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Types of Snowmobiles

There are six types of Snowmobiles to choose from:


1. Utility Snowmobiles

Approximately 80% of snowmobilers use their snowmobiles for trail riding and touring on marked, groomed trails. The other 20% use their snowmobiles for work. Utility snowmobiles are often used by snowmobile club members who like to groom trails and carry food, tents, firewood and safety equipment, or by commercial snowmobilers using models for multi-person transports at ski areas. These transports can be used to transport injured people trapped on a mountain or hiking trail, or even for bringing scientific expeditions to the polar ice caps. Utility snowmobiles are longer, wider and heavier than recreational snowmobiles. As expected, they work well on trails and in heavy snow conditions, and typically come equipped with an electric start and reverse gear as standard features.

Examples of 2023 Utility Snowmobiles include:

  • Ski-Doo Skandic SE

  • Polaris Voyager 550 144

  • Ski-Doo Expedition Xtreme 850 ETEC

  • Yamaha LE (online reservation orders only)

2. Touring Snowmobiles

2-ups (doubles) or touring snowmobiles are made for carrying two riders and designed to give them a comfortable ride over long distances. Touring snowmobile models will come with an electric start, side mounted mirrors, reverse gear, large windshields. Many luxury amenities will include hand, foot and seat warming modes, communication systems and music capabilities. Touring snowmobiles are large, heavier and have a longer track length than either performance of trail snowmobiles.

Examples of 2023 Touring Snowmobiles include:

  • Polaris Titan Prostar S4 Adventure 155

  • Ski Doo Expedition SE 900 ACE

  • Polaris Indy Adventure 155 550

  • Ski-Doo Grand Touring 900 ACE and Sport 600

3. Trail snowmobiles (also called machines)

Trail snowmobilesare a great choice for snowmobilers who are often new to the sport. These snowmobiles are economically priced, light weight and easy to handle on rough trails. Trail models accelerate faster that a touring snowmobile and offer more comfort than a performance style.

Examples of 2023 Trail Snowmobiles include:

  • Yamaha LE

  • Rotax 850 E-Tex Turbo R

  • Lynx X-Terrain RE and Brutal

4. Performance Snowmobiles

Performance snowmobiles, just like the name implies, are bult for speed and punishment. Designed for aggressive riders who like the thrill of an adrenaline rush, these snowmobile engines will typically generate over 85 horsepower, are light weight and come with advanced suspension systems for precise handling. Although not designed for comfort, this snowmobile style is perfect for flying across a frozen lake or participation in a sporting event. Performance snowmobiles are recommended for experienced, expert snowmobilers.

Examples of 2023 Performance Snowmobiles include:

  • Yamaha Sidewinder SRX LtX IE GT

  • Polaris 650 Indy XCR 129

  • Ski-Doo Renegade X-RS

  • Ski-Doo Renegade Adrenaline 850 E-TEC

  • Lynx Shredder or Rave

5. Mountain Snowmobiles

If you like the challenge of climbing vertical slopes in deep snow, a mountain style snowmobile may be for you. Mountain style snowmobiles have high horsepower engines that perform well in higher altitudes, are narrower than other models, weigh less and have longer lug tracks. Naturally, mountain snowmobiles maneuver best on tough vertical climbs vs. groomed snow packed trails.

Examples of 2023 Mountain Snowmobiles include:

  • Yamaha Mountain Max

  • Ski-Doo Backcountry X-RS

  • Polaris 9R RMK Khaos/155

6. Youth Snowmobiles

Snowmobile clubs and trade associations promote snowmobiling as a great way for the family to enjoy the winter season together. Snowmobile manufacturers agree, and have smaller scale youth style snowmobiles available for ages 8 and up. Youth style snowmobiles offer safety features like the ability to limit speed and a tether strap that will kill the engine immediately. Most of these youth snowmobiles are low horsepower single cylinder motors with one or two exceptions. As the sport of snowmobiling gains popularity, more youth snowmobile styles have emerged.

Examples of 2023 Youth Snowmobiles include:

  • Ski-Doo MXZ-NEOT

  • Polaris Indy 120

  • Yamaha Youth

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Types of Snowmobiles
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