Say Hello To The Honda Pioneer 520
Yep, there is a new Pioneer in town, and it has been fitted with the Rubicon 518cc engine, a tweaked suspension, and a dumping cargo bed. What is crazy is that we didn’t see this Pioneer 520 coming! Honda was super smart for creating this newer 520 Pioneer with all the advantages of the Pioneer 500 such as a 50-inch width and an automatic/manual hydraulic transmission, and then adding a bigger engine and dumping cargo bed with sides. You can have all of this for a very reasonable price at $9,499. The Pioneer 500, which has been very popular, will still be around for those who are looking for a “value” model at a $8,499 price point.
There are a handful of things to note about the Pioneer 520 compared to the Pioneer 500. The engine has been optimized for side-by-side use since we this engine comes from the Rubicon ATV. This added 43cc’s of power and torque are available at the low-to-mid RPM range for both fun and work purposes. The dumping cargo bed has a 450-pound capacity, slots for dividing the cargo, 5-gallon bucket rings, and 5 D-links for securing cargo. The cargo bed also is compatible with the Honda Pro-Connect accessories. It is 2.4-inches longer than the Pioneer 500, but the width at 50-inches and wheelbase at 73-inches remains the same. The Pioneer 520 has no trouble fitting in the back of a pickup bed. Front and rear dual a-arm suspension travel comes in at 5.8 and 5.9-inches respectively with 8.5-inches of ground clearance. The shocks have preload so they can be adjusted to the load, and towing capacity is 1,000 pounds. Rounding out the specs on the Pioneer 520 would be the 24x8-12 tires up front and 24x10-12 tires in the back.
Like many of the Honda vehicles, the Pioneer does not have a CVT belt to be found, but instead has Honda’s hydraulic transmission with both an automatic and manual setting. Paddle shifters allow the driver to move through its five gears in manual mode or override a gear in automatic mode. Then there is also the option to put the transmission in automatic mode and forget about it.
What a great move on Honda to add the Pioneer 520 to its Pioneer lineup. No, it is a not a high-speed sporty side-by-side, but it is a great entry-level side-by-side that still offers fun, adventure, and work capabilities in a smaller package. The 520 engine is powerful and refined offering up plenty of power for a side-by-side in this class. All in all, the Pioneer 520 is a great offering. We will try to get our hands for little test.
Here is the release video.
For more information check out Honda’s Pioneer 520 website