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Machine reviews

Suzuki King Quad 700 4x4 Review

We Ride the King


September 17, 2004

ImageThe front wheels are driven by a unique torque-sensing, limited slip differential.Transmission
The King Quad orders power to its wheels with its QuadMatic CVT-type automatic transmission. A fender-mounted shifter on the rider's left operates the transmission's high, low, neutral and reverse gears. A gear indicator appears in the instrument panel on the dash. A push of the red button on the right handlebar side engages the front wheels. Suzuki wants you to completely stop before switching into 4 wheel drive. We ignored that rule and shifted on the fly without a problem. A unique Sure-Track torque sensing limited-slip front differential delivers 4 wheel drive traction control that is more efficient than a conventional limited slip system. This offers more powerful traction while delivering a lighter steering effort.

The King Quad's front differential lock system can be engaged when you need all four wheels delivering the most traction possible. This is engaged with a flick of the right thumb. The continuously variable transmission (CVT) delivers power with a V shaped belt and centrifugal clutch. We're happy to report that the belt didn't slip after a day's worth of extreme riding, which included several trips through deep water and mud. Also worth mention is the fact that the transmission features an advanced engine brake system. This minimizes free-wheeling to reduce downhill speed.

Chassis/Suspension etc.

ImageThe King Quad comes with a center mounted tow hitch and can tow up to 992 lbsA high tensile-steel frame is used with special attention to rigidity and weight. Suzuki went with an independent double wishbone arms controlled by independent shocks up front. The shocks feature five-way spring pre load adjustment. We clicked it stiffer by two clicks and felt it controlled the slight amount of push we experienced earlier in the day. Front wheel travel measures in at 7.1 inches. The rear boasts the same independent double wishbone arms with five-way spring pre load shocks as well. There's 8.1 inches of wheel travel in the rear. The King counters body roll encountered in hard cornering with a low mounted stabilizer bar, which connects the right and left side of the lower suspension arms.

The King comes to a stop nicely with dual 7.9 inch diameter hydraulic front disc brakes. Rear braking is done quite uniquely with a sealed, oil-bathed, multi-plate, internal system. Only the Kawasaki Prairie has such a thing. The braking system, with its seven plates, is housed right in the rear axle and works similar to how a clutch works. The end result allows a maintenance free, sealed from the elements, rear brake. Suzuki claims this system is lighter than a traditional brake system as well. A parking brake is included in this fully enclosed rear brake system. 8x12 front and 10x12 rear Dunlop rubber is mounted to pressed aluminum-alloy wheels.

Suzuki has a feel for providing comfortable quads. Perhaps the King Quad tops the list of comfortable quads. Suzuki's distinctive T-shaped seat gives the rider a stable, comfortable and spacious ride. Even with it's thick plush seat, seat height is only 33.9 inches. This helps lower the center of gravity, which contributes to a better handling ATV.

King?

ImageWe're sure you'll agree, this Mattawa hockey rink deep in Ontario, Canada provides an excellent backdrop for this photo.All the king's riches are useless if the ride isn't up to par. It's high time we put all the talk aside and ride his royal highness. A push of the start button fires the big bore motor. You can start it in gear if the rear brake is engaged. The first thing we noticed was Suzuki's all too familiar comfortable feel. Seat, bars, levers and pegs all seemed to be built around a 6'-0'' 175 pound person precisely. Accelerating was down right fun, especially its low end grunt. Power remained strong through mid rpms, just like Suzuki promised. Suzuki never mentioned top end power, but before we knew it speeds reached the 72 mph mark!

Entering the enormous and beautiful Mattawa Voyageur trail system meant it was time to bare down and give the King a good hard core test. Its independent suspension shouldn't allow it to corner as well as it does. No doubt, Suzuki did their homework in the handling department. Its lower center of gravity really allows it to corner well. We did notice a slight, and we mean slight, amount of push at high speed cornering.

Square edge bumps were easily soaked up even at speed. Traversing heavily rocky areas with independent suspension was amazing. This quad seems to float over the roughest terrain. Suspension is outstanding! We stiffened the front shocks two clicks and felt even more comfortable on the machine. The stiffer front end helped soak up high speed hard hits a little better and, low and behold, helped the King from its slight pushiness.

ImageA large 4.6 gallon fuel tank positioned purposely for a low center-of-gravity, includes a vacuum operated fuel petcock, a ratchet-style fuel cap and a convenient bar-type fuel gauge on the instrument display.

ImageThe King Quad soaked up even the hardest landings.

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