UTVs of SEMA 2016
WRITTEN BY MIKE ACTON
PICTURES BY MIKE ACTON
Today we’re going to focus on some of the UTVs on display at SEMA this year. According to a report commissioned by SEMA, “82% of owners will upgrade their side-by-sides—usually soon after the vehicle purchase”1 and will spend “an average of $2,102 to accessorize their UTVs.” This has presented a significant opportunity to manufacturers of add-on products, and created an entirely new market segment for sales.
UTV racing has taken off across the globe and some predict this to be the new growth potential for off-road racing in general. By outside appearances UTVs represent a lower cost to get started in racing, attracting new, younger talent to our sport. In reality UTVs are no cheaper to build and race than many other classes, and quite possibly more expensive to repair and maintain over the course of a season. Classes from stock full size, to Jeepspeed, and on to Class 11 VW Beetles have access to cheap replacement parts due to the millions of vehicles on the road. They also benefit from other types of racing that use the same chassis, engines, and parts.
However there is a lot of buzz right now and vehicle manufacturers are producing new models focused on the extreme end of the sport. The new Can-Am Maverick X3 and Polaris RZR XP Turbo EPS are exciting to drive and parts manufacturers are out in force this week. Here are some of the show ponies on display this week.
1“Utility Task Vehicles By the Numbers” SEMA News—July 2014. Accessed November 2, 2016. https://www.sema.org/sema-news/2014/07/utility-task-vehicles-by-the-numbers