That actually makes it a night-and-day difference in everything from plushness in slow-speed chop to bottom-out bump absorption. While the Talon 1000X has better-gripping tires than the YXZ leading to more holeshots, the YXZ can beat it in an all-out, top-speed run. With reference to the Kawasaki, we overwhelmingly heard the terms smooth and roomy. From the sand dunes to the racetrack, it out-performs the other non-turbo-equipped machines. Good sight lines out front and over the doors, along with a steel skid plate, help it lead through the rocks.

We think it will need them. The YXZ tops out at a few mph faster at just under 80 mph. The computer can pop the clutch to get up steep ledges, but the driver does have to be more aggressive to make it through the technical sections.

On this day of testing, we let two guys who had never driven the KRX before drive it, and neither one of them complained about it being too slow. Clutch work on the YXZ is easy and can be accessed under the car.

For now, here is the Kawasaki Teryx KRX1000 versus the Yamaha YXZ, Polaris … The cockpit is the loudest of the three. The lower straight-out position is too narrow for both feet. In our tests on loose dirt, you had to be lightning fast, shifting between the first three gears, and make the shifts in the first 10 yards when driving the Talon.

The Talon is the only UTV on the planet that can do that, and it’s one of its best assets. We wouldn’t call either one great in this section, but they are both still very capable.

Next, we headed over to a deep, consistent whoop section to see how the wider, longer-travel Talon 1000R did on the bumps compared to the Yamaha. We kept reaching for more seat adjustment with the Honda, and the armrest on the driver’s side door gives your funny bone a workout. After three years, old rival Honda came to the table with not one but two models that compare closely with the YXZ. The Honda got the jump off the line, but the Yamaha overtook the wider Talon 1000R at about 40 mph, then slightly pulled away as it reached top speed. And they do, but factor in the size and quality of Fox suspension on the YXZ. Honda’s transmission gives you the option to do the shifting via paddle shifters or let the system shift for you in full auto mode. The motor will automatically hold the car back to 2 mph if you wish going down a steep rock face. We road them in a variety of terrain at typical trail speeds with drivers of all sizes and skill levels. All three cars have a completely different tire setup. Price wise, the two are only a few dollars apart. Both have 999cc of displacement and fuel injection, but that’s where the similarities end. Yamaha measures the YXZ’s travel at 16.2 inches in front and an even 17 inches of travel out back. We like the simplicity of the three-way adjustable Fox’s on the Talon, but they don’t provide enough comfort or rebound damping. A full lock diff selector on the dash will fully connect the front two drive shafts so they rotate together and get you through the gnarly stuff.

Nets are not available for the YXZ unless you order them custom. The KRX hits its stride 10 mph slower.

The guards are the lowest point on the car. Here, confidence is key, and sitting lower in the YXZ and being able to flick the car around helps.

The KRX hits its stride 10 mph slower.

The lack of sidewall on the 28-inch-tall tire can’t provide enough deflection, and the springs are too stiff.

Honda bulks its dual-clutch transmission together with the engine, and that tranny is at the rear of the car, but there are separate shaft-driven front/rear differentials—unlike what Can-Am and Polaris use in the rear, as their diffs are part of the tranny. But, the Talon is quicker off the line for sure, and the YXZ has the top speed advantage. The Talon has a nice deep growl and sounds better than the YXZ in stock trim.

There’s nothing notably wrong with the Honda, and we love to drive it.

We added a mirror and a roof, so, out the door, they are about dead even.

Also, the lower center of gravity and much better sight over the front fenders helps in the rocks and over ledges. The shocks on our SS model can be tuned for a very plush ride by turning the slow-speed compression adjusters all the way out. The I4WD set up on the Honda allows it to crawl fairly well; however, low gear is not low enough in many situations. It is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies on your website. The Yamaha is still our favorite all-around machine that works better in most terrain. At 50 mph, the Talon would start to swap slightly, signaling to our driver not to push it any further. We are constantly trying to move the driver’s seat back in the Honda. We do like the full door on the Yamaha best, but the doors and latches work well on both machines.

To access the air filter on the Talon, clips open the airbox, but you do need a 5mm Allen to remove the paper element. In the rougher sections of the trail, it’s the car everyone wanted to be in. But, when the going is super tight, the Talon does have a tighter turning radius by a massive 2 feet. When we got into a nasty rock section, we clicked the diff lock on in the Yamaha and put the Honda in low gear. Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly.

The Talon hooks up better, but the YXZ has smoother power across the board. Seats in Talon are better by most who have sat in Talon.

Before hitting its top speed at 74 mph, the Talon can put a car length between it and the YXZ. For this test, we started in demo cars with over 700 miles on them. Honda made a good machine, and something as simple as a set of 2-inch-taller tires can make it great. What hurts any Talon at slow speeds are the shocks and tires.

We chose that comparison first because both machines are 64 inches wide.

We were not only paying attention to how well they ran and handled, we were looking closely at squeaks and rattles, along with wear items like suspension bushings, tires and skid plates. The first year introduction bothers me. It’s a slightly bigger car but doesn’t feel that way 90 percent of the time on the trail. Either Talon still has one clear advantage over any YXZ. Standard engine work or maintenance  on either machine is basic and can be done at home on either machine. Like the X, the Talon R tops out at 75 mph and the YXZ keeps pulling up to 80 mph. Overall, size-wise, we mentioned the Talon R is wider at 68.4 inches; however, that doesn’t lead to a bunch more wheel travel. On different Talons, we tested springs from Shock Therapy and new valving from Race Tech. It uses a manual, wet-plate clutch system similar to that of a larger motorcycle. The Talon comes with a roof as standard equipment. If you don’t care to drive around in easy mode and want to bang through the gears getting the most out of a pure sport UTV, the Talon is still great; however, even with 4 1/2 inches of width, 2 inches of wheelbase and 2 inches of extra wheel travel, it doesn’t do anything better than the YXZ1000R SS. It offers a plusher ride than the X. Both are comfortable, but you have a lot more room in the YXZ. All three of those measurements should alone equate to better suspension action. The instrument panel is also the hardest to read. The plastic split during a recent rock crawl test. In fact, every time you turn the key on, its default is to be in automatic mode. The YXZ is more confidence inspiring going over obstacles of any size. You do have to remove some bolts and push pins to check the oil on Yamaha’s divorced transmission between the seats. This system senses how much the front wheels need to turn in unison, depending on their movement, throttle position, etc. Yamaha uses an inline three-cylinder setup with a 80mmx66mm bore and stroke.

The Yamaha has a big washable foam element that can be pulled out of the air box without tools, cleaned and reused. It’s the quietest cabin. Both cars got through the rocks with nearly the same effort. copyright owned by hi-torque publications. The Talon X is over 6 inches taller than the YXZ1000R, so the Talon does feel a little tall when riding it. The low nose of the YXZ makes it easier to see the trail and just more fun. Kawasaki gave the KRX great engine braking, which is another reason it’s a great rock crawler.

On the YXZ, we used a Yamaha swing-out tire carrier, and on the Honda we strapped it flat to the cargo bed. They are nothing to brag about like they are on the new Polaris RZR Pro XP. It will be interesting to watch the first Talon to take on King of the Hammers and see if it has any gearing changes. Finally, Fox makes the shocks for both cars, but the ones found on the Yamaha are way more adjustable. You have to put one foot on a high platform and one straight out or bend both legs on a high platform if you are sitting in the right seat of the Talon. We have been waiting a long time for someone to challenge Yamaha and its manual-transmission-equipped YXZ1000R. Unlike the Talon 1000X, the Talon 1000R does have dual-stage spring adjustment, but there is only a three-way compression setting and no rebound adjuster. The YXZ has better visibility (I think) Not having sat in both, just from the looks the Talon has a higher front like the razors. Depending on the speed you want to travel, you can leave the transmission in a single gear and lug it around just fine. We have talked to two different aftermarket suspension companies, and they both have theories on how to make the Talon better. In the slower-speed bumps and rocks we liked that we could easily adjust the Talon’s shocks to full soft via the three-click QS3 adjusters. It’s the best over rough terrain but also the heaviest. We immediately ventured out to see how the Talon vs KRX1000 vs YXZ1000 comparison turns out and help you pick which machine is right for you. We hammered both cars over and over the whoops in both directions. These features make it handle well at higher speeds, but make it a rough ride at slow speeds on anything other than a smooth trail, even with the shocks turned on full soft. With much excitement, we are taking a machine with the same width measurements of 64 inches, the Talon X, and putting it head to head with our favorite YXZ… HOW DOES COST COMPARE CONSIDERING HOW THEY ARE EQUIPPED? This was a close one. It’s hardly noticeable, so it’s not a huge issue, but compared to the others, the Honda feels rough. Cubbyholes and storage pockets are just okay in both machines. The biggest benefit is not having to worry about CVT belts or breaking drivetrain components.