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  • 2022 Polaris RZR Pro R (Starting at $34,199)
  • An industry leader in many categories
  • Pro: The Polaris RZR can get you anywhere off the beaten path and provide a lot of fun in the process.
  • Con: The suspension doesn’t provide the most comfortable ride, but it’s forgiving

As I drove along the trail in the Nevada desert just outside of Las Vegas, I smiled through my full-face helmet as rocks and grasshoppers flew at me. The trail before me disappeared quickly as I gained speed – 20 mph, 30 mph, then 40 mph. The faster I went, the quicker I watched the shrubbery, gravel, and whatever other small animals that stood in the path get run over by the tires of the UTV that I was in. Sorry Mother Nature, the 2022 Polaris RZR Pro R is here.

Polaris debuted the highly-anticipated RZR Pro R last November and invited us out to the desert to get some seat time. I’m glad they did, not just because the RZR Pro R is fun to drive, but also because it felt right at home in the hot and rocky terrain.

2022 Polaris RZR Pro R driving through the desert, up close view
2022 Polaris RZR Pro R driving through the desert. | Polaris

The Polaris RZR Pro R comes in three different trim levels

During my time with the Polaris RZR Pro R, I got to spend time in the top tier of the three available trims.

  • RZR Pro R Sport  — $34,199
  • RZR Pro R Premium – $37,499
  • RZR Pro R Ultimate — $40,699

Opting for the two higher trims – the Premium and Ultimate – mainly gives you features like Ride Command Technology, a banging Rockford Fosgate audio system, and the all-new DYNAMIX DV system. The Pro R comes standard in a two-door/two-seat configuration, however, a four-seat configuration is available.

The Polaris RZR Pro R is a fierce-looking little buggy

2022 Polaris RZR Pro R group shot
2022 Polaris RZR Pro R driving group shot | Polaris

Whether you’re into powersports or not, you can take one look at the Polaris RZR Pro R and know what it’s meant to do. Its plastic shell has an aggressive look with a couple of fierce-looking body lines on the doors. But let’s face it, this thing isn’t meant to win any car shows. Its sole purpose is to tear through any terrain that you put it on and it shows, literally.

Above the 32-inch tires sit the massive Fox 3.0 suspension components, which offer 29 inches of travel. That amount of travel, in addition to the 16 inches of ground clearance came in handy throughout the ride as we mowed over everything in our path.

Is the RZR Pro R comfortable?

2022 Polaris RZR Pro R interior
2022 Polaris RZR Pro R Interior | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

Technically, yes. Although, the word “comfort” is relative when it comes to a side-by-side vehicle. But for what it’s worth, the RZR Pro R comes with padded buckets seats that hold you and your passengers in place very well. The seats also have extended sliders and three-position tilt control to help you dial in the optimal seating position. And if you have a four-person rig, then the rear seats can fold down and reveal up to 16 cubic feet of storage space.

To make the driving position even more customizable, the steering wheel tilts and telescopes. Otherwise, your actual comfort is governed by the tightness of the six-point harness that straps you into the seat. It’s constrictive but necessary.

How is the tech?

2022 Polaris RZR Pro R navigation
2022 Polaris RZR Pro R Navigation system | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

In addition to the optional Rockford Fosgate audio system and Bluetooth, the Pro R is available with an onboard navigation system and Ride Command.

With Ride Command, you can plan and share routes with your group and keep track of them if they split up. I actually got a taste of this technology when I accidentally split up from the caravan of RZRs that I was with. I turned right when I should have turned left and thought it was weird when I came to a clearing filled with grasshoppers and other bugs.

It took a minute for me to realize that I was clearly off the trail, so I turned around and went over a bunch of rock fixtures in search of my group. Fortunately, they found me quickly and said that they could see me on the Ride Command feature the whole time. Luckily, no one could see the embarrassment through my helmet.

The RZR Pro R is the most powerful version to date

2022 Polaris RZR Pro R rear corner
2022 Polaris RZR Pro R rear corner view | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

The RZR Pro R is powered by a Prostar Fury 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine that produces 225 hp and is connected to a CVT. To date, it’s the most powerful RZR you can buy, and trust me when I say that power level is more than enough for most of the driving you’ll do. Its throttle response is quick and the power picks up even quicker since you don’t have to wait for a turbo to spool up. There are also three different drive modes – sport, race, and rock – that change the throttle mapping depending on your mood.

Also, the RZR Pro R only weighs around 2,000 pounds, so I can equate it to driving a Honda S2000 with a ton of weight reduction. It sure felt that way on the dirt trail that I was driving on. The whole time, I kept thinking “this thing feels like a sports car on dirt,” which isn’t too far considering it can get up to 90 mph with a brave driver behind the wheel.

How does the RZR Pro R handle?

The RZR Pro R has a 74-inch stance and a 133.5-inch wheelbase, which makes it stable on the most uneven roads. I can attest to this I plowed through the small crevices and tiny canyons in the desert floor with ease. There wasn’t even a second thought that crossed my mind when driving over the rougher stuff as the RZR Pro R made quick work of the surrounding landscape.

Its high ground clearance added to the fun as I was able to go up steeper inclines than I thought would be possible. There’s also an on-wheel “oh sh*t” button that comes in handy when you run out of talent. It instantly takes the compression out of all four shocks and sets them to full firm, which can get you out of any hairy (and bumpy) situations.

Speaking of tweaking the suspension, the Dynamix DV active suspension worked overtime on my adventure across the desert. The control module monitors the suspension components over 200 times per second to ensure the best stability. I made sure to play with all of the driving modes – Baja, Rock, Track, and Comfort – to get a good feel for it. The Baja mode seemed to work the best over the stuff I was driving on and Comfort made it feel a little unsettling.

Is the Polaris RZR Pro R safe?

2022 Polaris RZR Pro R driving through the desert rear view
Rear view of the 2022 Polaris RZR Pro R driving through the desert. | Polaris

Just like the word “comfort,” the word “safe” is a relative term when it comes to UTVs. Having said that, the Polaris RZR Pro R is as safe as it can be with a six-point harness, no windshield, and half doors. There are no airbags, adaptive cruise control, or anything that you could find in a modern car, but the RZR Pro R does have a one-piece chassis that is two times stronger than other Polaris models, so that should keep you safe in case the worst happens. Also, the one-piece cage helps too.

In case you want to spruce up the safety or look of your Pro R, there are over 70 different accessories including custom wheels and tires, full-aluminum doors, steel rock sliders, and side mirrors available from Polaris.

MotorBiscuit gives the Polaris RZR Pro R an expert rating of 8.4 out of 10

2022 Polaris RZR Pro R group shot
2022 Polaris RZR Pro R group shot | Polaris

Is the Honda Talon Faster Than the Polaris RZR?

The editors at MotorBiscuit awarded the Polaris RZR Pro R an overall rating of 8.4 out of 10. It’s tough to rate a vehicle in this category, especially since have yet to drive a competitor like the Can-Am Maverick X3. However, considering the type of performance that you get with the RZR Pro R, in addition to its tech features, it’s quite the total package when it comes to UTVs.

However, it is priced pretty high in the segment. But if you can spend close to $35,000 on a weekend toy like the Pro R, then you won’t be disappointed. Just try not to get lost in the desert like I did.