Mark Daniel checked out Honda’s new TRX 520 ATVs.
This combination is said to offer stability and comfort, and give a tight 4.3m turning radius.
The machine uses a frame that is ‘shinari’ tuned -- a Japanese term that describes elasticity and the ability of components to ‘bend’ then return to their original shape, not unlike a hunting bow or fishing rod. The upshot in this case is better handling and ride comfort, with the bonus of prolonged durability.
Power is provided by a 3-cylinder, 812cc, fuel injected 35kW engine.
A CVT-style transmission gives high, low and reverse, and engine braking for control on downhill sections, with overall traction controlled by 2- or 4WD choices and a dual-mode differential.
Controlled braking falls to disc brakes all round.
The suspension set-up is double wishbones in each corner, working with twin tube shock absorbers and coil springs, resulting in a 275mm ground clearance for this 800kg unit.
The wide body configuration allows for a roomy cabin, accommodating three adults side by side and kept safe by three-point safety belts.
Half doors allow easy ingress and exit, while also keeping legs out of the danger zone and keeping mud out of the cabin. A standard hard top/roof also helps with weather protection and can be combined with screens and full door assemblies.
The bench seat layout has two sculptured seats and shoulder bars for the left and right occupants, with a flat pad for the piggy in the middle. Both right hand passengers have handgrips integrated into the ROPS safety frame ensuring security in difficult terrain.
A multi function display includes a digital speedo, fuel gauge, odometer, hour meter and clock. Additionally, dual trip meters, 2- or 4WD indicators and a park brake warning light complete the information available to the driver.
A tilting steering column accommodates drivers of differing sizes and is equipped with electric assistance that is speed sensitive, helping more at lower speeds or when manoeuvring.
A 30L fuel tank is good for a long working day, and is located away from the wheels to prevent impact from hidden obstacles but is also protected by a steel guard.
Helping to keep the machine looking its best are steel front bumpers and a bash guard, and similar rear assemblies -- a first for the PRO-FXR machines.
Completing the package, cast aluminium wheels are fitted with 27-inch bias ply tyres to give off road ability, grip and ride comfort.