Determining winners in the annual Supertrax Best In Class selections requires the combined brainpower of seasoned Supertrax editors and opinionated test riders. Co-Publishers and brothers Kent and Mark Lester present their arguments for each winner and runner-up.
WINNER: ARCTIC CAT PROCROSS 1100LXR
I know this is a completely new sled this year and, under your unrelenting criteria, “hasn’t had enough consumer testing yet” to officially rate a win (I’m being sarcastic here).
The fact is, however, before the first snowflake hit the ground this season, I had personally put almost three hundred miles on this chassis and particularly, a lot of miles on the non-turbocharged Procross 1100. Come to think of it, at that point in the season, I may have ridden this sled more than any other non-Arctic Cat employed consumer or media person in the world.
Last February, on one pre-production adventure, I rode this sled from Montana into Idaho and back and I’ve gotta admit, it was probably the best day’s riding of my winter.
I was impressed with the 1100 LXR’s great handling and doubly impressed with its great ride. However, what really sent me reeling was the integration of this all-new platform with its 4-stroke twin.
This sled feels as light as a 2-stroke and its power delivery is a close match to one, too. Frankly, this is the first 4-stroke snowmobile I’ve ridden that didn’t feel compromised in some way.
Big Mile competence usually boils down to ergonomics and this sled is so comfortable and so confidence inspiring, whether you’re sitting or standing it just feels perfect. Its seating position, footrests, instruments, switchgear, controls, even the brake lever are a pleasure to ply and seem to be tremendously well thought-out.
This snowmobile will leave owners with a drooling desire to get on the seat and dial miles of long distance. Absolutely, the best in this class by more than a country mile.
RUNNER UP: SKI-DOO GSX SE 1200 4 TEC
Let’s get this straight; the Big Miler segment has been owned by the Ski-Doo GSX SE since it first landed.
You might ask yourself why this is the case and why a brand new ride isn’t able to dethrone it in one short year? The answer is obvious to everyone but Kenny.
Let’s talk air ride, on-the-fly adjustable suspension that’s so plush you can fall asleep at the controls on this thing. Ski-Doo’s SC-5 using an onboard compressor to make incremental or wide-swing adjustments to the rear shock’s air pressure is without equal. It even out-rides Ski-Doo’s brand new rMotion in deep, gnarly bumps.
Yes, I am at a slight disadvantage here as a result of the 4-TEC’s throttle lag issues. However, if this engine produces only 130-hp how come it literally blows away sleds with as much as 20 more ponies. The GSX can regularly haul over 110 mph on hard pack.
Finally, check out the standard accouterments on this exceptional ride. There’s heated everything including the seat, adjustable handlebars, mirrors, a digital display that makes everything else in the biz look like a kid’s cell phone and a mogul-bridging 136-inch shoe.
Kent, dunno how you can sleep at night after missing this one! Clearly, the GSX SE rules.