We tested the $19,999 2016 Polaris General 1000 EPS Deluxe, which has a lot of great features. The base-model General starts at $15,999 and has many useful features to get the job done and comes standard with EPS. A 100-horsepower ProStar engine gives it the ability to drive fast and in a sporty manner through most any trails. If you take a RZR S 1000 and a Ranger XP 900, pour them into one vat and melt them together, eventually the Polaris General will ooze out of it. The only machine that might even come close to how good the General is would be the $15,199 Honda Pioneer 1000, but its suspension and performance simply can’t keep up.
POWER AND PERFORMANCE
The powerplant that rests in the General’s frame is a 100-horsepower, 999cc, twin-cylinder four-stroke engine that is liquid-cooled and is electronically fuel-injected. A fully automatic CVT-style transmission makes driving the General easy, and moving in a hurry takes no time at all. To keep the CVT system cool, Polaris designed the ventilation into the hood of the machine as well as the engine cooling system. If you are big into the mud-running scene, it’s practically set up for you to make it taller! As far as power goes, the General has 18 percent more power than the CanAm Commander, which only has an 85-horsepower engine.
CHASSIS AND SUSPENSION
One of our favorite parts of the General is its suspension and handling. Borrowed from the Polaris RZR S line, you get dual-A-arm suspension up front with 12.25 inches of wheel travel and 13.2 inches of wheel travel through dual-A-arm suspension in the rear. No torsional trailing arms means less breaking parts! The General has a wheelbase of 81 inches, which is only 2 inches longer than the RZR S 1000. The front and the rear suspension on the Deluxe General model come with Fox 2.0 Podium X shocks that have a stabilization bar in the front to help with cornering. Like the RZR S 1000, they have a stabilization bar in the rear and suspension adjustability clickers on all four corners. We ran our rear shocks at the softest point for the smoothest ride in rough terrain. Another big plus is that the General sports a ground clearance of 12 inches for clearing over fallen logs or big rocks.
The General comes with hydraulic disc brakes on all four corners that are strong and stable. They don’t tend to out-brake in the rear like some other machines will. As far as tires go, the 27-inch Dirt Commander eightply tires on the General are great. They hook up well in most terrain and are durable. We lowered the psi from 15 to 10 due to the cold weather we were testing in for better traction and trusted we wouldn’t easily get a flat tire.
The cockpit of the Polaris General is comfortable and impressive. Full doors come standard and provide more protection from debris. The passenger has a handle by their left hand and another hand-grab that is attached to the door by their right hand. The Arctic Cat Sport has a similar setup that some of our test riders prefer more over others.
The seats are well-designed and comfortable. They don’t hold you in as tight as the RZR S seats do, but they are softer. The seat adjusts for the driver, and the steering wheel tilts as well and the gauges tilt with it. The driver can program the instrumentation to show different functions of the machine and show different colors on the screen as well. The center of the dash had room for a nicely sized navigation system, which Polaris Accessories can provide for you. They also left a lot of room on the dash for accessory switches. On the Polaris General Deluxe model, you get an MTX sound-bar system that has Bluetooth capabilities to blast your tunes on the trails. You also get a full roof, a heavy-duty front bumper and 4500-pound winch for sticky situations. The only issues we had with the sound bar was that if your helmet visor was propped up, it was easy to hit on the MTX sound system.
CARGO AND TOWING
The rear dumping cargo box on the 2016 Polaris General is a great feature for this sport-type utility machine. It can hold up to 600 pounds. There is a 2-inch receiver in the rear of the machine that can tow up to 1500 pounds as well. In the cabin there are two cup holders, a glovebox and a center-console storage that acts as an armrest as well.
THE TEST RIDE
Our test riders first thought they were driving a Polaris RZR S 1000. Aside from the fact that the machine has a longer wheelbase of 2 inches, at 81 inches, the suspension handled well. The added stabilization bar in the front suspension made the General dive less in corners, and the EPS made driving this machine effortless. Big chop was soaked up by the Fox 2.0 Podium X shocks. The power out of the 100-horsepower ProStar engine was plenty to have fun and get the General moving. Breaking the rear end loose was no difficult task at all. The seats kept the test drivers in place and comfortable. The passenger liked the position of the handholds, but our other test rider liked the RZR handlebar out of the dash-style better. For steep descents or towing, Polaris also included an engine braking feature on this machine that helps keep the General in a controlled fashion. The four-wheel hydraulic disc brakes stop the General quickly and efficiently, and the stopping power feels pretty even in the front and rear of the machine.
If you want a machine that truly has a more sporty feel but can still be used around the farm, then the 2016 Polaris General 1000 EPS is a great choice. The Deluxe Edition comes with great standard features like a 4500-pound winch, MTX Sound bar, roof and a heavy-duty front bumper. However, if you want a machine with less suspension and less power that isn’t as fun to drive and costs less, Can-Am has their Commander EPS for $13,149. The 2016 Polaris General comes in three models: the $15,999 Indy Red Polaris General with stamped-steel wheels and no bumper; the $17,499 Velocity Blue General with aluminum wheels and heavy-duty bumper; and the $17,499 Polaris General Deluxe EPS. If you want to learn more about the all-new General, find your local Polaris dealer or go to www.polaris.com.
2016 POLARIS GENERAL
Engine.DOHC, liquid-cooled, 4-stroke twin
Transmission…Fully automatic CVT
Fuel capacity…9.5 gal
Claimed dry weight…1,544 lb.
Front…Dual A-arms w/ 12.25”
Rear…Dual A-arms w/ 13.2”
Front…Dual hydraulic discs
Rear…Dual hydraulic discs
Rack capacities…600 lb. (Rear)
Colors…Indy Red, Velocity Blue,