2008 Polaris Sportsman 500 Specs and Review 2022

2008 Polaris Sportsman 500: The 2008 edition of the Polaris Sportsman 500 is higher than your typical “working man’s ATV.”

It’s a dual-purpose utility vehicle that has not only contributed to Polaris their current standing as a major player in the industry but also added an entirely new meaning to the phrase “work hard but play harder.”

2008 Polaris Sportsman 500

This article focuses on the iconic American-made four-wheeler.

This year’s Polaris Sportsman 500 will be the thirteenth installment in Polaris the top-selling ATV collection. 

With a powerful engine of 499cc, Electronic Fuel Injection, convertible trims, and an Independent Rear Suspension that is rolled The 4×4 is another step taken by the American company to move in an upward direction.

Highly reliable, robust, and efficient in fuel They can be found everywhere including snow-capped mountain ranges and tracks that are muddy, trails that are wooded, as well as hunting spots. 

These rugged UTVs led the common man to the rugged beauty and ruggedness of the great outdoors. Many enthusiasts acknowledge that they were among the first to launch the concept of hybrid vehicles on the marketplace.

The 2009 Polaris Sportsman 500 offered so many more things – as you’ll discover in this article.

2008 Polaris Sportsman 500

Setting the Bar Higher

There are numerous reviews of this model. Polaris Sportsman 500 which is not surprising considering its position as this Sportsman is Polaris its most popular utility vehicle. 

It was originally designed as a utilitarian vehicle it has grown to become a powerful all-rounder producing displacements of 450cc as well as the XP series, which was later to become one of the American company’s most popular and highly praised quads.

In 2008 this year’s Polaris Sportsman 500 received the same innovations it had in the past a few years the year 2008 – Electronic Fuel Injection and the X2 model that was adapted by ATP. 

The owners who are considering buying it can expect excellent handling, flexibility, and track-worthy performance that was as seen in predecessors.


It’s true that Polaris maintained the original with carbureted H.O. trims for riders who wanted an easier but controlled riding experience. This was in addition to these trims:

  • 2008 Polaris Sportsman 500 EFI (Electronic Fuel Injection, Base)
  • 2008 Polaris Sportsman 500 H.O. (High Output, Base)
  • 2008 Polaris Sportsman 500 Touring
  • 2008 Polaris Sportsman 500 6×6
  • 2008 Polaris Sportsman 500 EFI X2 (Electronic Fuel Injection, Two-Up)
  • 2008 Polaris Sportsman 500 H.O. RSE (High Output, Remington Special Edition)

The decision to not reinvent all Sportsman trims was a good idea for Polaris. This choice bolstered the lineup’s multi-faceted capabilities. 

Because it was able to accommodate both old and new, users with all skill levels and tastes can appreciate the vehicle according to their preferences and desires such as a hay-wagon or trail tamer, a two-up, or even as an individual.

This section follows on with the complete specifications of the base model, while also highlighting a few of the differences it has from different Sportsman 500 models.

2008 Polaris Sportsman 500 EFI Specs & Features Engine

A liquid-cooled, 4-stroke Fuji single-cylinder engine is the catalyst for 2008 the Polaris Sportsman 500. 

The majority of models share a bore-stroke proportion of 92 x 75 millimeters (3.6 3.0 x 2.9 inches) and a 10.2:1 compression ratio.

Engine displacement is provided through Electronic Fuel Injection (EFI) with a Visteon throttle to control the EFI trims and an in-line constant-velocity Mikuni carburetor on the models with high output. The 6×6 comes with a smaller, but equally effective 34mm Mikuni carburetor.

Fuel & Lubrication

The capacity of the oil is 1.9 Liters/2 US Qts SAE 0.W-40 Polaris Premium 4 All-Synthetic Four-Cycle engine oil or the equivalent. 

Alternative oil types need to have an API certification of SJ at a minimum JASO T903 MA as well as other specifications of the manufacturer. 

The lubrication process is a pressurized dry-sump system that helps to create an effective cooling system as well as longer changing of oil intervals.

However, the fuel system needs sixteen liters/4.25 US gallons (High Output) or 22.7 liters/6 US gallons (standard/deluxe EFI, an X2) of unleaded gasoline that has a minimum PON rating of 87-89 (oxygenated). Other parts comprise an inside-tank fuel pump (view on Amazon) and an in-line/in-tank micron fuel filter.


An automated Polaris Variable Transmission (PVT) manages power, which is delivered via a Hilliard-type clutch assembly as well as driveshaft equipped with a H/L/N/R shifting sequence. 

All trims feature On-Demand(TM) AWD/WD drive system with selectable driveline options – 2WD, AWD, and Turf. Touring and X2 models have ADC as well as Active Descent Control. Only one model, the 2008 Polaris Sportsman 500 H.O. has parking as well as reverse.

Active Descent Control

This feature allows all-wheel braking at the flick of a button – ideal to descend steep slopes. In addition, these requirements need to be met in order in order for this feature to work:

  • Close or release the throttle lever.
  • The AWD switch needs to have the ADC 4WD position.
  • The quad’s speed cannot exceed 15 miles per hour (25 KPH).
  • The transmission must be in low, high, or reverse gear.


The 2008 model comes with a DC-CDI (Capacitor Discharge Ignition) as well as an eleelectric-start system.

The ignition timing needs a spark plug from NGK with a 0.035-inch (0.9-mm) distance. An alternator that is triple-phase with 350-watts @ 6,000 RPM is used as its charging device.

The battery that is located under the back left the fender, you will find a 12V 30 Ah/10HR, lead-acid The YB14A A2 is a Battery (view at Amazon) that powers your 12V outlet, as well as any electronic devices. 

The battery that comes with it is a standard model, however compatible LiPO4 or lithium-ion variants are able to be used in place of it. 

If you choose to go with YTX14AH or YTX14AH versions will require spacers of 10mm to fit inside the box for the battery.

Lighting & Instrumentation

Dual 37-watt grille-mounted light fixtures placed on the front of the bumper as well as 50-watt Halogen pod light offer a Sportsman 500 superior light distribution. 

The lighting also has two 8.26-watt brake lamps, 26.9-watt taillight, single-watt indicators, and two light sources of 13 watts for work. 

In terms of instruments, the quad’s digital gauge features a speedometer, the odometer, and tachometer, as well as an hour meter, trip meter high-temp/low-batt lighting, a clock as well as fuel gauge.

2008 Polaris

Tires & Brakes

Standard trims feature 26 8-12 front tires and 26 11-12 back Titan tires that are mounted on wheels made of stamped steel and identical-sized Polaris PXT tires that are mounted on cast aluminum rims for Deluxe models. 

The recommended cold tire pressure for cold tires is 34.5 (kPa) (0.35 kg-f/cm, 5, psi) however they can be air-cooled or inflated based on the terrain. 

Furthermore, ITP 6P0530 Mud Lite II All-Terrain Radials (view on Amazon) are better than rear-tire replacements in case of damage or wear.

The Sportsman 500 has dual hydraulic discs on the front and one hydraulic disc at the rear completes its wheel-and-tire assembly. 

EBS (Engine Braking System) which is as standard on Deluxe trims, but not on base models, adds it with stopping capabilities. 

The use of DOT3 brake fluid is essential for the assembly or maintenance of brakes in order to prevent the formation of swollen rubber parts.


The suspension system utilizes MacPherson front suspension struts with 8.2 inches or 208 millimeters of travel.

It also has fully independent coil-over shocks with a progressive rate that includes an anti-roll bar spring tension shock with preload adjustment and 9.5 inches/241 millimeters of travel.

The minimum ground clearance is adequate at 11.25 inches/286 millimeters and allows riders to navigate rough terrain without fear. 

But, this isn’t the case with the 6×6 model which has the disadvantage of 6 inches.

The increase of 3/4-inches in the wheel’s travel in the rear, coupled with the 5.4-feet/1.6-meter turning radius gives incredible corners. 

Additionally, 50.5-inch wheelbase raised rear seat footrests, and ergonomic handholds help to maintain vehicle stability, improve the input of passengers, as well as active weight shifting.


The overall dimensions of the vehicle are the following: 83 x 48 x48 inches. The height of the seat is 33.8 34 inches/857-864 millimeters which is well-matched with the footrests that are raised. 

The dry weight of the seat is 715 pounds. or 324 Kg for the H.O. model, 722 lbs. and model, 722 lbs.

and 327 Kg to the H.O. RSE/Mossy Oak(r) Break-Up(TM) Camouflage trim, 895 lbs. and 406 kg for the 6×6, and 798 – 830 pounds. and 362 and 376.5 Kg for the X2 version.

Both the length and wheelbase of the X2 models are 10 inches long when compared to regular models. 

The 6x6s are 20 inches wider but are two (2) inches wider than other trims. Touring trims are between these numbers, yet have the same height and width that the standard Sportsman 500.

The towing capacity of the Hitch is 1,225 pounds (556 Kg) and it can tow a trailer with brakes that weigh 1,786 pounds (810 kg). 

The tongue of a hitch can hold 120 pounds (54.4 kg) and ought to be at least 180 pounds (81.6 kg) when added to the rear rack’s weight. GVWR is 1200 lbs (544 Kg) comprised of curb weight, rack capacity, accessories as well as passengers.


Models with Base H.O. and Touring models have the front-rack capacity of 90 lbs./40.8 Kg, a rear rack capacity of 180 lbs./82 Kg as well as the 1,225-lbs./555.7-Kg hitting capacity for towing. 

The X2 models added a rear capacity of 400 lbs./181 kg to accommodate its two-seater design. 

Similar to that, the 6×6 Sportsmans decreased the front carrier’s capacity to 75 lbs./34 Kg but increased its rear hitch and rear carrier towing capacity to haul larger loads and provide an even bigger cargo bed.


Every model for the 2008 Polaris Sportsman 500 models has a tubular Spirited steel frame, with a medium-gloss black color. 

Plastic body panels are offered with Stealth Black, Boardwalk Blue, Indy Red, Sage Green, Sunset Red, and Mossy Oak(r) Break-Up(TM) Camouflage.

Carrier racks are made from composite material, which is strong however, they are best cleaned either by hand or using the garden pipe (low-pressurized water). 

Brush guards and fenders with high clearance give the 2008 Polaris Sportsman 500 parts needed protection from the elements as well as the full floorboards, handgrips, and handlebars enhance the quad’s racing.

Lock & Ride(r) Cargo System

This attachment doesn’t require drilling permits to the Polaris Sportsman 500 in 2008 Polaris Sportsman 500 and the other Polaris 4x4s to connect accessory carriers, as well as other utility items to the vehicle. 

In the end, this feature allows users to expand their luggage storage capacity, storage capacity, and general versatility of the Sportsman according to their own preferences.

Cost of a 2008 Polaris Sportsman 500

Based on the model and the trim (High Output EFI touring 6×6 or X2) The MSRP ranged between $5,999 and $7999. H.O. Mossy/RSE Oak(r) Break-Up(TM) trimmings have the highest price than H.O. and EFI models. 

The resales values for the Sportsman are typically less than the cost of the original models. Here is a brief overview of the Polaris Sportsman 500 list and the resale price:

Year – Trim List Price Retail/Trade-In Values
2008 Polaris Sportsman 500 HO (High Output) $5,999 $2,100 – $3,780
2008 Polaris Sportsman 500 (EFI) $6,999 $2,955 – $4,850
2008 Polaris Sportsman 500 6×6 $7,999 N/A
2008 Polaris Sportsman 500 NBU (EFI) $7,399 N/A
2008 Polaris Sportsman 500 Deluxe (EFI) $7,699 $3,410 – $4,490
2008 Polaris Sportsman 500 2 Up (EFI) $7,999 $3,440 – $4,525

The choice of the rider’s package options increased the price by a minimum of $1,000. Dealerships also offered lower add-ons – for example, $300 for matching paint or wheels. 

But if you were searching for Lock & Ride compliant or performance-enhancing aftermarket parts, it was best to source them from reputable parts dealers and other known trader sites.

But, you might find rare items which will cost more but are in better overall condition, such as Sportsman 500 Mossy Oak(r) Break-Up(TM) Camouflage trims that cost $4,500. 

Higher-end models usually include snowplows, an acrylic windshield, rear drop baskets as well as extenders, and so on. In addition, you can get well-maintained units that have a new 2007 Polaris Sportsman 500 battery or new tires that are Mud/All-Terrain.

Based on their usage in terms of hours, they range from 1,928-7,908 miles and between 282 and 829 hours. 

Vehicles with lower mileage are likely to have fewer previous owners. But, you must be alert to conduct an investigation into the background of the vehicle. 

Be sure to inquire about any modifications or changes that are made to these pre-loved quads.

Known Sportsman 500 Problems

Known Sportsman 500 Problems

In addition to the cosmetic and part damage that can be to be expected from second-hand Sportsman 500s.

This segment will cover some of the model’s most well-known problems, such as 2008. Polaris Sportsman 500 HO problems:

Active Descent Control

In some instances, ADC seems inactive, being inactive on slopes with a downslope, making the descent down snow or mud slightly slick. Riders have reported that changing the throttle and brakes is not enough to secure the front wheels to the drivetrain, and thus make the wheel turn. 

This results in an ineffective performance when going uphill in reverse, and negligible differences in performance between AWD or 2WD settings. This is a major disadvantage for recreational riders, however, it is a feature that is sought-after by serious trailers.

Rectifier/Regulator Failure

The first indication of this issue is a flashing alarm light. This is followed by an unproven decrease in battery voltage. 

If the problem is not serious, simple procedures like checking the stator and terminals connecting them, tightening loose connections, or replacing the battery entirely could resolve the cause. 

If not, you could be dealing with a malfunctioning regulator or rectifier that needs replacement to correct the issue.


For H.O. models, the most frequent causes are the wrong tuning, vacuum, gas leaks, vacuum lock, or ignition problem. 

These are fairly straightforward to correct. Regular inspection and replacement of gaskets keep gas leaks in check. Clean intake boots along with the lack of obstacles can ward against vapor and vacuum locks. 

Also, the removal of spark plugs that are clogged and the correct adjustments to air-fuel help to prevent ignition issues or tuning inconsistencies.

Sputtering is often accompanied by overheating of the engine and could indicate an issue with the wiring of the TPS sensor harness. 

A fault code will point you in the correct direction when diagnosing the problem. In the absence of an error code, the exhaust manifold has to be examined, and the heat shield from an off-the-shelf source should be added.

Other signs that could indicate the same issue source include a stuck Idle Air Control (IAC) motor, as well as damaged fuel injection plugs. Also, the throttle body might require thorough cleaning in order for it to function properly.

Other issues that are known to be a problem, such as intermittent stalling, no-starts power loss, and sensor issues are described in-depth in a previous post regarding the 2007 Polaris Sportsman 500. 

The indicators and repairs are basically identical to the prior model year of the quad, with some issues fixed permanently in subsequent versions of the vehicle. 

If you’d like to approach buying a second-hand item in a smart method, you should avoid rigs that have been damaged by water.

About Polaris

Polaris is an American manufacturer based in Roseau, Minnesota, recognized as the pioneer of the snowmobile market through the introduction of its 1956 Sno Traveler. 

It also introduced its first U.S.-made ATV in 1985, which ended the Japanese dominance in the ATV business.

Polaris is a reputable name in the ATV world, well-known for its specially-built four-wheelers, such as the Polaris Sportsman 500 in 2008.

Polaris Sportsman 500 and other innovative all-terrain vehicles and Powersports innovation.

Conclusion – 2008 Polaris Sportsman 500 Review

The model of 2008 continued with the laudable advancements in the Sportsman lineup, retaining tested and proven models while adding more options for end-users that they can take advantage of. 

This wheeler is geared towards utility users who are not experienced feel less intimidated by a mid-sized 4×4.

It’s not the ideal car, but its increased capabilities and the myriad of useful features that are included are nothing anything less than fantastic. 

Anyone looking to get the most value for their money and more should opt for this year’s Polaris Sportsman 500!

Are Polaris Sportsman 500 any good?

The Sportsman 500 H.O. is a highly excellent ATV, regardless of its size. We’ve yet to discover anything that it isn’t capable of as well, and like many Sportsman owners, it can get to work every day and be prepared to play on weekends.

How fast is a 2008 Polaris Sportsman 500?

The 500 of the following break should be between 60-65 miles per hour. Mine is 67 mph when it is at sea level.

How much does a 2008 Polaris 500 weigh?

The overall dimensions of the vehicle are approximately 83x48x48 inches. The seat height ranges from 33.8 34-34 inches/857 864 mm. This will work well with elevated footrests—dry weight: 715lbs.

Which is better ATV Honda or Polaris?

The Honda is well-known for its reliability, ease of operation, excellent ride, ease of riding and capacity to be agile. The Polaris is more smooth than the glass on rough terrain. It has impressive power, and the EBS performs well, is exceptionally comfortable to ride, while the electric steering system is of top quality.

What year was the Polaris Sportsman 500 made?

A Revamped Best-Seller. Polaris introduced its model in the year 2001. Polaris Sportsman 500 in reaction to reviews from consumers about the feeling of being underpowered in the quad. The model was developed by engineers who changed the power mill originally in use to a High Output motor.

Is a Polaris Sportsman a good quad?

I discovered the handling and power of the 450 the perfect choice for anyone looking for an all-around machine capable of handling small-to-medium-sized hunter’s property. It has an excellent distance to the ground (11.5 inches) and could handle the numerous ruts we had on our property quickly.

Is Polaris Sportsman automatic?

There’s an explanation for why Sportsman is the home of the most popular ATV that is automatic and 4×4 ever. Unbeatable performance. Incredible riding and handling.

How do I tell what year my Polaris Sportsman 500 is?

— Take a look at the 10th character in the identification number of the vehicle. The 10th character is used to identify the year of manufacture of the four-wheeler.

How fast does a Polaris Ranger 500 go?

The top speeds are 44 miles per hour, marginally faster than many other manufacturers’ top models. Whatever the speed or the RPM, it can hum through the air at a low volume. Similar to other Ranger models, it is located underneath the bench’s seat.

How much weight can a Polaris Sportsman 500 pull?

The dry mass of the ATV is 696 pounds. The tank for fuel can hold 4.1 Gallons of regular unleaded gasoline. The front rack can accommodate 90 pounds. The rear rack can accommodate 180 pounds. This ATV can tow 1,225 lbs.

What ATV has the most horsepower?

With 91 horsepower, at 91 HP, the Renegade X XC1000R is among the top horsepowers of any ATVs made in the present. It is equipped with the most potent Rotax motor; these machines are quick when delivered from the factory. It is possible to purchase one with upgraded rubber tires and a snorkelled engine if you are a fan of dirt.

What kind of oil does a Polaris Sportsman 500 take?

Polaris offers the Premium Synthetic 4 0W40 to be used as an engine oil because it is specifically designed to be compatible with Polaris four-cycle engines. It is a synthetic multi-viscosity oil with decent film strength across a broad temperature range of minus-40 until 120 degrees F.

How fast is a Polaris Outlaw 500?

It was the predecessor of the 525 KTM powered IRS. The Polaris Outlaw 500 is fondly described by off-road enthusiasts to be “the Chuck Norris of the quad world.” The model was manufactured from 2006 until 2007. This mighty machine featured a pro-steering system and an 82-mph top speed and was the first sports quad equipped with IRS.

What is a Polaris 500?

Its name is the Polaris Magnum 500 is, an all-new 498-cc quad that was one of the very first Polaris 4x4s that targeted the growing ATV market for rec/utility. An automatic PVT, a long-travel suspension, intelligent storage and On-Demand 4WD. This classic wheeler was popular with those who loved the outdoors and ranchers.

Polaris Sportsman 500 FAQ

1. Is the 2008 Polaris 500 fuel injected?

In 2008 this year’s Polaris Sportsman 500 received the same improvements it received in the past year 2008 – Electronic fuel Injection along with the ATP-adopted X2 model. The owners who are considering buying it can expect excellent handling, flexibility, and track-ability that are as seen in predecessors.

2. What does HO stand for on Polaris Sportsman?

HO = High Output. It was previously mentioned that Polaris changed its engine to make more horsepower from the same displacement of the engine.

3. When did Polaris make the 500 Sportsman?

A Revamped Best-Seller. Polaris introduced its model in the year 2001. Polaris Sportsman 500 as a response to the consumer feedback about the feeling of being underpowered in the quad. In this model, engineers have upgraded the motor to become a high output engine.

4. How often should you change the oil on Polaris Sportsman?

Do a break-in and filter change every 25 hours on the engine (or one month) of service — or whatever comes first. After breaking in, replace your filter and oil every 100 hours or one year or 1,000 miles depending on what occurs first. Make sure to change the filter every time you are you change your oil.

5. Where is the oil drain plug on a Polaris 500?

The drain plug of the crankcase is located in the middle of the case. Access the drain plug via the lower part of the car.

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