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Model Year 2014

Steve Janes Blog 031013

Published online: Mar 10, 2013 White Out & Wide Open—The Blog
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            This past week the staff at SnoWest Magazine (and every other snowmobile publication, website or other various media) had a chance to get our first look at the 2014 model year snowmobiles.

            Well, technically, these are prototypes of what the 2014s will be . and this year there wasn't a big effort (at least with the mountain sleds) to fabricate the new models. Basically, the 2014 mountain sleds are extremely similar to the 2013 production sleds with just a few simple variations.

            That isn't necessarily saying that the snowmobile manufacturers took this year off. But rather, with all the changes over the past couple of years, we're not yet due to new body styles or major changes. And to be honest, the 2013s were pretty solid units built from the latest technology.

            I'm not sure there are too many things that I would have expected to see changed. Both Polaris and Ski-Doo have focused on refining their product line. Cat went the extra mile for 2014 in an effort to shave more weight of the sled. Yamaha is still standing pat with its mountain line. So the only real noticeable change will be BMG-bold new graphics.

            On a side note, as I was driving up to West Yellowstone to ride the new models, I couldn't help noticing as I drove past the Arctic Cat R&D facility that there was a Yamaha engineering trailer parked out back. For those who don't know, Cat and Yamaha are working on some joint ventures that have brought Cat suspensions to some of Yamaha's trail sleds and Yamaha engines to some of Cat's trail sleds. This may be something interesting to watch to see how things unfold.

            With our three days of riding the 2014s, we must say we were impressed on how well they all performed and on how class the 800 mountain sleds are with their performance. We were also delighted to see Ski-Doo throwing out a 600 to compete with the Pro RMK 600. That's an intriguing market that really should be getting more attention to many mountain riders.

            Thanks to Ski-Doo, we have a 2014 Summit 6 to ride for the rest of the season. You can bet there will be a lot more head-to-head comparisons with our RMK 6 as the season winds down.

            If you want to see all the 2014 mountain sleds, be sure to attend the World Snowmobile Expo in West Yellowstone March 14-16.

SJ

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