Birth and History of the ATV

All-terrain vehicles (ATV) are becoming popular in the vehicle industry nowadays. In fact, more models with various styles and designs are available in the market. Some popular manufacturers include Honda, Yamaha, and Kawasaki.

The all-terrain vehicle (ATV) was initially developed in Japan to help farmers transport goods and products from farm to town in isolated, mountainous areas. This vehicle was especially helpful during the spring, winter, and rainy seasons as the roads proved to be often impassable with conventional vehicles. Japanese innovators and inventors observed these four-wheelers were better mode of travel and soon became a recreational vehicle, providing transportation to areas inaccessible by other motorized transport.

A group of Japanese engineers worked on a vehicle that could sell during the winter season. Honda engineer Osamu Takeuchi and his team already started to work on recreational vehicles at this time but they were not deployed to production. The project fell to their team and they developed the first all-terrain vehicle called US90.

Honda introduced the three-wheeled US90 with a 7hp engine to America in 1970. Yamaha followed and developed its first ATV, the YT125. In 1980s, quad bikes or four-wheeled ATV’s were developed by Yamaha and Honda. Suzuki introduced the first high-performance, two-stroke four-wheeler, the QuadRacer LT250. Polaris Industries becomes the first North American company to enter the ATV business, introducing snowmobile technology such as automatic transmissions to replace manual gearboxes and floorboards rather than footpegs. Kawasaki offers its first four-wheeled ATV.

In 1998, ATV manufacturers stopped selling three-wheeled ATV due to safety standards and regulations released by the US Government. Fast forward to 1990s to early 2000s, high-performance ATV models returned to showroom floors with all-new premium 4-stroke models from virtually every ATV manufacturer.

All-terrain vehicle continues to develop high-performance and powerful quad bikes with unique and functional designs. Some of these include the Yamaha Raptor ATVs such as the Yamaha Raptor 250R, ThunderCat 1000, and the Outlander.

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