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ATV vs UTV vs 4Runner/Samuri/Etc

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So I have been contemplating a dedicated hunting rig for a bit and keep coming back to this topic, though I do not think I've seen it asked directly here on the site. For those that have had all 3, or even just two, how was your progression through each type, and what are/were the pros and cons of your decision? What were the limiting factors that played a role and how satisfied have you been with your decision(s)?

 

My logical brain lays things out as so, assuming buying used but in decent shape:

 

ATV

Pros- Cheapest route, small footprint, easy to transport, maneuver and maintain.

Cons- No separation from the elements, not the safest mode of transportation, typically only single rider, eat dust.

 

UTV

Pros- Smoothest ride, multiple passengers, much safer, cheaper to maintain than the SUV, partial separation from elements, fun to ride even when not hunting

Cons- Most expensive initial cost, partial separation from elements, eat dust.

 

SUV

Pros- Street legal, no need to trailer, multiple passengers, full protection from elements inc, heat and AC, no dust, street legal.

Cons- Will not fit in toy-hauler (must tow or drive separately), highest cost of maintenance.

 

 

Thoughts?

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Sounds like youve got the pros n cons down. UTV us the happy median in my opinion. Multiple passengers and you can haul extra gear, ice chest or even just throw an elk in the bed. The elements can def be a btch. Bottom line is you just have to decide which works best for you, your style of hunting and of course price range.

 

Oh and all 3 can be street legal. Not just the SUV. Also as far as off road capabilities the ATV/UTV are on top. Many will disagree and say their rig will go any they can.

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Indeed you do have it down.

 

For me ATV is not family friendly. I am fortunate that my family hunts with me. If they did not I would probably have a mid size 300-400cc 4x4 Honda or the like. They are like goats in the rough and easy to put in the bed of a truck.

 

UTV is it for me but you are spot on on the pros vs cons.

 

Small beater SUV would be a PIA to tow up to the hunting grounds. The trailer required to do the may cost as much as the SUV. Driving it to the hunting grounds would be like painful... comfort and ride wise.

 

For the record do not have any at the moment. I have had the ATV and a UTV. The next one I get will be a UTV.

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I think considering the cost an SUV is the best. I have a lifted expedition that has taken me places meant only for side by sides. I put a new motor in it and know I can't get that money back. So it became the hunting truck. I can how pull the camper with it and then use it As my hunting rig. It's very freeing to have a vehicle that you don't care if it gets dinged up. Having heat when it's 8degrees out is also nice. Utvs look cool and are fun but they are overpriced and I'm not into freezing and eating dust. Fyi there was a nice 4runner in the classifieds.

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All three can be street legal in Arizona. If you hunt out of state you need to check on the ATV and UTV. On a hunting trip in New Mexico I took off down a rural Highway on my licensed and insured ATV. A Catrone County deputy pulled me over and politely explained that was not allowed in New Mexico

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Correct me if im wrong, but if you have a 5th wheel can't you tow an SUV behind?

 

Obviously, this doesn't matter if, like me, you have a bumper pull.

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Went to an outdoor expo in Rapid City SD about a month ago. They had several utv's with fully enclosed cabs, crank windows, ac/heater, windshield wipers, and all. Seems like the best of all world's but about $18,000 to get one.

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Get a Tacoma and it will do everything a UTV/ATV will and even more! Did the UTV gig for years and then bought a Tacoma. Would do it again in a heartbeat

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I have a pickup, utv, and atv, at my cabin up north.Year’s ago I thought the atv was the way to go. Then started going in the Kawasaki Mule. Now I use the pickup, much more comfortable, warm in winter and no dust.

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I've contemplated this many times. I have none of the above but I would probably lean towards the Samurai type SUV.

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I currently run a Honda 4x4 ATV in the back of a first generation 4x4 Tundra. There are very few places I can't (or won't) go and I really enjoy my setup. No trailer, no BS.

 

As my family grows, I will have to decide what direction to take next. I can't imagine getting rid of either vehicle above so I will be following threads like these for advice and logic.

 

It is difficult to justify the 12-18-25k price tags on newer side by sides but it's also difficult to compromise on speed and time front point A to point B, which is the only major factor I haven't seen considered yet in this post, and where UTVs really shine. They are fast, comfortable, can go nearly anywhere, and take a beating. The most important factor will come down to exactly how and how often the machine will be used.

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I don’t have a Utv but sold my att since I want to be able to cruise with family. Now the next question is costs. You can get into a 2 seater or 3 seater bench style pretty cheap used but I have a family of 4 and the markup for that upgrade is significant.

 

So will my wife really want to roll with us or not is the 4000 dollar question lol

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I have a ATV they are ok but suck at the same time due to getting family in them.

one good thing about them is they are small and dont damage roads like everything else does. un north this last sunday we couldnt get to one spot because the mud and I didnt want to tear up the roads in my diesel.

but you either have to trailer them up or put them in the bck of the truck. then when its cold and rainy or even hot you have to tough it out.

 

UTVs are nice but why pay that kinda money from something and still have to buy a trailer.

 

daughter bought a jeep year and a half ago and its easy to tow or she can drive it. usually I tow it up on the freeway to chino then she drives from there. they are small and light for the roads as well not to mention has a/c heat top windshield wipers etc etc.

and family can go up as well. not to mention you can get a nice one for 5-6k or even less 97 and up

towing is really easy and takes 20 mins to bolt on towbar and go(unless you run it over like I did ;)

plus the fact if you break down or get stuck jeep pull you out or drive to town, atv or utv you aint pulling a big truck out.

and there is more storage room in a jeep.

I was going to buy a utv or get another ATV but the more I think about it a jeep would be better.

you can triple tow with a 5th wheel you just cant be over xx feet. guys do it all the time with bass boats and jeeps

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Up until this past Sunday I had all 3 that you describe. Just sold my 2001 4runner that I was planning on making my hunting rig but life happens and plans changed. If I'm by myself I will take quad every time. Faster, goes more places, more enjoyable to ride and easy to haul in back of truck. Got the side by side if 3 or less go and it is great but I always have to pull it with trailer. Not that big of a deal but something to consider. Vehicles are nice for temp purpose and even dust but they are very slow. In my experience, I have more mechanical issues with vehicles than I do with ATV/UTV. I used to beat the heck out of my 4X4 trucks but since I went to ATV/UTV route not nearly as much. Still have the pinstriping on truck but for most part don't use if for off road stuff very often. For cold weather driving some good winter gloves, bacalava and coveralls work great. I have had very good luck with Polaris products.

 

Good Luck on whatever you decide.

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