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ATV Hauling and Towing Guide

Note: Towing loads is not recommended on Scrambler models. 

Driving with extra passengers or cargo – and therefore an increased payload – requires extra precautions when operating your Polaris ATV.

Payload includes all passengers, accessories and cargo in the vehicle. Always be sure that the total weight of passengers, accessories and cargo does not exceed the stated weight capacity listed later in this article. 

Hauling Cargo Guidelines
Overloading the vehicle or carrying or towing cargo improperly can alter vehicle handling and may cause loss of control or brake instability, which can result in serious injury or death. 

Always follow these precautions when hauling cargo: 

  • Never exceed the maximum weight capacity of the vehicle. When determining the weight you are adding to the vehicle, include the weight of the operator, accessories, loads in the rack or box, and the load on the trailer tongue. The combined weight of these items must not exceed the maximum weight capacity. 
  • Do not travel faster than the recommended speeds. The vehicle should never exceed 10 mph (16 km/h) while towing a load on a level surface. Vehicle speed should never exceed 5 mph (8 km/h) when towing loads in rough terrain, while cornering, or while ascending or descending a hill. When operating over rough or hilly terrain, reduce speed and cargo weight to maintain stable driving conditions. 
  • Use low, forward gear when hauling or towing heavy cargo to extend belt life. 
  • Reduce speed and allow greater distances for braking when hauling cargo. 
  • Cargo weight distribution should be 1/3 on the front rack and 2/3 on the rear rack. When operating over rough or hilly terrain, reduce speed and cargo to maintain stable driving conditions. Carrying loads on only one rack increases the possibility of vehicle overturn. 
  • Carry loads as low on the racks as possible. Carrying loads high on the racks raises the center of gravity of the vehicle and creates a less stable operating condition. 
  • Secure all loads before operating. Unsecured loads can create unstable operating conditions, which could result in loss of control of the vehicle.
  • Operate only with stable and safely arranged loads. When handling off-centered loads that cannot be centered, securely fasten the load and operate with extra caution. Always attach the tow load to the hitch point designated for your vehicle. 
  • Heavy loads can cause braking and control problems. Use extreme caution when applying brakes with a loaded vehicle. Avoid terrain or situations that may require backing downhill.
  • Use extreme caution when operating with loads that extend over the rack sides. Stability and maneuverability may be adversely affected, causing the vehicle to overturn. 
  • Do not block the front headlight beam when carrying loads on the front rack. 

Note that cargo weight distribution and capacities vary by model and trim level. Refer to the Operation section of your Owner’s Manual for information specific to your vehicle. 

Towing Loads
Note: Towing with Polaris Scrambler models is not recommended. If trailering, ensure the receiver does not exceed a 2-inch drop or raise.

Always attach a towed load to the hitch point. Remove the hitch from the ATV when not towing a trailer. If towing a load, reduce rear rack cargo weight by the amount of tongue weight. 

  • The combination of rear rack cargo weight and tongue weight must not exceed the rear rack capacity. 
  • The total load (operator, accessories, cargo and weight on hitch) must not exceed the maximum weight capacity of the vehicle.

Notice: Using an improper hitch or exceeding the maximum tongue weight capacity can result in serious damage to the vehicle that may not be covered by your ATV warranty. Never install a hitch longer than 4 in (10 cm). Never install automotive accessories on your Polaris ATV. Always install Polaris-approved accessories designed for ATV use.

Towing Your Vehicle
Some, but not all, Polaris ATVs can be safely towed. To determine if your vehicle can be safely towed and for towing instructions, if applicable, consult the Operation section of your Owner’s Manual

Maximum Hauling and Towing Capacities
Never exceed the maximum weight capacity of the vehicle. 

Pay attention to the following specifications when hauling or towing cargo: 

  • Maximum Weight Capacity: The total weight that can be placed on a vehicle. Includes the weight of all passengers, vehicle accessories and cargo. 
  • Front Rack/Storage Box Capacity (if applicable): Maximum weight to be loaded onto the front rack or storage box.
  • Rear Rack Capacity (if applicable): Maximum weight to be loaded onto the rear rack.
  • Hitch Tongue Capacity: The maximum vertical weight that can be applied to the hitch. 
  • Hitch Towing Rating: The maximum weight that can be towed from your ATV’s hitch. 
  • Tire Pressure, Front
  • Tire Pressure, Rear 
VehicleMaximum Towed Load (Level Ground)Maximum Vertical Hitch Weight
570 Touring SP/ 570 6x6
Scrambler 850
Sportsman 850 and 850 High Lifter
Sportsman XP 1000 and XP 1000 High Lifter
Scrambler XP 1000 S
1500 lbs. (680 kg)150 lbs. (68 kg)
Sportsman 450/5701350 lbs. (612 kg)135 lbs. (61 kg)
450 HO
450 HO EPS
570 EPS
570 Touring EPS
570 Touring
570 Touring EPS
570 X2 EPS
1225 lbs. (555 kg)120 lbs. (55 kg)

A complete list of relevant hauling and towing specifications can be found in the Specifications chapter of the Owner’s Manual

Cargo Box Dumping (if equipped)
Select a level site to dump the cargo box. Do not attempt to dump or unload the vehicle while parked on an incline.

2. Place the transmission in PARK. Lock the parking brake.

3. Dismount the vehicle.

4. Lower the tailgate. Warning: If cargo weight is placed toward the rear of the cargo box, the load may dump unexpectedly and cause serious injury. When loading cargo, always position the weight as far forward and as low as possible.

5. Pull the cargo box release lever upward.

6. Lift the front of the cargo box and dump the cargo.

7. Lower the cargo box and make sure the release latch is secured. Warning: To prevent a crushing injury to hands and fingers, keep hands and fingers away from the lower front edge of the cargo box while lowering the box.

8. Secure the tailgate. Warning: Operating with the cargo box in the raised position can cause serious injury and damage to the vehicle. The cargo box could close unexpectedly and injure the driver. The rear tires will also catch the rear of the bed, damaging the vehicle and creating hazardous driving conditions. Never operate this vehicle with the cargo box in the raised position.

For further hauling and towing guidelines, consult your Owner’s Manual
To shop hauling and towing accessories, visit the online ATV Accessories & Parts store

Unless noted, trademarks are the property of Polaris Industries Inc.
© 2022 Polaris Industries Inc.

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