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Are Kawasaki ATVs Good?

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Kawasaki ATVs are a popular choice among powersports enthusiasts looking for a versatile and powerful all-terrain vehicle. As one of the “Big Four” Japanese manufacturers, Kawasaki has a reputation for building high-performance motorcycles and other powersports vehicles. Their ATV lineup includes sport and utility models ranging from youth quads to large displacement 4×4 workhorses.


While Kawasaki ATVs are known for their power and capabilities, there is some debate around their overall quality and reliability compared to rivals like Honda, Yamaha and Polaris. Some riders feel that other brands offer better fit and finish, more refinement, and improved durability. However, Kawasaki still has many loyal owners who are attracted to the performance and value offered by models like the Brute Force and Mule PRO series.


In this article, we’ll take an in-depth look at the pros and cons of Kawasaki ATVs to examine if they live up to their reputation and are a good choice for potential owners. We’ll explore Kawasaki’s build quality, owner experiences, top models, and how their quads compare against the competition.

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Kawasaki’s Reputation for Quality and Reliability

Kawasaki has built a strong reputation for manufacturing high-quality powersports vehicles over the decades. The Japanese company is well known for making durable and powerful motorcycles as well as personal watercraft like Jet Skis. Kawasaki first began producing motorcycles in the 1950s and expanded into ATVs (All Terrain Vehicles) in the 1980s. Today, Kawasaki ATVs are known for their powerful and reliable engines.

When it comes to quality and reliability, Kawasaki has a reputation for being good but not necessarily the best. According to some Kawasaki ATV owners, their models may not have the pinnacle of quality when compared to rivals like Honda or Yamaha. However, most owners agree that Kawasaki engines are durable workhorses that can stand the test of time. Their fit and finish is also better than lower-end competitors.

One downside that Kawasaki faces is offering fewer model configurations and options than leading competitors. For example, brands like Polaris and Honda tend to offer consumers more choices when it comes to things like transmission, tire size, special editions etc. However, the models that Kawasaki does produce consistently offer the quality and performance that the brand is known for.


Powerful and Durable Engines

One of the main reasons Kawasaki ATVs have built a reputation for quality and reliability is their powerful and durable engines. Kawasaki uses large-displacement V-twin engines in many of its ATV models, which provide excellent low-end torque and smooth power delivery. The 750cc and 700cc V-twin engines found in models like the Brute Force and Prairie are designed for hard recreational and utility use, with features like overhead cams, electronic fuel injection, and liquid cooling.

These motors are known to produce ample power even under heavy loads or when climbing hills and inclines. Owners report getting thousands of trouble-free miles out of these engines with proper maintenance. Things like valve adjustments and oil changes are relatively straightforward on Kawasaki’s V-twins. The engine design also keeps vibration low, increasing rider comfort during long days working or trail riding.

In build quality and materials, the engines feature strong components like forged pistons and carburized crankshafts. This adds to their reputation for durability under pressure. Kawasaki engines may not make the highest horsepower in their segments, but they have a workhorse reliability that owners appreciate.


Fewer Models Than Competition

One area where Kawasaki lags behind competitors like Polaris and Honda is in the number and variety of ATV models offered. Kawasaki’s ATV lineup is much smaller, with fewer options and configurations to choose from.

For example, Polaris offers over a dozen different ATV models across utility, sport, and youth segments. There are options with 2WD or 4WD, various engine sizes and power outputs, premium or budget trims, etc. Honda also has a wide range of ATVs to suit different needs.

In contrast, Kawasaki’s 2022 ATV lineup only consists of 4 models: the Brute Force 300, Brute Force 750, Mule 4010, and Mule Pro-FX. There are far fewer choices compared to the competition.

While Kawasaki ATVs are still highly capable, this more limited selection can be a drawback for buyers looking for specific features or configurations. Those wanting a wide range of models to choose from may be better served looking at other brands.


Good But Not Best-in-Class Quality

While Kawasaki ATVs have a solid reputation for quality and reliability, some owners feel they fall slightly short of being the absolute best when it comes to fit and finish. Kawasaki is known for making powerful and durable engines, but some of the supporting components may not quite match the standards set by premium ATV brands.

For example, some owners report minor vibrations or louder cabins compared to rivals like Honda or Polaris. The plastics and body panels may not have the same refined look and feel as a top-tier ATV. Overall, Kawasaki offers very good quality control and reliability, but lacks some of the attention to detail and luxury appointments found on premium ATV models.

Additionally, Kawasaki offers fewer configurations and options compared to competitors. While their ATVs showcase excellent engineering and performance fundamentals, there are fewer “bells and whistles” to customize the riding experience. As a result, some owners seeking the utmost in fit, finish, and customizability may find Kawasaki’s offerings to be good, but not necessarily best-in-class.

However, this focus on high-performance essentials allows Kawasaki to deliver strong value. Buyers get durability and power without paying premium prices. So ultimately, Kawasaki provides excellent quality for the price, even if it falls just short of top honors when compared to rivals.


What Owners Love About Kawasaki ATVs

Kawasaki ATVs are beloved by many owners for their powerful V-Twin engines that provide excellent low-end torque for towing and hill climbing. The fuel-injected motors deliver smooth, linear power across the rpm range that makes accelerating, cruising, and climbing effortless. Owners consistently praise the strong performance from Kawasaki’s large displacement engines.

The ride quality on Kawasaki ATVs is also a standout feature. The long travel suspension soaks up bumps and ruts on the trail, while the plush, adjustable seats keep the ride comfortable for hours of riding. The combination delivers a smooth and stable ride quality that owners appreciate.

Kawasaki uses quality components and good fit and finish on their ATVs. From the brakes to the drivetrain and everything in between, owners report that the parts feel solid and built to last. Attention to detail in manufacturing and using proven components lead to fewer issues down the road.


Excellent Value and Performance

One of the biggest reasons Kawasaki ATVs are so popular is the excellent value and performance they provide for the price. Compared to premium offerings from Honda or Yamaha, Kawasaki ATVs often cost significantly less while still offering great capabilities both on-trail and off-road.

For example, the Kawasaki Brute Force 750 4x4i can be purchased brand new for under $10,000 in most cases. This gets buyers a fuel-injected 749cc V-twin engine with ample low-end torque, fully independent suspension, selectable 2WD and 4WD, and high/low range gearing – at a price that’s thousands less than a comparable Honda Rancher or Yamaha Grizzly 700. You simply get more ATV for your money with Kawasaki.

The same goes for the smaller displacement Kawasaki Brute Force 300. It retails for around $5,000 yet still offers a 271cc fuel-injected engine, disc brakes, and plush suspension. You’ll be hard-pressed to find another entry-level ATV that provides that level of performance and capability at such an affordable price point.

While Kawasaki ATVs may not have the same premium fit-and-finish or brand cachet as the Japanese competition, most owners agree you can’t beat the performance, reliability, and capabilities Kawasaki offers at every price level. For serious ATV enthusiasts on a budget, few brands can match the excellent value Kawasaki provides.


Large Dealer Network

One of the key advantages of buying a Kawasaki ATV is the manufacturer’s extensive dealer network. With over 1,000 authorized dealers across the United States, Kawasaki has more brick-and-mortar retail locations than most other ATV brands.

This widespread dealer network provides Kawasaki owners with easier access to sales, parts, and service compared to more niche ATV manufacturers. Having a local dealer nearby is a major perk – allowing owners to conveniently shop for accessories or get their ATV serviced without traveling long distances.

The size and reach of their dealer network demonstrates that Kawasaki has made the necessary investment into infrastructure to properly support their customers across the country. Buyers can feel confident that they’ll have access to knowledge sales staff, factory OEM parts, and qualified technicians to keep their ATV running for years to come.

While other brands may have fewer total dealers, Kawasaki’s focus on making dealerships readily available nationwide is a strong advantage. Having accessible and professional support from a local authorized dealer makes owning a Kawasaki ATV an even more appealing proposition for many riders.


Common Complaints About Kawasaki ATVs

While Kawasaki ATVs offer excellent performance and value, they aren’t without some downsides compared to competitors. Here are some of the most common complaints from Kawasaki ATV owners:


  • Less models and configurations than rivals – Kawasaki offers fewer ATV models and trim levels than brands like Polaris, Honda and Can-Am. This means less choice for buyers looking for specific features or performance levels.
  • Not seen as the pinnacle for reliability – Although Kawasaki engines are known to be durable, some owners report more issues compared to Japanese rivals like Honda or Yamaha. There are concerns over quality control and longevity from a portion of owners.


Kawasaki produces high-performance ATVs at an affordable price point, which can mean reliability and refinement is not on the same level as more premium brands. While they offer excellent value, some buyers are willing to pay more for improved quality control and long-term dependability from competitors.


The Bad – Common Complaints About Kawasaki ATVs

One of the most common complaints from Kawasaki ATV owners is that the ride can be noisy and rough compared to some competitor models. Kawasaki ATVs are known for their powerful V-twin engines, which deliver excellent torque but can vibrate more than single-cylinder motors. The engine noise is also higher than some rival brands. While great for performance, the trade-off is often a rougher and louder ride.

Kawasaki ATVs also tend to use basic suspension components to keep costs down. This can make the ride bouncier over rough terrain compared to premium suspension on models like the Honda Rancher or Polaris Sportsman. Basic shocks lack adjustability and damping control of higher-end units. Combined with a stiff chassis, the ride comfort suffers on rocky trails or at higher speeds.

Owners report the Kawasaki Brute Force and Prairie models exhibit more engine noise and vibration than competitors. The lack of refinement means a rougher ride for the pilot and passenger. Noise-reduction measures like rubber engine mounts are not used extensively. While these ATVs have excellent power and capability, the trade-off is higher noise and vibration.

For recreational and utility use, the noisy and rough ride may not be an issue. But for all-day comfort across varying terrain, many riders prefer ATVs with more refinement. While not a deal-breaker, it’s a commonly cited downside of some Kawasaki ATV models.


Less Refinement Than Premium Models

While Kawasaki ATVs offer excellent performance and value, some riders note that they lack some of the refinement and features found on more premium models from brands like Polaris, Can-Am, and Honda. This is especially noticeable when comparing the Kawasaki Brute Force to machines like the Polaris RZR XP Turbo or Can-Am Maverick X3.

Areas where riders notice less refinement include the overall fit and finish, with some cheap plastic components versus metal and carbon fiber on premium models. The suspension is good but basic, lacking high-end shocks with compression/rebound adjustability. You also miss out on features like power steering, advanced GPS navigation, and Bluetooth connectivity which are common on premium side-by-sides.

The tradeoff is that you can get a very capable Kawasaki ATV for thousands less than a loaded premium side-by-side. But if you want the utmost luxury and features, Kawasaki may not be the best choice currently. The fit-and-finish and ride comfort lag behind when doing a direct comparison to premium brands.


Weak Resale Value

One downside commonly cited by Kawasaki ATV owners is that they tend to have weaker resale values compared to segment leaders like Honda and Polaris. While Kawasakis are known for their durability and longevity, the resale prices tend to depreciate faster than the competition. This can make it more difficult to recoup your initial investment if you decide to sell or trade-in a used Kawasaki ATV after a few years of ownership.

There are a few factors that contribute to the weaker resale values of Kawasaki ATVs compared to rivals:


  • Less brand cachet – Kawasaki isn’t seen as a premium brand for ATVs like Honda or Polaris.
  • Fewer model options – With fewer ATV models, there is less demand in the used market.
  • Less refined features – Kawasakis are seen as more basic machines without all the bells & whistles of pricier models.
  • Smaller dealer network – Not as many potential buyers shopping at Kawasaki dealers.


So while Kawasaki ATVs represent a great value for purchase price, owners need to be prepared to potentially take a larger hit on depreciation compared to other major ATV brands. However, for buyers planning to keep their ATV long-term, this may not be a significant downside.


Best Kawasaki ATV Models

When it comes to the best Kawasaki ATV models, there are a few standouts that consistently receive praise from owners and reviewers. Here are some of the most popular and capable options:


Brute Force 750

The Kawasaki Brute Force 750 is one of their flagship ATVs, known for its brawny 749cc V-twin engine that provides plenty of low-end torque. It’s a great choice for recreational riders who want power for climbing hills and hauling loads. The EPS model adds power steering for easier handling.


Brute Force 300

For a smaller and more affordable Brute Force, the 300 still packs a punch with its 271cc single-cylinder engine. It’s lightweight and nimble, making it a good choice for younger or smaller riders. The automatic transmission keeps operation simple.


Mule PRO Series

The Mule PRO side-by-side UTVs are Kawasaki’s rugged and versatile workhorses. Available in 2-seat and 3-seat configurations, they provide good power, payload capacity, and towing ability. The transmissions and 4WD systems are built to handle tough chores and terrain.

Whether you need brute force recreational abilities or maximum utility, Kawasaki has some of the best ATV/UTV models available from major manufacturers.


Considerations For Buyers

When evaluating Kawasaki ATVs for purchase, here are some tips to consider:


  • Test ride different models to get a feel for power, handling, comfort and capability
  • Research reliability of the specific model year you’re interested in
  • Factor in maintenance costs and availability of parts
  • Consider what type of riding you’ll be doing – trails, utility, mudding, etc.
  • Compare pricing and features to other brands like Honda, Yamaha, Polaris, etc.
  • Think about resale value and long-term ownership costs
  • Make sure there is a local Kawasaki dealer that can service the ATV
  • Read owner reviews online to learn about real world experiences
  • Determine your must-have features vs. wants to find the right model
  • Examine the warranty coverage to understand what’s protected


By evaluating your needs and researching Kawasaki ATV models thoroughly, you can determine if a Kawasaki is the right fit for your riding style and budget.



After examining the pros and cons of Kawasaki ATVs, it’s clear they offer excellent value and performance for the price. Kawasaki has a reputation for building powerful and durable engines, and their ATVs are known for smooth, comfortable rides. Owners praise the strong V-twin power, quality components, straightforward maintenance, and large dealer network.

However, Kawasaki ATVs do have some downsides. They offer fewer models and configurations compared to competitors, and may not have the refinement or features of premium ATVs. Some owners report noisy, rough rides and weaker resale values. Reliability is good but not considered best-in-class by everyone.

Overall, Kawasaki ATVs provide a great blend of power, comfort, and affordability. For riders prioritizing value and capability over premium features and status, Kawasaki models like the Brute Force 750/300 and Mule PRO series are excellent choices. While not perfect, Kawasaki ATVs deliver strong performance at reasonable prices for most recreational riders.

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Kawasaki ATV Q&A

Kawasaki ATVs are very popular in Canada due to their reputation for reliability, durability, and performance. The Brute Force and Prairie models are especially popular, known for their ability to handle Canadian terrain and weather conditions. Kawasaki has a strong dealer network across the country to support owners.

Some of the most popular Kawasaki ATV models available from Canadian dealers include:


Brute Force 300: A great entry-level sport ATV.

Brute Force 650/750: Powerful and versatile mid-size ATVs.

Teryx KRX 1000: Kawasaki’s high-performance sport side-by-side.

Mule Pro-MX: A heavy-duty side-by-side built for work.

Prairie 360: An excellent value utility ATV.


Kawasaki Canada offers a range of engine sizes and purposes like recreation, sport, utility, and farm work.

Most Kawasaki ATVs and side-by-sides sold in Canada are built in the company’s U.S. manufacturing plants. This includes locations in Lincoln, Nebraska and Buffalo, New York. Some utility ATV models like the Mule Pro-MX side-by-side are assembled in Kawasaki’s factory in Tecate, Mexico.

Riding an ATV in Canada requires proper preparation:


– Wear a DOT or Snell-approved helmet, goggles, gloves, over-the-ankle boots, long sleeve shirt and pants.

– Carry a first aid kit and survival supplies like a knife, fire starter kit, flashlight in case you get stuck.

– Install a winch and snow plow if riding in winter conditions. Use extra caution.

– Take an ATV safety training course. Know all operation controls.

– Get appropriate license and registration. Obey trail regulations.

– Use specialized oils and lubricants designed for cold weather.


Taking safety precautions prepares you for challenging Canadian landscapes when riding a Kawasaki ATV.

Several key design factors make ATVs like the Kawasaki Brute Force and Mule Pro series well-suited for hunting and farming applications in Canada:


– Strong towing capacity to pull equipment and trailers.

– All-wheel drive is great for accessing remote locations.

– Comfortable seating positions for long days.

– Large load beds and storage space for gear and crops.

– Robust suspension for uneven terrain and jumps.

– Available accessories like gun scabbards, winches, snow plows and cold-weather add-ons.


Kawasaki engines deliver plenty of low-end torque important for farms, trails and heavy loads. These capabilities make them very popular ATVs and UTVs for Canadian sportsmen, farmers and ranchers.

Kawasaki offers a range of engine types and sizes for Canadian riders:


– 271cc single-cylinder on the Brute Force 300.

– 695cc two-cylinder on the Brute Force 750.

– 999cc twin-cylinder on the Teryx KRX 1000.

– 783cc twin-cylinder on the Mule Pro-MX side-by-side.


Most sport and utility ATVs use four-stroke engines, providing good fuel economy and power. Several side-by-sides feature liquid cooling for improved performance. Kawasaki’s V-twin and parallel-twin engines deliver smooth, strong acceleration ideal for Canadian trails and chores.

Yes, Kawasaki Canada partners with Tricor Insurance and Kawasaki Credit to offer financing and insurance options to Canadian customers including:


– Low ATV finance rates and flexible terms through Kawasaki Credit.

– Extended warranty plans to protect your investment.

– Gap insurance to cover any loan balance owed.

– Comprehensive insurance covering fire, theft, vandalism and more through Tricor.


Utilizing Kawasaki financial services allows Canadian riders to conveniently finance and protect a new Brute Force or Mule ATV purchase.

To keep your Kawasaki running strong across long Canadian winters you should follow these maintenance tips:


– Change engine oil and filter according to owner’s manual intervals.

– Lubricate all pivot points and cables regularly.

– Check and adjust valve clearance clearance at proper intervals.

– Inspect air filter frequently when riding in dust or snow.

– Check tire tread depth and pressure before each ride.

– Clean radiator and check coolant strength before winter.

– Consider full skid plate kits to protect underside.


See your dealer if you notice any unusual noises, shifting issues or performance changes. Proper maintenance is key for safe, reliable riding.

Yes, Kawasaki dealers across Canada carry a full selection of accessories and upgrades to customize your ATV including:


– Plows, winches, hitches for utility use.

– Windshields, bumpers, guards for protection.

– Tires, rims, shocks for improved performance.

– Racks, bags, gun scabbards for storage and hauling.

– Heated grips, thumb warmers, seat pads for cold weather.

– LED lights, graphics kits, custom seats for style.


Whether you want to boost capability for farm work or customize the look, Kawasaki’s large accessory catalog has you covered.

Here are my top tips for safely riding your Kawasaki ATV in frigid Canadian winter conditions:


– Invest in snow-specific tires with aggressive tread for traction.

– Add extra weight over the rear wheels to increase grip. Sand bags work well.

– Install a winch and plow to manage deep snow on trails.

– Dress in layers and avoid cotton that holds moisture.

– Carry emergency supplies like a flashlight, fire starter, snack bars.

– Ride slowly and avoid sudden acceleration or braking.

– Let the engine warm up 5+ minutes before full-throttle operation.

– Consider a battery blanket and oil pan heater for cold starts.


Following winter-specific preparations and smart trail techniques allows you to fully enjoy your Kawasaki even during extreme Canadian winters.

Kawasaki ATVs like the Brute Force and Mule Pro series are designed to excel in muddy, wet conditions common across Canada thanks to:


– Snorkel air intakes allowing deep water crossings.

– Strong sealed differentials and drive shafts.

– Waterproof electronics and connectors.

– Steel cargo beds and foot wells avoiding corrosion.

– Large tread lug tires for traction in mud.

– Beefy suspension travel to traverse holes and ruts.


Following proper maintenance procedures, a Kawasaki ATV can handle miles of Canadian mud riding thanks to water protection measures integrated into their design.

Yes, Kawasaki maintains an extensive dealer network across Canada offering sales, service and parts availability including:


– Certified technicians performing warranty repairs, scheduled maintenance and complex overhauls.

– Genuine OEM Kawasaki parts in stock for performance repairs and accessories.

– Online parts lookup and ordering capability.

– Trained staff helping diagnose issues and make repair recommendations.


Kawasaki Canada proudly backs every sale with specialized service staff, parts availability and customer support.

Yes, every new Kawasaki ATV sold in Canada is covered by a standard manufacturer’s warranty including:


– 12 months warranty with unlimited mileage.

– Coverage of parts, components and labor in case of defect.

– Honored by every authorized Canadian Kawasaki dealer.

– Transferable to subsequent owners within term limits.

– Extended coverage options available to further protect your investment.


Kawasaki provides reliable factory-backed coverage to give Canadian riders peace of mind with every ATV purchase.

Kawasaki has issued several past safety recalls applicable to Canadian ATV owners including:


2017: Fuel pump failure risk on Teryx models.

2016: Potential loss of steering control on Brute Force ATVs.

2015: Fuel tank issue with Mule Pro side-by-sides.

2012: Brake caliper corrosion in cold climates.


Owners can check the Transport Canada database using their VIN to see if any open recalls apply to their ATV requiring free inspection or repair from their local dealer.

Yes, the Kawasaki Factory Rider Training School provides hands-on instruction to Canadian owners including:


– Certified trainers with extensive competition experience.

– Operation briefing covering controls and safety.

– One-on-one training tailored to your experience level.

– Obstacle course and trail ride sessions.

– Post-class debrief reviewing your progress.


Taking training helps instill proper riding skills, prevent accidents and ultimately get the most enjoyment from your Kawasaki ATV when riding challenging Canadian terrain.

Follow these tips for securely transporting your Kawasaki ATV around Canada’s vast landscape:


– Use a specialized ATV hauler or trailer with ramp for loading.

– Properly secure machine using tie-down straps through multiple anchor points.

– Ensure lighting is operational and meets federal towing requirements.

– Verify trailer’s weight capacity exceeds ATV curb weight.

– Cross-check all mirrors and blind spot visibility from tow vehicle.

– Carefully load/unload to avoid tipping when climbing ramps.

– Make sure machine is in neutral gear without parking brake engaged during transport.


Taking steps to safely haul your ATV ensures you can reliably explore Canada without worrying about transportation issues.

Some prime off-road trails and destinations across Canada for enjoying your Kawasaki ATV include:


– Whistler mountain biking park in British Columbia.

– Drumheller badlands route with striking hoodoos and terrain.

– Coastal beaches on Vancouver Island.

– Remote fishing lakes of Northern Ontario.

– Rugged Gaspesie peninsula trails in Quebec with climbs, mud and hills.

– Sand dunes and coastal routes in Prince Edward Island.

– Mountain trails of Alberta’s Kananaskis Country and Banff.


Canada’s diverse geography offers unlimited adventure possibilities to experience on a capable Kawasaki ATV.

Below are top tips for getting your Kawasaki ATV ready to ride in frigid Canadian winter conditions:


– Install winter-specific tires with stiff rubber compound and deep knobby tread.

– Run engine for 5+ minutes before hard acceleration to circulate warm oil.

– Upgrade to synthetic engine oil designed to flow in sub-zero temperatures.

– Coat metal parts with anti-rust protectant to resist road salt corrosion.

– Charge and load-test battery ensuring sufficient cranking power.

– Replace wiper blades ensuring good visibility clearing snow or mud buildup.

– Carry emergency supplies like a headlamp, fire starter, extra gloves.


Prep ahead of winter so your Kawasaki ATV will start, run and handle regardless of how low the mercury dips across Canada’s cold landscape.

Not at this time – Kawasaki’s current Canadian ATV and side-by-side lineup consists entirely of gas-powered models ranging from 271cc to 999cc engine sizes. Key factors influencing this include:


– No electric model currently meets towing, load and range demands of utility buyers.

– Gas engines continue offering performance advantages for recreational riders.

– Rural owners have limited electric charging capability.


However, with the major rise of electric vehicles, Kawasaki engineers are likely evaluating prototype electric powertrains that may reach production in coming years to complement gas-powered recreational, sport and utility ATVs.

When getting your first ATV, buying new from an authorized Canadian Kawasaki dealer allows you to take advantage of:


– Latest engineering and design improvements.

– Factory warranty backing all components.

– Assured full service history and no hidden issues.

– Newest technology like fuel injection, ABS, power steering.

– Financing incentives and potential rebates.


However, buying used can make sense finding a low-mileage, well-maintained model and using savings for accessories like plows or saddle bags. Test ride and inspect any used ATV before purchase.

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