There's good news for the Polaris faithful: The 1996 Indy Storm should be more powerful than the previous editions of the 800cc top-of-the-line Indy.
At the American Snowmobiler Shoot-Out last December, our test 1995 Storm
was decidedly at a power disadvantage when compared to the 1995 Ski-Doo
Mach Z, Arctic Cat ZRT 800 and Yamaha Vmax-4. Those three sleds all dynoed
out close to 150 horsepower. The best the 800cc Storm could do was 132.7
horsepower at 8000 revs.
As a point of reference, the 1995 Storm dynoed 5.6 horsepower less than the previous year's best Storm dyno run of 138.3 horsepower at the same rpm. However, the actual on-snow test runs turned in by the Indy Storm last year were about the same in top speed, but slightly more than a second quicker
in the quarter-mile. Remember that elapsed time rules in drag racing. So, bottom line, the folks from Don's Polaris in Old Forge, New York, did their
prep work in getting the underdog to perform at the top of its game. You can't give away nearly 20 horsepower and expect traction and clutching to make up the difference over 1,320 feet at full throttle.
Relative to the other 800s, last year's Storm registered more than 15 horsepower less than the rest of the competition. The ZRT 800 topped the
charts at 151.1, 18.4 horsepower more than the Storm. Meanwhile, the Vmax-4
and Mach Z came in at 149.4 and 149.5 horsepower respectively.
Interestingly, the Storm's triple jumped more than 10 horsepower in just
250 revs - between 7500 and 7750. The triple went from 121 to 131.6 horsepower! After peak horsepower at 8000 rpm, the dyno showed the triple's power dropped off dramatically, losing 6.4 horsepower at 8250, but dropping down to just 108.1 horsepower at 8500 revs. It would appear that you really needed to pay attention to clutching and keeping the power in that 250 rpm window between 7750 and 8000 revs.
Given its lower dyno statistics versus the other 800s, it is no surprise that the Storm posted the lowest ET and mph of the day. The best ET from Polaris' muscle sled was 12.538 seconds. That's almost a whole second slower than the fastest ET of the day set by the Ski-Doo Mach Z at 11.63 seconds. The Storm's top speed was 97.12 out of the box and 98.10 after dealer setup. Much credit goes to the crew at Don's Polaris for getting almost a whole mph more out of it after two hours of wrenching. Their work also managed to make the Storm .555 seconds quicker in elapsed time.
The fact is that snowmobilers don't always run a full quarter-mile drag. Frequently in buddy-to-buddy runs, one guy pulls up alongside the other
rider, nods his head and they're off. In this type of down-and-dirty contest,
the Storm is competitive. The Shoot-Out showed the Storm excelled in initial
quickness. Its best run in the eighth mile was 7.84 seconds at 81.27 mph.
Again, this accomplishment was obtained after dealer setup, but it was only
five tenths of a second off the fastest eighth-mile split set by Ski-Doo at 6.990 seconds. We also saw indications that the Storm was strong in the holeshot runs with 0 to 60-feet times comparable to the more powerful 800s. Due to the disparity in overall horsepower, it was at a big disadvantage in the quarter-mile runs where greater horsepower makes a difference. Still, Polaris' muscle sled was quite competitive in off-the-line acceleration.
After looking at and test riding the 1996 Storm we expect it to be much more competitive in the 800 class than it was a year ago. Just a few indications
include the Storm's all new Nicasil-lined cylinders, revised exhaust porting,
digital CD ignition and the use of three, separate tuned pipes. Whether
this will be enough to bring the latest version of the Storm up to the performance
levels of its competition, we can't say. We'll wait for the results of this season's Shoot-Out. We can say that the Indy Storm is the powerhouse of the Polaris line and for Polaris owners, that's more than enough!
1995 POLARIS STORM
Weight: 616 pounds
Data for 29.92 inches Hg, 60 F dry air
Test: 100 RPM/Sec Acceleration
Fuel Specific Gravity: .745
Vapor Pressure: .25 Barometer: 29.77
|RPM || CBT|| CBHP|| FUEL|| BSFC ||CAT|
|6500|| 71.3|| 88.2|| 47.3|| .54 ||56|
|6750|| 68.8|| 88.4 ||56.7|| .65 ||57|
|7000|| 78.7|| 104.9|| 68.0|| .66|| 57|
|7250|| 81.5|| 112.5|| 72.4|| .65|| 57|
|7500|| 84.7|| 121.0|| 76.0|| .64 ||57|
|7750|| 89.2|| 131.6|| 81.2|| .62 ||57|
|8000|| 87.1|| 132.7|| 84.0|| .64|| 55|
|8250|| 80.4|| 126.3|| 87.8|| .70|| 55|
|8500|| 66.8|| 108.1|| 91.6|| .86 ||57|
RPM: Engine crankshaft speed. CBT: Corrected Brake Torque.
CBHP: Corrected Brake Horsepower. FUEL: Actual fuel flow
pounds per hour.
BSFC: Brake Specific Fuel Consumption. CAT: Carb Air