2014 Kawasaki Teryx LE - Off-Road AlternativesPosted in Vehicle Reviews on March 7, 2014
Kawasaki makes a full range of side-by-side vehicles, but the 2014 Teryx LE grabs our attention first because it’s loaded with high-performance features right off of the showroom floor.
The Fox Podium Shox with color-matched lime-green coil springs are the first hint that this is more than a utility side-by-side, and the aggressively styled front brush guard and LED headlights drive the point home a little further.
Underneath the bodywork, there’s a newly tuned, liquid-cooled 783cc, 90-degree V-twin engine. The V-twin is fed by dual 36mm Mikuni throttle bodies. Digital fuel injection compensates for altitude and ambient air temperature as well as coolant temperature, throttle position, vehicle speed, and crankshaft angle to feed the ideal fuel/air mix into the combustion chambers. The 90-degree V-twin engine configuration reduces vibration, which in turn increases comfort for the driver and passenger. When combined, the engine upgrades result in 26-percent more horsepower and 12-percent more torque compared to last year’s engine. A final added bonus: Fuel economy, too, is improved.
We mentioned suspension performance, and while the Fox Podium Shox are certainly attention-grabbing they’re not the whole story. The color-matched front and rear control arms give the Teryx LE a fully-independent suspension system equipped with four-wheel drive. The front suspension benefits from an anti-sway bar to keep the handling stable and predictable through tight bends and tricky trail sections. Suspension travel measures 8 inches up front and 8.3 inches out back. The Teryx LE’s track width still allows it to be transported in the back of most fullsize pickup trucks. The ride is customizable thanks to adjustable spring preload and 24 clicks of adjustable compression damping on the reservoir-equipped Fox Podium Shox. All told, this suspension and handling package is ready to play hard from day one.
Between the engine and the suspension, there’s a CVT (continuously variable transmission) and a three-position transfer case linking the power to the wheels. The CVT features high and low ranges plus a reverse gear. The transfer case can be shifted between 2WD, 4WD, and 4WD with the center differential locked. On top of that, the front differential can be locked to produce ultimate traction in slippery situations.
The Teryx LE can work hard, and it’s equipped with a 600-pound capacity cargo bed. Need to tow? The Teryx LE can pull up to 1,300 pounds.
We like side-by-sides that match our trucks. You know: Work hard, play harder. The 2014 Kawasaki Teryx LE is good to go, right from the get-go.