PROJECT UTV: BUILDING A BETTER ACE

Project Polaris Ace 570 racer By the staff of Dirt Wheels

The FCR dual-rate spring kit gives the Ace a softer ride when you are going fast, and it helps make hard landings feel a lot softer.

The FCR dual-rate spring kit gives the Ace a softer ride when you are going fast, and it helps make hard landings feel a lot softer.

 

There is just something great about a Polaris Ace. Maybe it’s the fact that it is a single-seat UTV that is the width of a quad and is a load of fun to drive! You can take an Ace on 50-inch-wide trails with a 320, 570 or 900 engine choice. We wanted to take our Ace 570 from a good trail machine to a full-blown trail racer by bolting on aftermarket parts that help protect the rider and machine, making the Polaris handle better and add a bit more power.

 

We installed a quick-release steering wheel from Assault Industries that has a leather-over mold and a few color options of stitching. The wheel is a lot more comfortable to use than the stock one, and getting in and out of the Ace is easier with the wheel removed.
We installed a quick-release steering wheel from Assault Industries that has a leather-over mold and a few color options of stitching. The wheel is a lot more comfortable to use than the stock one, and getting in and out of the Ace is easier with the wheel removed.

 

POWER UPGRADE

The 567cc ProStar four-stroke engine that came in our 2015 Polaris Ace 570 has more than enough power to have a good time, but the existence of the Ace 900 proves that a bit of extra grunt is nice to have. We started by installing a Trinity Racing Stage 5 full-exhaust system. The pipe adds more power to the low and midrange with a bit of gain to the top end, and it is even better when paired with an electronic fuel-injection programmer. The Power Commander PC5 allows you to tune the air to fuel mixture on the Ace’s fuel-injection system. To make sure that the 570 engine gets the right equation of air to fuel, we installed a reusable Uni air filter while leaving the air-filter-box lid off. Now the Polaris can breathe deep, get the right amount of fuel and expel exhaust gas far more efficiently than before.

 

We installed a PRP GT/S.E. seat that holds you in place snuggly and is much more comfortable than stock. The 4.3 harness system has padding on the shoulder straps for comfort, and they are easy to adjust.
We installed a PRP GT/S.E. seat that holds you in place snuggly and is much more comfortable than stock. The 4.3 harness system has padding on the shoulder straps for comfort, and they are easy to adjust.

 

HANDLING AND CONTROL

The Polaris Ace is a unique machine. It isn’t quite an ATV because it has a steering wheel, roll cage and a seat belt. However, it has the same suspension as a Sportsman 570 quad, is the same width and handles like an ATV without the ability of the rider to stand up over the rough stuff. This ultimately makes it so the Ace can’t go as fast over some terrain unless you better the suspension and handling.

 

Rath Racing makes nerf bars and racing bumpers for the Ace that are durable. PRP offers latching doors that mount in the same location as the nerf bars that results in a tight fit.
Rath Racing makes nerf bars and racing bumpers for the Ace that are durable. PRP offers latching doors that mount in the same location as the nerf bars that results in a tight fit.

 

We wanted to enhance the suspension with FCR’s dual-rate spring kit for the single-seater. The front McPherson struts and the shocks on the rear dual A-arms gained new spring rates to help make the ride smoother. The short, stiffer springs help the machine in cornering and taking hard hits and landings, while the longer, softer springs soak up everything a lot smoother than the stockers.

 

We paired 26x9-12 GBC Dirt Commander tires with Raceline Mamba beadlock rims for all-around better traction than the stock set. We had Factory MX do a great powdercoat job on the wheels to match the rest of the Ace’s scheme.
We paired 26×9-12 GBC Dirt Commander tires with Raceline Mamba beadlock rims for all-around better traction than the stock set. We had Factory MX do a great powdercoat job on the wheels to match the rest of the Ace’s scheme.

 

In the control department we went to Assault Industries to obtain a new removable steering wheel. The stock steering wheel has a hard plastic surface that doesn’t provide much grip where the Assault wheel is wrapped in leather, and allows you to have more hand traction. When we are done driving the Ace for the day we can take the steering wheel off with its quick-disconnect function and make sure no one can drive away with the Polaris.

 

We installed FCR’s dual-rate springs on the Polaris. They have a stiffer main spring, which helps with higher-speed riding and handling jumps and landings better than the stock ones do.
We installed FCR’s dual-rate springs on the Polaris. They have a stiffer main spring, which helps with higher-speed riding and handling jumps and landings better than the stock ones do.

 

We also improved the handling and control of the Ace 570 by installing GBC Dirt Commander tires on Raceline Mamba beadlock wheels. The GBCs are an inch taller than the stock tires at 26 inches. They have a much more aggressive tread pattern and provide great traction in multiple types of terrain.

 

Assault Industries has a quick-release fire extinguisher system that is a great buy for any UTV. If you pull the handle, the extinguisher is released.
Assault Industries has a quick-release fire extinguisher system that is a great buy for any UTV. If you pull the handle, the extinguisher is released.

 

PROTECTION & SAFETY

Protection from crashing is very important to the Dirt Wheels crew. We always wear proper riding gear and never ride without a helmet. With that being said, we wanted to upgrade the protection of the Ace since it will be involved in technical riding and racing.

We started off by installing a much stronger race cage by Racer Tech. The front of the roll cage has two support bars tied into the dash bar that connects to the A-pillars. The rear of the cage has a similar setup. This makes sure the Polaris can withstand multiple roll-overs while keeping the driver safe. Racer Tech also installed a roof on their race cage.

 

Assault Industries’ Bomber-series mirrors are great to have whether you trail ride or race. They help with reversing the machine or keeping an eye on your competition.

Assault Industries’ Bomber-series mirrors are great to have whether you trail ride or race. They help with reversing the machine or keeping an eye on your competition.

 

Next we went to PRP to gain doors and a seat. The doors are easy to open and close and have latching systems that are simple to use. PRP makes nets that go from the top of the cage to the doors to protect you further from harm in an accident. We installed one of their GT/S.E. seats with a custom color scheme and paired it with their 4.3 harness. The seat keeps you far more planted than the stock one and is much more comfortable. The harness system will make sure you don’t come out of the Ace or move an inch while you’re ripping the trails or on the track.

We didn’t want to only protect ourselves; we wanted the Polaris to gain more security as well. Rath Racing offers nerf bars and bumpers for the Ace. The bumpers are sturdy and easy to install. It was a little tricky pairing up the new Rath nerf bars with the PRP doors since they use two of the same mounting points, but after a bit of customization they came together. On their own the doors and nerf bars take little effort to bolt on. To finish off protecting the Ace 570, we installed a full set of skid plates from Ricochet Off-Road that includes a full-belly skid plate setup along with front and rear A-arm protection.

THE RIDE

Right when you strap into the new PRP seat and harness system and grab the Assault steering wheel, you instantly feel more comfortable and ready to shred over the old stock setup. The harness keeps you planted in the very comfortable bucket-style seat so you can focus more on going fast.

The increased power from the new exhaust, intake and fuel-injection programmer gave the Ace 570 more grunt in the low end and even more impressive gains in the midrange. At high speeds the power increase is noticeable as well.

 

The Raceline Mamba beadlock wheels are a wider offset than the stock rims that makes the Ace feel more stable in turns, but the front end pushes in corners more.
The Raceline Mamba beadlock wheels are a wider offset than the stock rims that makes the Ace feel more stable in turns, but the front end pushes in corners more.

 

By introducing taller and heavier six-ply tires to the Polaris with beadlock wheels, we knew that the machine would lose some of its responsiveness since we effectively raised gearing with the bigger 26×9-12 tire size. We put the same-sized tire on all four corners so it was easy to carry a spare or keep one in the pits that would fit on the front and rear of the machine. We went to EPI to upgrade the CVT clutch in the Ace to help turn the taller tires. The kit gave the machine back the lost power and made it feel more aggressive when alternating on and off the throttle.

The tires helped gain a lot more traction compared to the stock tires in all different types of terrain. They work well on hardpack or slick terrain and are great all-around tires. The wider offset of the Raceline rims helps stability. The FCR spring kit let the Ace ride smoother over the rough stuff, soften landings and helped the machine feel more planted in corners and less likely to tip.

FINAL THOUGHTS

When we build project machines we take pride in installing parts that will benefit the rider and machine. We focused a lot on protecting the driver with a stronger roll cage, better seat and harness system. We also gave the Ace protection, power and handling upgrades to let it go faster in a safer manner. We installed parts like Assault Industries’ Bomber-series mirrors to keep an eye on the competition and even bolted on a quick-release fire extinguisher just in case. This project is about having a great time and being safe while out shredding the trails or tearing it up on the track!

 

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PARTS & CONTACTS

ASSAULT INDUSTRIES: www.assaultind.com, (714) 799-6711

Bomber Series Side-View Mirrors: $239.95

Quick Release Fire Extinguisher Kit: $169.95

Polaris Quick-Release Steering Wheel: $344.95

EPI: www.epiperformance.com, (218) 829-6036

570 sport-utility kit: $299.99

FACTORY MX: www.factory-mx.com, (661) 251-2680

Beadlock Wheel Powdercoat: $100 per wheel

FCR: www.fcrsuspension.com, (330) 426-4600 Dual-Rate Spring Kit: $600

GBC MOTORSPORTS: www.gbcmotorsports.com

Dirt Commander Tires 26×9-12: $134.53 each

POWER COMMANDER: www.powercommander.com, (800) 992-4993

PC5 Tuner: $419.99

PROLINE WRAPS: www.prolinewraps.com, (818) 348-3120

Ace Wrap: $390

PRP SEATS: www.prpseats.com, (800) 317-6253

Doors: $580

GT/S.E. Seat: $425 without custom colors

4.3 Harness: $129

RACELINE WHEELS: www.racelinewheels.com, (800) 529-4335

12×7 A71 Mamba Beadlock: $149.95 each

Lug Nuts: $64.99

RACER TECH: www.racertech.com

Race Cage: $950

Roof: $300

White Powdercoat: $175

RATH RACING: www.rathracing.com, (320) 234-7223

Ace Front Bumper: $279.95

Ace Rear Bumper: $199.95

Ace Nerf Bar: $189.95

RICOCHET OFF-ROAD: www.ricochet-off-road.com, (866) 273-1197

Full Skid Plate Kit: $625

TRINITY RACING: www.trinityracing.com, (800) 310-5519

Stage 5 Full System Exhaust: $549.99

UNI: www.unifilter.com, (714) 535-6933

Reusable Air Filter: $30.95

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