WHAT’S NEW FOR 2016?
For 2016 the Wildcat 1000 4X EPS
gets 27-inch Duro PowerGrip tires for
more traction and durability, and it’s
the only four-seat sport offering. Two-seat 1000s get Limited and Special
Edition versions with high-end Elka
Stage 5 shocks. All Wildcat 1000Xs
get the new closed-loop EFI for 2016
with a ceramic-coated exhaust system.
Output is 90-plus horsepower. New
LED headlights put out 216 lumens
on low beam and 384 lumens on
high. Also for 2016, 1000X models
sport JRi 2. 5 ECX-1 compression-damping-adjustable shocks, which
have a 70-position needle/seat
adjustment on the shock shaft instead
of in the reservoir for better oil flow.
HOW DOES THE COST COMPARE?
The Wildcat 1000 4X EPS is $20,999.
We got a chance to try out the 2016 Arctic Cat Wildcat 1000 4X at Moab’s Behind the
Rocks trail, and the longer wheelbase of the four-seat ’Cat makes it super stable at speed and
fun to drift in dunes and sandy two-track trails.
Tall bucket seats can be removed for use
around camp, but running accessory harnesses
through the ’Cat’s seats would complicate that
benefit. The seats are comfortable, but the
shoulder belts can chafe necks.
A new ceramic-coated exhaust has an oxygen bung for the closed-loop
EFI, and the 951cc V-twin breathes through a 50mm EFI throttle body.
The 4X comes stock with JRi ECX-1 shocks, but ours was upgraded to
accessory Elka Stage- 5 46mm shocks ($1,499 a pair) with high- and
low-speed compression adjusters, rebound clickers and dual-rate springs.
The Team Rapid-Response clutch and EFI tuning work well together,
even in heavy rock crawling, and the sealed airbox draws air at
radiator level above the bed. Twin fans keep coolant cool, and our
accessory Elkas also had dual-rate springs with crossover rings for a
The Can-Am Maverick Max 1000 X
ds is $21,499, and the Maverick Max
DPS is $19,449. The Polaris RZR XP
4 1000 EPS is $22,299, and the High
Lifter Special Edition is $25,699. The
Kawasaki Teryx4 800 EPS is $15,799
to $16,999, while Honda’s Pioneer
1000-5 is $16,199 to $17,999.
HOW FAST IS THE 1000 4X?
Fast enough to be fun. While the
90-horsepower V-twin is sporty in
the two-seat ’Cat, four people bog
down the 4X in the dunes—compared
to the 110-horsepower RZR XP 4
and 101-horsepower Maverick Max.
On harder ground, the 4X is a hoot
to drift into turns and powerslide
out, and it has plenty of power for
rock crawling in low range. We got
70 mph out of it in high, and low
is governed to 40 mph max.
HOW IS THE CVT/4WD DELIVERY?
Confidence-inspiring. The Team
Rapid Response clutch lives up to
its name with cat-quick engagement
that takes some time to get used to
in delicate rock-crawling situations,
but it’s great for foot-stomp launches.
It also jumped out of low a couple
of times. The 2WD/4WD/diff-lock
toggle is easy to use, and servos
engage 4WD and diff-lock instantly.
An indicator lights up on the toggle
lights when in diff-lock mode, which
is like having retractable claws.
WHAT ABOUT HANDLING?
It’s agile and predictable. With a
10-foot, 4-inch wheelbase, the 4X is
super stable and slow-turning. Savvy
drivers get more cornering performance
by coming into turns hot and drifting
the rear end out for tighter turning,