Most of the time we go four-wheeling there’s a steering wheel in our hands and we’re looking through a windshield. However, once in a blue moon we get to off-road something totally different. This four-wheeling adventure had us looking through goggles and gripping a handlebar, and it was every bit as challenging and exciting as any Jeep trail we’ve tackled. Believe us when we say a powerful ATV with four-wheel-drive and a locking front differential can be a smokin’ good time on the trail.
Good times perfectly describe our recent experience with the new Yamaha ATVs. We had the chance to spend two days at Windrock Park just outside of Knoxville, Tennessee, testing out the latest entries in the ATV market from Yamaha–the 2016 Grizzly and Kodiak 700. Windrock Park contains 72,000 acres of mountains, valleys, meadows, and streams crisscrossed with 300 miles of off-road trails, and it has a very nice campground. According to the owners of this massive chunk of land, it’s the largest privately held off-road park in the country.
A powerful 700cc four-cycle, four-valve, fuel-injected engine with assistance from the On-Command 4WD system and a locking front differential helps the 2016 Yamaha Grizzly EPS conquer a rocky trail.
The two new rides are very similar, yet offer nuanced differences, and are targeted to different customers. We’ll begin with the new Grizzly, a powerful ATV aimed accurately at the sport-riding customer. First of all, the 2016 Grizzly features an all-new DOHC, 708cc, four-valve, four-stroke, fuel-injected engine that has been tuned for aggressive recreational riding. Its power output is up 6 and 9 percent in horsepower and torque, respectively, over the previous model.
These power gains are primarily due to some major modifications in significant areas of the engine. The new engine offers a DOHC design, where as the 2015 model was a SOHC. A newly redesigned air intake system is longer, wider, and straighter for a greater and more free-flowing volume of airflow, and is located at a higher point now for better water-fording ability. The filter is larger, and is now located under the seat for easier maintenance. The Mikuni fuel-injection system with its 44mm bore and throttle position sensor helps to provide more power, uninhibited fuel delivery on any terrain or in any conditions, and makes for easier cold starts.
The Grizzly’s fully independent suspension offers five-way adjustable coilover shock absorbers for a nimble-footed ride. The optional Warn winch makes removing trail obstacles a breeze, and comes in handy for extricating other stuck machines.
Riding is made easy with the addition of the Yamaha Ultramatic automatic transmission. It features a gated shifter with a positive and sure feel when engaged in Park, Reverse, Neutral, Hi or Lo. The CVT system has an automatic centrifugal clutch that keeps constant belt tension to reduce wear and tear on the belt. It also features a sprag clutch that delivers all-wheel engine braking that’s nice and smooth–very helpful on steep descents. New gear ratios in the transmission (a lower high gear and a lower middle gear) are part of the “recreational tune” on the Grizzly.
In addition to the revamped transmission, the 2016 Grizzly also offers a locking front differential and part-time four-wheel-drive that can be instantly engaged with the touch of a button mounted on the right-hand side of the handlebar. Larger and stouter front and rear driveshafts were also part of the upgrade and redesign of the new Grizzly.
Read More Here: http://www.fourwheeler.com/vehicle-reviews/1603-we-test-yamahas-2016-grizzly-and-kodiak-700-atvs/