The Linhai rustler is one of those machines that has really proved itself over the years. Not many budget models have stuck around for as long as this one has – and we’d be very interested to see just how many of these units have been sold in South Africa – and of those units what percentage still work hard almost everyday.
Back to basics:
There is a reason that this quad has done so well. Historically it has never been very expensive and it has proved to be rugged and reliable. Ask any of the thousands of farmers who use them commercially, they will tell you that. Parts are inexpensive and readily available, so that’s also a big plus.
Nothing fancy at all on this machine – and that is a good thing. It is powered by a reliable 300cc liquid cooled engine. It is automatic, so there is no fuss with shifting gears. Simple ford, reverse actuation via the gearshift – and they chuck in low and high range – along with 4wd for more versatility. Disc brakes do all the stopping, and power is transferred to the rear wheels via a solid shaft driven differential – so that means no chain to replace.
The seat is wide and comfortable, the bars and controls are placed sensibly, wide plastics and runner boards keep the pilot dry and free of excess mud and mess from the wheels. The wheels are nice and big and they are mounted on pretty good suspension (Independent up front with a monoshock out back), which translates to decent ground clearance and a comfortable ride. The air-filter is simple to access and service – so it really is an every man’s ATV. Simple. Solid. No bells and whistles. You get the idea? Another bonus is the fact that parts are readily available and guess what? The parts are notably less pricey than parts from most of the main line brands.
Lekker. We had a lot of fun. 60 Km’s or so of trails that ranged from lots of water crossings [who on a quad does not enjoy water?]. rocky hills and fast flowing farm terrain . This is not the biggest, baddest quad on the market, it’s more like the Donkey that will keep stooming along while some of the pedigrees are having a little rest. Make
sense? Power delivery is smooth and predictable -there is nothing wild or out of control about it. The quad has a certain amount of stiffness to it- but that was probably due to the fact that this one was brand new. We’ve seen these Linhai’s on trails all over and they are perfect for that, a very chilled machine to ride and very capable, with great gearing for all sorts and 4wd to get you out of trouble.
If we were farmers, we’d have a couple parked in the shed for zooting out in the lands, loading a box full of tools or checking the fences. The sturdy carriers are designed just for this purpose. Load the tools, load the hay bales, load the dog go exploring. The large [14.5litre) fuel tanks means that you can go for miles before refuelling- and as it is, this quad sips fuel.