Over the past few years, Polaris and Apple's product release regimen has looked very similar. As each new generation of product is released, both companies unveil an upgraded version within a year or so. iPhones get the "S" moniker (3GS, 4S, 5S), and RZRs get a number 4 tacked onto their name. Both companies are on top of their markets, and for good reason- they perform at the top of their game.
The XP4 1000 follows the same route- based entirely on the two-seat XP 1000, Polaris stretched the frame by adding a stout 27-inch long section between the wheels. These 27 inches houses two more seats, a set of upholders, and a 12-volt outlet. The rear seats are exactly the same pieces you get up front, albeit without sliding bases. Three point seat belts and a cab-wide horizontal grab bar round out the differences between the 2 and 4 seat XP 1000s visually. Unlike four seat RZRs past, the rear seats aren't positioned stadium style. The front and rear seat heights are identical, allowing for a lower center of gravity and overall cage height.
On the performance side, the XP 1000's drivetrain carries over without any changes. The same 107 horsepower, dual overhead cam, twin-cylinder engine is positioned just behind the rear seats, routing power through Polaris' PVT (continuously variable) transmission. The clutching has been revised to deal with the machine's added girth, and the shocks have been sprung and valved to accept the changes as well. The rear 2.5" Walker Evans needle valve shocks have upgraded shafts, which are now 7/8" thick.
Despite having the ability to carry two more passengers, four seat RZR models have always been revered for their smoother ride. This is due entirely to the stretched wheelbase- having more length between the front and rear suspension greatly reduces the bucking motion you experience traversing rough terrain. Suspension travel is rated at 16 inches up front and 18 in the rear- Polaris can't call it "Class-Leading", but the feel from the cab says otherwise. The suspension's tuning is perhaps the best we have felt from a showroom-stock UTV to date, and the car just begs to be driven hard.
Creature comforts provided by Polaris include sliding front seats, a tilt steering wheel, standard electronic power steering, a sealed electronics storage compartment, and blue LED interior lighting. The aggressive look of the bodywork lends well to its extreme performance, as the XP4 1000 looks fast even when it's parked. Polaris worked hard to ensure that this machine was ready to conquer any terrain in style and comfort without any modification.
Entry and exit into any of the cab's four seats is done with ease, as Polaris designed the best latch system we have used on any UTV door. The bolstered seats are simple to slide into, and don't require climbing up over steep hip supports. They hold you in well in most conditions, but they are a bit flimsy in the seat back. Cab comfort is upgraded over previous RZR models, with a much-needed update to the dash and cab plastic that gives off a high-quality feel. Fit and finish is the tightest of any Polaris product to date, and the small interior styling cues will keep occupants happy when parked.
Polaris designed the new ProStar 1000 parallel twin engine with a throttle by wire system, allowing for increased fuel economy and a smoother throttle feel. There is absolutely zero lag from the throttle pedal- flex your right foot, and the engine responds with a raspy tone. Compared to the XP 900, the 1000's engine feel is much more robust in the low-mid range power department. Cruising along at light throttle, you hardly feel like you're using any of the pedal's travel, and it will hum along in the dunes at 40 mph with a light foot.
The most impressive weapon in the XP4-1K's arsenal is its suspension- the Walker Evans needle shocks and abundant amounts of wheel travel ensure that your ride is smooth in ever scenario. Plush low-speed comfort quickly ramps up to provide incredible bottoming resistance. The needle shocks have an internal port that is progressively blocked off as the shock gets deeper in the stroke, allowing the shock to produce more compression dampening as you reach the ends of its suspension travel. It all adds up to a buttery-smooth ride and confidence-inspiring, land-flattening performance capability. After a few hours behind the wheel, any driver will feel confident enough to attack rough whoops, ruts, G-outs, and jumps without pause.
As with any long-travel car, body roll is prevalent. The XP4-1K doesn't stay flat in the turns like a 900 does, allowing quite a bit more lean during hard cornering. Once you get used to the increased body roll, you will find that it actually lends itself to increased cornering grip, allowing the weight to shift to the tires with the most traction and drive you through the corner. The four-seater rotates slower than the two seater, allowing the driver to attack the corners with more gusto without as much oversteer. The car is flat out easy to drive fast, and will make any amateur feel like Robby Gordon for a bit.
Jumping the XP4-1K is incredibly fun- its length allows hard charges at smooth takeoffs, and it flies straight and true. As the suspension reaches full droop, it has about a foot and a half of wheel travel to slow the chassis' momentum before bottoming out, making big landings feel smooth as a cloud. We aired our RZR 4 well over the heads of onlookers in Glamis, and the landings produced no drama or broken parts.
The XP4 is about 11 inches shorter than the Wildcat 4, and while it isn't as plush as the Cat, it handles with more confidence and will outrun it without issue. The Maverick four-seater will hang with the XP in a drag race, but as soon as the trail gets rough, the RZR starts to pull away very quickly.
Overall, this machine is about as impressive of a specimen as you will find in today's market. It just does everything well- it corners hard, runs like a whipped thoroughbred, and handles the ugliest terrain you can throw at it with poise and comfort. If you're in the market for the highest-performance four- seat UTV on the market, look no further.
-Incredible suspension prowess
-Stellar motor, with tons of grunt
-Loves the air as much as the dirt
-You may need a bigger trailer
-Performance and weight are tough on belts
ATV RIDER'S SUSPENSION SETUP
Increased Preload 0.5 inches
Compression 6 clicks out
1-2 passengers: Compression 1 click out
3-4 passengers: Compression 5-6 clicks out
2014 Polaris RZR XP4 1000 EPS
Engine Type: 999cc, 4-stroke, DOHC, Twin Cylinder
Fuel system: Electronic Fuel Injection; Dual 48mm throttle bodies
Starting system: Electric
Drive system: On-Demand AWD/2WD
Transmission: Automatic PVT P/R/N/L/H
Front: Double A-Arm with 2" Walker Evans Needle Shocks (compression adjustable.) 16" Wheel Travel
Rear: Trailing Arm with 2.5" Walker Evans Needle Shocks (compression adjustable with remote reservoir) 18" Wheel Travel
Front: 29 x 9-14; Maxxis Bighorn
Rear: 29 x 11-14; Maxxis Bighorn
Front: Dual Hydraulic Disc with Dual-Bore Front & Rear Calipers
Rear: Dual Hydraulic Disc with Dual-Bore Front & Rear Calipers
Claimed dry weight: 1596 lbs.
Ground clearance: 13.5"
Length/width/height: 146" x 64" x 73.75"
Fuel capacity: 9.5 gal
Cargo bed dimensions: 28 x 41 x 2.8", Main box size: 28 x 22 x 7"
Cargo bed capacity: 300 lbs.
Lighting: White LED, High/Low & Red LED Tail / Brake Lights
Instrumentation: Digital Gauge, Speedometer, Odometer, Tripmeter, Tachometer, Coolant Temperature, Volt Meter, Hour Meter, Service Indicator, Clock, Gear Indicator, Fuel Gauge, Hi-Temp Light, Seatbelt Reminder Light, 2 DC Outlets (front and rear)