Ski-Doo’s XP chassis has gotten pretty much all the BRP press the last three years but many don’t realize the company introduced a workhorse chassis at the same time.
The XU (the ‘U’ is for utility) platform incorporated all the weight saving chassis design of the XP but focused on extreme durability plus load bearing, towing and deep-snow traction. The big issue is weight and, like almost every Ski-doo model the last couple of years, this one delivers top-of-class lightness.
The 2010 version of the Expedition is available with choices of 2-stroke and 4-stroke power. Tick the 1200cc 4-TEC 4-stroke option box and you get a single throttle body 4-stroke triple with 130 honest stallions.
Go for the 600 SDI 2-stroke and you’ll get about 115. Here’s where things get interesting. The 4-stroke tips the scales at 690 lbs. – very good weight for a 4-stroke utility sled, but the 600 weighs in at a featherweight (for this class) 630 lbs.
These weights are stunning considering the Expedition has a full 156 x 20 x 1.25-incher under it and is supposed to be targeted at pure utility applications. We’re not arguing about its utility designation here, believe us.
The 2-stroke version rides and handles so much like a good touring sled, we can’t help but boost it into the touring category. To further mess up the minds of its competition, the Expedition comes equipped with a sub-tranny, too.
Yes, you’re reading correctly: A sub-transmission with hi-lo, neutral and reverse, electric start and a mega-track underneath plus bunches of touring amenities. The touring goodies include passenger handwarmers, a modular seat with underseat storage, a slick rear rack – even handlebars with a mountain strap, 8-inch riser and j-hooks. Snocross, anyone?
We’re not sure why Ski-Doo opted to use the old SDI semi-direct injected mill instead of the newer tech 600E-TEC engine that is top-of-mind with the powersports world because of its mileage and efficiency.
Frankly, we were long term advocates of the SDI engine and if the E-TEC hadn’t been so good were ready to beg for its return. In this application, it runs strong and delivers ample power to make the riding experience a good one. We kinda like the 4-TEC here a bit more, but it depends on what you want – almost like Ski-Doo already thought of that.