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2006 Ridge Runner RTX800 - Bed Toys

Posted in Vehicle Reviews on February 1, 2006
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The RTX800 has a powerful Polaris 800cc two-cylinder, four-stroke, liquid-cooled engine with an automatic transmission. The combo builds speed at an offensive pace. With just one blip of the gas pedal, the 800-pound beast surges forward, challenged only by driver confidence and open space. The engine is quiet enough so that it won't frighten off animals or offend hikers, yet it vibrates your entire body enough that you know you're in charge of something big. It truly has a feeling all its own. And the best part of all is that you get to share it with your best friend, right beside you.

If only all roads were made of dirt .... That was our first thought after we tested the Ridge Runner RTX800 at Southern California's Hungry Valley OHV Park one sunny afternoon. Driving this new vehicle was an eye-opening experience, to say the least. The RTX800 packs the thrill-ride of an ATV with the safety factor of a sand rail. It was designed to fit in the bed of any fullsize longbed pickup, and is most easily described as a miniature Class 1 car.

However, because of its proportions, the Ridge Runner is quite unlike any conventional race buggy we've seen. It has 19 inches of ground clearance, 13.5 inches of suspension travel, and a nimble 44/56-weight distribution front to rear, which allows for some pretty incredible trail maneuvers. But the really extraordinary thing about this vehicle is the undeniable feeling of safety that occupants experience when strapped into either of the vehicle's two bucket seats. It's like a study in safety overkill. At the RTX800's top speed of 65 mph, you know you're moving, but you don't feel unsafe. It's like riding an ATV, but without the fear of losing a limb in a rollover. Your eyeballs are 17 inches lower in a Ridge Runner than on a standard ATV. Being closer to the ground gives riders an increased sense of speed, like riding down a steep hill on a skateboard, on your stomach. A fully encompassing DOM rollcage was designed by an aviation engineer and the entire chassis was built to keep the center of gravity as low as possible. We piloted our test unit through sandy washes, boulder-strewn stream beds, over 20-inch roller whoops, and even up and over steep hills that made the past climbs of Top Truck Challenge look like molehills. Without a doubt, the Ridge Runner RTX800 is a powerful and capable machine.

Vehicle model: Ridge Runner RTX800
Base price: $16,950
Price as tested: $20,900
Engine: Polaris two-cylinder, liquid-cooled, four-stroke
Displacement (cc): 800
Fuel system: Electronic fuel injection
Transmission: Hi-Lo and Reverse transfer case with Park
Drive axle: Rear/spooled
Brakes: Four-wheel disc
Suspension: Four-wheel independent with Fox Racing Air Shox
Tires/ wheels: 26-inch six-ply radial with optional bead locks
Wheelbase (in): 85.5
Overall width (in): 56
Overall length (in): 122
Weight (lb): 795
Turning radius (ft): 11.9
Ground clearance (in): 19
Seating capacity: Two adults
Fuel capacity (gal.): 8
Cargo capacity (sq. ft.): 10 (cargo deck)
Top speed: 65 mph


Ridge Runner of Idaho

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