For some of us, riding an SXS is really appealing because it’s a lot of fun. The Maverick Sport X xc 2023 is no exception, offering a sporty, precise ride.
If you’re looking for something comfortable, agile on the trail, and with good power, the Maverick X xc is designed for you. In 2023, Can-Am returns with its popular Maverick Sport X xc with a few minor updates.
The powertrain remains unchanged in 2023, with Can-Am returning with the legendary Rotax 976 cm3 V-twin engine developing one hundred horsepower. It features the iTC intelligent throttle. Reaction is lively and instantaneous.
The transmission is a QRS (Quick Response System) CVT with high-flow air intake. There’s also an electronic drive belt protection system. The drive train features a lockable front differential with exclusive Smart-Lock technology. This is a true four-mode system: two- or four-wheel drive with locked front differential/ four-wheel drive TRAIL ACTIV/ four-wheel drive TRAIL. Electronic hill descent control and SPORT/ECO driving modes harmonize the whole package.
Front and rear suspension remain unchanged for 2023. At the front, there’s a double-arched wishbone with 14.8-inch stabilizer bar/deflection. Shock absorbers are still Fox 2.5 podium with external reservoir and QS3 compression adjustment. For the rear suspension, we’re going with a TTA independent with 14.8″ stabilizer bar/travel as for the front. And, of course, the rear shocks will be Fox 2.5 podium QS3 piggyback shocks with compression adjustment.
The engine has excellent pick-up when required, as the intelligent ITC throttle does an excellent job in this respect. Once again, the QRS CVT transmission is really willing and gives exceptional energy in any situation. With the Maverick’s suspension, combined with Fox shock absorbers, even the roughest terrain will be a charm to overcome. The instrumentation inside is easy to spot at a glance, with its 7.6-inch digital display and keypad. LED lighting and high-end taillights will guide you perfectly at night.
First contact with the Maverick:
When Can-Am told me it would be sending me the Maverick Sport X xc 2023, I knew this SXS would satisfy me. Taking my place behind the wheel, I immediately noticed a virtually perfect driving position. Turning on the ignition, you recognize the distinct sound of the Rotax V-twin engine that brings the Maverick to life. On my first outing, I took the opportunity to familiarize myself with the X xc and see how it handled. I immediately noticed that I had a very agile SXS on twisty trails, with good power under acceleration. As for the suspension, I blame a stiffness that, combined with the rough road, creates a hopping problem. After a few kilometers and some adjustments to the shocks, I managed to find a good comfort level. The DSP dynamic power steering works perfectly in all conditions, providing perfect comfort and precision. With two choices of driving mode, Sport or Eco, I didn’t really notice a big difference between the two.
I’m lucky enough to test SXSs on a regular basis, and Can-Am’s Maverick Sport X xc 2023 is one of my favorites. Its agility, precision and comfort on the trail are simply brilliant. After a few hundred kilometers on this test ride, I found the engine’s power to be well balanced. The intelligent throttle is perfectly distributed along its stroke, with precise regularity and no kicking. In 4×4 mode, the X xc gets you out of a dead end without any difficulty. If you need more pulling power, you can lock the front differential with the Smart-Lok automatic differential lock. By setting the gear selector to low and letting it work gently, there’s virtually no stopping it. Compared to the Maverick X3, the sport driving mode didn’t impress me. Yes, there’s a change, but it’s barely perceptible compared with Eco mode. On a forest road with supervision, I liked the acceleration provided by the Maverick X xc; you can really feel the hundred horsepower. With its 64-inch width, it handles winding trails perfectly. It takes curves one after the other with surgical precision. On steep descents, the electronic hill-holding system reacts perfectly, slowing the Maverick down without a hitch. The 220-mm front and rear disc brakes brake the X xc effortlessly.
Whatever the trail, the Maverick Sport X xc will meet your expectations for absolute comfort. Its 14-inch ground clearance overcomes the worst obstacles along the way. The 29-inch Maxxis bighorn 2.0 tires will successfully negotiate any surface. The suspension will soak up holes and bumps one after the other, without practically jolting you inside the cockpit. The Fox shocks do an excellent job, even if I occasionally had trouble finding the perfect fit.
Maverick Sport highlights:
Comfort and precision on trails with good curves
Storage box capacity
38-liter fuel tank
What disappointed me:
The muffler that expels monoxide directly onto the Fox shock reservoir on the left rear… To be corrected eventually by Can-Am.
The winch is optional on this model
Difficulty seeing obstacles when reversing
The Can-Am Maverick Sport X xc 2023 is an excellent VCC. It’s sure to provide excellent sensations and guaranteed fun on your rides. The quality design of this side-by-side puts it at the top of our list. The 976 cm3 Rotax V-twin engine developing one hundred horsepower is really interesting in this version. Reliability is the name of the game with this engine. You’ll be sure of enhanced performance on the move. As for the suspension, it will provide you with outstanding comfort and enable you to tackle the worst roads ahead. For added protection, the X xc features sturdy front and rear bumpers. Finally, the Maverick is worth considering for a future purchase. It’s up to you to try it out when you store.
The Raven Media team would like to thank Can-Am Off Road for the loan of the vehicle.
Enjoy the ride!
Photos: Louis Gagnon and Marc Bergeron