ATV vs. UTV: Which Should You Buy?

Riders shopping for a four-wheeled vehicle for work or play must decide between an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) and a utility vehicle (UTV). While the structure and operation of these four-wheelers are similar, they serve different purposes and have distinct strengths. Here’s what off-roading newbies should know before choosing between an ATV and a UTV.

All About ATVs

ATVs are often the best choice for those who plan to go trail riding in their recreational vehicle. These four-wheelers are designed to perform well through the woods and handle rough terrain and tight turns with ease. ATVs can also handle small loads and allow passengers to jump on and dismount quickly.

Driving an ATV requires more control and precise handling, which makes them ideal for those who are planning to purchase this type of vehicle for sports riding. Some ATVs are designed specifically for high-performance racing and riding, while many other models are perfectly suited for a day spent venturing through some rugged trails at a leisurely pace. Overall, ATVs tend to cost less than comparable UTVs.

Benefits of UTVs

UTVs were once used almost exclusively for farm and ranch work, but the new generation of utility models offers plenty of performance and extensive customization opportunities. While most ATVs are designed with a single seat, UTVs allow comfortable transportation of passengers. Some models even have a truck-like cab, which makes them more supportive for older riders. UTVs have a larger cargo hold than ATVs, which is good for those who want to optimize their hauling capabilities for everything from moving scrapwood to holding all the necessary gear for a day spent hunting.

Many UTVs, such as the Polaris models, support an endless array of accessories—from suspension packages to mudder tires—that allow customers to create a vehicle specially designed for the work they do. However, customization of UTVs isn’t all about function—other high-end add-ons include everything from stereo systems to HID lighting and cab heaters.

TC Powersports in central Michigan is a family-owned business with an impressive selection of ATVs and UTVs. Visit our showroom to browse our inventory of new and pre-owned recreational vehicles, set up a test drive, and learn more about our financing programs. We pride ourselves on top-notch customer service and offer a 10 percent military discount on apparel and accessories.