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Choosing the Right ATV: A Buyer's Guide

All-terrain vehicles (ATVs) are exciting. They are fast, ready for adventure, and practical, helping on the farm and in other outdoor settings. 

If you are wondering how to choose the right ATV, this guide will help. The first section covers everything you need to know before picking an ATV, while the second concentrates on top ATV models from leading manufacturers and what to expect from each. 

What to Consider Before Buying an ATV

Before jumping in and buying an ATV, here are some things to consider. 


First, you’ll want to consider what to spend on one of these vehicles. New models can cost 5,000 to 20,000 CAD, while those under five years can sell for as little as 2,500 CAD. 

If you don’t have the cash you need in your account, you can purchase ATVs with finance. Monthly installments spread the cost over several years, making it more affordable. 

Skill Level

Next, consider your skill level related to the engine size and power output you should choose. Experts recommend beginners choose less powerful ATVs that are easier to control and maneuver over obstacles. More experienced riders can go for powerful ATVs that offer a higher level of performance. 

It’s worth noting that ATVs can be physically challenging to operate. Turning, accelerating, and braking require substantial upper, lower and core body strength. Therefore, you may also want to choose models with features that improve ergonomics and comfort while on the trail or ranch. 

Riding Style

Riding style is another consideration. Consider which type of ATV you need for your requirements. 

Manufacturers typically divide ATVs into the following categories based on their intended use: 

  • Utility. Designed for towing items around the ranch and carrying heavy loads. 
  • Hunting. Smaller ATVs with tremendous off-road capabilities for accessing remote hunting spots. 
  • Sports. High-powered ATVs with rapid acceleration and high top speeds for racing and time trials. 
  • Recreational. Feature-packed ATVs offer a range of amenities, storage, and space for a second rider. 

You should choose which of these categories applies most to you. For example, select a sports model if you want an ATV for competitions. Likewise, pick one with hunting-specific features that prevent startling prey if you go hunting. 

The Terrain Type

Another consideration before you buy is the terrain type you will encounter. Manufacturers build ATVs for snow, rocks, mud, and grass. Therefore, you’ll want to check if the vehicle you intend to buy is suitable for local conditions. ATVs designed for rocky terrain may not fare well on muddy tracks. 


Lastly, you’ll want to consider the maintenance requirements. Early ATVs tended to break down regularly. However, modern versions are superior and can go longer between servicing. 

Even so, you will still need to check the oil levels, air filters, and so on regularly. You should also ensure you can access the parts you need from reputable mechanics and vendors. You may need to replace them at the start of the season. 

Which ATV Models Should You Choose?

A handful of companies dominate the ATV market. These have a reputation for reliability and high-performance vehicles. 

Honda is a leading brand in the segment. It offers some of the most coveted ATVs in the industry for every niche. 

For example, its FourTrax Rincon is a 4x4 ATV designed for ranchers. It is incredibly reliable and has proven its worth in some of the most demanding terrain on Earth, including Moab, Utah, and a 600-mile course across the Baja desert. 

Polaris is another famous ATV maker. Its Sportsman XP is a distinguished example of a sports product, offering massive power and enormous tires. While it might not be legal on 50-inch trails, it can dominate rocky and muddy terrain. 

Yamaha ATVs are another option. The Japanese motorcycle manufacturer is responsible for creating some of the best ATVs to ever hit the trails. 

For example, the Yamaha Grizzly 90 is a highly capable yet affordable off-road beast with minimal features for those who exclusively want to hit the trails. Another option is the Kodiak 450. This ATV is an entry-level mid-sized machine with a four-stroke 421cc engine that’s lighter than most and easier to throw around for riders of all skill levels. 

Financing Your New ATV

As we have seen, ATVs can be pricey. However, National Powersports Financing can help. We specialize in assisting ATV enthusiasts like you get the money you need to buy the vehicle of your dreams. Take out a loan even if you have no credit!


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