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Discussion Starter #1
Hey folks this is my first post. I'm looking to upgrade my atv. I currently just use it to plow snow and put around on some local trails and do some light farm work. I have an 03 Forman S right now w/o a title.. I want to go do some day rides on some atv trails out west in colorado and maybe a few other states when I get a little more experience out there. I've got a small girlfriend (130lbs) that will ride 2 up with me for now. I'd like some opinions on your take of the pros and cons of the 3 different atvs around me in my price range.

I'm undecideds between a forman 500 and a rancher 420.

I would also like your opinions on the auto/esp transmissions available. As a simple farm boy, the foot shift or es seem the way to go to me. But I'd like to hear you guys opinions on it for what I want to do.

Am I going to find difficultly doing 2 up on a rancher on mountain trails?

Will a forman 500 be nimble enough to do what I want it to do?

How reliable are the hondamatic transmissions and will they benefit or hinder me in what I want to do?

I've ridden quite a bit growing up. That's all my friends and I did, but I'm from the flat lands and I've only ever had 2 atvs the forman mentions earlier and an old 1996 fourtrax 300 so I'm trying to make as an educated decision as possible before I buy.

I appreciate your input and I look forward to your wisdom. Thank you
 

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Hey folks this is my first post. I'm looking to upgrade my atv. I currently just use it to plow snow and put around on some local trails and do some light farm work. I have an 03 Forman S right now w/o a title.. I want to go do some day rides on some atv trails out west in colorado and maybe a few other states when I get a little more experience out there. I've got a small girlfriend (130lbs) that will ride 2 up with me for now. I'd like some opinions on your take of the pros and cons of the 3 different atvs around me in my price range.

I'm undecideds between a forman 500 and a rancher 420.

I would also like your opinions on the auto/esp transmissions available. As a simple farm boy, the foot shift or es seem the way to go to me. But I'd like to hear you guys opinions on it for what I want to do.

Am I going to find difficultly doing 2 up on a rancher on mountain trails?

Will a forman 500 be nimble enough to do what I want it to do?

How reliable are the hondamatic transmissions and will they benefit or hinder me in what I want to do?

I've ridden quite a bit growing up. That's all my friends and I did, but I'm from the flat lands and I've only ever had 2 atvs the forman mentions earlier and an old 1996 fourtrax 300 so I'm trying to make as an educated decision as possible before I buy.

I appreciate your input and I look forward to your wisdom. Thank you
I have a 2006 honda foreman 500 and I love it. It's been through every thing iv thrown at it been flipped multiple times and still keeps going. I never have had a problem with the hondamatic but I know some people have. It's nimble enough for what your wanting to do.
 

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Yup, these are not designed for two-up riding.
Can Am Outlander XT version is a 2-up unit.

I personally don’t like the ES or auto-shift. I like the foot shift Honda and the CanAm and Yamaha CVT
 

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2020 520 rubicon foot shift
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Get a honda with IRS. I have a foot shift rubicon and my brother has the auto, neither one of us or the guys we know with auto's have had issues with it. You do see some post about issues with the auto's but you only hear about the bad ones, the guys without issues never post anything.
Once you ride an irs atv you wont want to ride a foreman anymore. The foreman is a great work horse and does better towing trailers but the irs is 100x soother on rocky trails like you will find in the mountains.
Riding two up isnt a problem for most people on ranchers, you'll be fine. I prefer a back box without a seat mounted pretty far back with a small pad behind the seat for the passenger, this keeps them lower and closer to you making the atv handle better, most of the rear seats you buy put the passenger up high and pretty far back.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for your input so far. I've found a foreman es near me I might go look at.

Anyone familiar with the ranchers made after 2014? I hear they have the same frame as the foreman. Anyone got an opinion on that quad? I might have found a 2020 rancher near me for the same price as the foreman es.


I did forget to mention my girlfriend said she would like to get her own quad eventually so 2 up might only be on a few trips.
 

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2020 520 rubicon foot shift
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If you dont need diff lock the rancher is just as good as the foreman after 2014.
The only thing the 500 does better is pull heavy loads or turn big mud tires, all its extra power is at low rpm, once you get the revs up a little they're equal in power.
I go atving with a guy on a 2019 rancher most weekends, its actually faster on the road than the foremans and rubicons.
 

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If you dont need diff lock the rancher is just as good as the foreman after 2014.
The only thing the 500 does better is pull heavy loads or turn big mud tires, all its extra power is at low rpm, once you get the revs up a little they're equal in power.
I go atving with a guy on a 2019 rancher most weekends, its actually faster on the road than the foremans and rubicons.
My buddy has a new rancher and it's faster than my rubicon but we are in mud and rocks and going about 7 miles an hour on most of the trails around here so it really does no good but it's NICE!
 

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take my advice, stay away from es models, and auto models !. you've been warned !.
 

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if i were you i would look for a 2017 or newer polaris sportsman 850. i used to be a diehard honda guy. until my dad bought a 2020 polaris sportsman 850. it has awesome suspension and power steering and the power is unbelievable
 

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When I bought my 2012 420fm , foot shift, even the salesman told me they have a lot of problems with the electric shift. Go with a foot shift whatever you get
 

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I've got a 2015 Foreman 500 with the foot shift. We hunt waterfowl and ride on our mountainside 7+ acres.
During waterfowl we ride on a gravel road 3 up (I'm 350 lbs, the boys are 170 lbs each) so it runs good overloaded. Ridden single thru harvested and flooded rice fields, crawls great. Our property is about 15° side hill grade and it wails away just fine.
The only issues you might not like is aftermarket receiver hitches appear weak and selection is limited (you did say you did ranch chores with your current atv.
The Foreman 500 is a solid axle, so has only one shock. The IRS models have two.)
Enjoy whatever new ride you choose, realize most things can be upgraded and RIDE IT LIKE YOU STOLE IT!!!
 
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