Earlier this week we took two hypersleds, the Polaris RUSH 800 Pro-R and Yamaha’s EPS Apex (128-inch) for a 130-plus mile ride on a series of lakes near the Supertrax cave.
The lakes we frequently run were about perfect for some high speed testing. Conditions were incredible and everything was packed down smooth and hard for maximum traction and side grip. Temperatures hovered just above zero-degrees Celsius (32F) all day.
We’ve been very impressed with this year’s RUSH and its most recent suspension calibration plus its Cleanfire 800 is a strong, consistent runner that never disappoints. We didn’t expect to be so surprised by the Apex.
The single biggest change to the 2012 Apex was its re-padded seat. There’s now more foam at the front of the seat close to the gas tank and it allows the rider to sit a bit higher. A good modification and one we fully appreciate but not earth-shaking in its scope.
We had installed a set of Yamaha P&A’s aftermarket dual skag skis early in the season and were double impressed how they had completely eliminated the sled’s tendency for darting.
This is a big deal with the Apex and quite frankly, once you install these skis you get EVERYTHING the Apex is capable of delivering in the steering and trail riding departments. Handling is even improved with very predictable turn-in and great tracking through the corners.
As we honed those near-perfect lakes, we were flat-out blown away with the Apex’s fantastic engine. Only one word can describe it – POWERHOUSE!
This mill pulls like a locomotive from top to bottom. The mid range hit is so impressive you become addicted to plying the throttle just to get the vibe over and over again. The engine pulls extremely hard even past the C-note. Incredible – and so consistent!
We rode choppy trails for about 20 miles on our return loop and once again, the Apex impressed, this time with its excellent ride.
For a big sled, its monoshock skid and 128-inch track combo handles trail chatter and washboard so well you don’t even feel the stuff at low speeds. It’s only when the bumps get deeper and the speeds go up you’ll feel it and it’s not that bad.
At the end of the day we would issue a warning to those 800 2-stroke owners who want to pick a drag race with a new Apex. Don’t do it.
Find out about surprising sled #2 tomorrow.