Rancher vs. Recon... Questions... - Honda ATV Forum
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post #1 of 33 (permalink) Old 10-10-2012, 10:18 PM Thread Starter
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Question Rancher vs. Recon... Questions...

Honda is tempting me with their current Bonus Bucks on the Rancher 4x2 ES and Recon ES. I think either one might fit 99.8% of my needs. There will not be any mud riding or mountain trails. I will use this ATV for some light "improved trail" riding with some hilly terrain... and more for work on the few acres I have... pulling a utility trailer... maybe a spray rig. I don't even plan on changing the tires and rims... however a winch and a rear utility rack could be a "go".

So, I would like to hear from Rancher and Recon folks on their recommendations regarding which might be "best"... and opinions concerning reliability between these two choices. I'm interested in your experiences with the manual shift vs. electric shift Recons and Ranchers.

Also, if you believe the 4x4 Rancher is a superior choice for my needs stated above, please speak up and tell me why.
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post #2 of 33 (permalink) Old 10-10-2012, 11:29 PM
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4x4 and a manuel shift are always better. imo electric shift is just somthing else that can break, and the 4x4 will be helpful on a working atv. as for rancher or recon ive only ridden one so i cant say but i like the 350 rancher
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post #3 of 33 (permalink) Old 10-11-2012, 12:13 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the input. I do have the TRX420FM on the "list" along with the TRX420TM and TRX420TE... and don't want to eliminate from consideration four wheel drive capability and the advantages of manual shift you mentioned. I do hear folks saying sooner or later I'll need four wheel drive... or wish I had it.
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post #4 of 33 (permalink) Old 10-11-2012, 12:28 AM
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The ES is pretty reliable. As far as 4x4 goes, I wouldn't own an atv without it.



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post #5 of 33 (permalink) Old 10-11-2012, 06:22 AM
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Welcome to the forums from ok. I've had both a recon and now have a 4wd rancher 420. The recon is old school technology which equals ultra reliable. It never let me down except the battery died. The one thing to watch on a recon is the front brakes. Mine were inop when i traded it in. Other than they, change oil and enjoy! Also i used to pool broke down quads with it sometimes over a mile in the woods. Its a very good machine. On the rancher, its awesome. 4wd is a nice option. It has allot of low end grunt, disc brakes on the front, fuel injection and water cooled engine. I pull nhra funny cars and dragsters with it without a problem, either machine you pick will be a great machine. Any other questions, don't be afraid to ask. Ive had both and really liked both. I trade up because i wanted more power and 4wd, i got the recon to see if i liked riding and feel in love lol, and got a new rancher. I didn't have much tome to type this, but
later i can give ya a little more detail on my opinions of the two.

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Last edited by bobs330; 10-11-2012 at 06:29 AM.
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post #6 of 33 (permalink) Old 10-11-2012, 08:05 AM
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They are all excellent atvs and you could use any of them for what you are describing, but the 4wd Rancher would be your best machine for the money in the long run, for use and in resale value from being 4wd. The things to keep in mind is the amount of work duty you will be doing as the recon is air cooled, lighter, and less powerful, and of course 2wd. It will wear on the little Recon where it won't phase the Rancher.
You would be farther ahead in the long run by spending the extra money now on a 4x4 rather than buying a 2wd then selling it and losing money and buying the 4x4 later on. With you stating of buying a winch and getting accessories, it makes sense to get the 4x4 as the money will be better spent on the Rancher in the long run.
I have the Recon clone which is the Suzuki Ozark, and I've owned a Rancher 420ES 4x4, and had it for a long time with no mechanical issues,they are a great all around quad. The 250 is a very light duty work machine, and more of a fun trail rider, but a good quad in it's element. I have overheated my little 250 air cooled machine doing work duty before on an 80 degree day pulling around a cart full of dirt. It got hot where the Rancher being liquid cooled would never do that, and it struggled. Plus the low first gear on the Rancher with the engines good torque output and getting the power to the ground is much better on the larger machine without straining it. The all important 4x4 being there to keep you in control of the machine with a load behind it is a great safety factor also, and the clutch on the Rancher is very heavy duty as well as being FI. Also much less apt to flip over being heavier and a longer wheelbase with a load behind it if you need to go up some hills while pulling something.

There us nothing wrong with an ES equipped machine as it does have it's benefits and is more reliable than what you hear and read. That being said, I would get the base model Rancher with a foot shifter and no PS to save money on the purchase and still have a really good reliable machine that will holds its value better than any 2wd quad. If not new, there is some very nice used units out there that you could get also to save some expense also. At the very least get the 2wd Rancher as it is much more able to do what you are describing. Good luck with your new purchase.

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post #7 of 33 (permalink) Old 10-11-2012, 08:20 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DogRunner2 View Post
The ES is pretty reliable. As far as 4x4 goes, I wouldn't own an atv without it.
Thanks, DogRunner... I appreciate your information about the electric shift. There's no 4x4 option with the Recon... with the Rancher there will be a choice required.
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post #8 of 33 (permalink) Old 10-11-2012, 08:31 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobs330 View Post
...later i can give ya a little more detail on my opinions of the two.
Thanks, Bobs330... I appreciate the kind words and information. I hope you can return and give more detail as you mention. I've driven an ES Recon and liked it... seemed great for trail riding... but the work and pulling capabilities of the Rancher you speak about are an advantage.
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post #9 of 33 (permalink) Old 10-11-2012, 08:35 AM
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i have a 4x4 rancher 420 and i love it i think if u get a rancher u will need 4x4
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post #10 of 33 (permalink) Old 10-11-2012, 09:05 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stu5969 View Post
They are all excellent atvs and you could use any of them for what you are describing, but the 4wd Rancher would be your best machine for the money in the long run, for use and in resale value from being 4wd...
Thanks, Stu5969... I do appreciate your information... very much what I was looking for. I'll agree with your assessment on the Rancher 4wd manual shift... for the long run and future resale value too. If it's a 4wd Rancher, I'll currently exclude the ES model as Honda's "Bonus Bucks" on it aren't nearly as lucrative... in other words, right now at the dealer I'm likely to buy from the electric shift 4wd Rancher is priced $850 more than the manual shift 4wd Rancher.

If 2wd will work, I can save an additional $850 with the 2wd manual shift Rancher vs. the 4wd Rancher manual shift... and the difference is $650 if I choose the electric shift 2wd Rancher.

I don't want to come across as trying to go "cheap"... but price is important, however the 4wd could be worth the extra cost.

Your comments about the air cooled engines overheating when used for "work" is well received... and I do plan to hook a small utility trailer to any future ATV for cleanup of limbs and other light use around my home.
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