Discover Why 900 ACE Is Best Engine For Touring…
Did I test the Rotax 900 ACE on tour last winter on my snowmobile tours and snowmobile vacations? You bet, and here’s my real world review as it appeared in Snow Goer Canada Magazine…
My riding buddies gave the Rotax 900 ACE a big “thumbs up”. These are experienced snowmobilers, most avid 2-strokers. As part of our Snow Goer Canada tour crew, each is accustomed to putting on big miles at a brisk pace – and doing it with 600 or 800 ponies under their hoods. So if there was ever a group that would be sceptical whether the 900 ACE could cut it, these were them.
I put my buds on either of a Ski-Doo Renegade or a Ski-Doo MXZ, each powered by BRP’s 900 ACE in Sport Mode. Each rode for at least half an hour in real life trail conditions during a Snow Goer Canada tour where higher-powered sleds set the pace. The 900 ACE impressed everyone by staying right with the pack. Afterwards, the prevailing sentiment was that riding a 900 ACE all day would be no problem at all.
Rotax 900 ACE Product Review – More Than Enough Power for Most Riders
Certainly before trying it, some riders were questioning the viability of the 900 ACE. But after putting almost thousands of kilometres on that engine, I can confirm that it will be everything most casual and touring riders ever wanted from a snowmobile engine – efficient, reliable, smooth, and with more than enough power to do the job. However, if having oodles of extra power at your fingertips for speed runs and lake racing is what matters, then the 900 ACE probably isn’t for you.
Throughout my touring, my 900 ACE never under-performed, ran out of power or disappointed me anywhere through the entire power band. To check top speed, I had it to the bar on a long, flat rail-trail. My fully loaded, long track Renegade topped out at 137 km/h – the shorter track MXZ with a lighter load made it to 140. I don’t know about you, but I simply never ride that fast, so why would I need more power than the 900 ACE delivers?
Rotax 900 ACE Product Review – Exceptional Gas Mileage
What about gas consumption? I kept very careful fuel records while trail riding 1,078.1 kilometres on two different tours. I don’t care much about miles/gallon or litres/100 kilometres. What I want to know is how far I can ride starting with a full 40-litre tank, cruising along at a steady Quebec touring pace of 80 to 90 km/h in Standard Mode. My fully loaded Renegade Enduro 900 ACE (tour luggage, Woody’s studs + snowmobile suited, 220-lb me) averaged 310 km per tank. The lighter MXZ 900 ACE got 335 km per tank. A friend of mine riding tours of his own on the same Renegade 900 ACE averaged up to 350 km per tank.
By way of comparison, in previous winters on current year Ski-Doo snowmobiles I’ve averaged 350 km per tank on a 600 ACE, and around 240 km per tank with an 800 ETEC (similar on a 1200 4-TEC) and almost 300 km per tank from a 600 ETEC. I want to emphasize that these results are for me, my riding style and tour load – if you ride lighter, with a different throttle thumb, or at a different pace, yours will vary accordingly, but should still be in the same relative ballpark.
Rotax 900 ACE Product Review – Multiple Engine Modes
I also want to comment about the 900 ACE engine modes – Eco, Standard and Sport. Eco Mode didn’t cut it for my kind of trail riding, but was good for loading and unloading from my Triton Trailer, maneuvering in and out of gas stations, parking at restaurants and motels, and getting unstuck – anywhere I didn’t want track spinning. Sport Mode was torque-ier than I needed for most trails, so I mostly stayed in Standard Mode, which I found best suited all of my riding and fuel economy needs.
Having racked up more miles on a 900 ACE in several seasons than most other riders in North America, I have no reservation in recommending it as my Ski-Doo engine of choice. I will be riding a 900 ACE again in 2018. Fellow snowmobiler Brent Murphy may have put it best after his own test ride when he exclaimed: “Riding that Ski-Doo really made me feel like I was hauling ACE!”
The tips and advice in this blog are the opinions of the author, may not work in every situation and are intended only for the convenience and interest of the reader, who has the personal responsibility to confirm the validity, accuracy and relevancy of this information prior to putting it to their own use.