polaris indy 500, 600?

i am looking to get another sled and the polaris indy 500/ 600 have caught my eye.

i would like to get one from any where from 1990 to lets say 1995-1996. or a little newer for the right price. i think the 500 is just a twin and the 600 is a tripple? right?

also the main thing i was wondering about is the efi on them? is it similar to the newer sleds? like arctic cat didnt start putting it on its sleds until around 2000 or so? so what is the deal with that, polaris started way sooner? is the efi on these a different type, or did just no one else decide to make it? is the efi on these sleds any good? are they fairly reliable? any major common problems? anything to look for?

also i am interested in how one of these would match up to a yamaha v max 500 or 600?

thanks for your help:ride:

we have a 1995 polaris indy 500, yes it is a twin. It has a very comfortable ride. and nice to just take it through a nice pine tree filled trail after a long day of work!

DO NOT buy a 90's vintage EFI from either CAT or Polaris (both made them cat had the Wildcat 650 and 700 in EFI) unless you have a real affinity for buying really expensive hard to find parts and buying them often as well as buying a new battery every year.

Stick with the carbs and you'll be a lot happier and they make more power than the EFI versions of that era.

Either one will be comparable performance wise with the Yamaha's but they are lighter and the suspension is much better.

The 500 is a twin and the 600 is a tripple the XCR flavor from 96 and newer is a tripple with tripple pipes and a heavy mistempered pig to boot.

Honestly I would stay away from the tripple as in the XCR flavor completely as they were plug eaters. Then there is the XLT which is the same basic motor with slightly smaller carbs and is actually much more user friendly. Then with both of those there is the issue with Crankshaft failures. Normally if you got a good one your OK but the bad ones were really bad, Out of about 15 sleds that friends had in both the XLT and XCR versions I know of 2 that were good ones, one is a fully modded 95 XCR 600 built for Ice racing that my brother still owns and collects dust, and the other is an 94 XLT special that a friend owned from new until he sold it to another friend that still has it. That sled had over 8000 miles on the original motor when I rebuilt the top end for him 2 years ago when it burnt down due to a crank seal and the rest of the crank was in perfect shape.

Both sleds were hugely popular and used parts are abundant. The indy 500 has still to this day sold more sleds than any other model ever produced and that's the reason Polaris made that sled from 1989 up until 2001 or 2 without any major revisions to the motor. It's a good one.

so my vote is deffinately the 500 non EFI

i vote a 670 summit x or mountain max 600 . both can be found for cheap .


i agree with staying away from efi , ski- doo didn't start efi till about 5 years ago . carbs work great .

oh if the indy 500 where so popular i would think parts would be easy to come by? what parts are the ones that go out on the efi system?

so my best bet would to be to stick with a carb sled? when did they come out with the modern efi? or when did it start to be good?

what is bad about the older efi???? did the efi on them get better like in the late 1990s models???

how well could the indy 500 or 600 or yamaha v max keep up with a zrt 600 or a like a zr 600 ? what my buddies have?

thanks for your help!

The parts for most of the sled are very easy to come by with the exception of the EFI parts, they only made that efi system on the Indy 500 for 2 or 3 years around the early-mid 90's. It was around a little longer in the 650 RXL but the problems were pretty much the same. The biggest problem is that it will kill a battery nearly every year and second is the brain box. Polaris dropped EFI completely until 2005 when they started with the cleanfire system on the 900 which is a solid setup (EFI only the rest of the 900's had some issues but you could address them) with the exception of some TPS problems early on and then some mapping problems along with other motor issues on the 08 and newer 800's. The CFI system itself is great the mapping just needed some help on these new 800's.

For the 90's model sleds you are much better off with the carberated sleds for reliability and maintenance costs.

An indy 600 (xcr/xlt/xc) or yamaha 600 from the mid 90's will "keep up" with the 600 zrt's and zr's but get the zrt out on a lake and he'll leave you behind pretty handily. That was a 600 tripple with tripple pipes done VERY well for it's vintage. The ZR 600 was about on par with the 600 twins from the other manufacturers at the time. The indy 500 is a low 90 mph top end sled and will fall behind on top end on the lakes ect when compared to the others mentioned here. However you will have less motor problems than any of the other sleds you've listed hands down.

The Yamahas are a solid running motor but the chassis is sorely lacking until you get to the pro-action vintage sleds (got rid of the pogo stick front suspension) in the late 90's this is also when all their 600's went to a 3 cylinder configuration and that is when they started making good hp numbers from them.

I will say this on the EFI systems, Don't buy any EFI sled that was built before 2002 or 3. Cat was the first to perfect it (EFI in general and Battery-less) and it came in about that time, the last years of the zr's and the first year of the F series was when they got it dialed in well and since then their system has been flawless in stock form.

What kind of a budget are you working with for buying/maintaining/fixing a sled and how handy with a tool box are you? That will make it easier for me to make a good reccomendation for you.

You might be surprised at how little of a price difference there is from the 90's to the early 2000 models that would get you into a much better sled for not much more $$.

Oh and unless you don't have any mechanical abilities for working on sleds don't even bother spending your $$ at a dealer on a sled of that age, your paying too much for what you will get because there's a certain amount that is worked into that cost for customer service on a sled of that age. IMHO

um i can do pretty much of all my own work on my sled. i have rebuilt several dirt bike top ends before so i think i should be good. i would like to spend around 1000-1200 wich i have seen many of the indy 500s for that price. i would proble be willing to pay 1500 for the right sled. but if i could find a decent one for around 1000 that would be great.

i am in northern indiana if that makes a difference on price

If this one stays low it'd be a great sled for you, I had the exact same sled, bought it brand new in 99 and it took a lot of abuse and kept on rolling. It's also the newer US built motor that makes the same kind of power as the older XLT's and XCR 600's but is rock solid reliable.


Another Great option if the price stays low


Keep your eyes peeled and you should be able to find a good sled for that money in the mid to late 90's

ya both nice sleds called the guy about the first one wants in the upper part of my price rang. and the second one has quite a few miles dont you think?

thanks for your help though. i think i will stay away from one of the older efi s

I wouldn't bother with the Indy 500s. I've got 2 1996 Indy 500's sitting at my place and they are pretty pathetic. Great for women riders though or someone out for a cruise with speeds around 60 at most.

If I was looking for a sled from the 90's it would be a 98+ Powder Special, 97?+ Mountain Max, or 99 RMK 700. Wait till spring and you can find any of these cheap. Sleds really took a turn for the better at the end of the decade.

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