Get ready to be blown away, literally. Thrust forward with a force never before felt in a Side-by-Side. Powering this awesome-looking new off-road monster is a brand-new Rotax ACE 900 cc turbocharged three-cylinder engine providing 154 hp! ACE stands for Advanced Combustion Efficiency. It is liquid cooled engine with integrated intercooler and Donaldson high-performance air filter. Coolest thing is, that’s not what is most impressive about this new game changer.
The original Maverick came out in 2012, then the X DS chassis came out for the Turbo with its revised rear end, and so maybe that is why this stunningly bold model is called an X3, not because it has 3 seats as some had suspected. Maybe the X3 stands for the third step in this model’s evolution. 3 cylinders in a turbocharged engine is also a very good reason to name it X3, but why a Maverick? It looks, feels, and drives totally different. It is nothing like what we know to be a Maverick. Truth is that after just a little bit of reflection, the name fits this vehicle even more than the other Can-Am Mavericks. Searching for a definition of what a Maverick is, you will come across: someone who refuses to conform to established standards of conduct, a person who takes a stand independent of others in a group, a person of unorthodox views. This vehicle totally fits that sort of description and its owner might very well fit with it too, but it isn’t a prerequisite to buy one. We have mentioned this many times before; high-performance vehicles such as this one make for more comfortable and safer rides when used in normal conditions at unexaggerated speeds. On the other hand, that higher comfort level, which comes from your vehicle being able to accomplish much more than you ask of it, can drop the fun factor a little. Who is the say that a Commander can’t be your perfectly suitable off-road vehicle in check with your real-world needs? The Maverick X3 was specifically created to challenge the limits and let you travel farther, faster, and negotiate tougher terrain in a way you never even thought possible. It is for you to decide if that sounds like too much. The Maverick X3 side-by-side vehicle is available in three different packages: the Maverick X3 Turbo R, the Maverick X3 X ds Turbo R and the wider Maverick X3 X rs Turbo R.
We would normally talk about the engine first because it is many times what people ask us about first, wondering about if it is going to make any given ride faster, but we need to start putting things together like they truly should in order for those new to this kind of vehicle, to focus on the important things first, like safety features, and…drum roll please…Tada! Suspension! If going faster than someone else is your main goal while out riding, you’re in for trouble. Don’t ask yourself if a model is faster than another but rather if you would feel comfortable going fast at the controls of one or the other. The most extreme version of the X3, the X RS, is truly all about suspension. It transforms the 64-inch-wide Maverick X3 into a desert-munching 72-inch-wide monster, which could handle even more than this impressive sounding 154hp. With 24-in of suspension travel and advanced FOX Racing components, it stretches the X3 X rs’ abilities far beyond expectations for amazing performance. Imagine this, just four days after its worldwide unveiling in Orlando, Florida; Jason Murray piloted the brand new Can-Am Maverick X3 side-by-side vehicle to the UTV Unlimited Pro class victory at the 2016 Best In The Desert Vegas To Reno race in Las Vegas, Nevada. Although they added the necessary safety and racing equipment, the new X3 remained mostly stock. The Murray brothers lightly modified their Maverick X3 X rs vehicle with a Lonestar Racing cage, doors and bumpers and necessary safety equipment required by the BITD. The two Maverick X3 X rs vehicles racing used the factory-equipped driveline, FOX shocks, suspension arms, 154-hp Rotax ACE triple-cylinder engine, QRS-X CVT, steering componentry and differentials. Those facts say quite a lot. Why? Because The Can-Am / Murray Racing teams outlasted 60-some other entrants to stand atop the podium in two separate classes in what BITD calls “the longest off-road race in the United States.” Jason Murray drove the No. 2927 Can-Am Maverick X3, while his brother Derek piloted the No. 917 Maverick MAX Turbo. Jason took the victory with the all-new Can-Am Maverick X3 side-by-side vehicle in its first official race. Derek drove his Maverick to victory in the Turbo Pro Production class and a third-place overall amongst all UTV classes.
The FOX 3.0 Podium RC2 HPG shocks they use for the X3 X rs, and its 24 in. of travel are truly special in how they can change how we the people, can enjoy pushing limits as much as the creators of this off-road dominator did when they designed it. Externally adjustable dual speed compression lets you tune for optimal compression damping at each phase of the stroke. It also has a wide range rebound adjustability allowing for a set-up that’s perfect for your personal driving style, terrain, and who knows maybe race course conditions. FOX 3.0 Podium internal bypass shocks share many of the same components as race-proven Trophy Truck shocks, including: stainless steel shock shafts, PTFE-lined spherical bearings, proprietary racing oil, and high-temp Viton seals. The less intimidating in looks but just as fast accelerating Maverick X3 and X3 X ds, feature FOX 2.5 Podium HPG Piggyback shocks with front and rear QS3 compression adjustment and rear bottom-out control for a balanced setup right out of the box.
This one’s is right on the money if a low-slung seating position, a bit more centered than in the now considered basic Maverick models, and lower centre of gravity, sound good to you. Honestly, when we first sat in one, it sounded like a beautiful symphony. The feel of sitting in one is quite unique and your secure–feeling position alone prompts you to buckle up and give it a go as soon as possible. Even if both the 64-inch wide version has the same exact cockpit, catching a glimpse of a front tire thread or two on the wider X rs, seems to have a huge effect on confidence inspiration. Without compromising ground clearance at a practical 15 inches, the low seating envelops both driver and passenger so they feel connected to the vehicle at all times.
The chassis… ok just kidding. The powerful engine used in this technological marvel isn’t totally new which is an excellent fact to consider, even more so than the power it delivers. The ACE 900 engine has been proven for years in other recreational machines from BRP. Turbocharged and intercooled, this particular precision-engineered, triple-cylinder Rotax ACE engine pours out 154 horsepower at 7,500 RPM and 113 lb-ft of torque at 7,000 RPM and its intake and exhaust are tuned to maximise power, efficiency, and throttle response.
I was tempted to speak of the chassis before, with reason. It is an ultra efficient and lightweight chassis. All Maverick X3 models feature this state-of-the-art frame made of Dual-Phase 980 steel, a high-strength steel that has a ferrite and martensitic microstructure. Dual phase (DP) steels have tensile strength levels ranging from 500 to 980 MPa so for obvious reasons BRP engineers used the toughest one. This grade is often used for unexposed automotive structural parts where high strength and formability is essential and where significant part performance and durability is desired. DP steels are one of the important new advanced high strength steel (AHSS) products developed for the automotive industry. Their microstructure typically consists of a soft ferrite phase with dispersed islands of a hard martensitic phase. The martensitic phase is substantially stronger than the ferrite phase. The dual-phase microstructure results in a high-strength product with excellent formability.
We are running out of space to talk about many other interesting details about this exciting new line of vehicles from BRP but that all is good, as it will encourage us to come back to you with another article on them in a near future; hopefully the result of a full-on long-term test like they usually let us do.
There is a slew of things we love about this new vehicle; the 4-way adjustability on the race car-inspired one-piece moulded seats, its advanced cockpit, full High Molecular Weight (HMW) skid plate, LED headlights and tail lights, and the ease of accessorizing with integrated wiring, allow it to truly adapt to many different owner types. We just love it when such a new model hits the market and opens up a whole range of new possibilities. Who knows, maybe we will even get a chance to race in one some day.
For more information on the above mentioned models, please visit the Can-Am Off-Road Website