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Okay, we’ll go out on a limb here and shoulder all the accusations of sucking up to the manufacturers. Feel free to send us your comments dissing us for loving one OEM more than the others. We’re ready.

We did have a discussion the other day, though, about the strengths we see in Yamaha’s snowmobile line-up and stuff we hope they will never take off the table as new products are developed. Here’s our list (we might do one of these for all of the OEMs, come to think of it):

1. Engines:

Yamaha is first an engine manufacturer and, man, are they good at it. Try to think of a single snowmobile engine that’s been about 99-percent bulletproof over its entire production run. It’s a Yamaha, right?

Now think of a company whose complete engine line-up has been incredibly reliable for the better part of a decade. Warranty claims are rare with any of these 4-strokes and unless they’ve been horribly abused, radically modified or smashed repeatedly with ball peen hammers, pretty much the whole fleet is still running. Incredible.

2. MonoShock:

This skidframe has so much going for it (ride quality, light weight, design simplicity) and it has not received enough credit for its performance. Since day one it has been used in sleds that are heavier than its competitors but it has always delivered a premium ride at the top of the industry. We stated earlier we’d love to see this skid in a sled that weighed 100 pounds less.

3. Clutches:

Yamaha’s primary and secondary clutch design is well calibrated, durable beyond sanity and offers such incredible belt life even on its highest performing engines, it defies logic.

4. Finish Quality:

You just never see a Yamaha sled that has mismatched panels, bad paint or stuff that doesn’t work the way it claims. The company’s ability to pre-test and work out glitches on new models before they are presented for sale is unprecedented and borders on the obsessive. It’s been the same for decades.

5. Resale:

Obviously the word is out on used Yamahas because it’s tough to score deals on anything used from an RX-1 to an Apex to a Vector. Why? Most of these sleds look and perform pretty much the way they did when they rolled out of the showroom.

Once again, if the former owner was into gross abuse, the theory may not hold water – however, any used Yamaha that has had basic storage and maintenance care over its life will bring top dollar.

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