At the other end of the spectrum from the Yamaha Phazer MTX you have the Arctic Cat M1000, arguably the most powerful stock sled on snow.
Although the 800s are coming dangerously close to the M1000 in the horsepower department, the M1000 still owns the title of the biggest and baddest mountain stocker on the planet.
It's a big sled that is designed to go big, especially if your western hankerin' is for mountain climbing. There are a lot of places where you'll run out of mountain before you run out of horsepower.
If you want to get technical, the 200cc difference between the M1000 and the 800 mountain class is more like 204cc for the Polaris 800, 205cc for the M8 and 199.5cc for Ski-Doo's 800 E-Tec. Still, the horsepower advantage leans toward the M1000 to the tune of about 10 hp-or less-depending on what numbers you believe.
But horsepower is really only part of the power equation. You've also got to consider torque and the Suzuki 1000 is a torque monster that just keeps pulling as you gain elevation.
While sledders who like to go big will appreciate the horsepower and torque, you can also finesse this machine if you're tree riding. Part of that finesse is courtesy of lower gearing, which allows for slower track speeds at clutch engagement and that should lead to less trenching.
In certain snow conditions and mountain terrain you might find the M1000 Sno Pro handles differently compared to the M8 Sno Pro, even though the two machines are fairly identical except for the powerplant. And that is the difference, mostly due to the weight difference of the engines. The M1000 engine is a bit heavier and all that weight is in the nose of the sled, of course, so some sledders will notice a weight difference, albeit a fairly slight difference.
One other difference the rider will notice comparing the M1000 to the M8 is sled vibration. It's mostly noticeable at idle and lower speeds and some find it annoying but it's one of the few gripes you'll hear about the M1000.
So what's the attraction of the M1000? It's pretty simple: having the biggest and most powerful stock sled available today. One SnoWest SnowTest staffer described the M1000 as "a niche sled for those who think they need more than the 800s."
And it's not much of a stretch to make the statement that all the things you like about the M8 Sno Pro you'll like about the M1000. It has the same Fox Float Shock rear suspension, lightweight and tall seat (a favorite feature of ours), decent windshield, Power Claw track (another huge favorite of ours), easy pull start and Telescoping Steering System.