Let’s face it: We all love going fast. We love it so much, in fact, that we buy vehicles with the specific purpose of driving as fast as we can on any terrain. That’s right, we’re talking about ATVs. These vehicles can provide the most fun out of all vehicles, and they shouldn’t be overlooked in terms of power.
What’s the fastest ATV in the world?
That’s a tricky question. The world record for the fastest speed on an ATV was recorded in 2008 by Terry Wilmeth of Oregon. He reached his top speed of 196.19 miles per hour on a Yamaha 700 Raptor, which was modified using a hybrid rocket thruster. While not usable on roads or trails, to think anyone can modify an ATV to go almost 200 miles per hour is mind-blowing.
The speed of an ATV depends on a lot of things. There are two main types of ATVs: sport and utility. Sport ATVs are designed for competition and speed. Their features are more about usefulness than comfort. Sport ATVs usually have manual transmissions, narrow seats, and rear-wheel drive. But they all have the purpose of giving the driver more control so they can go as fast as possible.
Utility ATVs, on the other hand, offer more creature comforts. They have four-wheel drive, a versatile suspension, and more low-speed power than sport ATVs. Utility ATVs are heavier and slower, but they can do more things like tow heavy loads.
Wilmeth’s model is obviously an exception, but how fast can ATVs usually go? Some of the most powerful ATVs may reach top speeds of about 80 miles per hour, but the average is more like 50 to 60 miles per hour. A lot of factors go into how fast a quad can go apart from the engine. The wrong tires can slow you down, so if you want to go fast, avoid big tires meant for muddy, rough trails. Opt for smaller tires instead. You can also replace the standard exhaust for one that gives better flow and therefore more power.
Today’s top sport ATVs
Although they won’t be able to go as fast as Wilmeth went back in 2008, let’s take a look at some of this year’s fastest sport ATVs.
The Honda TRX250X is one of the most lightweight, quick sport ATVs available. This model is built for speed. It has a manual transmission with Honda’s SportClutch, which makes shifting gears easier and lessens the chance of stalling. It also has lightweight aluminum wheels for more speed and control. Its engine is rubber-mounted, which cuts down on vibration and doesn’t tire you out as much while you’re driving.
2020 Can-Am Renegade
Another option for people who love to go fast, the 2020 line of Can-Am Renegades are some of the most powerful ATVs today. They utilize Tri-mode Intelligent Throttle Control (iTC), with standard, sport, and eco modes. The iTC gives you more control over the engine and lets you customize your use of fuel. The biggest upgrade in 2020 is the updated front and rear A-Arm suspension. Combined with new, wider wheels, this suspension system gives you more stability while going fast on rough terrain.
Yamaha YFZ450R SE
Ready for a race track, the Yamaha YFZ450R SE is a perfect companion for any high-speed driver. It has a lightweight aluminum chassis combined with a powerful 449cc engine, giving you the fastest speed possible. This model features an assist-and-slipper clutch, which reduces engine braking effect, allowing for faster turns while downshifting.