How fast is the average snowmobile? – This is a typical question that many beginners ask, and with good reason.
In the world of powersports, there are many performance-minded buyers. Thus, a snowmobile’s top speed number, just like their horsepower rating, is usually the main focus!
If you would like to learn how fast a snowmobile can go or accelerate to, this post is for you.
We’ve done the research and have compiled the top speeds of some popular snowmobiles into one chart!
Additionally, you can find the world’s fastest snowmobiles here!
How Fast is the Average Snowmobile?
How fast do snowmobiles go? As a rule of thumb, the average top speed for snowmobiles is around 70 mph to 120 mph depending on the make and model. Even entry-level snowmobiles can go as fast as 70-90 mph, while high-performance sport snowmobiles can go up to 110-120 mph under ideal conditions.
For your convenience, we’ve compiled the top speed of some popular snowmobile models into one chart:
Snowmobile Top Speed Chart
|Model||Top Speed (mph)|
|Yamaha SRX 120||8|
|Arctic Cat Sno Pro 120||8|
|Arctic Cat ZR 6000RR||83|
|Arctic Cat ZR 6000 EL Tigre||83|
|1997 Arctic Cat ZR 580 EF||100|
|Polaris XC 600 Triple||102|
|Polaris Switchback Pro-S 800||105|
|Polaris XC 600||105|
|Ski-Doo MXZ 600 HO||105|
|Polaris Assault 800||112|
|Arctic Cat XF 1100 Turbo||118|
|Ski-Doo MXZ X 850 E-TEC||128|
Vintage Snowmobile Top Speed Chart
Just for fun, we’ve also compiled the top speed numbers for some vintage snowmobile into this chart.
|Model||Top Speed (mph)|
|1972 Yamaha SL338C Yamaha 338cc||50|
|1973 Ski-doo Elan T Rotax 250cc||38|
|1980 Yamaha Enticer Yamaha 340cc||55|
|1980 Ski-Doo Citation SS Rotax 377cc||66|
|1981 Yamaha Exciter Yamaha 440cc||60|
|1983 Polaris Indy Sport Fuji 440cc||80|
|1986 Yamaha SRV Yamaha 540cc||90|
|1990 Ski-doo Mach 1 Rotax 583cc||105|
|1996 Polaris XLT Fuji 600cc||110|
As we mentioned, the highest possible speed depends on many factors, but the main factor always comes down to how powerful the engine is.
Let’s take a closer look at the most common snowmobile engine options, and the maximum speeds they can provide. Please note that the numbers may vary depending on many factors, which we will discuss later in this post.
How fast does a 120cc snowmobile go?
The stock 120cc snowmobiles can go as fast as 6-8 mph depending on the model. But it’s good to know that the top speed of these kid-sized sleds is artificially limited. This means that with some basic mods, you can expect to reach 20 mph, which is very fast on these tiny machines! 120cc snowmobiles are usually powered with a single-cylinder, air-cooled, 4-stroke engine.
How fast does a 440cc snowmobile go?
Although these are entry-level full-sized sleds on the market, 440cc snowmobiles can reach a top speed of 70-90 mph. As a rule of thumb, liquid-cooled 440cc snowmobiles are not just faster, but last longer compared to the air-cooled models. Some 440cc top speed samples are:
- Polaris 440 top speed: 75 mph
- Yamaha Exciter 440 top speed: 78 mph
- Ski-Doo MXZ 440 top speed: 80 mph
How fast does a 500cc snowmobile go?
The average top speed of 500cc snowmobiles is around 80-100 mph. A snowmobile generally needs around ½ mile (or even more) to reach these speeds. Some top speed samples for 500cc snowmobiles are:
- Arctic Cat Sno Pro 500 top speed: 85 mph
- Polaris Indy 500 top speed: 90 mph
- Arctic Cat El Tigre Suzuki 500: 100 mph
How fast is a 600cc snowmobile?
A stock 600cc snowmobile can go as fast as 90-105 mph depending on the model. With some modifications, you can even expect to reach 110+ mph! Some examples:
- Arctic Cat ZRT 600 top speed: 104 mph
- Ski-Doo MXZ 600 HO: 105 mph
- Polaris XC 600 top speed: 105 mph
How fast can a 700cc snowmobile go?
The top speed of a 700cc snowmobile can reach an amazing 100-110 mph. Here are some popular 700cc snowmobile models as examples:
- Polaris XC 700 top speed: 110 mph
- Ski-Doo MXZ 700 top speed: 110 mph
How fast does an 800cc snowmobile go?
800cc snowmobiles can go as fast as 110-120 mph top speed, even in stock condition! Three of the fastest 800cc snowmobiles are:
- Polaris Axys XCR 800 top speed: 110 mph
- Polaris Assault 800 top speed: 112 mph
- Polaris XCR 800 top speed: 120 mph
How fast does an 850cc snowmobile go?
850cc snowmobiles can reach easily the top speed of 120 mph. For example, the, the Ski-Doo 850 has a top speed of 118 mph.
What Does the Top Speed of a Snowmobile Depend On?
After the hard numbers, you may want to know what factors impact the maximum speed.
Many beginners think that speed depends solely on the engine’s performance, but many more things play a role in it.
As a rule of thumb, the top speed of a snowmobile depends on three main factors: the snowmobile’s abilities, the rider, and the environmental conditions. The main factors are as follows:
- Type and design
- Engine (stroke, HP, max RPMs, settings)
- Fuel octane and quality
- Clutch setup
The environmental factors like:
- Weight and height
These are the main factors that affect the highest possible speed on a snowmobile.
How to Measure a Snowmobile’s Top Speed
You can measure a snowmobile’s top speed with the built-in speedometer, radar, or GPS. Please note that the top speed numbers in this post were measured with factory-installed speedometers. And we have to mention that speedometers are prone to being inaccurate.
When it comes to snowmobile speedos, errors can be around 5-10% depending on the model. In general, the numbers on the speedo are higher than the real top speed. That’s why speedometers are often called dream-o-meters!
This means that if you want to measure the accurate top speed of a snowmobile, you have to use GPS or radar.
How Fast Can a Snowmobile go on Water?
Surprisingly, snowmobiles can even go on water. However, it’s always dangerous as there is a risk of submerging the machine, which may end in costly repairs. When it comes to speeds, a snowmobile can go as fast as 130+ mph on water. (The world record is 131.7 mph!)
How fast can a Snowmobile Accelerate?
In the world of motorsports, beyond top speeds, the acceleration is no less important.
How fast can a snowmobile accelerate? The acceleration of stock snowmobiles is about 4-6 seconds in a 0-60 run. Special drag snowmobiles accelerate much faster of course. The world record for 0-60mph is around 1 second!
For some examples, we’ve compiled some stock snowmobile acceleration (0-60 mph) numbers:
- 2014 Arctic Cat ZR 6000 EL Tigre acceleration: 4.38 sec.
- Yamaha Viper R-TX LE acceleration: 4.25 sec.
- Arctic Cat XF 8000 Sno Pro acceleration: 4.19 sec.
- Polaris Rush 800 H.O. Pro-S acceleration 4.15 sec.
- Ski-Doo 800R Renegade X-RS acceleration: 3.63 sec.
Finally, a snowmobile’s acceleration depends on many factors, like its weight, engine, design, clutch setup, and environmental conditions.
Snowmobiles can go as fast as 70-120 mph depending on the make and model.
As a rule of thumb, a bigger engine means more horsepower and higher top speeds. But the top speed of a snowmobile depends on many other factors as well.
These are mainly the snowmobile’s design and settings, and the rider’s weight and skills.
Moreover, environmental conditions also play a role, which is why the highest possible speed on a snowmobile can be different from one ride to the next!
And as a final word, don’t forget that speedometers on snowmobiles are mainly for informational purposes. This is because you can expect to see higher numbers on them, rather than the real speed.
If you want to measure the real top speed of a snowmobile, best practice is to use GPS or radar!