In 2010, Arctic Cat only offers one version of the Twin Spar chassis with a 500cc 2-stroke and it’s the LXR series with a ton of standard goodies thrown in.
The sled looks much trimmer this year with a cut-down and shortened seat and a new aluminum tunnel extension that is more conventional looking than last year’s plastic array. It also features a new snowflap and a much lighter LED taillight.
AC has not skimped on the details and the F5 LXR offers real upgrades like electric start, run-backwards reverse (including Cat’s exclusive planetary drive system) and Infinite Rider Positioning that allows vertical adjustment of both the seat and handlebars.
There’s a more-than-complete gauge package with an electric gas gauge, speedo, tach and much more, plus the F5 uses Cat’s sliding arm suspension that offers an amazingly cush ride.
Hydraulic twin tube shocks are about the only questionable equipment glitch but, quite honestly, we’ve found today’s twin tube gas cell shocks to be among the very best for trail riding – especially considering their zero maintenance requirements and incredibly long life.
The Suzuki EFI 500 under the hood has a long history of reliability and is a strong achiever in the 80hp range. Remember, this is the same fuel injected engine being used in the cross country race targeted 2010 Sno-Pro 500 this year.
Arctic Cat obviously has tremendous confidence in the durability of this engine and it has proven itself to be rock steady in this chassis the last couple of years.
The F5 LXR is a great snowmobile for use as a second sled. Its comfort level is unsurpassed and it offers an incredible list of features to make it a perfect fit for anyone in the family.
Yes, its power output puts it in the mellow range and not in the arm-stretching league some performance phobes require. It does get down the trail nicely, though, and won’t embarrass its owner on a long trail ride accompanying more powerful sleds.
Maybe its biggest negative is its considerably high list price. At $10,499.00 you could argue there are more powerful sleds available.
However, the F5 is targeted at a narrower segment of the market that wants maximum comfort and doesn’t prioritize ultimate power. We think it’s a perfect fit for sled number two.