UTV TEST: POLARIS RANGER SP 570 NORTHSTAR

 

The Polaris Ranger SP 570 NorthStar is a fun workaholic UTV that has a wide range of uses from work to hunting or fishing adventures to a nice ride through the woods.

We recently reported on our test rides of a Polaris RZR Trail S 1000 Ultimate with the Adventurer Collection in an issue of Dirt Wheels Magazine. In that review we claimed we were becoming “RZR snobs.”

You can now add that we’re becoming Ranger snobs as well. This after spending a fair amount of seat time in the Polaris Ranger SP 570 NorthStar Edition. Actually, “snob” is kind of harsh so let’s go with “spoiled” instead. The Trail S 1000 and NorthStar edition of the Ranger SP 570 have so many creature comforts to help keep the elements at bay that our opportunities to ride have increased. No longer does foul weather keep us indoors.

We’ve taken our Ranger SP 570 NorthStar out in the snow, rain, wind and teeth-chattering cold. The Pro Shield cab system provides protection from the elements, the wiper (and washer) keeps the glass windshield clear of moisture and mud, the heater keeps the cab nice and toasty. It also keeps the windshield clear of fog, thanks to a defroster, and the solid doors keep things out of the cab that you don’t want coming in. On days when the temps were pleasant, we rolled down (did you catch that? Rolled down, not unzipped) the windows to provide a nice breeze through the cab. However, the windows are not electric, nor does this machine have an Air conditioning setting like the full sized (3-seat), HVAC equipped Northstar Rangers.

In some respects, we preferred the NorthStar cab features to the Adventurer features on the Trail S 1000 Ultimate. Sure, the Trail S is farther up the performance pecking order in Polaris’ off-road segment. Compared to the Ranger SP 570, the RZR comes with more than double the horsepower (100 horsepower compared to 44 on the 570), more features like Ride Command and a nicer riding suspension. But, in some ways, the NorthStar cab features are better and more solid. We get that it’s an unfair comparison in many aspects, as each vehicle has a different purpose.

But, we think the Ranger SP 570 NorthStar is a nice little package for those looking for a hunting/fishing/outdoor adventure or need a solid UTV to help on the farm or ranch or large property. The Ranger SP 570 is a worker with the ability to play when the work is done.

We’ll break down our impressions of the Ranger SP 570 NorthStar using the three Gs: Guts, Glory and (nitty) Gritty.

The Pro Shield cab system is an integral part of the NorthStar package. It seals out the elements (including dust!) and has a heater and defroster for cold conditions.
One of the most functional features on the Ranger SP 570 NorthStar are the doors. They are full size and very solid. They keep just everything, including dust, out of the cab.

GUTS

The ProStar 570 offers up a mild 44 horsepower, which is plenty to get most jobs done. This Ranger is not a dune runner or rock crawler; although, you could do both in certain conditions. But, its real purpose is to get back into secluded fishing or hunting spots, or haul a load of hay to the cows or gardening equipment, or just even take a nice leisurely ride in the woods.

Were there times we wish we had more horsepower? Absolutely. Like when we were trudging through some snow and needed a little more oomph, or when crossing some soft dirt and stomped on the gas looking for more momentum. Or, at elevation when the altitude was sucking the horsepower out of our little 570. The most we could coax out of the 570 on the flats was 50 mph. But, remember the purpose of the Ranger SP 570 and you’ll get along just fine.

While we don’t have any official numbers, we know the Pro Shield/NorthStar package adds weight to the vehicle (somewhere in the neighborhood of 300 pounds), and you can feel that in the horsepower department at times.

When riding conditions change, another nice perk on this UTV is Polaris’ True On-Demand all-wheel drive, which is activated by the push of a toggle switch on the dash. It also includes a Turf mode, so you don’t tear up your yard or field when making a tight turn. It truly is switch-on-the-fly, providing quick engagement when needed.

There are plenty of vents to get the heat into the cab and switches for the winch, AWD, heat controls and more are within arm’s reach. It’s a nice cab setup.
The Ranger SP 570 NorthStar’s cab system, complete with a heater, allowed us to head to the mountains even on a frosty morning with the temps hovering around freezing.
The full-coverage front bumper came in handy when we were plowing through underbrush along a river. It mounts the winch cleanly and out of the way.

GLORY

All fingers point to the Pro Shield and NorthStar package in this department. It’s quite an impressive list of features, especially considering the size of vehicle it’s mounted on. That list includes a completely enclosed cab with a glass windshield, rear glass window and glass side windows. The side windows, as already mentioned, roll down and up with a solid handle mounted on each door. You can roll the windows down a little or all the way, depending on the outside conditions.

Additionally, there’s a heavy-duty 3500-pound-rated winch with synthetic rope, electronic power steering (again, worth every penny), full-body skid plate and full-coverage front bumper. There’s plenty of in-cab storage, including in the doors, as well as under the bench seat.

The Pro Shield Cab offers a couple of things to the NorthStar system that the Adventurer package on the Trail S 1000 we tested didn’t have. First, a tight seal around the doors and roof. Not only was there virtually no dust getting in the cab, neither was any sound. Vehicle noise was virtually nonexistent in the cab until you rolled the windows down. One other check mark in the NorthStar’s box are the solid doors. They not only offer plenty of protection, but they also help keep heat in the cab. Even when it’s cold outside, with the glass windows, the cab is fairly warm thanks to the radiated heat that stays in the cab.

Along with the doors are handles on the outside and inside, meaning you don’t have to unzip a window or access point to get to the inside handle to open the door. They may be small things, but they are great features.

Then there’s the heater. It warms up quickly and provides heat inside the cab through dash vents and defrosters. During one ride, we left in the morning when the air temperature was just above freezing (there was a little frost on the windshield, too). It stayed pretty chilly as we climbed a mountain, but the temperature warmed up to near 50 degrees by the time we got back home. The heater was a champ. When it warmed up, we rolled the windows down. On another ride, it was below freezing and windy. Again, very warm in the cab.

Our one complaint about the Pro Shield cab system is there is an “air leak” near the steering column that lets in outside air. It wasn’t a huge deal except on frigid days. You might not even notice it except when it’s sub-freezing and you’ve got the heat blasting in the rest of the cab.

Are all those features worth the extra $7600 it will cost you to pick up a 2024 NorthStar edition at $19,499 compared to the base SP 570? That’s for you to decide, but on those cold days or when it was raining (or snowing) and windy, it was worth it to us. It would be even more worthy if we were working in the elements (or hunting in the fall/early winter) on a consistent basis.

The Ranger’s enclosed cab lets you ride when regardless of the elements. Except for the gnarliest trails, the 44-horsepower Ranger SP 570 can go just about anywhere.
The wiper is very handy on the Polaris Ranger SP 570 NorthStar. Yep, we could go riding in the rain and not get wet. Getting to your favorite spot is a cinch.
The Polaris Ranger SP 570 NorthStar isn’t going to set any land speed records but it has the power to take on mountain trails, farms and fields, and desert paths.

(NITTY) GRITTY

This is where you grasp the Ranger SP 570’s work ethic. We probably could have put the HD winch under this heading. It’s as handy helping get work done as it is getting your (or your buddy’s) vehicle out of a mud hole or the snow. We could have also mentioned the full-coverage front bumper. We didn’t use it to help move cows, but the bumper was handy when we were pushing through some underbrush in the river bottoms.

This Ranger 570 has a towing capacity of 1500 pounds and comes stock with a 2-inch receiver so you can just hook up and go once you install a draw bar and ball.

We also took advantage of the 500-pound-rated gas-assisted dump box. It’s so easy to use, not just when dumping but when you want to snap it back into place. You can do it with one hand, whereas on a couple of competitors’ system it takes two hands and just about all your body weight to put it back in place.

Another feature we really appreciated was the tight turning radius on this Ranger. It’s a claimed 12.7 feet, which is tight. We found it essential a couple times in a field we were navigating and also in the river bottoms when we were negotiating tight turns in brush and trees along the river.

A fellow rider commented about how easy it is to get in and out of the Ranger. There are no “lips” to step over to get in and out. You just slide off the bench seat and out the vehicle when exiting.

We didn’t hesitate to tackle water crossings with the Polaris Ranger SP 570 NorthStar. Its 10.5 inches of ground clearance allow you to get over reasonable obstacles.

CONCLUSION

While the Polaris Ranger SP 570 NorthStar is a true utility vehicle, we like how versatile it is. You can do plenty and go a lot of places. We didn’t spend a lot of time doing farm or ranch work but we did head out during hunting season and crawled all over the mountains with it (on trails of course).

It can’t be overstated: the NorthStar/Pro Shield cab system meant we could ride more often when the weather wasn’t cooperative. Why would we want to ride in the rain? Because we could. Same goes for riding in the cold or snow. We logged far more miles than we would have with an open cab. Yep, we’re spoiled.

POLARIS RANGER SP 570

Engine type 4-stroke DOHC single cylinder

Displacement 567cc

Drive system type True On-Demand AWD/2WD/VersaTrac Turf Mode

Fuel system Electronic Fuel Injection

Horsepower 44 hp

Transmission/final drive Automatic PVT P/R/N/L/H

Box capacity 500 lb.

Estimated dry weight 1,476 lb.

Fuel capacity 9.5 gal.

Ground clearance 10.5”

Towing capacity 1,500 lb.

Overall vehicle size (L x W x H) 108”/58”/74”

Wheelbase 73”

Front/rear brakes 4-wheel hydraulic disc

Tires:

Front 25×8-12; Carlisle Terra Cross

Rear 25×11-12; Carlisle Terra Cross

Suspension/travel:

Front MacPherson strut/9”

Rear Dual A-arm/10”

2024 Price: $19,499

Comments are closed, but trackbacks and pingbacks are open.

edit