Choosing a Utility Side by Side

Bryan Cunningham
By Bryan Cunningham
5 Min Read

Many people find they benefit from buying a side-by-side. These off-road vehicles can be used for both work and recreation. They make hauling items effortless. However, the right model must be purchased. What should you consider when deciding which vehicle is right for your needs?

Do Research

When researching side-by-sides, you need to consider several things. Take into account how the vehicle will be used and what engine size and power are needed. Comfort and safety features should not be overlooked, but reliability and durability must be priorities. Finally, look into the cost of the machine and the value to determine the overall cost of ownership for different models. The goal is to get the best value for the money and the best utility side by side.

Think About How You Will Use It

Consider how and where you will primarily use your utility side-by-side. Do you need one that can muscle through tough terrain and challenging trails? Will you mainly use it around your property for landscaping, maintenance, and outdoor chores? Understanding your usage will help narrow the options. If you’ll need to tow heavy loads, focus on models with increased towing capacities. If maneuverability is key, seek out ones with tighter turning radiuses and tri-mode power steering.

Choosing a Utility Side by Side

Take Some Test Drives

Once you’ve narrowed down the choices, it’s time to schedule some test drives. Pay attention to the suspension and see how it absorbs bumps. A smooth and comfortable ride is key for recreational trail riding. Take it onto some rougher terrain as well, even small hills or rocks to test ground clearance and traction. Turn the steering wheel completely left and right while stationary to gauge maneuverability in tight spots.

Don’t be shy about testing all the features like flipping on four-wheel-drive, using the gear selector, checking auxiliary power ports, and seeing how responsive the brakes are. Also, consider ergonomics. Check that you can reach all the controls comfortably and that you have enough legroom. Getting a thorough feel behind the wheel will ensure you select the right side-by-side for your needs.

Inspect Build Quality and Components

As you test drive, take time to inspect the overall build quality and look closely at components like the tires, wheels, dump bed, and hitch system. Check for sturdy welds, thick metal plating protecting key areas underneath, and quality branded parts and components. This can give you insight into the long-term durability you can expect. Also, pay attention to safety features like seat belts, nets, roll bars, and handling at higher speeds.

Choose What Fits Your Budget  

With so many options, features, and capabilities to consider, these vehicles span an enormous price range. Make sure to choose one that fits both your needs and your budget. Setting a firm ceiling for what you can spend will help narrow the options.

Trust Your Instincts

Finally, as you evaluate the test drives and weigh the options, don’t underestimate the importance of your personal feelings and impressions. Consider the inputs, do the analysis, read reviews and feedback from other owners, but also listen to your instincts on things that numbers can’t always capture, such as how comfortable you felt driving it, how easily you could control and maneuver it, and your overall level of confidence behind the wheel. Finding just the right utility side-by-side involves careful research and evaluation, but also trusting your gut when making the final decision.

Investing in a utility side-by-side is a major purchase, but taking the time upfront to carefully assess your needs and research options will pay dividends every time you use it. Focusing on build quality, test driving different models, and finding one suited to both your property tasks and budget will ensure you wind up with a rugged, long-lasting vehicle. Use this straightforward guide to match the perfect utility side-by-side to your priorities. Before long you’ll be hauling, towing, and getting jobs done around your land with confidence and ease in your new go-to vehicle.

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My name is Bryan, and I'm just your average guy trying to navigate through this crazy thing called life. I'm a lover of all thing's sports, music, and food related. Don't be shy, drop me a message and let's connect! ?? #livelaughlove #foodie #sportsfanatic #musiclover
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