Frankly, our AXYS preference has pretty much always been the Switchback with its 137-inch track.
Somehow, the longer track seems to ride just a tad better and the AXYS has such incredibly good handling, at the handlebars when trail-riding you just can’t tell the difference between this one and the 121-incher.
The Switchback Adventure is really Polaris’ premium trail sled and its feature list goes deep.
Immediately noticeable are the rugged looking aluminum racks and hard-shell saddlebags at the rear. Some riders think of this as a compromise or as a somewhat unwanted and ugly addition to an otherwise sleek-looking sled. Their opinion, not ours.
We think those racks add a tough, all-business look to the Adventure, whether you’re going commando with the racks fully exposed or have the bags attached, and they sure make attaching luggage and gear easy. Don’t like-em? Just take them off.
What’s really to love about the Adventure is its suspension. Up front are Fox compression adjustable gassers and the rear end combines a compression adjustable Fox on the front arm and a very trick 3-position compression adjustable air shock on the unique AXYS overstructure.
Adjustability is critical with a sled like this because you may be carrying heavy mass at the rear when the bags and racks are loaded up or you may simply have purchased the Pure Polaris 2-up seat accessory and intend to use the sled as a 2-upper. Either way, you can adjust in an incredible range of ride comfort.
The 800HO 2-stroke available for 2016 is a strong and efficient mill that runs crisply and cleanly all the time – honestly, one of our fave snowmobile engines ever! Although gas and oil mileage aren’t quite up to E-TEC standards, this engine gets good distance out of a tankful and its performance is stellar.
Despite the fact the air shock isn’t remotely adjustable (you have to get off the sled to set it up), we’ve found you can tune it to your liking and just leave it there all day.
We also like the Adventure’s 1.375-inch lug depth and found, aside from its better traction on take-off, it really is like having power brakes when you grab a handful and need to stop quickly.
A great sled – no matter how you equip it.