Types of ATVs: Learn About the Basics Before Buying


Are you planning on a brand new ATV adventure this summer? If you are still deciding which vehicle is right for you, the following section has information that could help make up your mind. ATVs, or all-terrain vehicles, are motorized vehicles designed for off-road use. They are popular due to their versatility and ability to traverse rough terrain quickly. This type of vehicle is designed for varied uses, including racing, recreation, hunting, ranching, military, paramedics, and industrial purposes.

Types of ATVs

ATVs vary by engine capacities, from 50 cc juvenile ATVs to 700 cc sports and 800 cc utility. Following are the four main types:

1. Sports ATVs

These lightweight quads come in various sizes, from 250 to 700 cc. Sports ATVs are typically lighter than others, which allows them to be more agile and maneuverable. They can tackle terrain with a unique suspension system that can handle jumps, bumps and turns like a formidable machine. They have a narrower profile and a lower center of gravity than other types of ATVs, which aids in swift turns beneficial in a sports setting.

With a vast array of accessories, you can transform your sports ATV into a high-performance machine that looks terrific and delivers an unbeatable ride. Some additions include fuel containers, gas caps, lights, mounts, plows, shifters, and storage options. Sports ATVs are designed for riders who want a powerful vehicle that can handle the demands of sports riding.

2. Utility ATVs

These beasts are built tough with a powerful motor and specialized accessories and are perfect for farming, hunting, or any other heavy-duty work. Given their impressive weight and suspension, they can easily handle any terrain, as seen with the Polaris ATV. Utility ATVs are more powerful than other ATVs, with larger engines and more torque to handle heavy loads and tough terrain. These are heavier than other types of ATVs, which helps them maintain traction and stability on uneven terrain.

3. Youth ATVs

Youth ATVs are smaller ATVs designed for children and teenagers. They come with engine sizes ranging from 50 to 110 cc (sometimes 125 cc). These machines may have little suspension or power, but they make up for it with an automatic gearbox and relative ease of use. Youth ATVs have safety features that protect young riders, such as adjustable throttles, independent front suspension, and speed-limiting governors.

4. Side-by-Side ATVs

This off-road type features two seats and one steering wheel, much like a car. They are designed to be driven in all terrain and include a seating configuration closer to a traditional car or truck. They usually have two seats beside each other, sometimes with the addition of back seats, and can seat up to six passengers. They are also enclosed within a roll cage structure, sometimes called multipurpose off-highway utility vehicles (MOHUV). Overall, side-by-side ATVs are designed to be versatile and capable workhorses. They offer more seating and cargo capacity than other ATVs, advanced suspension systems, and steering controls for improved handling and performance.