This year, Ski-doo’s most modified and upgraded mountain sled the Freeride 2024. Considering the Gen5 Freeride was introduced just one year before, the number of changes and improvements to this snowmobile is quite surprising. This package not only is fun and playful, but has the features, and components, to make it one of the most hardcore and capable machines on the mountain.
That’s why I choose the Turbo R 154″ with the PowderMax X-Light 3.0 ″ track as my personal favourite configuration for my Ski-doo Freeride 2024. Are you wondering what’s changed on this mountain hot rod for next season? Well, let’s look at the upgrades, and how Ski-doo enhanced this sled’s performance on the snow.
The Biggest Changes to the Freeride 2024
The biggest changes to the Freeride 2024 are, in my opinion, in the back end of the sled. It now has two track options with different lug depths: PowderMax 2.5 ″ and PowderMax X-Light 3.0 ″. Both are 15″ wide and have full rods going all the way to the edge of the track, to help give it a stiffer edge. This allows it to hold a sidehill much better. At 15″ wide, the Freeride’s track has slimmed down. It is now 1″ narrower than last year’s model, as well as Ski-doo’s other mountain sleds for 2024.
The Freeride 2024 doesn’t have the flex edge track anymore now that it has full rods to the edge of the track. This alone is a huge performance enhancement for 2024. The new 15″ track with full rods is a great combination of two elements. First off, it is slightly narrower for a more playful feel under power. Second, it is more rigid on the edge for a better hold on a steep technical sidehill. I’m a big fan of the new track modifications, because this sled is engineered for an aggressive mountain rider looking to push their limits, and this new track design helps them do that.
tMotion XT with Rigid Rear Arm
The rear skid on the Freeride 2024 now has the tMotion XT Rear Arm, which is locked to give it more rigidity, aiding in control during technical maneuvers. Now that the more flexible tMotion X rear skid is gone, the aggressive rider can hit their line in technical terrain or launch off a big jump with more confidence. I like the locked out rear skid. It’s not quite as smooth, with its side-to-side transitions, but it works very well, and provides extra stability for riders pushing the limits, which is what the Freeride is designed to do. This year’s tMotion XT rear skid is also 3 lb lighter than that used by the Summit X with Expert Package from last season.
KYB Pro 40—Upgraded Front Shocks
The Freeride 2024 also got an upgrade in the shock department. The front shocks are now KYB Pro 40 mm. Upgraded from the previous 36 mm, they are designed to take severe impacts from aggressive riding with bigger jumps and drops. The nice part about these shocks? They can take more abuse and impacts, but don’t feel harsh when you’re riding. They still give a fun and playful ride. It’s a win-win in both performance and handling.
Redesigned Spindles for More Stability
The Freeride 2024 also brings redesigned spindles to help give their aggressive riders more stability at higher speeds. The main difference is the shorter distance between the upper and lower A-arms, giving the sled a different geometry thus making it more stable. Everyone will benefit from this change, but it was mostly designed for riders coming into jumps with a high-speed rate.
New 146″ Length Option in the Freeride Turbo R!!
This is the first year Ski-doo has offered the Freeride Turbo R in a 146″ length. If you’re looking for the most playful sled on the mountain, especially at high elevations, this is the one. It features the extremely powerful and fun 850 E-TEC Turbo R motor, maintaining 180 hp at elevation. Now, with a 146″ length, this sled maxes out the fun metre for mountain riders! It’s easy to wheelie, extremely maneuverable in the tight trees, and flips around with ease.
Why Wasn’t the 146″ My Favourite Length?
You might be wondering why I didn’t pick the 146″ length as my favourite. For a guy like me, who really likes a playful mountain sled, I was fairly shocked myself. With the 146″ length, you give up some traction and climbing ability in steep terrain on deep days. Therefore, in my opinion, the 154″ length is the perfect combination of great traction, very good manoeuvrability, and playfulness. For my riding style, and the steep terrain I ride in, the Turbo R 154″ is the sweet spot for the Freeride 2024.
Just One More Ride?
All Ski-doo’s upgrades to the Freeride 2024 have put this sled at the top of my list. Every modification to this sled felt right and enhanced its capabilities for the aggressive rider. Anyone buying the Freeride 2024 will get a fun, playful sled that’s designed and engineered to take the harshest punishment a mountain rider can throw at it. What more can you want?
Even though it was designed to be pushed to its limits, it truly is an enjoyable sled that kept me wanting for more.
For more information about Ski-doo’s model year 2024 lineup, visit their Website here.
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