New models, colors and options By the staff of Dirt Wheels
If you have spent any time researching the UTV market or have simply gone to your local dealer, you will learn that Arctic Cat is a major manufacturer, but you won’t see them on the trail in the same numbers that you will Polaris and Can-Am. In an effort to change that disparity in numbers, Arctic Cat just released the 2017 Wildcat X and X Limited with the new RG Pro suspension system, and we are impressed! Arctic Cat teamed up with professional race car driver Robby Gordon and modified the Wildcat for better performance in the handling department. And the best part? You can get the Wildcat X Limited for under $20,000!
RG PRO SUSPENSION
The biggest change with the new Wildcat X model is the rear suspension. For starters, adjustable, dual-rate-reservoir King shocks provide 16.5 inches of travel and are now used on the ’Cat. The new trailing arms mount in two pivots almost like a motorcycle swingarm. They are designed to be stronger than before, and just like the axles and hubs, the exact same part is used for both sides of the Arctic Cat. When the independent rear suspension runs through full travel, there is always some side-to-side movement called wheel scrub. On the 2016 Wildcat there was 5 inches of scrub. With the Gordon suspension, scrub has been reduced to 1.5 inches. That helps the machine track much straighter over rough terrain.
The front suspension has been modified to have stronger A-arm mounting points and stronger tie-rods. There is a welded-in brace in the frame to reduce flex in the front suspension. The bottom of the frame has a stronger gusset to help keep the front end stiff, and that improves steering. The RG Pro suspension package also includes a front sway bar on the Wildcat X and a redesigned rear sway for improved stability at higher speeds and in corners.
FEATURES OF THE X
The Arctic Cat Wildcat X line has machines with great handling for a very competitive price. We had hoped to see some changes to the engine, but that wasn’t the case for 2017. The Wildcat still utilizes their H1, 951cc, V-twin, four-stroke engine that is electronically fuel injected and paired with a CVT that has Team Rapid Response clutch technology.
Professional stadium super truck and Arctic Cat driver Sheldon Creed showed how well the RG Pro suspension handles corners at the 2016 Sand Sports Super Show.
The front dual A-arms have stronger mounting points, the tie-rods are stronger and there are strengthening braces in the frame to help this machine steer and handle better.
The Wildcat X line gained new 15-inch, cast-aluminum KMC wheels. Arctic Cat wrapped ITP Ultra-Cross six-ply tires on the X, and they are some of the best tires on the market. The Wildcat X Limited gained color-matched aluminum front and rear bumpers, as well as a much stronger roll cage that Gordon helped design. There are V-bars built into the roll cage in the front and rear, and the top bars were moved further outward for more strength. One center roof bar was added. A roof comes standard on the LTD model, as well as full-aluminum doors.
The Arctic Cat Wildcat X line features the $18,499 Wildcat X, the $20,499 Wildcat 4X four-seater and the $19,499 Wildcat X Limited. The new RG Pro suspension system is impressive and will handle much better than previous years, and the Wildcat already has one of the best systems on a UTV. You will be able to purchase bolt-on RG Pro kits for older Wildcat 1000s. Go to www.arcticcat.com to learn more about their lineup.