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2014 Arctic Cat ZR 5000 LXR Preview


by Guillaume Rivard ,

For 2014, the newly named ZR 5000 LXR is the most affordable member of Arctic Cat's performance sled family, although in reality it's more of a long-distance cruiser than a pure, aggressive trail shredder.

The naturally aspirated, 1,056cc, 4-stroke 5000 C-TEC4 engine that powers the 2014 Arctic Cat ZR 5000 LXR is said to be clean, quiet, fuel-efficient, and devoid of annoying engine braking. This Suzuki-sourced twin-cylinder uses liquid cooling and electronic fuel injection for precise calibration at any RPM, temperature or altitude. With 125 hp (10 hp less than Yamaha-powered ZR 7000 models), it's one of the least-potent engines in the performance class. However, the ProCross chassis, which utilizes a triangulated upper-spar assembly that provides increased strength and reduced weight, should make for a favourable power-to-weight ratio.

The 2014 Arctic Cat ZR 5000 LXR benefits from new, 1lb lighter ski spindles and widely spaced A-arms for superior torsion rigidity and strength. Equipped with new IFP gas shocks (premium shocks are available), the Arctic Race front suspension and revised Slide-Action rear suspension supply 10” and 13.5” of travel, respectively. The latter is relatively simple when compared to the latest Polaris and Ski-Doo multi-adjustment designs. Engineers claim it delivers better all-around ride and handling while offering a suspension that is easy to keep in tune.

The 2014 Arctic Cat ZR 5000 LXR's 15”x129” Ripsaw II track has tiny 1” lugs, clearing favouring drag-free acceleration and top speed over grip and stability. On the plus side, the ski stance is adjustable from 42”-43”, while the narrow, tapered, two-piece tunnel and newly shaped seat with increased foam combine for improved ergonomics and control.

The LXR package makes the ZR 5000 a full-on comfort machine with features like a heated seat, medium-height windshield, rear storage bag, and electric start. The deluxe gauge lets you choose between digital and analog speed and tachometer readouts. There's also an odometer, two trip meters, an engine hour metre, reverse indicator, and warning lights. The adjustable handlebar comes with high/low hand & thumb warmers. If you plan to ride with a passenger, a two-up seat appears on the options list.

2014 Arctic Cat ZR 5000 LXR
Photo: Arctic Cat

You can buy a 2014 Arctic Cat ZR 5000 LXR for just $12,399. Competition includes the Yamaha FX Nytro and RS Vector, Polaris 800 Indy SP, and Ski-Doo GSX LE.