Story by Seth Fargher, photos by Adam Campbell
2012 Kawasaki Teryx 4 Side-x-Side 1st Ride
Amazingly, Kawasaki engineers managed to maintain
similar ergonomics as a two-seater machine while
doubling the carrying capacity with only ten inches
of added overall length. As mentioned, you
won’t have to worry about your knees being crammed
in your chest as there is plenty of legroom for
both rear passengers. One minor note is a
small obstruction on the rear floorboard which forces
longer legged passengers to position themselves
with their knees pointed slightly to one side rather
than straight ahead. Regardless it is unlikely
that your knees will be touching the seat in front
of you. The rear passengers will also appreciate
the grab bar that stretches the entire width of
the machine, reminiscent of a ride at an amusement
park. The bar looks if it might get in the
way or be too close to the passenger, but we preferred
it to the traditional handholds that are usually
near the outer edges of the cage. The bar
allows you to comfortably keep all of your extremities
well within the safety of the roll cage.
Kawasaki engineers didn’t merely stretch out
the Teryx frame but rather reconstructed it to feature
a double-x design to make it stronger and more rigid.
A unique feature of the new frame are the exposed
outer frame rails along the bottom portion of the
machine. At first glance the exposed frame
rails might look unfinished or not as clean as other
units who’s body work covers all exposed areas of
the frame but it all made sense when our hosts encouraged
us to use the frame to pivot around tight trees
if we found it necessary. The frame rails
are the widest point of the machine and offer added
protection from rocks or trees on both the underside
as well as outer edges of the unit. Rock crawlers
will appreciate this feature as it will protect
them from body damage if ground clearance is ever
an issue. However for our test, the Teryx
4’s 10.8 inches was more than enough for most of
the terrain we saw throughout the day.
In terms of comfort features, three of the four
models being offered feature electronic power steering.
We weren’t able to test the base model, the only
one that doesn’t include EPS, however we believe
it’s well worth the extra $1000. There was
never a threat of losing control or having the steering
wheel yanked from your grip by an exposed root or
rock as the EPS provides added dampening.
When exiting turns quickly we were able to allow
the steering wheel to slide freely through our grip
without the threat of it over steering. In
short, we felt in control at all times thanks to
the EPS and we feel it’s well worth the extra money.
Between the digital fuel injection, centrifugal
clutch and CVT transmission, smooth and precise
is the theme of the new Teryx 4 and we think that
you’d be short changing yourself to skimp on power
Regardless of which of the four seats you find
yourself sitting in, there was nothing that stood
out that would make you uncomfortable or possibly
fatigued on a longer ride. At a stand still
one driver felt the control pedals were a little
too far to the right of the cockpit causing the
center console to rub against his calf but it seemed
to be unnoticeable once he put the UTV in motion.
Overall we felt Kawasaki exceeded expectations
and more than satisfied the needs of their target
demographic. You can’t please everyone and
racers or those content to carve dunes or run wide
open in the desert might not find the Teryx 4 to
be their cup of tea. We’re confident everyone
The folks from Kawasaki explained that the ideal
Teryx 4 user is a family looking to explore and
experience the outdoors, together. They envision
the typical user, a family with small kids or perhaps
a group of hunters, loading up a cooler in the storage
compartment, which accommodates a 100 qt cooler
by the way, and having the freedom to take off for
an entire day without having to return because of
fatigue or even in need of refueling.
Engineers intended to provide sporty performance
and top of the line handling while still providing
the additional seating. They did an exceptional
job blending the two as not once did we feel like
we were driving a four seater side by side.
One driver commented that every time he turned around
he was surprised to see two extra seats behind him.
Sand duners and desert enthusiasts might prefer
the extra horsepower and suspension travel of the
Teryxs’ competitors but by and large we felt the
Teryx 4 will appeal to a much broader audience.
With the longer wheelbase and precise steering and
throttle controls, the Teryx 4 will likely be a
hit with rock crawlers as well.
You can read more on each machines specifics
at the below articles
or on Kawasaki’s website but we’d recommend you
get yourself into the drivers seat and see for yourself.
We did and we love what we found!
Teryx4™ 750 4x4
Kawasaki Teryx4™ 750 4x4
Kawasaki Teryx4™ 750 4x4
Kawasaki Teryx4™ 750 4x4