There’s been mixed opinion about Cat’s XF 7000 CrossTour. It certainly looks different than most trail sleds – its 146-inch track takes care of that.
At first view it appears the sled should have difficulty turning and would be heavy at the handlebars when you’re slogging through tight esses. After riding it, we can state with confidence, nothing could be further from the truth.
The CrossTour turns every bit as good as a 137-incher and when you’re trail-riding, it just doesn’t feel any different than a shorter sled.
There’s been magic performed with this skidframe and for some reason, it turns-in better than Cat’s former CrossTour with a 141-inch track.
True, this is a sled designed for a smaller market than Cat’s herd of 137-inchers. It’s auxiliary gas tank, long track and hard luggage compartment at the rear define it as a sled for those riding long distances with maximum comfort.
You can easily attach an accessory 2-up seat and adjust the skid’s coupler blocks and torsion springs to deal with the extra weight of luggage and a passenger, so versatility is its strong suit.
As equipped, this sled is no featherweight. Despite its 146-incher with 1.5-inch-deep lugs and stretched dimensions, it’s only available with a 4-stroke and the extra mass incurred limits its powder abilities.
That being said, you can take the CrossTour off-trail successfully and as long as you pick your spots, you’ll do well in that environment.
Radical side-hilling and extreme vertical climbs are not recommended, but boondocking in powder meadows and traipsing through ungroomed accesses can be performed with confidence. Definitely, the extreme track length and exquisite balance of this sled enables it to perform well off-trail – with limits.
The Yamaha 1049 4-stroke is a great engine choice here but we can’t help wondering if this sled would be a completely different ride with a super-light 600 CTEC-2 2-stroke under its hood.
One thing’s for sure: We completely endorse Cat’s move to TEAM clutches on nearly all of its sleds this year. On the CrossTour, power delivery, from the time you turn the key to full shift, is smooth, predictable and responsive.
We’re having trouble being critical here. For its intended market, we think this is an incredibly good sled. On-trail, off-trail, it’s tough to beat.