5 Arctic Cat Alterra 700 Problems (Owners Wish They Knew!)

Alterra 700 is a beast launched by Arctic Cat in a series of improvements since 2005. The best versions were produced in 2017 and in recent years.

With the addition of the H1 powerhouse of 699cc, improved graphics, 2 & 4 WD terrain with Differential Lock, and greater turning radius with power steering to handle rough terrains at its best.

With all these notable specs and a lot more, Alterra 700 is a decent ATV in the market. But in parallel, you should be aware of several minor and major problems.

Some significant problems in Arctic Alterra 700 are its problematic suspension, unreliable plastics, problems in Downhill and sometimes the inability to produce less than the required horsepower.

As nobody tells these Arctic Cat Alterra 700 Problems, we will see them in this detailed article with its fixes.

If you plan to buy Arctic Cat Alterra 700, you should also know its problems, with a potential fix to minimize the stress and increase the joy with your rides on ATV.

Arctic Cat Alterra 700 Problems

These are a few major and minor problems in Arctic Cat Alterra 700:

Zeshan (Author) on Arctic Cat ATV

1. Precise Shifting

Being a machine of over 10 grand, it has got a precise shifting transmission that every rider loves to have. The goal of precise shifting is to shift two-way gears smoothly and accurately and to have very good control of your machine since you are on unpaved and tricky terrains.

Now in Alterra 700 by Arctic Cat, the Precise shifting sucks, which is one of the main problems in this ATV. The ATV lacks proper referencing on Precise Shifting. It is affecting the precision and making it hard to control initially.

To tackle it, you have a trick: to get used to it and rely on it as much as you can. Or the other option is to try to manoeuvre and practice to improve your control.

Unless you are an experienced ATV rider, the precise shifting will annoy you in the first couple hundred kilometres.

This was a common problem in the 2016 and 17 models Alterra 700 and it is not a big deal anymore. 

But, if you have your eyes set on a used model, ensure it’s working and respond in a test ride. Else, it might become a headache.

If Precise shifting is what you primarily look for in an ATV, you get a different ATV model or a used 2017 Alterra 700 with no such problems.

And, if you can manage improper precise shifts, you can still get a newer model. It’s all about your preference and what matters the most!

2. Auto Choke

Sometimes, a product designed for your ease puts you in trouble. The same goes for the Auto Choke, which is a good addition to Arctic Cat Alterra 700 for making your life easier.

Although there is no such known fault in these automatic chokes, new riders who aren’t aware of its presence put themselves and the machine in trouble. 

Spark plug fires up due to Auto Choke.

Old ATVs with EFI engines require a throttle and a choke to start.

But, in the case of an Automatic Choke, you should not use a throttle because it automatically uses the required mix of gas and air to burn the fuel. 

Else, the spark plug will be ruined and can even catch fire, increasing damage and trouble.

The only solution is when you know your machine has an automatic choke and the engine is not starting. You should use this feature but never touch the throttle

Once the engine starts, let it still and get to the recommended temperature before you gauge its throttle and shift the gear.

3. Unreliable Suspension

The Arctic Cat Alterra 700 comes equipped with a fantastic ground clearance of 11 inches to uplift the machine and its suspension with the package of differential locks.

Its suspension is undoubtedly good in short routes, but it becomes a little stiffer on long routes, and low traction also affects its performance in snowy routes, making the suspension a bit harder. 

Although, the snowy track is a core route for ATVs.

Default factory tires that aren’t the greatest quality also affect their suspension, traction and overall readability.

For these things, I would change the tires to Dunlop and anything reliable in these conditions. And, to prevent stiffness in suspension, you should consider buying 2020 and later models.

4. Low Footwell

Depending on your vision, you may think this is a problem if you are 5’6” and shorter, like me. Its footwell is at least an inch and a half lower than Yamaha and its sibling Arctic Cat models.

Considering these footwell and seat height ratios, you may find it a bit low if you are 5’6” or shorter. The front view could be distracting, or your handlebars may tire of handling this machine.

To fix this problem, you should avoid using additional cushions on your seat and start wearing sports sneakers with high ankles to reach your feet comfortably.

A similar problem may be its limited storage room.

You can take tools and limited basic supplies with this machine, but you would need additional storage boxes, metal racks and bags for keeping more luggage. 

And, if you have loads of luggage, that would add more weight to the machine, affecting its performance to some extent.

Arctic Cat Alterra 700 is capable of handling up to 150 pounds. You need to add a cart for that since there’s no room for any integrated storage box.

5. Less HP & Downhill Problems

With the Liquid cooled and 700cc single-cylinder engine, the Alterra looks and works like a gigantic machine for beginners. 

Since it’s a single-cylinder engine, the Alterra 700 produces just enough Horsepower with its H1 plant. This is sufficient for trail rides, no doubt.

But the problem is; the HP could be low when going downhill or uphill. It limits this machine from being an aggressive beast to some extent. If HP is enough somehow, you will notice it is getting out of control on downhills due to traction issues.

You can control this machine by installing high-quality and tractable tires. Also, try to shift this beast to lower gears so engine braking could come into play to make it controllable.

Frequently Asked Question

Is Arctic Cat Alterra 700 reliable?

Arctic Cat Alterra 700 is a general, budget and reliable ATV by Arctic Cat for beginner riders.

The machine features a durable 700cc EFI single-cylinder engine with improved mileage and controllable handling.

There are a couple of problems too you may get. We have discussed all these problems with their potential fixes in this detailed article on Arctic Cat Alterra 700 Problems.

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