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I have always liked AC. I grew up riding their snowmobiles in the 1970s. You wanna talk about big HEAVY machines; they handled like wood piles !! They had leopard print seats (LOL) and were mostly black with maybe a spalsh of green or a sticker. I can remember my old man had to tinker with them for days to get them running for the first snow (Maine) and then he had to constantly dig them out (get them unstuck) and then we (three kids) would get them stuck again five minutes later. Poor bastard !! That is what was available back then and we loved them. Eventually AC started producing some awesome machines.

Because of my history with AC, I really want to like the new Wildcat. I gotta say though, it looks like it came from a college level, engineering class project, or something; maybe even high school. My first impression is that it is built CHEAP, it looks JUNKY and it seems like it came out of the lab only about 1/4 baked. I hope I am wrong. I do realize they are brand new; so they get some bennefit of the doubt, but....

If they turn out to be great I will be the first one to eat my words and write a fat check! :cool:
 

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I disagree, I think it looks awesome and about time someone took on the RZR head on! Time will tell how well it is built but from the pictures the suspension trailing arms and axels look beefy. Also love the location of the air intake
 

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I have to agree with Baditude, it looks like they put some time and thought into it. The suspension looks great and uses quality parts, not to mention the AC motors are usually top of the line.

I wouldn't hold judgement against them for products build 40 years ago ;) Everyone had to start somewhere, but that's a lot of engineering experience to put into new products.
 

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Like the OP I grew up on Cats, nothing could touch my old man's '73 El Tigre 440 F/A backin the day, until my buddy passed me on his dad's silver bullet and that was only because a stupid pine tree jumped out in front of me and I totalled my dad's sled. Back then every hour of ride time meant an equal hour of fixing time, no matter what the brand.

AC has had some QC issues with their sleds but I don't think that applies to all their ATV's and SxS's. I liken the Wildcat to what AC did in 03-04 with their quads. Back then they took the best features from all the other machines ( big clearance from the grizzly, independent rear suspension from the Polaris, push button 4wd, integrated floor boards) and put out some great machines compared to the ones pre 2003. I see the Wildcat following the same route, take what everyone is looking for and throw it into one machine. There will be bugs to work out, but the machine has appeal (not like the butt ugly F cats from 07-11), power, suspension travel, eps, etc etc.

and I am not a blind loyalist, I have Cat ATV's but also own a 800 Etec Gade and an XR 1200 ( but a procross in the future after I get my Wildcat!)
 

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There are a few things that jump out at me right away in the pics.

No CV boot protection. Not sure if the sand guys need it but us woodland/ rock riders do.

No heat shields or protection for the exhaust pipe.

What is that plastic funnel looking thing in front of the clutch cover? looks like it is going to the rear housing but looks vulnerable

The seats are already crumpled, indicating cheap fabric and/or cushioning.
 

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I must admit that until the new pics were posted today, I loved everything about this machine. Once I saw the interior, I just about fell out of my chair. The interior definitely does not match the looks of the rest of the bike. I was hoping they would take a page out of BRP's book on the fit and finish, but they didn't. All and all, I think the wildcat is a great looking bike; however, I do think that Arctic Cat dropped the ball on the interior.
 

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I also agree. I think this thing LOOKS Awesome. If their quality has improved and it will stay together, then I think they hit a home run. Lets be honest.....All SXS have some issues because they are still being developed into what the public wants.Call it industry growing pains. But this one is by far the most progressive looking to date.
 

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AC reported that they have known about the RZR XP for about 2 years now. This thing wasn't developed overnight. I am sure they have been designing this since then. The interior looks fine to me. Its simple and functional. Look at the rest of the UTVs out there. The Commander does have a very nice interior, but you definitely have to pay for that. I don't want a plush interior. I want a comfortable seating position, and something I can hose off when I am done. The stereo and other stuff I can add later. I will get a padded arm rest for the center console like I did on my XTZ and call it good. They did the suspension the right way with the rear shocks attaching to the lower arms like they should. It looks like they did their homework on baja trucks before they built it. There are always gonna be plusses and minuses with these things. As long as the power and suspension are what I hope for, I will be very happy with my new Wildcat...........................
 

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from what i'vve "heard" these things have been in the work for 2 or 3 years and that doesn't mean that all the bugs are worked out there are always gonna be bugs, i hate bugs, I work their but im just a line lackee 14 years worth and i think its about time they did something like this :)
 

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I have owned plenty of atv,s over 27yrs.Last thing I looked at were bell,s and whistles.Give me performance and I,ll be good.A+ for another company stepping up!
 

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I agree. All SxS have their weak points and issues. I'm thrilled that another make has stepped up to the plate to compete with Polaris. I ride with a large group of friends, all with assorted SxS and have seen the RZR's blow thru belts and spindles, and a brand new XP grenade a motor due to bad intake design and poor quality control. To me it's crucial that new owners will really go over these machines with a fine tooth comb before blaming AC for loose clamps, hoses, ect......Only time will tell
 

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They all have there limits. It depends on what style of riding you do and what you expect out of the UTV/ROV. This Wildcat looks amazing and well built. Looking forward to checking them out when they hit the showroom. I hope it's safe to say look out PoPo.

I just got off the phone with Jim from Bi Polar racing. They are the team that won the Baja 1000 with the Prolwers a few years ago. He spent last weekend at the AC show. Jim told me to sell all my toys, get a second on my house this machine is the real deal for a factory production machine. It will fast and smooth he said. They tested this it in the extreme desert sandy, dusty heat for a few years. Juming it 8' vetical and 37-40' long 20 times before they found any fatigue, so this tells me it will handle anything we will put on it.
 

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I too was raised riding AC snowmobiles. I had a 292 Lynx and a 440 Puma. They were great machines. Beat the hell out of them. I have to agree with the OP on some points. AC has always IMO lacked on the fit and finish of the machines. I think the chassis and drive train what we have seen look well thought out. I think the design of the plastics especially the interior looks cheap. I had the same impression of the Prowler when i looked at it back in 07 when i bought my Rhino.

I would like to get back in an AC someday. I like the design of the the new Cat. Just wish they would put a little more engineering into the fit and finish. Not too much to expect for 16K.
 

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They also have included Power Steering from the factory and Walker Evans shocks. Also look at the radius rods, axels and trailing arms. Then look at the air intake - POPO could learn from them.

The real test is when people start riding them and I for one am very excited about this machine. The interior looks good enough for me since it will be in the dirt / dust / mud -I'm not looking for leather seats :cool:
 

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Being the UTV racer/enthusiast that I am, I am excited to see AC come out with something like the WildCat! Benchracing and assumptions aside, I have to say two things that I really like on this are the Walker Evans shocks....(those are the SAME shocks I use on my SR1 - they kick ass and are NOT cheap!), and the fact that, even though they come with a regular 3-point seat belt (someday, an OEM will release something with HARNESSES!), the seats are made for 4 or 5 point harnesses. NO need to go around the seatback, since the holes are already there - nice touch! :)
 

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Being the UTV racer/enthusiast that I am, I am excited to see AC come out with something like the WildCat! Benchracing and assumptions aside, I have to say two things that I really like on this are the Walker Evans shocks....(those are the SAME shocks I use on my SR1 - they kick ass and are NOT cheap!), and the fact that, even though they come with a regular 3-point seat belt (someday, an OEM will release something with HARNESSES!), the seats are made for 4 or 5 point harnesses. NO need to go around the seatback, since the holes are already there - nice touch! :)
Nice of you to stop by Corry! Maybe there will be room for Wildcat down at Weller Racing........................
 

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i have known about this machine for 3 years. it is not a thrown together piece of parts. cat has known about polaris and can-ams offerings. they didn't want to throw out a machine just to be first. they have sat back and waited on what everyone else was doing. this machine is built to be a bad dude, and for $16000 you wont build something as fast as this machine with the looks it has. sure you can build a frame and suspension and slap a motor on it, but by the time you find a good sheet metal man to build you a body you will be looking at $20k to build a machine like this as a one-off. best part is, this is a factory offering that you can buy parts for and has a warranty. the engine is not a newbie, its something they have had around and know what to do and not to do. i myself think they hit a home run for duners. for trail and woods riders there will be a learning curve trying to learn how to fit a wide machine down the trails without scratching your paint but i am sure it will be WELL worth it. this machine IS all that!
 

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i have known about this machine for 3 years. it is not a thrown together piece of parts. cat has known about polaris and can-ams offerings. they didn't want to throw out a machine just to be first. they have sat back and waited on what everyone else was doing. this machine is built to be a bad dude, and for $16000 you wont build something as fast as this machine with the looks it has. sure you can build a frame and suspension and slap a motor on it, but by the time you find a good sheet metal man to build you a body you will be looking at $20k to build a machine like this as a one-off. best part is, this is a factory offering that you can buy parts for and has a warranty. the engine is not a newbie, its something they have had around and know what to do and not to do. i myself think they hit a home run for duners. for trail and woods riders there will be a learning curve trying to learn how to fit a wide machine down the trails without scratching your paint but i am sure it will be WELL worth it. this machine IS all that!
Who cares about paint? I'll have this thing scratched all to pieces. they should make them out of teflon LOL You should see my Thundercat at 5000 miles.
 

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I think its funny that people want a trophy truck with all the luxuries of a bentley for the price of a ford focus. Yea the interior is kinda plane but so what its perfectly functional. I dont know about you guys but when im haulin down the trails all i need is a gas pedal, brakes, as much suspension as possible, and a steering wheel. Sure the commander is more fancy but last i checked the commander didnt have 18" of suspension travel or 5 link rear suspension either. I will take that trade any day!!
 

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I find it amusing that someone wants to complain about a machine that all they have seen of so far is pictures. I seriously doubt that AC has just thrown this machine together just to get something out there to compete with the RZR and Commander. As far as the commander goes I have a buddy who has one and at just over 300 miles the seals in both the front and rear diffs are already leaking. I've seen the oil spots. For that kind of cash I would like to think the seals would last longer than that. He also has several other issues that I can't recall at this moment. So to sit and pass judgement on something based off of some experience from over 30 years ago is absurd. I will wait and see the machine for myself. To go ripping through the mud I really don't think that I will need much more than a steering wheel, accelerator, a brake, gear shift and seat. Dog
 
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