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Dear Motorhead:

Love the show (SnowTrax Television) and watch it every week. Wish I could ride as much as you guys do.

A couple questions hoping you guys might have answers to. Currently I ride a 2009 Ski-Doo MXZ TNT 600 HO E-TEC. I love everything about it and have about 2400 miles on it right now.

I’m starting to ride more often as I have friends to ride with now and I’m curious if you guys know how many miles I can expect out of my 600 E-TEC before I start running into engine trouble?

I ride with 4 Yamaha Apex riders and They’re always telling me to trade to a 4-stroke and I’m hoping to get a lot more out of my E-TEC before spending a couple thousand to upgrade again.

Hope you have an answer and hope to hear from you.

Thanks and keep up the good work on the show and the mag.



Thanks for your email!

Sounds like you need to start riding with some guys who own Ski-Doos! Just kidding.

Here’s the deal – your E-TEC has thousands of trouble free miles left in it. It is absurd to make blanket assumptions like your friends have. Do you ride a 4 stroke engine’s durability or do you ride a snowmobile with a 4-stroke engine? If the only criteria one has for a good snowmobile is durability get a diesel!

I would fully expect your 600 E-TEC with reasonable care and maintenance to last for 10,000 miles. At this point in time I have to ask you – and your Buddies with 4 strokes this question – do you really want to keep the doggone sled at this point?

At ten thousand miles any sled – doesn’t matter what brand – will need serious drive train attention like full primary and secondary re-builds. Suspension bushings front and rear and idler bearings – not to mention drive axle and chain case bearings – will all need attention.

Oh, I know there are people out there riding all different brands of sleds 20, 30, 40 thousand miles and more to prove their point about 2 strokes and 4 strokes. Take this advice – when your sled hits about 6000 miles start thinking about dealing it. In our opinion this is the sweet spot for re-sale.

Beyond that number – and it doesn’t matter if it’s 2 or 4 stroke – re-sale will begin to drop as a result of mileage – not year of manufacture.

Does Yamaha build great engines that last? They certainly do however you need not cower in fear from your bud’s assertions your E-TEC is about to self-destruct. Ride it. Enjoy it. Trade it at 6000 miles and you’ll be in the best place you can be with any sled – no matter the engine.

If you want to ride it 20,000 miles there will be more things to worry about than engine reliability.

Hope this helps!

Motorhead Mark

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