Just Plain Need A Life
Join Date: Jul 2004
Thanked 2 Times in 2 Posts
Your price range is very low so make yourself a wide list of used quads you're interested in. If you convince yourself that only one is the absolute best because someone tells you so, you'll probably have to shop farther, wait longer and pay more for that one special ride. If you have a list, you can take best deal on any of them. Figure out which years are good with which ATVs.
Depending on the conditions you want to ride in, 4x4 isn't absolutely necessary. We rode trails for several years on a Suzuki LTZ400 and there are lots of used ones out there now. What we didn't like? Zero racks to hold any tools or spare anything, and having to constantly shift. You'll have that with most non-utility quads. How important is performance compared to convenience to you?
On the other hand, we've also ridden trails for many miles on a Yamaha Grizzly 4x4. I personally love an automatic with 4x4. Men in the house prefer a 2wd sport bike they can shift, for maximum performance. We ride the exact same trails.
Finding one for a couple thousand dollars? It's going to have a lot of hours on it, likely be pretty beat up.
You'll find Honda owners across the country are hugely loyal because those things run FOREVER; you can probably get your hands on a good deal there on an older model and still get years of use out of it.
For some reason, Arctic Cat utility owners are loyal too, which we've never understood, because honestly we've never been impressed with them, especially the smaller cc bikes. However, you'll see them everywhere and may get a good deal.
So start reading boards like crazy, ask owners what problems they've run in to - if you get the same answer twice, beware. It doesn't necessarily rule a model out. If you know what a potential problem might be, go fix it and you should be fine. That's better than not knowing. (Yamaha YFZ450 had a wiring problem in 2006 that everyone complained about. Factory fixed it for 2007 and later but if you end up with a 2006 model, it's really easy to ask where to simply wrap electrical tape to prevent wear.)
So basically if you have unlimited budget and are buying new, you want to pick the one model that's right for you. If budget is number one consideration, you want to find the best deal in your area.
*And don't fall for the internet scam that says they'll ship you one from somewhere out of the country for a ridiculous price. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is!
Go see the bike in person before you commit. Ride it, even just around a parking lot, but better would be on a trail somewhere. If they won't let you, don't buy it. Take someone with you that knows ATVs if possible.
Does that help?