2009 Arctic Cat 700 H1 EFI MudPro
Have you ever pulled up to a deep nasty mudhole and were dared to sink your quad, but you knew if you did, that would certainly be the end of your finely tuned motor? But if you didn't, your buddies would get endless laughs for the rest of the day at your expense. It's happened to most of us at least once or twice in our lives, but from now on this won't be a problem as Arctic Cat has come to the rescue with the release of its new mud-ready-right-from-the-factory ATV, the MudPro 700 H1 EFI. When we got the invite from Arctic Cat to not only grab our first ride, but to actually put it to the ultimate test by competing on it at the last round of the Championship Mud Racing Series, surely you can imagine just how excited we were.
In this land of opportunity anything is possible. There's an old saying that goes, "If you can dream it, you can build it, and if there's a market, then you'll sell it." After receiving an overwhelming number of requests from its consumers, it seems as if the crazy cats from Thief River Falls, Minnesota, have built something that was once only a dream and is introducing it into an exploding market of mud enthusiasts. The MudPro 700 H1 EFI is a package of engineering that combines the everyday user-friendly utility ATV with a handful of mudhole-conquering features. And just so you know, Arctic Cat is the very first manufacturer to tread through these dark and murky waters.
"While sitting on the MudPro,...
"While sitting on the MudPro, I seriously wondered if I'd even be getting my feet wet. OK, maybe that's a stretch for these Texas-sized mudholes."
What Is MudPro?
What is the challenge in building a mud-friendly ATV, you might ask? Well, a mud ATV will continuously be dunked under murky waters and it has to have the power and torque to pull its way out of the muck all without sucking water. In other words, it must be watertight and able to breathe just like it were on dry land. The gearing will need to be modified so that it can output enough torque to claw its way through the thick stuff. And these are just a few of the things that Arctic Cat's designers and engineers wanted to concentrate on.
According to Arctic Cat product manager Craig Kennedy, the MudPro was built using the stock 700 H1 EFI machine. Many of the Arctic Cat sales managers in the southeast had realized that consumers were buying these high-displacement 4x4 utility machines and adding on components to make them more reliable in the deep muddy south. Unfortunately, these consumers were actually throwing their warranties right out the window with the first modifications to the air intake and CVT box. But not any longer if you so choose.
So here lies the niche market for the Arctic Cat engineers to target. With the stock 700 H1 EFI as the platform, the first step was to create as much ground clearance as possible. That was easy because the Arctic Cat line already boasts the highest ground clearance in the market. So adding a stiffer spring, preloading the stock shocks to the end of their travel and revalving the shocks' internals was what set this unit high enough without causing trouble with the CV axles. The next step was to make the MudPro waterproof. The airbox and CVT both needed to breathe while the majority of the machine was under water. In fact, these guys designed a very trick snorkel that actually looks like a claw and was built so that the CVT transmission as well as the airbox could be centrally vented without the worry of sucking water.