Polaris Introduces ‘Three-Quarter Ton’ Ranger XD 1500 Side-by-Side
This isn’t usual fare for news around these parts but the ever-expanding market for UTVs and side-by-sides is notable – especially as they become more like road-going pickup trucks than ever before.
This machine is called the Polaris Ranger XD 1500, part of the Ranger line which is targeted at consumers who primarily use these things for work on their farms or at a jobsite. In contrast, Polaris also has a RZR line for those of us who like outrageous high-speed off-road fun and the General line for customers who want something in between those two extremes.
Powering this new Ranger XD 1500 is a three-cylinder variant of Polaris’ own engine, a mill called the ProStar which replaced the old GM-sourced boat anchor the company used to use in some of its products. Here, the 1.5L engine makes 110 horsepower and roughly a like amount of torque. All of that is funneled through a liquid-cooled CVT which utilizes a belt crafted entirely from steel; it even manages to incorporate a form of hill start assist. So equipped, these things have a 1,500 lb payload and can tow 3,500 pounds, numbers which roughly equal that of a Ford Maverick – except the Mav doesn’t have 15 inches of ground clearance.
But it’s the cabin of the top-tier NorthStar editions which make the point that these rigs are more like an on-road truck than ever before. That waterproof 7-inch touchscreen packs maps and controls galore (and is easy to use in my experience, even with gloves), to say nothing of the unit’s power windows and full HVAC functionality. Even heated seats are available, fer chrissakes, along with a banging JBL stereo. As shown in those photos above, Polaris has been learning from automakers, now incorporating numerous automotive-grade controls and switch placements.
How much do they cost, you ask? A decked-out example like the ones shown here with a fully enclosed climate-controlled cab starts at $44,999. Inversely, an entry-level trim with one row of seats is priced under thirty grand before fees and taxes. That’s a heap o’ beans, but if you’re a Texas rancher with all hands out in a remote part of yer property, it makes sense to provide a machine which keeps them comfortable and improves productivity. Sure, an older Jeep or pickup could do the same but is unlikely to be able to get into – or out of – the type of terrain which the Ranger XD 1500 can handle with ease. Then there’s the moneyed set who simply want the best-of-the-best and get one over on the neighbours, cost be damned.
All of which is to say these are specialized tools intended for a specific audience – an audience who definitely exists and is willing to spend the cash. They’ll sell every single one of these they can make.
Become a TTAC insider. Get the latest news, features, TTAC takes, and everything else that gets to the truth about cars first by subscribing to our newsletter.
Latest Car ReviewsRead more
Latest Product ReviewsRead more
- SCE to AUX A question nobody asks is how Tesla sells so many EVs without charge-at-home incentives.Here are some options for you:[list][*]Tesla drivers don't charge at home; they just squat at Superchargers.[/*][*]Tesla drivers are rich, so they just pay for a $2000 charger installation with the loose change in their pocket.[/*][*]Tesla drivers don't actually drive their cars much; they plug into 110V and only manage about 32 miles/day.[/*][/list]
- SCE to AUX "Despite the EV segment having enjoyed steady growth over the past several years, sales volumes have remained flatter through 2023."Not so. How can EV sales be increasing and flatter at the same time?https://insideevs.com/news/667516/us-electric-car-sales-2023q1/Tesla and H/K/G are all up for EV sales, as are several other brands.
- ToolGuy Here is an interesting graphic, if you're into that sort of thing.
- ToolGuy Nice website you got there (even the glitches have glitches)
- Namesakeone Actually, per the IIHS ratings, "Acceptable" is second best, not second worst. The ratings are "Good," "Acceptable," "Marginal" and "Poor."