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ATV Basics

ATV Basics

If you are new to the world of all-terrain vehicles or just looking to purchase your first vehicle, it can seem like there is a lot of lingo to decipher. While you certainly don’t need to learn a second language, you do need a foundation of some basics about ATVs. Here are the ATV basics you need to know to get started.


One of the first things to establish when looking at ATV basics is the two types. The first type is sport. This is used mostly for fun and riding trails. Sport models tend to be sleek and smaller in the frame while offering speed and ease of maneuvering. They are usually manual transmission which means you have clutch and shifting.

The second is utility and this is meant for work purposes such as farm work or construction but can also be used for fun. These are heavy duty in their purposes and bulkier in their construction. These models typically have automatic transmissions with no clutch or shifting, more space in terms of storage and seating, and offer more stability than sport models.

When looking at which one is better for beginners, most people agree a utility ATV is the better choice for a few reasons. For starters, they are heavier, so they are less likely to flip over. The transmission is easier to use for beginners. They are also a bit more durable and rugged for those still getting familiar with an ATV.


Many people worry an all-terrain vehicle isn’t safe. There are stories of accidents, flipped ATVs pinning a rider in the wilderness, and other horror stories to make anyone think twice. One of the first things to know about ATV basics is that an all-terrain vehicle is as safe as you make it. If you follow the safety suggestions, wear a helmet, and ride with care, the odds are no worse than getting into any other type of vehicle wreck. This is not to say that there isn’t some danger to riding an ATV. An ATV can be dangerous, especially when going over particularly rough terrain at high speeds as an inexperienced rider, but there are definitely ways to make it a safer experience and those means are mostly in your control.


The features of an ATV are as varied as the many manufacturers creating the machines. From powerful engines of the highest standards and hydraulic disc brakes to more underground clearance and increased storage areas, there are a ton of features on most new models to make anyone get excited. When shopping for a model for you, you will need to do some additional research into each listed feature to determine which ones are important to you as an individual.