Polaris Nails It With The New XP 1000 EPS FOX Edition
As a manufacturer, Polaris is dedicated to the concept of racing and competing with its lineup of sport UTVs. Polaris has never shied away from taking a leadership position. They race side-by-sides. They have official teams that race their products nationally. Polaris fields vehicles in cross country events, desert racing, short course races, and all manner of competitive events from coast to coast, even internationally.
Polaris means business and has used racing to refine and define its brand. Their latest foray into building a production based competition oriented machine is the new XP 1000 EPS Fox Edition RZR. We recently got our hands on a production unit to test and can safely say that this is the single best vehicle that Polaris has ever built for consumers.
Why Is That?
First off, all the input they’ve gotten from using the machines in various race formats and events has finally filtered its way down to the production line. Innovative things that first came to light when the factory started racing the units has ebbed and flowed its way into production.
Some examples include the innovative new Click 6 safety harnesses. The RZR XP 1000 Fox Edition comes standard with Polaris’s new Click 6 Harness system for maximum security in the cockpit.
These 6-point harnesses feature an easy single click latch, with adjustable lap and thigh leg straps. They use integrated shoulder straps that come with built in retractors, which allow a greater freedom of movement, unlike traditional 4-, 5- or 6-point harness systems.
The factory has also now installed quarter doors on the new machines. It’s no longer an option you have to do yourself. Thanks to the new doors, it’s now easier than ever to get behind the wheel of a Polaris RZR, and the doors come complete with a new spacious curved design. The doors feature an easy-to-access latch and striker assembly for one-hand operation and also have an arched mid-point design for greater cockpit space and added elbowroom inside.
A new bucket seat design with adjustable slider is standard equipment on the new XP 1000, as well. It features all-day comfort and high perfomance support. Deep side bolsters keep both driver and passenger secure, while 50% more padding provides extra comfort. The new seats feature easy-to-adjust driver and passenger seat sliders that make for easy adjustments with various rider sizes. A waterproof internal membrane on the seat also allows for a drier ride in inclement weather, giving the XP1 one of the best seats on the market.
Electronic Power Steering Standard
Polaris has also made efforts to integrate a revised front suspension geometry, along with a new standard Electronic Power Steering (EPS) package, resulting in less steering effort that delivers better control with reduced driver fatigue.
They have incorporated their race-inspired 3-link rear suspension system on the vehicle, which maximizes acceleration, sharpens control, and improves straight-line tracking by keeping the tires in contact with the ground more often. Polaris engineers redesigned the 3-link suspension, introduced in 2011, with revised geometry to offer 25% more ground clearance from leading edge of tire in regards to the trailing arm, optimized camber gain for improved traction, and a longer trailing arm for added strength.
Added to that are front and rear anti-sway bars that help set it apart from any other machine out there. The RZR XP 1000 FOX Edition features a first ever front sway bar on a RZR XP 1000, and a redesigned rear sway bar with 25% less stiffness. Combined with FOX Podium Internal Bypass Shock technology, these new anti-sway bars dramatically decrease body roll and improve vehicle handling and comfort over a variety of obstacles. In short, this system provides unsurpassed handling and agility with state-of-the-art suspension from FOX Racing.
Max Ground Clearance And Max Wheelbase
The RZR XP 1000 FOX Edition is built upon a longish 90-inch wheelbase with a massive 13.5-inches of ground clearance. The chassis and suspension combination helps to smooth out the toughest terrain without unwanted chassis pitching or rolling. This offers superb control and comfort without sacrificing agility or its reputation for razor sharp handling.
More New Stuff
The engineers also completely re-designed the clutch cover, secondary helix and ducting system to offer the most durable clutch system ever on the RZR XP 1000. New ducting provides twice the airflow, decreasing belt temperatures by up to 50 degrees.
The new FOX Podium Internal Bypass Shocks feature a large 3” body in the rear and 2.5” body in the front. The extra large reservoirs and the increased fluid capacity allow for dramatic improvements in heat dissipation, fade resistance and durability of these latest FOX shocks.
The internal bypass technology uses five progressive zones to stiffen as the shock absorbs small to large hits. Combine that with three zones of rebound damping to minimize pitching and harsh top-out to provide an ultra plush ride and better handling over a wider range of terrain at any speed.
The two-stage coil-over springs have been redesigned to reduce noise as the shock moves through its travel, which work in tandem with the FOX Podium Internal Bypass Shocks. The upper progressive rate spring is lighter weight and absorbs small impacts, and the stiffer main spring maintains ground clearance while loaded and absorbs larger events in rough terrain.
For 2015 Polaris wanted even more power and torque! So they tweaked the cams, installed bigger valve springs, raised the compression and optimized the fuel map to crank out 110 horses of high-output power. Dual overhead cams (DOHC) actuate four-oversized valves per cylinder, slamming a huge fuel charge into the combustion chambers of the engine for maximum performance.
New LCD Display And Gauges
A new LCD display comes on board the latest 2015 Polaris RZR XP 1000 FOX Edition. The display and gauge come with full-featured GPS, mapping capability and compass. Polaris Interactive Digital Display is an integrated, industry-leading LCD display and gauge that also features integral Bluetooth functionality and shows the speedometer, tachometer, dual trip meters, odometer and maintenance warnings along with a digital clock, and operating conditions including fuel level and diagnostics.
Taking it out for a spin. The first time we ventured out with our XP 1000 FOX Edition we found the ride to be among the best we’ve ever had on a Polaris RZR. The new generation FOX shocks are the best suspension we’ve used recently.
With the newly redesigned coil-over springs and the internal bypass shock system, these units have a progressive rate feel to them. This helps absorb small impacts, while the stiffer, main spring maintains ground clearance and absorbs bigger impacts in rougher terrain. A unique combination that helps set these shocks apart from any others on the market
Combine that, with the new front and rear anti-sway bars, redesigned geometry and the snap of its ProStar series 999cc engine and you’ve got a potent package of parts, all working together. There is no lacking of forward momentum with the feel and acceleration of the 110 HP Polaris engine. It produces plenty of power and has a good solid feel that makes it easy to drive. The CVT transmission gets the power to the ground quite well, and offers high, low, reverse and neutral gear ranges.
The transmission does feel a bit notchy when shifting between gears but the overall engagement was good. The Polaris all-wheel-drive system is a true on-demand system and has been revamped with a claimed 80 percent improvement in strength over the standard system.
Polaris also claims this is the most durable front drive system ever found on a RZR. The system features a close ratio final drive to keep the front wheels pulling stronger and longer. This maximizes power delivery to the ground. With its built-in electronic steering assist, the ease of turning is remarkable.
We also really liked the Click 6 harness system for its ease of use and overall versatility. It accommodates a wide range of rider sizes and body types and makes cinching up easy. The new quarter doors also make access and entry into the machine easier.
Summing It Up
The new LCD digital gauges are a nice compliment to the style and look of the vehicle. A new graphics package (black/green) also enhances the look of the vehicle. The Polaris Interactive Digital Display has a full-featured GPS, mapping capability and compass. The display also features integrated Bluetooth functionality. It shows the speedometer, tachometer, dual trip meters, odometer and maintenance warnings, along with a digital clock, and operating conditions including fuel level and diagnostics settings. These are all features that we appreciated while out on the trail.
We have to admit that we loved the new 2015 Polaris XP1000 HO EPS, with FOX Podium Shocks. It is the best handling, fastest and strongest Polaris we have driven. The fact that Polaris is willing to use its race program to make this machine more improved shows the fact that racing can and does improve the breed.
The price is up there, as well. Expect to start paying $22,999 for this particular machine. In our opinion, though, it’s more than worth it. If you’re looking for outstanding, state-of-the-art suspension, superb handling, and rock solid stability, the new FOX Edition XP 1000 HO EPS is your machine.
By Dennis Cox
Photos by Dennis Cox