By Jon Crowley
In the summer of 2010, I was one of a few dozen media outlets to be invited to Montreal, Canada for Can-Am’s entry into the side-by-side vehicle market with the introduction of the Commander 800 and Commander 1000.
My how times have changed in a little over 10 years! At that time, there was only one other “big bore” UTVs on the market, and that was an Arctic Cat Prowler which wasn’t the sportiest of vehicles. Other sport or sport utility UTVs included the Polaris RZR 800 S and the Kawasaki Teryx 750. The new Commander 1000 had 25% more HP than any competitor and the best power-to-weight ratio at the time.
Back then, we thought the 10-inches of suspension was pretty good. Now the Can-Am Maverick X3 has more than double that!
With sport UTVs knocking at 200HP’s door, why would anyone get excited about a new Can-Am Commander? While the sport market gets most of the spotlight with big horsepower and sporty suspension, there are BIG numbers of utility and sport/utility (or some even call them rec/utility) units sold. While the Commander was pretty exciting for 2011, it was hard to get excited in 2018 about the Commander that really hadn’t changed since it was introduced. Sure there were new colors and interesting limited edition models, but year after year, that engine still sat in the middle of the chassis. I could not believe how long Can-Am milked the ol’ Commander.
Well, the wait is finally over with the introduction of the all-new 2021 Can-Am Commander.
There are multiple trims (DPS, XT and XT-P) to fit different needs for two or four passengers, and it comes with a wide array of optional features so your machine can be tailored to your every need. And with more than 150 available accessories – many of which using BRP’s proprietary quick-on, quick-off LinQ technology – the Can-Am Commander has all the essentials to perform on every journey that lies ahead or go toe-to-toe with any task.
- Performance: A powerful and proven Rotax 1000R engine delivering 100hp, maximum ground clearance to conquer rough terrain, a quieter ride for enhanced comfort, and improved suspension for a better ride experience in varying conditions.
- Workability: Take what you need when you need it with 2,000lbs of towing capacity and the segment’s largest dump cargo box able to load up to 600lbs of cargo.
The closest competitors for the 2021 Can-Am Commander are the Polaris GENERAL and the Yamaha Wolverine RMAX 1000. Features and price for these sport/utility units are very comparable, with one slight exception. The Commander features a longer wheelbase than the RMAX or GENERAL so I am expecting a nicer ride in rough terrain.
If all goes well, I will receive a demo unit within the next 30 days. I plan to shake it down, do a few upgrades, and then my wife and I are going to take it on a cross-country trip starting in mid-April. You can follow along at: Jon and Teresa’s Epic Cross-Country Adventure on Facebook.