For this week’s “5” list, we ventured into the dark, dusty cave that houses the Snow Goer magazine archives to find articles about late-model snowmobiles. Here are excerpts from stories about five Snow Goer demo sleds, ranging from model year 2006 to 2010. Click the links for bonus content related to each machine.
2006 Yamaha Apex GT — “On a trip to Ontario, we couldn’t imagine a more perfect machine to run isolated, rural terrain. We averaged 15.05 MPG with our Apex. The riding position was comfortable with the exception of the wind protection, and it had a fantastic engine that impressed everyone who pressed the throttle. Handling didn’t cause fatigue for long riding days as long as the trails weren’t full of moguls. The Apex GT was a wonderful, high-mile companion what was also a staff favorite.”
• Why the Yamaha Apex GT was the 2006 Snow Goer Snowmobile of the Year
2008 Ski-Doo MX Z TNT — “Every time we pulled our 2008 MX Z TNT out of the barn and took it for a rip, it performed well beyond expectations. Throttle response was quick and the engine pulled hard up to its 8000 RPM peak. Fuel mileage was excellent at more than 15 MPG. It sipped oil. Match that power to a super light, sharp handling chassis with leading economy and it becomes a recipe for riotous fun.”
• The 2008 MX Z TNT was light. How did 2009 models compare?
2008 Yamaha Phazer RTX — “The FLOAT-ed front end worked great in bumps with a firm, progressive compression stroke without bottoming and a quick, well-dampened rebound. The rear suspension handled rough terrain well, too, with adequate compression stroke to soak up impacts well. In terms of power, the engine pulls hard enough to thrill and it easily keeps up with other sleds on trails that aren’t railway straight and it’s comfortable enough to ride on all by the coldest days, when ridders are wishing for more protection and warmth.”
• Full review about SG’s 2008 Phazer RTX demo
2009 Polaris 600 Dragon SP — “Like most of the other snowmobiles in Polaris’ lineup, the Dragon SP is predictable and easy to drive. The machine just feels right and it reacts how you expect it to. It doesn’t feature the latest method of fuel induction, an exotic chassis or unique styling, but what it lacks in headline-making technology, it makes up for in the fact that it has a strong and playful engine, good front and rear suspension performance and predictable handling that add up to a snowmobile that’s versatile and fun to ride.”
• Full review about the SG staff’s 2008 Polaris 600 Dragon IQ
2010 Arctic Cat F8 Sno Pro — “Comfortable, stable, fast, adjustable, planted, reliable: all of those are words riders used to describe our F8 Sno Pro demo last winter. It was a strong runner that pulled hard on packed trails and straightened arms when accelerating out of the hole and when coming out of corners. We could get through those corners smoothly because handling was predictable and steering was easy.”
• Read about Speedwerx mods that were added to our F8 Sno Pro