There's a reason the Polaris 500 is the best-selling ATV ever, and the 800 is just a 500 with a larger, twin cylinder engine. The twin cylinder engine is tried and true. It's been on Polaris 600cc and larger ATVs for about 10 years now and they have proven to be very reliable. The basic engine is still the same. The EFI system makes cold start problems a thing of the past and severe altitude changes are seamless.
The ride is second to none. It's silky smooth on the trails. Smooth enough for grandpas and tough enough for the young rambunctious crowd, which I'm not. My Honda Rincon friends prefer the ride of my 700.
There are LOTS of aftermarket products for it.
The only real "issue" is with the front springs getting tired fairly quickly, especially if you hang a plow or accessories on the front end. Polaris sells heavy duty plow springs that many people use to correct it when it happens, or there are several aftermarket options as well. The change-out is easy and less than $100 if you do it yourself.
It's a heavy machine at 700-800 pounds, but coming from a Brute Force, you are used to that.
When hauling all my hunting gear, I sometimes wish I had metal tube racks for tying things down but I always seem to manage. I like the look of the composite racks much better.
No matter what anybody tells you, every brand breaks down sooner or later. How often and how bad is dependent on how you ride and how well you maintain the machine. Polaris is not immune but they are reliable.
2011 Sportsman 500 HO Touring: Polaris 3500 lb. Winch, Kimpex Adventure XL Trunk, 7" Passenger Foot Risers, UNI Foam Filter
2006 Sportsman 500 X2 EFI: Superwinch Terra 25 w/Synthetic Rope, Kolpin 4 gal Gas Pack, 3" Passenger Foot Risers, 3-Headlight Mod, K&N Filter
SOLD 2010 Sportsman 300: Polaris 2500 lb. Winch, Kolpin Rear Seat (for the dog), UNI Foam Filter
SOLD 2006 Sportsman 700 Twin EFI: 27" Mud-Lite XTR, Superwinch Terra 35 w/Synthetic Rope, Polaris HD Front Springs, OEM Front Bumper Guard, WES Rear Seat, Kimpex Fender Guards w/Footpegs, 3-Headlight Mod, K&N Filter, Symtec Heated Grips
Last edited by AKStew; 05-04-2012 at 08:29 AM.