Trail Mail-Hauler!

2017 Ski-Doo Renegade X 850 Adrenaline
2017 Ski-Doo Renegade X 850 Adrenaline
Maybe it should be called the “Male-Hauler,” or for ladies riding this sled with their significant other, “The Ego Crusher”!

Whatever we call it, this new last year Gen4 chassis E-TEC powered Ski-Doo simply cooked, like a Z06 Corvette on a summer afternoon.

After a full season on this smooth happy-horsepower machine we are convinced that just about anyone can drive this sled and be comfortable.

The Canadian Test
Every year I spend at least one week up in Northern Ontario visiting the in-laws for the holidays. I always bring a couple sleds with me to enjoy the beautiful Canadian countryside… and this year I brought the Renegade X. My adult in-laws are snowmobilers of varying ages from early-30s to 70+. I test them each year by not saying a word about the sleds and simply letting them make up their own minds. Our rides each day saw newer sleds in our group as varied as a new Arctic Cat Pantera 2-up, to a Skandic utility long-track, to an RMK 155 mountain sled and an MXZ short track trail sled. Conditions vary from frozen wind-swept lakes to logging roads with 2+ feet of untouched snow, to tight rocky trails and backcountry log-hopping. In every situation, on each day, the sled all riders said they were most comfortable driving (at any speed, snow condition, or terrain) was the Renegade X 850.

That was very enlightening to me because many of these riders are die-hard ice fisherman, or backcountry riders, or pure trail riders. Each has sworn by their current sled to me in one way, shape, or form, but each one did not want to let go of the happiness behind the handlebars of the Renegade X. Even the police officer in the family had a devilish grin on his face after riding the new 850!

A Closer Look At the Data
Compared to other crossover sleds, the 2017 Renegade X Adrenaline 850 is middle-of-the-road as far as wet weights are concerned. It is heavier than say the 2016 Backcountry 800 by about 16 pounds, but lighter than the 2017 Cat CrossCountry or 2016 Cat Crosstrek by 30-40 pounds. Polaris is the lightweight on-trail and off-trail king right now. Compared to just about any Switchback of the past two model years (Assault, Pro-S, or Pro-X), the Renegade X 850 is heavier. Looking back even longer into our database, the new 850 Renegade X Adrenaline was even heavier than the 2014 900 ACE 4-stroke Renegade from Ski-Doo and the 2015 800 Renegade X-RS (before we studded it). So there’s no doubt that Ski-Doo continues to add weight, but on trail sleds, if we had to choose, we would rather have handling, high-fun factor, durability and longevity, than super-lightweight. It is always a trade-off and we think Ski-Doo is proving they are doing it right.

Fuel mileage at right around 11mpg was also down compared to previous year 800 E-TEC models, but on par with most 137-inch trail crossover sleds for the 2017 model year. Compared to previous years our fuel mileage for ALL the 2017 demo sleds were down this year, but we attribute that to the fact that we had to chase snow up into many of the farther reaches of the snowbelt this year. These areas tend to have more long, straight railroad grade trails with loose snow, that really suck fuel.

137 Trail Sled Versus 129-inch
The age-old track length question is laid to rest with this sled. I’ll pick 137-inches with the Renegade Adrenaline, almost every time. You don’t give up anything cornering-wise with the new RAS 3 front vs. a 129 (any 129) and you gain holeshot grip and decrease track spin as well as bridge bumps better. The beef has always been in the push of the front end through the corners with a 137… well, the TS adjustable carbide skis, especially with the accessory seven-inch carbide put in to replace the stock four-inch, made the difference on this sled. You can get overly aggressive turning if you want, but in the 1000s of miles I have put on this and other 137 Renegade X 850s this year, I can honestly say that cornering is actually more predictable on the 137, and just as tight and flat as a 129.
Want to leave a comment?
Only registered members of are allowed to leave comments. Registration is FREE and only takes a couple minutes.

Login or Register now.
Sign up for our free newsletter
By signing up you may also receive reader surveys and occasional special offers. We do not sell, rent or trade our email lists. View our Privacy Policy.