How the Ski-Doo REV Platform Revolutionized Snowmobiling:
Have you ever wondered how snowmobiling has changed over the years? It’s an activity that has been around for decades, and it’s been evolving ever since. One of the significant changes in the history of snowmobiling came with the introduction of the Ski‑Doo REV Snowmobile Platform. This revolutionized how we ride today. Let’s take a closer look at how this revolutionary machine changed snowmobiling forever.
Overview of the Ski-Doo REV Platform Features:
The Ski-Doo REV platform was introduced in 2001 and immediately made waves in the snowmobile industry. The platform maximizes rider comfort, offering a more natural seating position and improved ergonomics. Most importantly, it provided a smoother ride thanks to its improved suspension system. This gave riders a better feel for their machine and better control over its handling.
History of the Ski-Doo REV Platform
In its 20 years on the market, the Ski-Doo REV platform has undergone numerous iterations and improvements. Over time, new technologies were added to improve performance, comfort, and safety. Even further, such fuel injection technology, improved brakes, and lighter materials for greater agility. All these advances have made riding safer and more enjoyable for everyone involved.
Benefits of the Ski-Doo REV Platform
The Ski‑Doo REV Snowmobile platform provides countless benefits for riders who want to enjoy their time on the trails without worrying about their safety or performance. Riders can get a better feel for their machines with adjustable handlebars, fuel injection technology, and improved suspension systems. In addition to these benefits, riders can also experience increased mobility thanks to lighter materials used in construction. This help makes maneuvering more effortless than ever before.
When other manufacturers saw how popular and successful this new platform became. They had no choice but to follow suit with their own versions of similar designs. If they wanted to stay competitive in this rapidly changing industry. They all scrambled to keep up with each other. Each introduced its own unique technologies that would give them an edge over competitors.
The 1997 Ski-Doo REV snowmobile platform was a revolutionary breakthrough in snowmobile design
“I” was the start of modern snowmobiling,” “arl Kuster, Ski-Doo Ambassador, and former Snocross racer.
The concept of the original Ski‑Doo REV Snowmobile came from within the walls of BRP (Bombardier at that time). Still, it was not a corporate mandate to develop a machine that would revolutionize the industry. Two young engineers, Bruno Girouard, and Berthold Fecteau, took it upon themselves to begin designing a concept. They felt this new concept could make riding a snowmobile easier for the rider. But there were challenges and detractors along the way.
Girouard had never ridden a snowmobile before. After his first rides and watching riders on their sleds, his first inclination was that the rider positioning on a traditional snowmobile was wrong – primarily through the bumps. The rider had very little influence over the sled behavior because of the way the weight was so poorly distributed.
While GiGirouard’s concept made sense to the pair in theory. It would be up to Berthold, who took that concept to the design phase. Then brought something tangible from the drawing board into the prototype phase.
What was the reaction to this radical new concept from their colleagues at Ski-Doo? Not great. In fact, many were against moving forward because they didn’t truly understand the benefits that could be realized.
I expect it to be something entirely different that the market would say, “We want to ride it.” said Pascal Vincent, Director of Global Product Ski-Doo. “Not at the beginning, let’s be honest. But over time, when you get to understand what’s behind it… there was something there,” he added.
The REV concept was brought to life in 2003
Eventually, the doubts eroded into belief, and the REV project was catapulted into full development mode. Prototype after prototype was built, analyzed, tested, tweaked, and rebuilt again until the Ski-Doo product team finally achieved the industry’s most monumental advancement.
The two primary factors of the original REV design that produced this paradigm shift. Were the pyramidal frame concept and moving the rider further forward on the machine.
The pyramidal frame instantly made the REV snowmobile five times more rigid than any other sled without increasing weight. That consistency in chassis dynamics made calibrating the rest of the vehicle much more manageable.
The rider-forward positioning was based on Girouard’s belief that moving a rider’s feet under their body would make standing up easier to absorb the bumps better and put the rider in a position of greater leverage over the sled.
The entire rider position shift amounted to moving a rider’s mass 12 inches forward and one inch higher. Tangible results were instantaneous. Riders such as Blair Morgan – who began using a stand-up riding style before the REV – immediately became nearly unbeatable on the track, thanks to this new riding position.
“When you got Blair on the REV it was almost a match made in Heaven. Look at how dominating he was… you’d almost believe the two were made for each other. He was that good,” Kevin Beilke, Editor of Snow Tech Magazine, said.
Those 13 combined inches launched the Ski-Doo brand lightyears ahead of the competition. This put Ski-Doo into the industry leadership position. The brand still maintains today. But the REVolution was just getting started.
The Introduction of the Revolutionary Ski-Doo REV XP Snowmobile Platform in 2008
Having a target on their back is something the Ski-Doo product development team was all too familiar with. As soon as their Ski‑Doo REV Snowmobile platform was released, they knew that other competitors would quickly try to replicate it in their own way. In response, Ski-Doo began work on evolving the REV platform, leading to the creation of the REV XP in 2008. This new platform featured a fantastic 50 lb. weight reduction and improved rider ergonomics. This made it easier for riders to control their snowmobile on the trail. The MXZ TNT 600 was also released as part of this platform. This was the first liquid-cooled sled marketed at under 400 lbs., setting a new standard in snowmobiling. Other innovations that were released as part of this platform included the Rotax E-TEC direct injection engines and the rMotion rear suspension, both of which have become hallmarks of Ski-Doo snowmobiles for over a decade. The REV XP was a genuinely revolutionary platform, paving the way for more innovation in the snowmobile industry.
In 2013 thIntroductionon to the Revolutionary XS and XM Snowmobiles was a turning point for Ski-Doo
The REV XS platform was an innovative development from Ski-Doo for the 2013 model year. It delivers a suite of cosmetic enhancements and improvements in rider ergonomics. Visible changes to the hood, side panels, headlights, taillight, and snow flap saw a greater emphasis on creating a more optimal trail riding experience.
For deep-snow riders, 2013 marked a significant milestone with the unveiling of the REV XM platform. This entirely new concept saw Ski-Doo depart from traditional methods of simply stretching out a trail platform to fit longer tracks. The tMotion suspension debuted as part of this new development, offering much improved deep-snow performance compared to traditional rear suspensions.
In 2017 Revolutionary Generation 4 Technology Delivered Unparalleled Riding Experiences
Almost immediately after the revolutionary REV XS and XM platforms launch, SkSki-Doo’sroduct team began work on their next snowmobile evolution – code-named Project ICE, or Incredible Customer Experience. The team was given a blank slate to reimagine the snowmobile from the ground up, and what they developed shook the entire industry.
The Ski‑Doo REV Snowmobile Gen4 platform was designed to centralize the mass of the snowmobile front-to-back and left-to-right, creating a perfectly balanced machine that responded instantly to rider input. Every inch, from the narrow seat to the open toeholds, was intentionally designed with ergonomics in mind so riders could customize the experience to their liking.
In addition, the new platform was accompanied by a game-changing power plant: The Rotax 850 E-TEC engine. This revolutionary engine featured technologies that improved performance and reliability while introducing the world to SHOT starting – electric start without extra weight – and frictionless pDrive clutch for better throttle response.
The REV Gen4 and 850 E-TEC engine laid the groundwork for what would become SkSki-Doo’sext major breakthrough: the 2020 Summit 850 E-TEC Turbo – the world’s first factory-produced 2-stroke turbocharged engine. With this game-changing innovation, Ski-Doo has taken snowmobiling to unprecedented heights.
Rev Gen5: An Unprecedented Level of Refinement and Sophistication in 2023
ItIt’sow 20 years since BRP first released the Ski‑Doo REV Snowmobile Gen4 platform, revolutionizing the snowmobile industry with its incredible customer experience. Fast forward to 2023, and BRP has once again gone above and beyond with the release of the REV Gen5 platform. Taking all that was great about its predecessor and innovating even further, the REV Gen5 offers a calmer, quieter ride with refined suspension geometry and redesigned tMotion rear suspension. As well as this, the platform is three inches narrower, making it easier to turn in tight spots while reducing the overall weight too.
The successful creation of the REV Gen5 platform has enabled BRP to push boundaries across the rest of the powersports industry with their Can-Am Spyder and Ryker 3-wheeled vehicles and Sea-Doo Spark personal watercraft and Switch pontoon boats.
As for what’s next for BRP? We’ll have to wait and see, but if 20 years of REV Gen technology is anything to go by, we can expect even more revolutionary ideas in the near future.
One thing is for sure, BRP’s innovation never stops!
Be sure to check out our other Stories and everything SXS Nation offers.