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2007 Suzuki King Quad 450 4x4 Utility ATV
2007 Suzuki King Quad 450 4x4 Utility ATV Press Intro

By: David Reese

Suzuki King Quad 450 4x4
Suzuki King Quad 450 4x4
Rome, GA - Suzuki established itself in the ATV market with the release of the original King Quad in 1991 which was Considered revolutionary in design at that time as a utility ATV. Like all utility ATV’s manufactured back then, there was nothing push button or plush about them and you certainly wouldn‘t of thought of them as being sporty. They were found to be cumbersome, rough riding, and tipsy out on the trail, and primarily produced as workhorses, so what could one expect.

Fourteen years later and light years ahead in Utility ATV technology the 2005 King Quad 700 4X4 sport utility was introduced. Did you notice the word sport before the word utility? That’s what you can call keeping your priorities straight, play then work. Yes, this now meant you could hit the trail with confidence and comfort on the same quad that you just finished the yard work with, or hopefully you can keep your priorities straight and go for the trail ride first.

The King Quad has been Suzuki's flagship utility ATV since its introduction in 1991 and has come standard with all their high end features and latest technology. For 2007 Suzuki is expanding the King Quad lineup with its 450cc model. Although the 450 is in a lower cc class and about a thousand dollars less than its big brother the 700 it still shares all the same high end features and latest technology. This includes a fully independent double wishbone suspension with a rear sway bar. A Lower center of gravity is achieved by the 4.6 gallon fuel tank being located under the seat, and the engines cylinder being at a slant of 48 degrees. The fuel tank location trading places with the air box places the engine air intake at the highest possible point on the quad giving it the capability to ride through deeper water and mud holes.

Suzuki King Quad 450 4x4  gas tank
Suzuki King Quad 450 4x4 airbox location
A growing trend in Sport Utility ATVs is to move the gas tank under the seat for lower center of gravity and moving the airbox to the historical gas tank location infront of the seat for a higher breathing positions for maximum protection from water and mud

Easy push-button drive-train mode selection for 2WD, full time 4WD, or 4WD with the front differential locked. The fully automatic v-belt driven transmission uses a gated left handed automotive style shifter to select neutral, low, high, or reverse with the ability to start while in gear with the brake fully engaged. Winch installation is made easy with a conduit for wiring already in place on the frame. Suzuki’s electronic Fuel-Injection is used, which makes for easy cold starts and good throttle response no matter what the weather conditions or altitude. For the infrequent rider who often finds their quad with a dead battery, the engineers at Suzuki have added a capacitor to hold a charge so pull starting is still possible with electronic fuel-injection where other wise the battery would have to be charged.

Suzuki King Quad 450 4x4  reverse rev limiter
Suzuki King Quad 450 4x4  diff-lock
The resverse rev limiter over-ride button is within a thumbs reach for quick access and the start button has been moved up beside the light switch
The Diff-Lock is also within thumbs reach for quickly switching between drive modes, which was extremely easy and convient to use during our test ride

Suzuki was proud to promote this first and newest addition to the King Quad line of ATV's and invited the ATV/Off Road media to Highland Park Off Road Heaven located in the North West Georgia Mountains for a day to test ride the all-new 450. Highland Park’s 45 miles of mountain trails would make for a great place for a test ride, with its many changes in elevation and switchback turns. Also, on the schedule was a tour of Suzuki’s Manufacturing Plant in Rome, Georgia where the Suzuki King Quad 450 and other Utility models are built from the ground up.

2007 King Quad 450’s at Highland Park

Being the first group to arrive at Highland Park, we had first pick from the cluster of 2007 King Quad 450’s that Suzuki had waiting for us to ride. A few were equipped with genuine Suzuki accessories installed such as rack extensions, bumpers, wheels and tires. Before riding the new quad we took the time to get familiar with the 450's controls and instrumentation. Looking for a choke you won’t find one anywhere because the EFI eliminates the need for one, which eliminates those cold morning starting issues of the past. From the throttle your thumb doesn’t have far to go to find the drive selection mode button for 2WD and 4WD as well as the 4WD with front differential locked switch. The left handed gated style shifter made it easy to select between high, low, neutral, and reverse. The drive mode and gear selection is displayed on an easy to read LCD digital dash along with an easy to read speedometer, odometer, twin trip meters, hour meter, clock, and fuel gauge. For the King Quad, the fuel Gauge is a real necessity considering the fuel tank is located under the seat. Besides the normal rear storage compartment, a dry storage compartment is also located in the front right fender within arms reach while in the sitting position. Trying the pull starter just for fun turned out to be a trying experience. Some brawn is necessary for the pull starter that’s for sure, and an automatic cylinder decompression is really needed. Cosmetically and feature wise the only difference between the 700 and 450 models that you will find, is the 450 lacks the third head light mounted on the handle bars and 250cc’s.

Suzuki King Quad 450 4x4 front storage
Suzuki King Quad 450 4x4 rear storage
The large front storage compartment is a great feature for keeping items dry and is easily accessible while sitting on the King Quad. Also, the King Quad has an even larger rear storage compartment, which can be accessed once dismounted from the ATV

Thankfully the heavy rain that morning began to taper to occasional showers and eventually just sprinkles as we geared up to hit the trails, which was littered with puddles and mud holes. Hitting these puddles and mud holes at speed, the aggressive sporty looking plastic with full fenders and floorboards proved to be extremely effective in repelling the slinging mud and water, and what little mud and water that did splash into the floor board drained well with the large drainage holes. As for traction in the mud, the specially designed light weight Dunlop tires worked ok, but lacked in lateral traction pushing a bit in the corners. There was one 450 that had ITP tires and wheels on it that didn’t push like the one with the stock tires and wheels but the extra traction and rotating weight noticeably bogged down the motor over the light weight stock radial tires.

Suzuki King Quad 450 4x4 ATV
Suzuki King Quad 450 4x4 ATV

The only real complaint with the King Quad 700 was its somewhat twitchy feel in the steering and a tendency for the weight to dive down on the front end under load, this issue was not evident on the 450 even though the same platform and geometry are used for both quads except for the wheels, hubs, and spindles on the 700 are aluminum while the 450 utilizes steel components to keep it within Suzuki’s goal weight of 606 lbs or less. This gives the 700 less un-sprung weight which would explain the somewhat twitchy feel in the steering, and the heavier larger displacement engine adds to the 700’s sprung weight explaining why it tends to dive down in the front. Even though the 450cc engine was no match in a drag race with its big brother, this electronic fuel-injected 4-valve single overhead cam power plant coupled with Suzuki’s constantly variable transmission provided sufficient power and torque to climb up the muddy hills of the NW Georgia Mountains with ease.

Suzuki King Quad 450 4x4 ATV

The well maintained water breaks on the main trail were perfect for sailing the King Quad 450 several feet in the air. I’m not sure Suzuki’s engineers intended for anyone to get that much air with it, but the fully independent suspension soaked up landings smoothly and predictably. The suspension also provided good control and tracking through the corners, and the aggressive raised above the floorboard foot pegs kept my feet planted and secured when shifting my body weight for high speed turns and off-chamber sections of the trail. Also, Suzuki’s hallmark T-shaped seat was very effective in allowing for easy body motion from side to side, and it was extremely comfortable, which is essential for a long day of riding.

Suzuki King Quad 450 4x4 ATV
Suzuki King Quad 450 4x4 ATV

Venturing off the main trail, things got more technical with tight trails and hairpin turns at the edge of drop offs where your brakes needed to be dependable. There was never a doubt in that you were going to have brakes. The front 200mm disk brakes provided more than sufficient stopping power and were only really needed when in 2WD. As for the rear clutch like or tractor style brake sealed in oil it can be compared to dropping anchor. In 4WD the rear brake by itself had no problem in stopping you. Being a sealed unit the rear brake didn’t overheat and never lost any stopping ability, and unlike drum or disc brakes, the internal rear brake is designed to last the life of the machine without any maintenance and the added cost of replacement pads, drums, or rotors.
Suzuki King Quad 450 4x4 ATV

The following day we went to the factory the in Rome, Georgia to observe the new King Quad 450 being built. Although it wasn’t nearly as fun as riding the day before, the factory tour tuned out to be really interesting. We got a chance to see how everything is fabricated and assembled on site from the cutting, welding, and powder coating of the tubing to make the frame, to the injection molding of the plastic. The whole process takes about 6 hours from start to finish in the manufacturing of one quad, and the plant produces more than 300 units a day including the King Quad, Vinson, and Eiger, which is almost every Suzuki Utility ATV besides the Ozark, which is still produced in Japan.

Suzuki King Quad 450 4x4 ATV being built in factory
Suzuki King Quad 450 4x4 ATV being built in factory
Suzuki King Quad 450 4x4 ATV being built in factory

Touring the factory left no question about what a great addition the 450 is to the King Quad family. Comparing the King Quad brothers obviously the 700 is the faster of the two with the 450 coming out on top in overall handling. The biggest difference you will see in the showroom is that the King Quad 450 is priced at an MSRP of $6499.00 a thousand dollars less than the 700, making it hard to decide between these kings. Expanding the existing King Quad line of ATV’s saves in production costs and enables Suzuki to give the consumer a better product at lower prices, explaining why Suzuki’s future plans are to expand the King Quad line even further, but we will have to wait till June 2007 to find out latest addition to the King Quad family.

Press Intro Video Clips
The 2007 Suzuki Kingquad 450
The 2007 Suzuki Kingquad 450 factory

American Suzuki

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