Over the past number of years, Ireland has seen continued growth in the popularity of utility all-terrain vehicles (UTVs).

The concept is far from new. UTVs, or side-by-sides as they are known to some, were initially developed in the US, many having evolved from the golf buggy.

It was in fact Kawasaki that had the idea of building the first UTV, back in the late 1980s.

Although there are pros and cons to UTVs, many farmers like the idea of being able to carry passengers and materials comfortably and safely, in addition to having the benefits of an ATV with a low ground pressure vehicle that can travel through mixed terrain leaving little or no tyre footprint.

There is a huge variety of UTV options to suit different applications and budgets. In this unique comparison test, we report on our findings on five different machines.

Alongside testing general farmyard duties, we set up a time trial to put the UTVs through their paces to find the pro’s and cons’ of each machine.

Time trial

To get a fair representation of how each machine performed in various conditions, we set up a 2.5km track. The track consisted of gravel and dirt roads, with some extremely challenging terrain and a tricky hill thrown into the mix. Each machine was loaded with 250kg in its respective cargo box.

Each machine was put around this track three times, with its best time listed.

The machines:

Winway Farmboss HD 1200

Can-Am Traxter HD5

Kioti K9 2400

Kubota RTV X1110

John Deere XUV865M

Watch the full UTV test below