BRP, the company behind the Can Am line of products, has expanded the choice of Defender Max UTVs for 2017 with the addition of two new machines, bringing the total number of Max models to four.
The company says the Defender Max UTVs are “pickup truck-inspired” and will now offer seating for up to six adults.
UTVs are gaining popularity with farmers because of that pickup-like ability to carry passengers and at least a small load in the back. In fact, some models have a pretty significant payload rating.
“We made a commitment last fall to vastly broaden our Can Am side-by-side portfolio with the introduction of a new vehicle every six months for the next four years,” said Anne Bélec, senior vice-president of global brand communications at BRP. “The release of this second Can Am Defender family of vehicles is a direct result of that promise. The Defender Max vehicle meets the very specific demands of global tradesmen, hunters and farmers.”
Just like the previously released two-seater Defender Max versions, the two new machines offer a choice of two V-twin 50- or 72-horsepower Rotax engines. But now they expand available seating capacity with the addition of a rear bench seat.
The rear cargo bed is rated for a 1,700-pound (793 kilogram) payload. And to help prevent damage, the tailgate has a 250-pound (113 kilogram) weight capacity. The box gets integrated anchors and tie-down points along with multiple recesses, including a set built specifically to hold five-gallon (19-litre) buckets in place.
On-board storage can be further expanded with folding front and rear passenger seats and a removable toolbox. And for that little extra touch, the fold-down armrests up front come equipped with cup holders.
Late in 2016, the brand also announced it was adding yet another Defender side-by-side UTV to its line: the new HD5, with what the brand calls a “mid-size” engine.
“The 2017 Can-Am Defender HD5 side-by-side vehicle provides full-size functionality and unmatched versatility at an attractive price point,” explained Marc-André Dubois, the brand’s global marketing director in a followup press release. “This addition of the handy Defender HD5 packages helps us expand the Defender family lineup to meet market demand and also to grow the Can-Am footprint in the highly popular utility-recreation segment of the industry.”
While it may not be as big and powerful as other models in the Defender line, the HD5 still gets a 1,500-pound (680 kg) tow rating and a payload capacity of 1,200 pounds (544 kg). Half of that, 600 pounds (272 kg), can be carried in the tilting cargo box. And the bench seat should accommodate three adults.
The HD5 comes in a choice of two options packages, the base and the DPS, along with a choice of three body colours.
If you like your off-road vehicle to have six wheels instead of four, the newest Can-Am Outlander 6×6 ATV can accommodate that. Its debut was also announced last fall.
The Outlander 6×6 is powered by a fuel-injected Rotax V-twin engine that produces 82 horsepower and 65 foot-pounds of torque. And it delivers that power through a CVT transmission that includes an extra-low gear ratio for slow driving or heavy pulling. To make them easier to control, the Outlander comes with Tri-Mode Dynamic power steering, which allows the operator to select the amount of steering assist.
The Outlander 6×6 offers both 4×6 and 6×6 drive with its Visco-Lok QE. In 4×6 mode, all four rear wheels provide traction. When 6×6 is selected, the system intelligently transfers power from the slipping front wheel to the opposing wheel with traction. The system progressively and automatically locks and requires no additional buttons to push or levers to hold.
The Outlander has a big 1,650-pound (750 kg) tow rating, and the tilt-assist dump box can handle 700 pounds (318 kg).
The Outlander 6×6 is also available with a smaller 65-horsepower engine but it still gets a similar tow rating.