, DC Outlet