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Polaris General XP 4 Long Term Review

Months into using the General as a life companion, we have fallen in love.


It is fitting that on Valentine’s Day, we would get to share the story of a love that has come and gone. This past week, we had to return our long-term Polaris General XP4, and it was a tough goodbye. There is a hole in our hearts now that she’s gone, and we would like to tell you all about why we fell so hard. Here’s our Polaris General XP 4 Long Term Review.

Polaris General XP 4 Long Term Review

Polaris General XP 4 Long Term Review
Sideways shenanigans are the General’s favorite thing. This isn’t a car built for race speed, it is a car built to be fun to drive and deliver smiles down the trail.

Polaris General XP 4 Long Term Review

Polaris General XP 4 1000 Long Term Review Highlights:

  • Versatile to the root of the word – does everything well.
  • Comfortable, filled-out interior with a lot of storage 
  • Plush ride for the whole family
  • Strong and agile enough to be useful for work
  • Earns fun nicknames like “Party Wagon”
Polaris General XP 4 Long Term Review
This year’s Polaris General XP4 Ultimate features two new colorways that we really like – Matte Silver Quartz (shown) and Polaris Blue.

Polaris General XP 4 1000 Long Term Review


Polaris applies the tried and true formula to the General XP4, meaning it gets a version of the RZR XP1000’s ProStar parallel twin. At 999cc and four valves per cylinder, this dual overhead cam engine is kind of like two 450 dirtbike engines joined at the crank. It makes 110 horsepower, produces a great exhaust note, and is responsive yet smooth. It may not be exotic, but it is reliable and plenty capable of hauling the General down the trail at speed. Think of it like the Chevy small block of the UTV world. 


The General is built with a Polaris PVT transmission, which is their terminology for a belt-driven CVT, or Continuously Variable Transmission. It is extremely easy to operate, and it functions fairly smoothly. It does lack a true engine braking system, and the process that Polaris employs often leaves the General skidding downhill instead of rolling slowly. The benefits to the CVT will outweigh the negatives for a lot of buyers, but we do wish that Polaris would beef up the clutching a bit to compensate for the ample weight the General can carry. If you use Low gear religiously where things go uphill, you will extend the life of your belts greatly. 

Polaris General XP 4 Long Term Review


Here is where the General XP puts a leg up on the competition. Its four-wheel dual A-arm setup is tuned well for sporty driving, but also gets huge points for ride quality. The Walker Evans needle valve shocks definitely help – they are supple over rough surfaces, but firm up well for big bumps, and even small whoops. 

The shocks lack anything other than preload and low-speed compression adjustment. Luckily, they are tuned very well. At this price point, and with the Ride Command system, we are surprised Polaris does not employ a Fox Live Valve Dynamix model. Maybe that is something in the works? A General XP4 with the RZR Pro XP’s turbo engine and Dynamix would be incredible. For now, the General does not leave anyone unimpressed with its ride quality or suspension performance. It delivers on the work and play promise.

Polaris General XP 4 1000 Long Term Review


This is another really strong area for the General. It features a fully-skinned interior door panel and a finished dash and center console. There are two armrest storage cubbies with power and four cup holders. Rear seat passengers get to enjoy a ton of room, fairly easy ingress/egress, and a good view of what’s ahead.

The General’s well thought-out interior is nice to look at, but also offers a ton of utility and space for accessories.

Polaris nailed the versatility of the General’s interior, as there are dash pockets and storage cubbies everywhere. Our top-trim Ultimate model came equipped with a Ride Command dash unit and four-speaker Rockford Fosgate stereo system. The stereo lacked a subwoofer, so the sound was quite tinny, but it worked well for a jobsite radio when parked. The Ride Command dash also worked in our favor when working, as it allowed us to make and receive phone calls hands-free from the General. Out on the trail, a full-function GPS unit is always a plus as well. 

Polaris General XP 4 Long Term Review


In the sun, the General’s Black Crystal metallic paint sparkles. It does show dust and dirt fairly quickly. Newer models have migrated to more of a dirt-colored hue.

The General XP 4 comes with Pro Armor Crawler tires, which are different tread patterns front and rear. The tires work well in sand and loamy, wet dirt, but they struggle for feel and feel a little out of place on dry hardpack. The 30 inch tires provide ample ground clearance ride quality. The General also works well on a 32 inch tire, and we tested the High Lifter Chicane LT 32x10R15 on ours recently. Check out this link to see what we thought of the General on 32’s!

This car also has surprisingly good brakes, which work great for hustling the General around a twisty fire road section. This car is a blast to drive, and it will leave you feeling like Ricky Bobby every time you get the chance to hold the throttle to the floor for a bit.

Polaris General XP 4 Long Term Review


Squarely competes with the Yamaha RMAX4 1000 XT-R, Can-Am Commander Max XT 1000R, and Honda Pioneer 1000-5 Trail. Many buyers who do more play than work will cross-shop a Kawasaki KRX 4 as there is no 4-seat version of the Kawasaki Ridge yet. The General is a few thousand dollars more expensive than all of its competition listed here.

Our General XP 4 Ultimate was a welcome addition to our stable, and checks nearly every box a UTV owner could think of.

Polaris General XP 4 1000 Long Term Review


We took delivery of the General XP 4 in the heat of the summer, and used it around the UTV Off-Road facilities as a daily tool. Picking up animal feed, runs to the hardware store, trips to the market or the Post Office became commonplace. Moving trash, dirt, rocks, and brick around the property was the General’s primary duty, and it performs these tasks perfectly. 

Plenty of room for cargo and company – the General was even a favorite with our four-legged crew members. 
The General’s 600-pound dumping cargo bed is wide, deep, and square. It makes work tasks easy.

This is a really easy UTV to live with, but more than that, it is a great companion – the General never once failed to start in our testing, even after leaving the stereo running for hours when working outside. The dump bed never failed to dump a load of dirt, we never blew a belt, and never flatted a tire. The General XP 4 showed up to work every day and never took a day off. It would then work weekends as a play rig. Climbing to mountain peaks, rallying around twisty mountain fire roads, and launching the XP 4 into the air are a lot more fun than working, and the General performs these tasks with the same dedication and reliability as the work chores. 

The General is a workhorse, but it can also turn up the wick and lead a pack of cars through the desert. This is one of the most versatile cars on the market, and at least for now, it holds the top spot in the Sport-Rec 4-seat segment.

Polaris General XP 4 Long Term Review

2024 POLARIS GENERAL XP 4 1000 Specifications

$26,999 – $31,999 (as shown, Ultimate Model, 2024 colors updated)

Engine & Drivetrain
Cooling: Liquid
Cylinders Displacement: 999cc
Drive System Type:  True On-Demand AWD/2WD/ VersaTracTurf Mode
Engine Braking System (EBS): EDA: Engine Deceleration Assist
Engine Type: 4-Stroke DOHC Twin Cylinder
Fuel System/Battery: Electronic Fuel Injection
Horsepower: 110
Transmission/Final Drive: Automatic PVT P/R/N/L/H
Box Capacity: 600 lb (272 kg)
Estimated Dry Weight: 1998 lb (906.3 kg)
Fuel Capacity: 9.5 gal (35.9 L)
Ground Clearance: 13.5 in (34.3 cm)
Hitch Towing Rating: 1500 lb (680 kg)
Overall Vehicle Size (L x W x H): 150.2 x 64 x 77 in (381.5 x 162.5 x 195.1 cm)
Wheelbase: 115 in (292 cm)
Front/Rear Brakes: 4-Wheel Hydraulic Disc with Dual-Bore Front and Rear Calipers
Parking Brake: Park In-Transmission
Front Tires: 30 x 10-15; Pro Armor Crawler XGF or ITP Ultra Cross
Rear Tires: 30 x 10-15; Pro Armor Crawler XGF or ITP Ultra Cross
Wheels: Cast Aluminum
Front Shocks: 2.0” Walker Evans Velocity Series Shocks
Front Suspension: High Clearance Dual A-Arm with Stabilizer Bar, 14 in (35.6 cm) Travel
Rear Shocks: 2.0” Walker Evans Velocity Series Shocks 

Rear Suspension: High Clearance Dual Arm IRS with Stabilizer Bar, 14 in (35.6 cm) Travel