Posts Tagged ‘all-terrain vehicle’

Can-Am Introduces Air Suspension in ATV Line

June 4, 2009
CanAm_OUTLANDERMAXEFILTD800

Outlander MAX 800R EFI LTD.

BRP’s 2010 Can-Am ATV line-up features models that come with the industry’s first air-controlled suspension system (ACS) and a new Dynamic Power Steering (DPS) with dual-mode, speed-sensitive power assist and next-generation Visco-Lok QE automatic front differential.

The ACS comes on the Outlander MAX 800R EFI LTD (MSRP $13,449). The compressor that activates the six-position, rider-selectable ACS system can also be used to fill tires while on the trail. The speed sensitive, dual-mode DPS and revised, quicker-engaging Visco-Lok QE front differential come on select Outlander and Renegade models.

Other model changes and technology updates to the Can-Am ATV line for 2010:

Renegade 800R X xc – The new Renegade package for the serious trail rider comes with a host of features: full beadlock wheels, premium suspension, dual-mode DPS power steering and a front sway bar.

XT-P Package – Gives the rider all the previous Outlander XT package features, but adds more value with painted plastic and package-exclusive cast-aluminum wheels.

More Outlander 650 Power – A revised calibration on the Rotax 650 powerplant helps generate seven percent more power than last year’s engine.

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Inventor Patents Passenger ‘Safety Grips’

March 9, 2009

An inventor from Portland, Ore., has patented an accessory that he says would help passengers of motorcycles, ATVs and personal watercraft hold on to the operator.

Inventor service company InventHelp publicized the product, but failed to name its inventor client. outmax800refixt1

The “Safety Grips” (not to be confused with the previously released “Buddy Belt”) consist of a nylon, padded belt that is secured via hook-and-loop fasteners. Sewn into the rear of the belt would be a pair of upright handles facing the passenger. In use, the operator would adjust the belt to fit his or her waist, and the passenger grips the handles throughout the duration of the ride.

According to InventHelp, the inventor was inspired to create the Safety Grips after an off-roading trip. “We used this belt while riding quads on sand dunes at the beach, and we got a lot of positive feedback from both passengers and operators,” he said.

Lets hope the inventor was riding the ATV in the prescribed manner – in other words, not riding two-up on a single rider vehicle. Existing two-up ATVs, from BRP and Arctic Cat, come supplied with multi-position passenger grab rails and backrest.

Court Nixes Lawsuit Opposed to ATVs in MN Forest

January 28, 2009

Common sense prevailed in Minnesota this week when a court decision rejected the Sierra Club’s challenge to the 2004 Revised Superior National Forest Plan.

The lawsuit included challenges to the analysis of potential impacts to the Boundary Waters Canoe Wilderness Area, as well as the accuracy of the road and trail inventory used by the Forest Service. The decision, penned by U.S. District Judge Patrick J. Schiltz, ruled in favor of the Forest Service and concluded that the agency had not acted arbitrarily or capriciously in adopting the broad prescriptions of the Revised Forest Plan.

The All Terrain Vehicle Association of Minnesota (ATVAM), along with the BlueRibbon Coalition (BRC), both recreation advocacy groups, intervened in the case on the side of the Forest Service.

The Superior Forest released a formal Travel Management Plan in December 2008, which designates areas, roads and trails for vehicle travel. Under agency regulations, that decision is subject to administrative appeal by those participating in the decision making process, including the Sierra Club, ATVAM, BRC and many others.

“We are certainly pleased by this outcome,” said Phill Morud of ATVAM. “Recreation is an increasingly dominant use of our National Forests and we feel this suit was an effort to delay and divert agency energy from active recreation management.”

“Thousands of visitors have a stake in effective management of the Superior, and with the dismissal of this suit hopefully we can all focus our attention on management of specific roads, trails, and areas of the Forest,” said Brian Hawthorne, BRC Public Lands Policy Director.

Want to help preserve our natural resources FOR the public instead of FROM the public? Click here to find out how you can assist.

Talking Taiwan at Dealer Expo

January 14, 2009

I’ve been invited to speak at the Taiwan Image Seminar taking place at the Dealernews International Powersports Dealer Expo in Indianapolis next month.

I’ll be joined by a couple of fellow journalists and representatives from Taiwan’s major powersports vehicle manufacturers. We’ll be sharing our opinions regarding Taiwan’s powersports companies and products.

ATV testing in Kaohsiung

Guido Ebert testing ATVs in Kaohsiung

My first experience with Taiwan-made two-wheelers occurred in the mid 90s, when I rented a KYMCO scooter during a trip to Greece. A couple of years later, remembering the pleasant experience I had on that scoot, I rented another KYMCO scooter while in Mexico, and had an equally enjoyable experience – even with my wife on the back.

Since then, I’ve been on four trips to Taiwan, visiting manufacturing facilities and riding two and four-wheel product. The facilities I’ve seen there matched, and even surpassed, some of the R&D and manufacturing facilities I’ve toured in Europe and the U.S.

Industry folk often ask me what I’ve experienced during my time in Taiwan, about the market, the companies, and the product. Here are the seven statements I tend to include in my reply:

1) Taiwan is NOT China.
2) Whereas China has proven itself to be a prolific vehicle manufacturer, Taiwan – like Japan – proves proficient at developing AND manufacturing vehicles.
3) Taiwanese manufacturers are to Japanese manufacturers as Japanese manufacturers were to Harley-Davidson.
4) Most people who’ve had a chance to inspect, ride or sell Taiwan-made vehicles know the quality of such product tends to be on par with units built in Japan and higher than many of the units imported so far from China.
5) Multiple North American and Japanese OEMs source quads and scooters from Taiwanese manufacturers.
6) While many “New Asian” suppliers entering the U.S. market often attempt to scrape together as many sales as possible as quickly as possible by moving product through multiple distributors, Taiwan-based vehicle suppliers appear to have a more long-term approach, choosing a single U.S. based importer/distributor through which they can more easily manage their business and plan for the future.
7) Remember where Kia and Hyundai were in the U.S. auto market 10 years ago? Check out their statistics now. Expect the same from the New Asians in the powersports industry.

Honda Plans Halt to ATV, PWC Production in S.C.

January 13, 2009

Honda of South Carolina Mfg., Inc. plans to cease production of all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) and personal watercraft (PWC) for three months beginning in March.

Click here to learn why.

Honda Motor Co. Ltd. ends its business year March 31. In 2007, Honda’s sales of ATVs in North America decreased 4.5 percent to 211,000 units.

In 2003, South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford helped Honda of South Carolina Mfg. dedicate its new personal watercraft assembly plant in Timmonsville, S.C. The plant became Honda's second in Timmonsville and 12th in North America.

In 2003, South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford helped Honda of South Carolina Mfg. dedicate its new personal watercraft assembly plant in Timmonsville, S.C. The plant became Honda's second in Timmonsville and 12th in North America.