How much is a Slingshot motorcycle? When the Polaris Slingshot first hit the market, people were not quite sure what to make of it. First, the purists claimed it would never be a motorcycle because it had three wheels. Then others said it wasn’t a trike because the two wheels were in front and not in the back. Even the local governments couldn’t agree on whether it was a car or a motorcycle.
How much is a Slingshot motorcycle?
The manufacturer suggested retail price of a new Slingshot motorcycle, as of 2023, ranges from $21,499 to $37,148, depending on the model. Slingshot S is the lowest priced type of Slingshot. Slingshot R is the most expensive type. Get MSR prices for all types of Slingshots below.
Be sure to check out our in-stock Slingshot motorcycles for sale. If we don’t have the Slingshot three-wheeled roadster you want in stock, we can order it for you from this model list. Request a model from this lineup.
Is a Slingshot a car or a bike?
The Polaris Slingshot is not considered a car but is federally classified as a three-wheeled motorcycle. However, most states classify the Slingshot as an “autocycle,” requiring only a standard driver’s license to operate.
A few states may classify the Slingshot as a motorcycle, requiring a motorcycle endorsement or license. Consult laws for your state. As a Polaris dealer, Monroe Motorsports also carries Polaris ATVs for sale and Polaris side by sides for sale.
Powertrain: Engine, Transmission, and Performance
All 2023 Polaris Slingshot models pack Polaris’ in-house-designed ProStar 2.0L four-cylinder engine, paired to either a five-speed manual synchromesh transmission with reverse or a hydraulically actuated automated manual (AutoDrive) five-speed synchromesh transmission with reverse.
While all trims feature the same drivetrain, the S is similar to SL models in that it uses Polaris’ detuned powerplant producing 178 hp at 8,500 rpm and 120 lb.-ft. of torque at 5,500 rpm. For comparison, SLR and R models pump out 203 hp at 8,250 rpm and 144 lb.-ft. of torque at 6,500 rpm.
Why buy a Polaris Slingshot?
Surely, you must think, for as aggressive, angular, and saurian as the Slingshot looks, it must absolutely tear up the asphalt. But … that’s not the case.
On both the stop-and-go streets of downtown Austin and the winding two-lane highways outside the city, the Slingshot never threw me back into the seat with unrestrained horsepower. And it certainly didn’t hug hairpin turns like an F1 racer.
But Polaris makes no apologies for the three-wheeler’s performance — because performance isn’t why demand for Slingshots has shot up 75% over the last year. Style is the number one reason folks fork over their hard-earned dollars to pilot these roadsters, according to market research conducted by Polaris.
And while there are more reasons to hop behind the wheel — the open-air cockpit and side-by-side experience among them — driving a Slingshot is less about what it does, and more about how it looks while doing it.
“We have a funny story that explains what it’s like to own a Slingshot,” Sarge told me. “You cannot gas this thing up in under 20 minutes. Anywhere you go, as soon as you stop, folks are going to come up and ask you everything about it. It’s always a conversation starter.”
To that end, Slingshot leans into its buyers’ motivations with a plethora of poppy color combinations, “endless personalization options,” and accessories like light kits and booming sound systems.
Because, as Slingshot’s driver profiles show, “We don’t just show up; we show up!”
Who buys a Slingshot?
If my experience was any indication, Slingshot boasts a broad demographic appeal. College-age to retirement, car enthusiasts to fashion aficionados, city dwellers to suburbanites are all key drivers of the brand.
In fact, one of the test drivers in my group was a YouTube-famous basketball icon known as “The Professor.” If you’ve never seen him school players in a Bugs Bunny Space Jam suit, I highly recommend it.
Needless to say, Slingshot appeals to an array of buyers. But one stat above all speaks to the brand’s success: Compared to the rest of Polaris’ customers, Slingshot drivers are “257% more multi-cultural,” brand research shows.
That’s a nebulous statistic, to be sure. But based on my testing cohort, that’s non-white drivers, including Black, Latino, Asian-American, and others. And really, when you consider the marketing data, that tracks.
Slingshots are all about non-conformity, individualization, and recognition. But for as much as this vehicle may seem to appeal to a wealth of diverse individuals, it does carry a unifying feature: sheer amusement.
That is, a Slingshot will not be the daily driver — it’s not built to handle the winter and you ought not take it on rough terrain (as I learned bottoming out off the shoulder trying to whip a Hollywood-worthy 180).
It’s a vehicle made to park in a multicar garage and used when you want to go somewhere, not when you need to.
Accordingly, data showed that the majority of Slingshot owners — 64% — also own a boat. So, while a Slingshot is by no means exorbitantly expensive, with entry builds starting under $21,000, it’s more of a vehicular accessory than a primary purchase.
Is it fun to drive?
Armed with all the above information, I can safely say that on paper, I am definitely not the Slingshot’s target market. My primary commuter is a bicycle, my only car is an unspectacular old pickup, I have no boat, and the mere thought of having to speak to a stranger — let alone many strangers — at a gas station makes my skin crawl.
That said, if you ever have the opportunity to hop in the driver’s seat of a Polaris Slingshot, I insist you do so. You are guaranteed to smile — and though it’s no Ferrari or McLaren to drive, it can still pack a few thrills.
In 2020, Slingshot saw a massive positive response with the introduction of “AutoDrive” — an automated manual transmission (A.M.T.). I can attest that this enhances the driving experience without excluding folks who don’t drive a stick.
This semi-automatic transmission, which allows you to manually shift gears without the use of a clutch, along with the steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters, makes the drive more fun and engaging. According to the brand, “AutoDrive is key to the Slingshot experience.”
What’s more, while the Slingshot lineup tops out at 203 horsepower, it weighs under 1,700 pounds. That power-to-weight ratio allows for a fair bit of giddy-up from a dead stop. In fact, several members of my group — myself included — “accidentally” kept doing burnouts for amused onlookers.
The most fun for me — and according to the brand’s research, the #2 reason people buy a Slingshot — is the open-air cockpit. On a summer day, almost an hour outside of Austin, hills and winding roads abound.
Sure, it’s the stuff of motorcyclists’ dreams. But a Slingshot does a decent job emulating a motorcycle experience, and it has the added benefit of two bucket seats for a more traditional shared experience.
And on the highway, the combination of open-air and low ride height makes for a more exciting way to weave through traffic!
How fast will a Slingshot go?
The manual machines come with a five-speed transmission. The Slingshot can achieve 0-60 in 4.9 seconds from a stop and can reach a top speed of 125 miles per hour. The 1,997cc engine rev limits at 8,500 RPMs. The Slingshot has Brembo aluminum calipers and vented cast iron brake rotors for great stopping power.
Are slingshots good on gas?
According to Autotrader, the Slingshot can get around 23 to 33 mpg on average. I only filled the 9-gallon tank once and didn’t make it through to test the gas mileage. But I did notice that the fuel gauge drops quickly.
How much is a down payment on a slingshot?
Minimum amount to finance is $5,000. Example: $27,499 financed at 4.99% APR over 36 months = 36 monthly payments of $742; financed amount of $24,749 with $2,750 down payment, total cost of borrowing of $1,950 and a total obligation of $26,699.
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