The Honda Rubicon and Honda Rancher ATVs look fairly similar. However, they do have differences. In this article, I will explain the differences between the Honda Rubicon and the Honda Rancher.
Overall, a Honda Rubicon is slightly larger. But, the Honda Rubicon also has one model with a manual transmission. Whereas, the Rancher only comes in automatic. The Rubicon has larger wheels, more weight capacity on the front and rear racks, and considerably more towing capacity.
There are quite a few specs that are different between the Rubicon and Rancher. Below, I will provide a side-by-side comparison. As well as, a summary of how much they differ as a percentage in terms of performance.
Specs Side by Side Comparison: Rubicon vs Rancher
|Specification||Honda Rubicon||Honda Rancher|
|Height||48.6 inches||46.2 inches|
|Length||84.5 inches||82.8 inches|
|Manual or automatic||Manual and automatic||Automatic only|
|Towing capacity||1322 pounds||848 pounds|
|Front rack weight capacity||99 pounds||66 pounds|
|Rear rack weight capacity||187 pounds||133 pounds|
|Wheel size||25 inches||24 inches|
|Fuel capacity||3.9 gallons||3.9 gallons|
|Reserve fuel tank capacity||1.3 gallons||1.3 gallons|
|Weight||700 pounds to 730 pounds||629 pounds to 676 pounds|
The Honda Rancher is overall smaller, and has less powerful specs across the board, apart from the fuel capacity which is identical. Some of the specs are quite a bit different, whereas, others only have a marginal difference. Therefore, below I’ve put together a table that shows how much as a percentage the Rancher differs from the Rubicon.
|Spec||Percent that the Honda Rancher has od the Rubricon|
|Towing capacity (weight)||64%|
|Front rack weight capacity||66%|
|Rear rack weight capacity||71%|
|Reserve fuel tank capacity||same|
Across, all of the specs measured the Honda Rancher has 86% less capacity or size. The biggest differences are the towing capacity, front rack weight capacity, and rear rack weight capacity. The Honda Rancher can tow a maximum of 36% less than the Honda Rubicon. However, interestingly they have the same fuel tank capacity, and the same reserve fuel tank capacity.
Because of these differences, it can be argued that the Honda Rubicon is more of a recreation ATV, and the Honda Rancher is more of a utility ATV. The reason is that the Honda Rancher can tow more, and can carry more on the front and rear racks.
It’s surprising that the weight, height, length, and wheel size are very similar. And only differ by about 10% to 20%. Yet, the bang for in terms of how much weight they can tow, and the carrying capacity of the front and rear rack is considerably more.
Difference in available colors: Rancher vs the Rubicon
Both the Honda Rancher and the Honda Rubicon have a black:
- Footrest area
- Front and rear racks
But the main body, the area above the wheels, and the front and rear can be different colors. The options are red, blue, olive, bronze or camo. There are four different models for the smaller Honda Rubicon. Whereas, the larger Honda Rancher has eight different models. Of these different models, they are about the same in terms of what colors are available.
|Color Option||Honda Rancher Number of Models||Honda Rubicon Number of Models|
|Red||6 out of 8||3 out of 4|
|Blue||1 out of 8||1 out of 4|
|Olive||5 out of 8||2 out of 4|
|Bronze||0 out of 8||1 out of 4|
|Camo||5 out of 8||2 out of 4|
The choice of colors is very much the same for both the Honda Rancher and the Honda Rubicon. The only difference is that the Honda Rubicon has a bronze option. The most available color for both are red, olive, and camo.
Which Is Better the Honda Rancher or the Honda Rubicon
The Honda Rubicon and Honda Rancher share some similarities but some of the other specs are very different. Now, that you’re aware of the major differences between the Honda Rancher and the Honda Rubicon, here’s a summary of which is better.
Overall, the Honda Rancher is better. It has about 20% more towing ability, and front and rear rack carrying capacity than the Honda Rubicon. The Honda Rancher is about 20% bigger. However, both the Honda Rancher and the Honda Rubicon have the same sized fuel tank.
They are both full-sized ATVs. Honda sells 4 different full-sized ATVs, and 1 that is much smaller – the Honda Recon. I evaluated all of the different Honda recreation/utility ATVs in another article.
It compares them based on the main specifications, as well as, and how they compare based on price. You can see the results and summary in this article about the difference between the Honda Rubicon and the Honda Foreman.
Which Is More Expensive the Honda Rancher or Honda Rubicon
So, the Honda Rubicon is clearly better than the Honda Rancher based on the specs. But, a key consideration is also the price. Here’s a rundown of how the Honda Rubicon compares to the Honda Rancher price wise.
The Honda Rubicon is more expensive than the Honda Rancher. The base model Honda Rubicon is $5,599, whereas the base model Honda Rancher is $8,799. The most expensive Honda Rubicon is $8,299, and the most expensive Honda Rancher is $9,999.
The base model Honda Rubicon is $3,200 more expensive than the Honda Rancher. And the most expensive Honda Rubicon is $1,700 more expensive than the Honda Rancher.
This is somewhat surprising considering the fact that the Honda Rancher outperforms the Honda Rubicon in nearly all categories. It is also a much larger ATV than the Honda Rubicon.
The Honda Rancher also has far more model selection than the Honda Rubicon. The Rancher has 8 different models. Whereas, the Rubicon only has 4.