By Jeff Henson
Honda’s long-awaited big-bore open class sport model finally arrived earlier this year [turn to page 52 for a full ride report]. The TRX700XX is an all-new machine and something many didn’t expect from a powerhouse like Honda. We’ll be honest, we expected a direct competitor for the Yamaha Raptor 700R, but instead Honda showcased a machine with an engine to compete with the Raptor and a chassis and suspension to rival a Polaris Outlaw IRS.
While Honda engineers didn’t introduce the concept of an independent rear suspension on a sport quad, the team did create an all-new proprietary design that offers both a comfortable and controllable ride in even the roughest of terrain. The double A-arm rear end features a unique set of three gears, a center-mounted chain drive, equal-length A-arms and drive shafts and lightweight aluminum knuckles.
The 686cc four-stroke is derived from the XR650 dirt bike, but made all-new for use in an ATV. It’s also the largest displacement single-cylinder mill Honda has ever mass produced. The XX features EFI and reverse to go with its super comfortable design.
Honda definitely thought outside the box and designed something many riders will have to try to believe. This model may just be that extreme sporty crossover quad that could entice a few 4x4 owners over to the sport side of the industry. At the very least, all those aging sport riders could easily hit the retirement trail on this big-bore beast.
Originally posted with permission from the July/August 2008 issue of ATV Sport ® ww.atvsport.com. Copyright 2009, Affinity Group Inc. All rights reserved. For more information about reprints from ATV Sport, contact Wright’s Reprints at 877-652-5295