Long Term Report - The Polaris RZR 570

Lessons Learned from a Year with the Fun-Sized RZR
Written By: 
Staff

2013.polaris.rzr570.red.front-right.riding.on-trail.JPGBefore the Polaris RZR, there wasn’t any Side x Side dedicated to high-performance recreation, but with the sporty RZR 800, Polaris had an instant hit and the race was on.  Since then other manufacturers have entered the game and each new model has seen huge gains in power, suspension, and performance.  Not everyone needs or even wants huge horsepower and desert taming suspension just to cruise the local trails, though, and for those riders, Polaris has a unique option.  The Polaris RZR 570 is the first model designed to offer many of the features of its high powered, racy brothers but in a great looking, quick handling package delivered at a budget price.  

The RZR 570 Package

At a distance, the RZR 570 looks like a twin to the RZR 800 with identical front bodywork, the same interior features, a radiator tucked under the bodywork for clean airflow, dual a-arms, disc brakes at each wheel, and 23cm (9 inches) of wheel travel.  However, one walk around the back quickly makes the differences obvious.  At the rear, the suspension is designed to cradle the 570cc ProStar engine, and the chassis is built from heavy duty steel tubing with dual A-arms, offering 24cm (9.5 inches) of wheel travel and a pair of disc brakes.  Both ends of the RZR 570 have a sway bar to reduce body roll and Sachs shocks dampen out the bumps while Ancla tires - 25x8x12 front and 25x10x12 rear – on stamped steel wheels get the power to the ground.  The best feature on the RZR 570, though, is the new ProStar engine.2013.polaris.rzr570.red.front-left.riding.on-trail.JPG

Just over a year ago, one model at a time, Polaris began to transfer their entire RZR and RANGER lineup into the new engine platform which was designed specifically for a Side x Side.  The new engine promised more power and increased reliability, and included a unique, modular transmission.  Everything about the engine and transmission was designed for the load of a Side x Side and to efficiently transfer power to the ground.  We also like how routine maintenance tasks were considered as well, and it’s easy to access the oil filter, the large dip stick on the right side of the motor, and the air filter.  Both the CVT air intake and the air filter are located high in the chassis which should help them breathe clean air and avoid sucking in any water.  A flat, automotive style pleated filter is right under the rear cargo deck, and Electronic Fuel Injection makes for easy starts at any temperature.  EFI also helps the engine run clean and crisp while sipping fuel at a rate that would make any hybrid jealous.  With many ATVs offering a larger engine, though, we wondered how a 570cc motor would perform and hold up in a Side x Side chassis; only time on the trial would tell.  Rather than a quick day on the trails or dunes, we tested the RZR 570 in every condition for an entire year of riding.  With 1000 miles on our RZR 570, here is what we’ve learned.

Riding Conditions:  We operated the RZR 570 under normal trail conditions including sand, muddy trails, large hills, and snow.  The RZR 570 was also used to haul bear hunting bait, and to haul out a whitetail taken during hunting season.  Typical operation was at varied RPM ranges, and riders ranged from intermediate to expert, both male and female.       2013.polaris.rzr570.red.front-right.jumping.in-air.JPG

Engine:  After an early break-in oil change, we did our next oil change as directed by the manual, and with PURE Polaris brand oil and filters.  We neither overworked the engine for extended periods, nor submerged the engine above any open intakes.  At 1000 miles, the ProStar 570 engine doesn’t burn any oil and appears clean every time it is checked.  

If your normal conditions are extremely dusty, hot, or consistently work the motor with a heavy load, we recommend changing it more often.  We would also change the oil after any deep water crossings that might have allowed water into the motor.  We have used MOBIL-1 fully synthetic in the past with excellent results. 

Air Filter:  The air filter is the first line of defense protecting your engine and, depending on the conditions, could require service after every ride.  We often drove the RZR 570 without other vehicles around which limited dust, but we found one annoying feature with the air filter system.

We like the flat, pleated filter, but when taking the lid off and removing the filter, it is very easy to have any crud on the bottom side of the deck lid immediately fall down the air intake tube.  Be careful when removing the filter, and immediately cover the open intake tract with a clean rag or shop towel.

Suspension: We greased all fittings on a regular basis with a high quality, lithium based grease.  We also used some good penetrating oil on the shock bushings & pivots to keep them from squeaking and prevent wear.   With the RZR 570 supported on jacks and no weight on the suspension, we can feel very slight movement in the rear control arm bushing, but it has not been getting any worse and is likely still within tolerance.  2013.polaris.rzr570.close-up.engine.JPG

Drivetrain:  At 1000 miles, the belt displays no signs of wear when under power or through visual inspection.  It is a good idea to blow any dust from the clutches with compressed air, however.  

CV Boots & Joints  No signs of wear or tears in CV boots. 

Drive Shafts:  No noticeable extra play from bearing or universal joints.  Fittings greased where possible.

Brakes, Shocks, & Chassis:  Thanks to a shorter chassis, the RZR 570 doesn’t flex much, and that means much less chassis noise.  At 1000 miles, the brakes are still working very well, and the shocks have not begun to fade.  

Bodywork: The bodywork on the RZR 570 offers very good splash protection, although in crossings deeper than the floorboards, water will enter through the floor drain slots.  Thankfully, it rushes out just as quickly when you’re back on dry ground.  Overall, the bodywork is holding up very well.  The red plastic is pliable enough to bend when needed, it hides deep scratches, and the push-pin fasteners used to fasten panels have also been holding panels firmly in place.  

Overall Maintenance: Overall, we give the RZR 570 a score of 9 out of 10 for regular maintenance tasks.  The filters and dip stick are easy to get to, there are grease zerks everywhere, and it’s generally easy to keep in excellent running condition.

Oil Used -POLARIS spec 

Oil Filter -Stock Polaris

Air Filter Used -  Stock Polaris – pleated 2013.polaris.rzr570.red.rear.studio.JPG

Engine and Drivetrain

Valve/Head - No appreciable or noticeable loss of power, compression, or valve noise

Cooling System - No leaks.  Maintains coolant level

Shaft Drive - No joint failures or excessive backlash 

CVT Clutches & Belt - No noticeable belt wear.  Clutch still operates smoothly

4WD System - No failures in 4wd system

Rear Differential - Maintaining recommended oil level with no leaks

EFI Mapping - Excellent starts at all temperatures, no backfire, no hesitation under acceleration.

Engine Noise - No noticeable increase in engine noise

Exhaust - No cracks in muffler or exhaust pipes, and only normal discoloration.  Negligible corrosion.  Sound level slightly higher than new. 

Battery - Battery still holding charge and cranking cold engine quickly. 

Shifting - Gear changes generally easy

Bodywork & Controls

Control Layout - Good Control layout

Instrumentation - Very good.  Easy to read and use but would be even better if numbers were a little larger.2013.polaris.rzr570.close-up.air-filter.JPG

Levers / Throttle/ Switches/ Shifter - High Quality controls.  4wd button easy to use.  Shift lever has positive engagement.

Seat Cover & Seat Foam - Seat has smooth surface and shows no signs of wear.  Foam is thick enough to provide support and comfort, and has not broken down or taken on moisture.

Bodywork - Excellent, high quality plastic is pliable and durable.  Resists scratches and can take an impact.  Shows no signs of wear, discoloration, or fading.

Splash Protection - Good protection from both front and rear fenders.  

Lights - Would be nice to have a dim/bright option, but stock lights offer nice spread from both front lights. 

Maintenance

Oil Filter - Good access.  Standard Polaris filter works well, but K & N is much easier to install and remove thanks to welded on nut.

Air Filter - Excellent access, easy to remove.  Large surface area for long service life.  Be aware cover can drop dirt into open intake tract during changes however.   

Coolant Reservoir - Good access.  Easy to check coolant level.

CVT & CVT Cover - Easy to access and remove

Electrical - Excellent access to battery2013.polaris.rzr570.red.front.riding.on-trail.JPG

Suspension

Shocks - Limited adjustment but effective for most trail riding.  We stiffened front by one click to reduce bottoming with two adult riders, and for better front to rear balance.  Body roll not significant.  Shocks will begin to fade depending on use, terrain, and load, and are not rebuildable.  

A-Arms - Good durability both on A-Arms and low maintenance pivot bushings.  Pivots can be greased.

Steering - Very good in standard model.  Does not need Electronic Power Steering.  

Tires - Respond adequately in mud, sand, and snow.  Tires will show cuts, but resist punctures so far.     

Wheels - Stamped Steel.  Effective but we have bent similar Polaris wheels on ATVs and other Side x Sides.

Brakes - Adequate at both ends and holding up well. 

Chassis 

Frame - Frame has limited flex and does not squeak or make any annoying noise. 

Fasteners - High quality and plated for corrosion protection.  Plastic push-pin fasteners good so far but will eventually become loose after several in/out cycles.

Paint & Plating - Good corrosion protection on frame thanks to powder coat.  Zinc plating on all fasteners and some steel parts

Towing - Standard hitch at rear.

Storage - Limited cargo deck, but works adequately for hauling a cooler, camping gear, extra tires, etc.  Front hood compartment works well and is covered.

RZR 570 Report Card

We have little to complain about with the RZR 570.  It has been flawless mechanically and is easy to maintain, but the most important feature is the “fun factor.”  It’s an absolute blast on the trails and with a 50inch overall width, it is trail legal practically everywhere.  The handling is precise, responsive, and predictable, and the ProStar 570 engine delivers almost as much power as the 800!  It was definitely far more responsive than we initially imagined and the engine is well matched to the chassis.  Clutching was very good as well and it was very easy to control through the trees, but in the open sections, it would top out near 60 mph!  The RZR 570 also goes forever on a tank of fuel, and you can probably ride it all day on one tank.  Overall, we’ve been very impressed with the Polaris RZR 570 and it easily passes our test.

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