2008 Sno Pro 600 – A Whole New Animal

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Originally published in PRIDE Magazine

For the first time since the 2002 season, Team Arctic racers will enter their battles aboard an all-new race sled: the Sno Pro 600.

The culmination of an intense engineering effort aimed at creating the ultimate terrain racer, the newest Sno Pro continues the long tradition of being both a sled designed to win races and test new engineering concepts.

Notice the emphasis on terrain.

“From the beginning, this sled was designed for both snocross and cross-country success,” said Brian Dick, Engineering Project Lead for the sled and a fiery cross-country veteran to boot. “Other goals included minimizing chassis scrub when going through deep holes, and incorporating a 600 engine to conform to the new Stock class racing rules for the 2008 season.”

A year ago, Team Arctic Race Manager Russ Ebert spoke of the company’s refocus on cross-country, and backed up his talk with a lucrative contingency program in the growing USCC circuit. The new Sno Pro 600 is another example of that commitment.

So what’s it got? Plenty!

For starters, underneath the stylish new hood is an all-new tubular chassis, utilizing a combination of 4130 chrome-moly and extruded aluminum to form a pyramidal structure that holds the motor, in addition to supporting the front suspension, steering posts and tunnel attachment.

The choice of a tubular chassis instead of a traditional bulkhead, and the use of self-piercing rivets instead of welding, is aimed at increasing chassis rigidity against the incredible forces inflicted during competition.

The front suspension is also new, with extruded spindles utilizing ball-joints rather than a spindle and housing configuration, relocation of the shock mounts to the lower A-arm and revised A-arm geometry.

“We went with a single spindle with ball-joint operation was to shed weight, and because it allowed us to use a longer spindle, which also raised the sled’s ground clearance,” said Dick. “The new geometry has the spindle travel in an up/down trajectory, rather than sweeping rearward during compression, for improved cornering.”

Equally important, the rear suspension is mounted two inches forward compared to the previous Sno Pro, effectively shortening the “wheelbase” by the same distance. In concert with increased steering angle, the result is a tighter turning radius. The Progressive Steering System and dual-position steering post mounts return from last year’s Sno Pro. C&A Pro skis come standard.

Out back, the Slide Action rear suspension returns with a new, more aggressive rail profile for increased traction. The track is a new 15 x 128 x 1.7-in. Camoplast hoop, with an optional 1.25-in. Cobra hoop for cross-country. Fox IFP shocks are used on the front and rear suspensions.

The new tunnel is wider to accept the 15-in. track, with revised running boards that are wider and flatter than other models, and that have a snow-shedding, open-hole design. An all-new seat is slightly wider and softer than the previous Sno Pro (a nod to the cross-country racers), while the seat base is now integrated with the fuel tank, available in either a 7-gallon unit for snocross or a 12-gallon unit for cross-country.

Powering the new Sno Pro is a heavily tweaked version of the 600 laydown twin used in the F Series. It features a new crankshaft that’s 5 lbs. lighter for quicker revving and higher performance. EFI is gone, replaced by dual 40mm TM flatslide carburetors (with throttle position sensors) for easier tuning.

The V-Force Reed Valve system is employed, as is a new cylinder head, ceramic-coated exhaust pipe, adjustable timing module and Hot Start button. The engine requires pre-mixing oil, and is capable of running on 92 octane fuel. A front-mounted heat exchanger and tunnel-mounted exchangers provide adequate cooling for both snocross and cross-country.

Transferring the power from engine to the track is an Arctic Cat drive clutch, TEAM driven clutch and Peak Torque Limiting System driveshaft, a combination proven bulletproof on last year’s Sno Pro Mod sled. New, however, is a higher driveshaft location for increased ground clearance.

A new hood graces the Sno Pro 600, featuring a very short nose structure – again, a nod toward reducing scrub/scooping in certain situations. Removable side panels ease accessibility to either side of the engine.

Two windscreens are available, a short (as shown here) and tall version. The sled comes without the standard digital/analog instrument gauge, but it’s ready to plug-and-play.

Racers and engineers who have tested prototypes of the new Sno Pro are unanimous in their praise for its handling, emphasizing its neutral manners in all conditions.

With a rider position that’s nearly identical to the Twin Spar chassis, the ride quality is extremely forgiving and comfortable, and easily adaptable. With a 450-lb. dry weight to meet racing specs, it’s quite flickable. And with two inches more ground clearance, it bashes through the big holes without scrubbing speed.

While there are no plans to make a consumer version of the Sno Pro, it’s clear that the company is using the sled to test new concepts that may someday see full production.

“There are many elements of the new Sno Pro that we’re evaluating for future use,” said Doug Wolter, Director of Engineering.

Production of the Sno Pro 600 is limited to 300 units, and all have been spoken for by Team Arctic racers. For racers who want an Open class sled, a Speedwerx-developed Mod kit includes revised cylinders, new cylinder head/domes, billet exhaust valves, a new exhaust system, and carb/clutch calibration.

Supertrax Online
Supertrax Onlinehttps://www.supertraxmag.com
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