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Arctic Cat addresses durability of 440 Sno Pro

Standing still, the 2003 440 Sno Pro may suggest to some the game hasn't changed. Out on the track however it will suggest something entirely different. For 2003, the sled has been given a snocross-only focus as engineers focused on three goals: Improving durability, improving cornering/handling, and getting more performance from the engine.

On the durability front, a third generation Cross-Link suspension is better than ever featuring a 2-inch diameter rear arm shock (1 5/8-inch diameter in 2002) for more consistent dampening characteristics and to eliminate fade concerns. Removed in 2003 is the adjuster canister.

New rail braces, new chain, revised steering arms and an aluminum throttle block have all been integrated for added durability required for landing 50 foot doubles all winter. And with more flex and durability, improved belly pan and side panel plastic address the demands of racing. Protecting against the elements, a front screen eliminates snow ingestion and improved water resistant intake screen material protect the carbs from water.

Changes to the sled's handling begin with the rear suspension mounting position. The FasTrack rear suspension is lowered (2.5-inch at the rear arm, 0.75-inch at the front arm) which effectively tips the sled and rider forward, improving cornering and centralizing the rider's weight.

A new rail profile and nine tooth drive sprockets (10 tooth in '02) improve the sled's handling. Throwing snow is a new 1.5-inch lug track (optional 1.65-inch lug) with improved side-slip and better forward traction. Coming standard, are running board traction strips.

In the performance department, a higher compression head dramatically improves low-end and mid-range output. The 440 Sno Pro will strictly run on 110 octane pre-mix race fuel which also allowed engineers to remove the oil pump and reservoir, eliminating weight. Other areas of weight reduction include aluminum body ski shocks, elimination of the rear heat exchanger and choke cable.

Other changes include the relocation of electronics that can now be found up front on top of the airbox for better accessibility. Brake placement is now on the chaincase/driven shaft. Cooling them off is the addition of a new air-duct.

"The machine looks similar to last year's sled, but the changes made make it handle and corner far better," adds racer/engineer Kirk Hibbert. "We've improved durability, and the motor pulls harder. I think everyone is going to be positively surprised."
 
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