Arctic Cat unveils 1,000cc ATV

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LAS VEGAS -- Arctic Cat revealed six new vehicles during its dealer meeting here, including the largest quad ever to roll off a production line: the Thundercat 1000.

"The catch phrase for this meeting is 'Go Big,' and that's exactly what we're going to do in 2008," says Arctic Cat ATV General Manager Ole Tweet.

The Thundercat 1000 is motivated by Arctic's new H2 engine, a fuel-injected and liquid-cooled 950cc SOHC hemispherical-head V-twin powerplant.

But it's not just the engine that's big on the Thundercat. Because of the unit's sheer power, the quad also features a newly designed 52.5-inch extended chassis to keep it planted to the ground and a beefed-up rear differential to better transfer power and protect the driveline.

Think an ATV this size may be tough to control? Think again. Arctic designed the Thundercat with what the company calls 'ride-in' calibration. As a rider climbs aboard the quad, the unit squats roughly two inches without affecting the 11-inch ground clearance.

The lower ride height and center of gravity combined with a low-profile seat, lightened, more responsive steering design and longer chassis offer increased cornering and high-speed handling characteristics, ultimately giving the rider the feeling of riding "in" the machine rather than "on" it.

Other new offerings include the Prowler XTX 700 EFI, 700 EFI TRV Plus LE, 700 Diesel, 366 Automatic and updated 90 DVX.

The Prowler XTX 700 EFI is Arctic?s top-of-the-line side-by-side, joining the previously released 650cc Prowler and Prowler XT. The XTX features not only a new engine, but also offers a tilt steering wheel, rearview mirror, larger front bumper trim, reduced noise levels thanks to new intake and exhaust systems, and a new "turf-saver" rear differential allowing the rear wheels to spin at varying speeds.

The popular two-up TRV line returns in 2008 with a 700cc limited-edition version joining the previously released 500 and 650 H1. The LE model features a 3,000-lb. Warn winch, polished aluminum rims with 25-inch Goodyear Rawhide RS tires and Arctic's Quick Attach windshield.

While the 700 Diesel made its debut at Arctic Cat's 2006 dealer meeting, the company decided to first retail the unit in Europe. This year North American dealers get their chance. The twin-cylinder four-stroke diesel engine is made for Arctic Cat by Italian engine specialist Lombardini. The quad runs on six types of fuel -- DF1, DF2, DF Arctic, JP5, JP8 and B20 bio-diesel -- and meets all federal and California emissions regulations.

Arctic's 366, built by KYMCO in Taiwan, comes with handlebar-mounted 2WD/4WD switch, start-in-gear capability, digital instrument pod and a two-inch automotive-style receiver hitch while the 90 DVX returns in '08 with a new high/low beam headlight.