2019 Ski-Doo Snowmobile Lineup for Mountain Riders
The 2019 Ski-Doo snowmobile lineup has quite a few changes on tap for the trail segment, but not a lot for us mountain folks. It comes as no big surprise that the advantages of the REV Gen4 chassis would make their way into the number of flatland sleds available from BRP. But also, a brand new Rotax 600R E-TEC engine—built on the technology pioneered by its older sibling, the Rotax E-TEC 850—will be available for both trail and mountain. What else is new for mountain riders you ask? Let’s take a look!
Images courtesy of BRP
2019 Ski-Doo Snowmobile Lineup
2019 Ski-Doo Summit Models
There just isn’t a whole lot new with the mountain-specific Summit lineup of 2019 Ski-Doo sleds. However, the biggest question on the minds of mountain riders continues to be what updates will be made to improve belt life. Well, it seems BRP plans to address this issue. It is noted in their press material that the pDrive clutch will be updated. However, there is not much information beyond that. Thankfully, the issue of belt life in mountain sleds was addressed more thoroughly in BRP’s Q&A Facebook live session, which took place the morning following their MY2019 reveal.
Otherwise, the story is for the most part bold, new graphics for the 850-class of mountain sled. The new colour choices will be Ultimate Lava Red with panel wrap, Octane Blue / Black and, of course the always timeless, plain Black. But there are a few more interesting tidbits. For one, a new 600-class engine has come to the mountains. More on that in a bit.
2019 Ski-Doo Summit X
Here are some key features of the top-of-the-line Summit. The spring-order only Summit X will continue to offer improved HPG Plus shocks which are lighter and can be serviced. The profile-extruded running boards are better than what’s offered on the in-season SP models. And finally, your sled can come with a sea-level calibration from the factory. Meanwhile, the 850 E-TEC powerplant comes standard on the Summit X.
Options include the 154″ and 165″ tracks in either 2.5″ or 3″ lug, or the big boy 175″ track with a 3″ lug only. Available colours are Ultimate Lava Red with panel wrap, Octane Blue / Black or good old Black.
2019 Ski-Doo Summit SP
The Summit SP is also mostly unchanged, with the exception of…drumroll, please! A Rotax 600R E-TEC will be available in Summit SP 146” and Summit SP 154” models.
Remember the good old days of the first generation REV platform and the pleasure of ratbagging the ever livin’ bejeezus out of those indestructible 600cc H.O. and SDI engines? We sure do. Those little 600s were light, durable as can be and fun as heck to rip around the mountainside.
Well, a new Rotax 600R E-TEC, based on the engineering of the powerhouse 850 E-TEC will be available in in-season Summit models with a 146″ or 154″ track. In fact, even the 154″ x 3″ lugged track will be an option! Pretty cool! SHOT technology will work with the 600R as well, but as it is a factory-installed option it will remain a spring-order only option as it was in MY2018.
Otherwise, the Summit SP will still be available with the 850 E-TEC, and can also be ordered with a slew of other track configurations, including 146″ x 2.5″, 154” and 165” x 2.5” or 3” options and 175” x 3”. Colour options include Octane Blue / Black and Black.
2019 Ski-Doo Summit Sport
BRP will continue to pump out its value Summit Sport offering. The sled continues to use the 600cc carb engine, pushed forward by a 146” x 2.25” track. It is based on the REV-XP chassis, which presumably will become obsolete as soon as BRP clears out whatever platform bits and pieces they still have hanging around at the factory.
On the plus side, the Sport does feature tMotion, the narrow 35.8” stance and Pilot DS 2 skis from the later REV-XM platform, so it should be able to hold its own off trail.
2019 Ski-Doo Freeride
For all the hard-charging riders out there, the spring-order only Freeride model—which was updated to the REV Gen4 platform in MY2018—remains unchanged. Here’s a rundown of the feature highlights, the most outstanding being the variety of track length options including 137”, 146”, 154” and 165”.
The Freeride continues to be powered by the 850 E-TEC. It features high performance KYB Pro 36 R EA piggyback shocks with Easy Adjust knobs for compression and rebound adjustments paired with a RAS 3 front suspension. In the rear, KYB Pro 40 EA piggyback shocks offer an adjustment knob for compression damping. The rails are reinforced with a stiffener for extra strength on hard landings. And finally, the Freeride comes standard with a sway-bar quick disconnect that can be operated in seconds and doesn’t require tools.
In terms of the options for the Freeride, there are many. For starters (get it?), the SHOT is an option along with standard pull-start or electric. Sea-level calibration can also be programmed at the factory. But it’s the range of track lengths, lug heights and ski stance options that really opens up the opportunities for customization here.
Freeride Models Options
On the short end of things, the Freeride can come in either a 137” x 1.75” or 2.25” track configuration. These models are an exception in the Freeride lineup, featuring the rMotion rear suspension. The combination shorter track, smaller lug and rMotion make the 137” tailored more for trail use than mountain. The 137” features a wider 38.4-40.2” ski stance with Pilot DS 2 skis.
Moving up in length, the 146” x 2.5” Freeride also features RS running boards which are flatter, wider and stronger with thicker aluminium and front and rear reinforcements. It also uses the same Pilot DS 2 skis in a wide, 38.4-40.2” stance. However, moving up in length, the 146” and longer-tracked Freerides use the tMotion rear skid for better handling in the mountains.
In the 154” track length, there are more options yet. It comes in the Freeride 154 and Freeride 154 S-38 designations. The S-38 offers the wider 38.4-40.2” ski stance for those looking for more stability on hard landings. In that case, the track is only available in a 2.5” lug configuration. For the standard Freeride 154, a 3” lugged track is optional, while a more narrow 35.8-37.4” adjustable ski stance is used. Both models use the newer Pilot DS 3 ski. At this length track and longer, the Freeride moves to the same profile-extruded running board found on the Summit X models.
Finally, the Freeride 165” comes in the same spec as the 154” but with the longer track. It also can be ordered with a 3” lug.
For 2019, all models of Ski-Doo Freeride come with the edgy Iceberg Blue colourway.
2019 Ski-Doo Backcountry Models
New for 2019, Ski-Doo will offer a Backcountry model for the crossover user who spends some time in the mountains and some time on trails. This is a new, dedicated 50-50 crossover platform, not some shortened mountain sled or trail sled with a tunnel extension.
The Ski-Doo Backcountry is engineered around the REV Gen4 chassis. It features a new rear suspension design called cMotion. BRP claims the same top-notch trail riding performance based on the same rising rate characteristics of the rMotion suspension. However, cMotion goes further with an uncoupled 146” skid featuring a tipped rail design which promises to provide equal parts floatation and sharp handling. Up front, the Backcountry features a modified RAS 3 front suspension with an adjustable from 38.4” to 40.2” ski stance.
The Backcountry will be powered by the latest in BRP technology, which a choice of either the 850 E-TEC engine or the new 600R E-TEC. Three model designations will be available. Here they are.
2019 Ski-Doo Backcountry X-RS
The Backcountry X-RS will be a spring-order only, premium offering. It’s aimed at riders who are looking for the most capable crossover sled. The Backcountry X-RS is fitted with KYB Pro 36 R piggyback shocks up front. To soak up big hits, on- and off-trail, KYB Pro 40 piggyback shocks are used in the rear suspension.
Three track options are available for the X-RS. There are two 15” wide tracks: a 146” x 1.6” Cobra and a 146” x 1.6” Cobra Ice studded option. Or, riders can opt for a 16” wide 146” x 2” PowderMax track to make the most of deeper snow conditions.
Advantages over the other two Backcountry models include chassis reinforcements and wider running boards. The Backcountry X-RS comes with the Rotax 850 E-TEC engine standard, and colour options include Ultimate Lava Red with panel wrap, and—you guessed it—Black.
2019 Ski-Doo Backcountry X
Like the Summit models, the Backcountry X model is also spring-order only. Backcountry X features a KYB Pro 36 EA rear shock and HPG Plus front and center shocks. In addition, it offers the choice of SHOT starter and the same track choices as the X-RS. There are some periphery improvements as such as low windshield and handguards and multi-function gauge. Ski-Doo Backcountry X is available in Octane Blue / Black and regular Black.
2019 Ski-Doo Backcountry
The base model Backcountry features the choice of either the 850 E-TEC engine or the new 600R E-TEC. Up front are the lightweight and serviceable HPG Plus shocks, with standard HPG shocks in the rear. A 146” x 1.6” Cobra track comes installed at the factory. White and Black are the colour options.
Rotax 600R E-TEC in 2019 Ski-Doo Snowmobiles
The new 600R E-TEC is built to meet the same demands at the 850 E-TEC in terms of increased power, responsiveness and durability. The new narrow design was developed specifically to fit with the REV Gen4 chassis.
It’s rated at 125 horsepower, and features the same square engine principals as its older, bigger sibling. The 600R features a mono-block cylinder, with the same 3-position eRAVE exhaust valve as the 850. It’s got a shorter intake tract and utilizes double reed valves.
The responsiveness is claimed to be improved 30% of that of the 600 H.O. To achieve that, the engine uses the same fuel injection tech as the 850. It’s got a low inertia cranktrain by way of the lightweight pDrive clutch and magneto. The ring gear is incorporated in the flywheel. And there is a bunch of other technology that goes beyond our comprehension such as more precise cylinder head voice-coil injectors, electronically controlled eRAVE valves and a redesigned, improved exhaust flow.
Without any major tech advances for mountain riders, BRP is focused on providing plenty of choice at least. Customers can choose from a variety of track lengths and lug, suspension packages, starting options, colours and a huge selection of OEM accessories to help customize their ride. In fact, BRP is offering no less than 376 snowmobile configurations of their 2019 Ski-Doo sleds.
2019 Ski-Doo Snowmobiles at a Glance
While there have been many advances to the trail lineup of Ski-Doo snowmobiles for 2019 including many not mentioned here), there just isn’t much happening in the mountain segment this time around.
However, the Backcountry crossover sled is likely the most interesting addition. It might be the ticket for those flatland riders who like to dabble in the mountains and off-trail.
Likewise, a peppy new 600cc engine should draw interest from those looking for a lower output option for exploring the mountains. In the past, Ski-Doo 600s have been little engines with big heart, and the 600R should carry on that tradition. These might be a great option for young or new riders looking to cut their teeth in the mountains.
Otherwise, mountain riders will have to satisfy themselves with new colour options and hopefully more information about updated clutching to come.