In perhaps one of the most stunning recall-related notices we’ve ever seen, Polaris today issued a “stop ride/stop sale” order on the vast majority of its snowmobiles built over the last 10 years.
The cause: A potential for degraded/old fuel to ignite in certain circumstances related to electro-static discharge. According to the official Polaris announcement, there have been 30 reports of fuel tank ruptures in that decade-long period, including 16 with fire and one with an injury, but the number of vehicles affected by this announcement is an amazing 230,000 snowmobiles. That includes all Matryx and Axys chassis sleds plus trail-performance Pro-Ride sleds from 2013-14.
Separate from the official announcement that is posted below, a Polaris official emailed the snowmobile media today and said the following:
“As with all our stop rides, owners of affected snowmobiles should not ride until we can provide a validated solution and they get work completed with a Polaris-authorized dealer on the repair. If the snowmobile must be started, we are telling customers they must first make sure the fuel tank is full and, if it is not, then they need to add fresh gasoline to fill the tank.”
The email continued: “We recognize the importance of the upcoming winter season. Our teams have identified a solution and are currently validating that fix, so our riders can get full enjoyment out of the upcoming riding season. We understand and apologize to our dealers and riders for this inconvenience, but safety is the driver behind our decision, and we are committed to making this right.”
The “identified a solution” part of the statement, plus the fact that it’s currently August, gives us some hope that none of the season will be lost. That said, we’re sure Polaris-owning sledheads will be nervous about this until their actual snowmobile is serviced/updated.
Here’s the announcement from Polaris, as posted on their website:
Polaris Issues Stop Ride / Stop Sale for Model Year 2021-2023 MATRYX, 2015-2022 AXYS, and select Model Year 2013-2014 Trail Performance (Pro-Ride) snowmobiles
Polaris has determined that with degraded fuel and especially after extended storage, Model Year 2021-2023 MATRYX, 2015-2022 AXYS, and select Model Year 2013-2014 Trail Performance (Pro-Ride) snowmobiles may pose a risk of fire due to electrostatic discharge (ESD) inside the fuel tank. Under specific conditions, vapors may be ignited inside the fuel tank, posing a potential injury hazard to consumers.
Number of affected vehicles: Around 230,000 units globally
Number of incidents: Polaris has identified 30 reports of fuel tank ruptures, including 16 incidents of fire and one report of injury.
Consumers should immediately stop using the impacted units. Polaris is currently evaluating a comprehensive action plan to correct this concern at no cost to consumers and will contact affected consumers once determined. DO NOT attempt any repairs yourself. If a rider needs to start their snowmobile, they must make sure the fuel tank is full and, if it is not, then they need to add fresh gasoline to fill the tank.
Polaris is notifying dealers and contacting registered owners directly. Polaris has reported this matter to the Consumer Product Safety Commission.
To search off-road recalls by model or vehicle identification number (VIN) to see if your unit is affected by any recalls, visit the Off-Road Safety Recalls page or call Polaris at 800-765-2747.