Projections show that the Norm American youth ATV market will reach a value of $383 million by 2024.
There are a lot of kids ATVs on the market giving you a lot to choose from. But they vary a lot, so before you make a choice it’s important to understand your options.
For a rundown of 5 of the top tips when it comes to buying a kids ATV, keep reading.
1. Age and Readiness
If you are planning on buying an ATV for your child, the first thing you need to do is be certain that they are ready. Many brands have age recommendations for their ATVs. Polaris, for example, has a minimum recommendation of 10 years old.
While this can be a helpful way to gauge if an ATV is suitable, it is important to remember that children can differ greatly even within the same age bracket.
No one knows your kid better than you, so you are the best one to determine whether or not they are ready to ride an ATV. You’ll want to think about their skill level, physical abilities, and levels of judgment/responsibility.
Anyone could get seriously hurt riding an ATV, so making an honest judgment call here is essential. If you think your child might still be too small a low-powered bike might be a better choice for now.
Another thing to keep in mind is that different states sometimes have specific rules on the legal age for operating an ATV. You should check this before making a purchase.
One of the biggest focuses among kids ATVs is safety. This is an important factor for any ATVs or similar vehicles, but more important for children. There are a number of safety features to look out for when buying a kid’s ATV.
The battery cover should have a lock fastener to stop your child from being able to access the battery compartment. The battery itself should have a strong retainer. If it isn’t properly secured it could move around freely while the ATV is in use.
We highly recommend an ATV with pedals and a safe braking system. When a child takes their foot off the pedal it will automatically bring the ATV to a halt, rather than letting it continue to roll.
Kids ATVs often have high-speed adjustment systems. A typical ATV would have 2 or 3 different speed options. Being able to control these helps you keep your kid safe based on your own judgment of their capabilities. This should be well concealed to prevent your kid from changing it on their own.
Front and rear lights can also be very helpful in poor conditions, both in terms of your kid being able to see where they are going, and for you to be able to keep track of them.
High-quality tires and shocks make quite a difference. Any ATV relies on having good traction even on rough terrain, and stability while riding can help a lot, especially if the rider isn’t very experienced.
3. Size and Weight
Something that often goes alongside age, for your child to be able to operate an ATV properly they need to be big enough to shift the weight of the ATV without trouble. If their feet don’t reach the footrests this won’t be possible.
A good way to measure this is to get your kid to stand on the footrests and check the clearance between their pants and the seat. You want this to be a minimum of 3 inches.
In terms of weight, you want to get them an ATV that is no more than 3-4 times heavier than them. You might be tempted to get one that they will ‘grow into’ but this means they won’t be able to safely operate it until they grow quite a bit.
4. Power and Speed
Electric ATVs are available, but they are generally far less powerful than gas ATVs. An electric model could be ideal for your kid when they are younger, but when they are old enough for a real taste of motorsport a kids gas ATV is the far better option.
Most gas ATVs for kids are around 90-110cc. More powerful models up to 250cc are available, but this may well be too much power for a child until they are a bit older and more experienced.
If you are undecided here a good option is to go for something at the more powerful end of the 90-110cc range that has an adjustable speed limiter. This means that you can set a lower top speed initially, and increase it as your kid’s skill level improves.
5. Transmission Type
Operating an ATV with a clutch isn’t the most difficult thing in the world. A lot of children are capable of it but bear in mind that it is one more thing that they will have to think about.
There are already a lot of things to focus on when a kid is first learning to ride an ATV such as balance, braking, and speed control. An automatic transmission will make the whole experience much easier, especially if they have little to no experience.
If you want your kid to start with something easy but learn how to shift as they go there are options with semi-automatic transmissions. This provides the option of an automatic transmission but can be switched to manual when they are ready.
It is worth noting that fully manual transmissions are quite uncommon on kids ATVs, so if that is what you are looking for you will be limiting your choices.
Best Kids ATV
The factors above all rely heavily on your own judgment and preferences. You want a kids ATV that is as safe as possible, but in terms of power, size, transmission, etc. it comes down to what you want and what your child is ready for.
For more articles on lifestyle tips check out some of our other blog posts.