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Thread: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

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    Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    Hi,

    I find myself in a position of having to buy two new quads, I have a 12 year old Honda 400 (its been a good work horse but has had its fair share of issues) which is just about ready to die, and a much newer Honda 500 which sadly had an argument with a steep bank last week, and came off bank in a new shape, so it also needs to be replaced. I have had a new 420 and 500 priced (not a cheap experience!) and was just wondering if any one else has moved away from a Honda with a positive experience?

    I look forward to hearing your experiences

    Regards,

    Topdown

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    What dealers are local to you? On our doorstep we have Suzuki and Kawasaki and 3 Honda dealers within 25 miles. I'm not in market for a new quad cos unless something happens like your Honda 500 , my klf 300 will have to do a good few years yet, but then she's only run in at 1800 miles in 17 years, not all my ownership btw. From what I've seen the Suzuki 400 are good machines although i've not used one for a day, the do seem popular around here but one mountain user said to me about 2 weeks ago that the suspension wasn't as good as his previous models and he has been a Suzuki owner for about 30 years.

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    Personally just switched to Can Am Outlander L after being a long term Honda owner. Did so after much deliberation as not had any issues with Honda and dealer is good.
    Can am was significantly cheaper than the Honda. It also has some nice features not found on the Honda - independent rear suspension, higher rack capacity, higher tow capacity, quick fit 'linq' attach system on the racks, 'park' lock on the gear shift - no more worrying about handbrake on steep ground, hitch positioned for much easier access. Rotax engine has excellent reputation.
    Only downsides I've found so far are the need for mudguard extensions which are available as an extra and no hooter!
    Fitting both still leaves it at least 1k cheaper than the Honda auto and several hundred cheaper than the manual.
    Goes like stink too! They do a 450 single cylinder (actually 429 I think so comparable to the Honda 420) and a 500 V twin which I went for.
    Engine braking is excellent too.

    Not many around down here yet, but I understand Can Am are quite popular in Scotland and North of England so there may be a dealer reasonably near you?

    Haven't tried other makes recently but have driven most over the years and wasn't tempted to try anything else.

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    We have a Honda 420 4wd manual shift. Had it for about 4 years now and has not been without its problems. Needed new starter brushes (which you could forgive) then needed a new starter not long after that. There's a relay or regulator thing that needed replaced to the tune of about 180/200 which was draining the battery all the time - a common fault on them. Had silly wee problems such as squeaking/rubbing brake discs and the like as well.

    A really powerful quad and very comfortable. We moved from a late 1990s Honda 250 which was faultless so it was a nice step up. However, if I had a gun to my head I don't know if we would buy another 420. A neighbour changed his 420 for a Suzuki recently, I think a 400 possibly. It's automatic and he says he wouldn't go back to the Honda having owned one. He had gearbox issues with his 420 and that regulator/relay thing as well.

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    Hi, thanks for your replies. Its an interesting observation you made about the CAN-AM I spoke with the local dealer this afternoon and we are hoping to arrange a demo next week, its encouraging to hear your positive experience, I will keep you posted. And thanks again.

    Regards,

    Topdown

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    We have moved from Honda to can-am, the honda was a good bike with few issues but we do prefer the can-am & were on out 3rd now.

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    Changes from Honda to Can-am 3 years ago and will never go back!!!
    Nothing runs like a Deere apart from a Limmy!

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    I'm in a similar situation here, got a can am 450 here on demo looking to change a honda 420fpm.

    Pros for the can am: plenty power, seems strong, good rack capacity, hydraulic discs all round, easy to put trailer on, good sized storage box, wider so a bit more stable than the 420, seams a lot of bike for the money.

    Cons: noisy, not just the usual auto racket but also clattery engine when cruising, throttle is uncomfortable, controls seem illogical compared to honda, only front brake on handlebars no rear, service access doesn't look brilliant, would definitely need the mudguard extensions.

    Personally I don't like riding it and feel you sit on it rather than in it, it is a big heavy bike and not very nimble, also I am not a fan of automatic bikes, just don't see the point in them and hate the noise.

    However it might still be an option as I won't be the one driving it!

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    Senior Member JimF's Avatar
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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    I think I'd stick with Honda. Looks like our SAS rely on them too, and they'll know because when you're in a 'life or death' situation you can mess with any old tat.



    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...our-weeks.html

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    Quote Originally Posted by AndrewG View Post
    I'm in a similar situation here, got a can am 450 here on demo looking to change a honda 420fpm.

    Pros for the can am: plenty power, seems strong, good rack capacity, hydraulic discs all round, easy to put trailer on, good sized storage box, wider so a bit more stable than the 420, seams a lot of bike for the money.

    Cons: noisy, not just the usual auto racket but also clattery engine when cruising, throttle is uncomfortable, controls seem illogical compared to honda, only front brake on handlebars no rear, service access doesn't look brilliant, would definitely need the mudguard extensions.

    Personally I don't like riding it and feel you sit on it rather than in it, it is a big heavy bike and not very nimble, also I am not a fan of automatic bikes, just don't see the point in them and hate the noise.

    However it might still be an option as I won't be the one driving it!
    Didn't try the 450, but I'm surprised it's noisy. The 500 V twin purrs beautifully. Agree there is a wine with the transmission. My neighbour says he can hear me from afar! But the Honda was certainly a noisier engine and another neighbour used to grumble he could hear that where ever I went.
    Haven't found throttle at all uncomfortable - hadn't noticed any difference. Agree to a point on controls - light dip switch doesn't fall to hand quite so easy, and I think they should have put the lights on the second key position instead of first so you don't have to switch 'through' the lights to not have them on.
    Kept looking for right hand brake to start with but used to using foot brake now. Foot brake on my Honda seized up due to lack of use so don't see any advantage in having both.
    Yes you sit up higher but it still feels more stable so that doesn't worry me.

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    Quote Originally Posted by JimF View Post
    I think I'd stick with Honda. Looks like our SAS rely on them too, and they'll know because when you're in a 'life or death' situation you can mess with any old tat.



    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...our-weeks.html
    Is that not a Yamaha?
    Ond lle bu'r arad' ar y ffridd Yn rhywgo'r gwanwyn pr o'r pridd

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    They got can am rotax engines,,,, they are squaddie proof,,
    Big Vern..... Stay low Move faster

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    General thought is the Honda is nothing like the quality or build as they once were. That said if you have a handy good dealer, stick with it. Otherwise the Can-Am is the daddy.

    No local dealer for us, so am on 5th Kaw 650, which is a topping bike, but can see the build quality heading slowly south with that too.

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mur Huwcun View Post
    Is that not a Yamaha?
    I'm sure that one is a Honda, but the other one is defo a Yamaha


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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    Hi,

    Demo machine is due to arrive later this week, had an interesting conversation regarding price, there is very little in it, particularly if you factor in the additional cost Honda ask for to spec the machine with power steering, will let you know how the demo machine performs.

    Regards,

    Topdown

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    Quote Originally Posted by topdown View Post
    Hi,

    Demo machine is due to arrive later this week, had an interesting conversation regarding price, there is very little in it, particularly if you factor in the additional cost Honda ask for to spec the machine with power steering, will let you know how the demo machine performs.

    Regards,

    Topdown
    You do surprise me on price. I presume you're comparing the Honda manual to the Can am? Prices I was given put the Honda manual (with no ps) around 500 dearer than the Can am (with ps). Honda auto was over 1k dearer.
    These are on the 500, didn't price 450 / 420

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    Senior Member Nithsdale Farmer's Avatar
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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    Honda warranty will not be beaten IMO. My bikes dont go to the garage unless something goes wrong - 3 bikes over 6 years, the first and 3rd bike both have been back. 1 was crashed the other the starter relay packed in..... both times the garage sucked through teeth that the service schedule hadnt been honoured so warranty didnt exist. Both times both bikes had ALL parts covered under warranty sorted/replaced and the bike a full once over. I paid for basic serviceand Honda stood on for the rest. (I obv. had to cover body parts etc. on the crashed bike but that was all).
    Happy Days!!

    No experiance of Can-Am, only whats said on here. I might throw another make into the ring, i have a demo coming next week... but it might be a week to forget!
    If in doubt, yank it out!

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    Quote Originally Posted by poorbuthappy View Post
    You do surprise me on price. I presume you're comparing the Honda manual to the Can am? Prices I was given put the Honda manual (with no ps) around 500 dearer than the Can am (with ps). Honda auto was over 1k dearer.
    These are on the 500, didn't price 450 / 420
    Hi,

    Yes I am, for comparison it was a manual 500 honda with no power steering, vs can am auto with power steering (standard spec vs standard spec), there is a little over 200 between them. Depending on the outcome of the demo, it's starting to look like a no-brainer !?!

    Regards,

    Topdown

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    Senior Member Nithsdale Farmer's Avatar
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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    How do the Can-Am's sell 2nd hand? Always something worth considering. I know when we had Suzukis (6 - 11 years ago) i couldnt give them away after 2yr old!! And that was taking them back to Suzuki dealership!... The Hondas can always be shifted.
    If in doubt, yank it out!

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nithsdale Farmer View Post
    How do the Can-Am's sell 2nd hand? Always something worth considering. I know when we had Suzukis (6 - 11 years ago) i couldnt give them away after 2yr old!! And that was taking them back to Suzuki dealership!... The Hondas can always be shifted.
    When I changed my 2yr old honda for a can-am 3yrs ago I got 2500 for it and when - changed that can am last year at 2yr old I got 4000 for it. Similar miles and condition
    Nothing runs like a Deere apart from a Limmy!

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    Senior Member Nithsdale Farmer's Avatar
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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    Quote Originally Posted by sodbuster View Post
    When I changed my 2yr old honda for a can-am 3yrs ago I got 2500 for it and when - changed that can am last year at 2yr old I got 4000 for condition
    What price was the Can-Am new, if you dont mind me asking?
    I get 2000-2250 for the Honda at 4years, depending on condition. Last new one i bought (2 years ago in January - 420FM with power steering) was priced at 4250, so about 2000 to change.

    As an aside, a friend runs Yamahas - he chops them in at around 18months. Last time, he told me he got 4000 for his bike, but a new one is 7100!
    If in doubt, yank it out!

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nithsdale Farmer View Post
    How do the Can-Am's sell 2nd hand? Always something worth considering. I know when we had Suzukis (6 - 11 years ago) i couldnt give them away after 2yr old!! And that was taking them back to Suzuki dealership!... The Hondas can always be shifted.
    The Hondas can always be shifted, all right, in my case after dark!.
    Got a loan of another, that went the next night.
    Surely the best recommendation you can ask for?

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    Quote Originally Posted by JimF View Post
    I think I'd stick with Honda. Looks like our SAS rely on them too, and they'll know because when you're in a 'life or death' situation you can mess with any old tat.



    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...our-weeks.html
    a) Its a Yamaha
    b) I hope he dosnt think that it will stop even a rimfire bullet!

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nithsdale Farmer View Post
    What price was the Can-Am new, if you dont mind me asking?
    I get 2000-2250 for the Honda at 4years, depending on condition. Last new one i bought (2 years ago in January - 420FM with power steering) was priced at 4250, so about 2000 to change.

    As an aside, a friend runs Yamahas - he chops them in at around 18months. Last time, he told me he got 4000 for his bike, but a new one is 7100!
    6500 new for 500cc with power steering last november. The 1 I sold didn't have power steering. Service every 350 hors so twice a year for 100 quid a go. Cheapest bike I have ever ran!
    Nothing runs like a Deere apart from a Limmy!

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    Been quoted 4700 for a new 450 can-am, 5300 for a 500cc with power steering but these where only a quick price over the phone so probably still a bit of room to move if pushed? They also come with 5yr warranty if bought before end of January which is nice.

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    Quote Originally Posted by Welsh hill boy View Post
    Been quoted 4700 for a new 450 can-am, 5300 for a 500cc with power steering but these where only a quick price over the phone so probably still a bit of room to move if pushed? They also come with 5yr warranty if bought before end of January which is nice.
    By the time you put chunky tyres and alloy wheels on and add front and rear bumper bars heated grips knuckle guards and mud guard extensions on you will be same as me cos I was also quoted 5300
    Nothing runs like a Deere apart from a Limmy!

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    If you go on to www.paulchuter.co.uk the Can Am prices are all there. Honda prices are on their website but there will be discount on them, I know 2 years ago it was 10% off list.

    Difficult to compare can am and Honda, for example on can am power steering is only available on a full road legal yellow one which is a 1000 extra

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    Quote Originally Posted by AndrewG View Post
    If you go on to www.paulchuter.co.uk the Can Am prices are all there. Honda prices are on their website but there will be discount on them, I know 2 years ago it was 10% off list.

    Difficult to compare can am and Honda, for example on can am power steering is only available on a full road legal yellow one which is a 1000 extra
    You can have PS on the can am 500 without going to full road legal version. You can't get PS on the Honda manual 500 currently I was told. There should be a bit to play with on those Can am prices too.

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    Quote Originally Posted by sodbuster View Post
    By the time you put chunky tyres and alloy wheels on and add front and rear bumper bars heated grips knuckle guards and mud guard extensions on you will be same as me cos I was also quoted 5300
    Alloys are standard on a dps model. (500 anyway)

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    Re: Is there an alternative to Honda when it comes to quads?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nithsdale Farmer View Post
    What price was the Can-Am new, if you dont mind me asking?
    I get 2000-2250 for the Honda at 4years, depending on condition. Last new one i bought (2 years ago in January - 420FM with power steering) was priced at 4250, so about 2000 to change.

    As an aside, a friend runs Yamahas - he chops them in at around 18months. Last time, he told me he got 4000 for his bike, but a new one is 7100!
    Think you'll find the next 420 a fair bit dearer, unless my dealer has lost his pencil sharpener.


    As I said at the beginning, Hondas haven't hurt me and I wouldn't knock them, but I liked the Can am and the price was right!

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