Powerland 900d 4×4 review
The Powerland 900d 4×4 is a brilliant machine. You can muck around on it, go rock climbing or carve doughnuts on a sandy beach. It has got enough thrills to turn a sombre geek into a kid with a free pass to an adventure park. Thrill of Driving, Riding or whatever else is guaranteed. You would want one, if you ever rode one. But here’s the thing, ATVs aren’t road legal. So, if you do want to have some fun with them then you’d probably need an SUV with a trailer. By the time you’ve hauled it up to wherever the trail exists you’re already pooped. Hell, it even sounds exhausting and you haven’t even begun. So what on earth is the brouhaha surrounding the Powerland 900d about?
The 900d has an ace up its handlebar. Imported as SKDs (manufactured in Goa) and homologated as… wait for it… an agricultural tractor, the 900d is completely road legal. Yep, that means no more SUVs and trailers. You gear up, get on the thing, ride to wherever and come back with a grin to split your happy head in half. We went trail riding over sand, muck and even stones, did pretty much nothing that would remotely qualify as (ahem) farming and came back as happy as pigs in the mud. Not much of a tractor then, is it? Who cares? It’s super fun.
The 900d comes with a 794cc, liquid-cooled, V-twin diesel engine that makes 20bhp and 45Nm. Why diesel you ask? Because Indians love the cheaper fuel; especially in the rural markets. The engine is centrally mounted and weighs just 60kg. And to keep the maintenance levels low, it comes mated to a CVT that feeds power to the rear wheels or all four. There is a simple handlebar based switch to put it into 4×4 mode, on the fly. You can also shift into 4-low when required. Some ATVs are devoid of a reverse gear, but not the 900d. In fact, it has a winch on both the ends and the max payload it can haul is 750kg. Although at the Baja SAE India event in Indore, some enthusiastic students managed to lug around 1.5 tonnes of mass! Now imagine the possibilities. And to maximise usability, it also gets a 20-litre fuel tank and a claimed fuel efficiency figure of 20kmpl giving it a range of 400km.
Heading down a trail on a big bored ATV (let us call it so) makes the hair on your back stand. My most memorable ATV trail remains the one I had been on in Scotland on a Honda Foreman, a few years ago. The Honda was extremely nimble and easy to ride for a beginner like me. The experience of riding the 900d is exactly the same. It makes things easy for the newbie.
The 900d has opened up a whole new window of opportunity for ATVs in the Indian market. And with an affordable price tag of Rs. 3.75 lakh, it can really start a new revolution for its recreational as well as farming value.
Engine 794cc, V-twin, diesel
Transmission CVT, with high and low ratio, and a reverse gear
Power 20bhp @ 3600rpm
Price Rs. 3.75 lakh (ex-showroom Goa)