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2014 Yamaha Grizzly 700 Review

2014 Yamaha Grizzly 700 Review
Yamaha Grizzly 700 Test Ride in the San Bernardino National Forest

Big Bear Lake, CA - In 1998, the Yamaha Grizzly 600 was released, which set a new bar for engine displacement for the utility ATV at the time, and Yamaha continued to set the bar when they released the Yamaha Grizzly 700 in 2007 with Electric Power Steering, which was a first in the ATV industry.  Now for 2014, the Yamaha Grizzly 700 Utility ATV received several substantial updates including wider front a-arms, longer suspension, engine updates, new tires, and improved EPS settings, so Yamaha invited several media publications including out to Big Bear Lake, California to put the Yamaha Grizzly 700 EPS to the test on the mountains trails of San Bernardino National Forest.

The San Bernardino National Forest features miles of trails, but for our 2014 Yamaha Grizzly 700 EPS Utility ATV test ride we staged in the Cactus Flats area, which was a Yamaha restoration area in 2012 as part of Yamaha’s OHV Access Initiative.

Yamaha Grizzly 700
Yamaha hosted the 2014 Yamaha Grizzly 700 media intro at the Cactus Flats Area in the San Bernardino National Forest, which features many scenic overlooks & a great mix of terrain for testing the Yamaha Grizzly 700

The Cactus Flats trails is on the east side of the mountain range with a base elevation of over 6,000 feet with some scenic vistas overlooking the desert valley to the east of the mountains. The trails provided a great mixture of terrain from high speed road sections to tight and technical climbs with an abundance of rocks to really put the Yamaha Grizzly 700 EPS to the test.

Yamaha Grizzly 700
With our ride starting at over 6,000 feet in elevation at the Cactus Flats and we gained several thousand more feeet at some of the overlooks, the Yamaha Grizzly 700's EFI system worked flawlessly

Fortunately, we were able to get in a full day of seat time on the Yamaha Grizzly 700 for testing purposes because it has been over a year since we rode a Grizzly 700 because we don’t have access to any long term test units like we do with most other manufacturers.

Yamaha Grizzly 700
The dry front storage compartment, although small, works great for holding a cell phone, GPS, or any other small item you might need along the trail

After a brief overview of the new features of the Yamaha Grizzly 700, we loaded up the two storage compartments full of bottled waters for our ride. It was nice to have the front sealed storage compartment in the front fender, which is very accessible and water tight if needed, but it isn’t huge, so we packed the under the seat storage full of extra water before heading out for a several hour long trail ride.

The first section of the trail featured a high speed switchback section with off chamber turns.

Yamaha Grizzly 700
Even at the high elevation, the 2014 Yamaha Grizzly 700 had plenty of power & its lightweight for a full size utility ATV makes it feel more like a sport ATV

The Yamaha Grizzly carved through the sand effortlessly and the added width surely helped with the stability and confidence to stay in the gas through the turns, but the smooth trail was short lived and we quickly found ourselves dicing through rocks and whoops with some elevation changes, which was much more challenging. The rock terrain really put the Yamaha Grizzly to the test, and after a full day of riding we really got a feel for the updates to the 2014 Yamaha Grizzly.

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