Polaris Ranger XP 900 vs Kawasaki Mule PRO-FX: Workhorse, Play Horse or Both?

All work and no play? Not with these two.

A couple weeks ago, TFLoffroad chief Stephen Elmer went over the differences between ATVs and side-by-sides. Narrowing down which one better suits your needs is a crucial purchasing decision, not least of which because of the advantages or disadvantages each type of machine offers.

Let’s say, after all the research and maybe kicking some tires, you’ve landed on buying a side-by-side. Great, but there’s plenty of competition in the field. Polaris and Kawasaki are both big players in the ATV business. Today, we’re going over which of two side-by-sides is a better option. In one corner, there’s the Polaris Ranger XP 900. On the other, there’s the Kawasaki Mule PRO-FX. Which is better?

Both offer the added utility over a typical ATV, but here’s how the two actually stack up on paper.

polaris ranger Kawasaki mule

Specifications: Polaris Ranger XP 900 vs Kawasaki Mule PRO-FX

Polaris Ranger XP 900 Kawasaki Mule PRO-FX
Price: From $12,399 From $12,099
Engine: 875cc 4-stroke DOHC 2-cyl. (liquid-cooled) 812cc 4-stroke DOHC 3-cyl. (liquid-cooled)
Horsepower: 68 hp 47 hp
Torque: Not listed 48 lb-ft
Transmission: PVT (Polaris Variable Transmission) CVT
Front suspension (travel): Dual A-Arm (10 in.) Double wishbone (8.7 in.)
Rear suspension (travel): Dual A-Arm, IRS (10 in.) Double wishbone (8.7 in.)
Front brakes: Disc Disc
Rear brakes: Disc Disc
Ground clearance: 11.5 in. 10.4 in.
Turning radius: Not listed 16.0 ft.
Cargo capacity: 1,000 lb. 1,000 lb.
Bed box dimensions (L x W x D): 36.5 x 54 x 11.5 in. 54.1 x 53.3 x 11.0 in.
Payload capacity: 1,500 lb. 1,616 lb.
Towing capacity: 2,000 lb. 2,000 lb.
Wheelbase: 81 in. 92.3 in.
Length: 116.5 in. 133.3 in.
Width: 60 in. 64.0 in.
Height: 76 in. 77.4 in.
Front tires: 25 x 10 R12 26 x 9 R12
Rear tires: 25 x 11 R12 26 x 11 R12

 

Comparing the specs, the Ranger offers better performance, while the Mule PRO-FX offers better utility. By virtue of the Mule being physically larger than the Ranger, Kawasaki gives you better hauling capability over Polaris. The base price for the Kawasaki also rings in slightly cheaper. However, from a power and agility perspective, the Polaris Ranger XP 900 wins the spec shootout.

Which would you have? Find out more information on the Polaris Ranger from our YouTube channel, and our expert buyer’s guide on TFLoffroad.com!