If you own or manage a farm or ranch, you know how useful utility vehicles can be for farm work. For your specific operation, you may want an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) or a utility terrain vehicle (UTV), which is also called a side by side (SXS). The four-wheeler you choose for farm work will depend on what you need to transport, how rough your terrain is, who will be driving the vehicle, and, of course, your budget.
What’s the Difference?
ATVs are smaller. You sit on an ATV like you would on a bike and steer it with handlebars. Most are designed for one person, but some models hold two people. They are easier to handle (follow these safety tips) and less expensive, typically costing $4,500 to $15,000.
UTVs are bigger, with bench or bucket seats for two to four people. They use a steering wheel, have more hauling capacity and can handle rougher terrain. Their bigger size and additional features make them more expensive — you’ll typically pay $7,000 to $30,000 for a UTV.
When it comes to a UTV vs. an ATV for farm work, an ATV might meet your needs if you need to get a single person from place to place, making it a great utility vehicle for small farms. UTVs generally work best for many farms and ranches, though, since they provide more space for people and cargo as well as better towing capability.
Customize Your Ride
When you’re choosing an ATV for farm work or UTV for ranch work, make sure you consider the features and options you need:
- Engine size and transmission
- Passenger capacity
- Cargo capacity
- Towing capacity
- Brush guards
- Dump bed/flatbed/tilt bed
- Reduced noise and vibration
- Lockable storage
- Hard roof
- Roof racks and mounting brackets
- Power steering
- Heating and air conditioning
Farm Utility Vehicles to Consider
Here are some of the leading manufacturers and the farm utility vehicles they offer:
Arctic Cat: Arctic Cat may have built a name for its snowmobiles, but its Prowler SXS line is designed for work.
Can-Am: The Can-Am Defender line includes a six-wheel version for better traction.
Kawasaki: The Mule line of SXS vehicles starts at just $6,849, giving you an affordable entry point for a utility vehicle for your farm.
Polaris: The Polaris Ranger line of UTVs is designed to meet the needs of farmers. They can seat two to six people and come in gas- and electric-powered options.
Yamaha: Yamaha’s Viking SXS line includes a ranch edition that seats six and can haul 600 pounds of cargo.
Make Sure You’re Covered
If you’re adding an ATV or UTV to your farm’s vehicles, you’ll want to make sure it’s protected. Talk to a Farm Bureau agent near you to ensure you have the insurance coverage you need at a price you can afford to safeguard your investment.