Rotax does make a good engine, but over the last few
years, Polaris has outdone themselves. Their 600 and
700 were among best in class. This year it seems to be
the Rotax 600 HO and probably the 700 F7.
It just means there will be a better Rotax in the future.
Personally, I'm glad to see each engine maker step up
to the plate to outdo their competition. Its good for
The reason, I believe, you'd find in the R&D budget of
each manufacturer. So for a few years Polaris was down
on hp. Polaris probably decided to spend $$$ on 2 stroke engine
improvements. At the same time, Bombardier was spending
money on chassis, SDI, and suspensions, as they had a good
engine. So that year, Polaris had the better HP engine as
they spent the money on it. And the cycle goes on and on.
Rotax Series 3 motors were designed more for lightweight then power. Unlike the Rotary motors which were the other way around. I belive that if they made the series 3 motors in rotary forum it would be amazing. As far as i know the rotarys didnt have Niscel cylinders, DPM, TRA3, SC-103, and MPEM to help them make power not to mention they were super reliable.
I think you will see rotax raise the bar in HP over the next few years with SDI and DI technology starting to move in. They would be smarter to make a totally diffrent motor made to run DI instead of adapting DI to the current motor. Maybe thats why they are still low (They dont want to blow money on a motor thats soon gonna be replaced.)
Anyway its just a thought. I have to admit that polaris really got there act together with there HP numbers.
Yea, polaris does have it 2gether w/ HP apparently!! 115hp 600 is pretty good. but then again so is a 120hp 600. But what if all the other manufactuers made HO's. then polaris would be like a 125-130hp 600cc. and no im not bashing ski-doo now bcuz i own a polaris. i was just wondering.
The ZR's numbers are probably a little high. they were about 102 -105 before APV and 105 - 107 w/APV. The new 600 H.O. Rotax will range in the 115 - 120 area. The 700 Rotax twin was the class leader until Polaris put the exhaust valves in their 700. Almost the same story with the 800 except the Cat had about 3 - 5 over the Rotax 800 and about 6 - 8 over pre-valved Polaris 800's. Since Polaris builds their own engines now, they seem to be committed to match or beat anyone else's HP numbers unlike the Fuji days. The problem with Ski-Doo(I think more than Rotax) is a reluctance to get into a large scale HP war. This probably stems from the upcoming EPA standards for emissions and what technology/costs will be needed to meet those standards. Right now the Rotax 440, 600 H.O., 800 H.O., and 800 triple meet or exceed the competition. The regular 800 twin is holding it's own in the REV chassis with less HP. The 500 and the 700 twins is where the big problem is. I think Ski-Doo is satisfied with letting the 440 cover for the 500 in a racing situation but the 700 is a different story. I think the Firecat 700 will mean changes for both Doo and Polaris but how soon? Polaris will probably bump up their 600 and 700's to meet or beat the 600 H.O. and F7 but I think Doo is going sit on the sidelines until they get a 700 SDI perfected that will meet 2006 EPA standards.
I think Gunner is correct that the cycle will go on and on.
Doo had to spend a bunch on R&D for the Rev and the 600 & 800 HO Engine. It is a giant shift in design and that doesn't come cheap. Also the Sea-Doo market is sweet for them and they have a big enough lead in that arena that they can coast for a year or two and put that money elsewhere.
Polaris holds the largest market share for sleds and they don't plan on losing that anytime soon. 2003 may seem like an off year but the Pro X and RMK line is pretty strong under its old skin. BUT a lot of money went into their other lines ATV Predator, MSX Watercraft, and Victory Vegas Cycles. The money is in ATV's and Motorcycles, not Sleds(small overall market).
Cat - Well they have their faithful for sleds and a growing ATV line. The Firecat is a great accomplishment and will be refined in another year and they will get the rewards just like they did with the ZR line. Notice they are putting some money back in the Moutain segment now as well. But they also don't work their production plant year round. Saves some money there.
Yamaha- A huge company that puts sleds 4th or 5th on their priority list. Develope for cycles and apply elsewhere, its a game plan that is working good for them.
But 2006 EPA will be a big one. I'd look for a lot of idea sharing between POL, DOO and CAT. One thing nice about Doo is they don't mind leasing their idea's ie RER/PERC etc.... Just my 2 Cents
I think that Ski-Doo does a good job at keeping there powerband pretty wide, which is pretty important also. The ZR 600 has about the same peak hp as the old Doo 600, but with lower hp and torque numbers through much of the powerband. I myself like to see the manufacturers one up each other, it makes it more interesting.
Are these f7 hp#'s the estimated ones that cat has been advertising
or are they real world?It's about time cat made a good 700 twin as they
were the ones who brought it out first but it was so bad they dropped it,now they think they have a good 700 and drop the 600 ??? I am impressed with polaris' american built twins though.
Bean counters are the answer. Only a certain amount of money is allowed to be targeted towrds, r&d. There are usual several different designs being considdered, production cost, projected failure rates/warrenty issues, power output to name a few are all taken in account. Part of the problem lies in the use of a cylinder reed vs a case reed engine. From what I have seen the case reed engine design is more of a high rpm peak hp engine vs the series 111 cylinder reed motors mid range flat torque curve engine. But hey what the heII do know???
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