What happens when you put together the most powerful factory side-by-side (Can-Am Maverick X3 Turbo RR) and the most powerful factory pickup truck (Ram TRX) against each other in a drag race off and on the pavement? What happens when you run both on an off-road track at IMI Motorsports? You get some surprisingly fast results! Let’s dig in.
This Can-Am Maverick X3 is one of the most capable specialty off-road machines out there. It has a very long name and the hardware to back it up. It is a MAX X RS Turbo RR. The “MAX” is a four-seater / four-door model. The Turbo RR is the most powerful engine option. The engine is a 900 cc three-cylinder ROTAX with enough turbocharged boost to produce a maximum of 195 horsepower.
Naturally, this Maverick X3 has a sophisticated 4WD system with an active front differential. It’s riding on adjustable FOX shocks with remote reservoirs and 30-inch tires that offer 22 inches of total suspension travel. This machine is built to devour some very tough terrain.
How can we measure its acceleration and suspension performance? Well, why not put it up against the new 2021 Ram TRX. The newest, the most-powerful, and one of the most advanced off-road pickup trucks currently available. The TRX is based on a Ram 1500 truck, but it has a unique frame, suspension, and engine to make it a quick and capable desert bruiser.
TRX is packing a supercharged 6.2-liter Hellcat V8 with an astounding 702 horsepower and 650 lb-ft of torque. It has a wider stance for longer suspension travel. It rides on Bilstein Blackhawk e2 active shocks and 35-inch all-terrain tires that combine for 13 inches of suspension up-and-down motion up front and 14 inches in the rear.
What about the power to weight ratios? This TRX weighs in at a massive 6,800 lbs with most luxury options and Mopar accessories included. This TRX has a 9.68 lbs/hp ratio. The four-seater Maverick X3 hits the scale at around 1,900 lbs. Thus Can-Am has a power to weight ratio of 9.74 lbs/hp. Yikes, these two are nearly identical in this measure.
On dirt, the Can-Am launches hard and gets good traction. It just puts you back in the seat. The TRX is no slouch either, but it’s a little more tricky to get great traction on dirt. The Maverick takes just a win by a slim margin, but you can tell the TRX an appetite for higher-end speed. If the track was much longer, the TRX is likely to cross the finish first.
The off-road loop is a fun comparison. No matter how good the TRX suspension is (at it’s arguably the best in a pickup truck), the Maverick is simply better. It’s much lighter, it has way more suspension travel, and it can go over big off-road obstacles with great speed. Frankly, both of these require a very skilled off-road driver to actually push them towards the limit. Nathan and I have the off-road experience, but we are not pro drivers. Still, the Maverick registers a much quicker lap time on dirt.
Finally, it’s time for the pavement 0-60 MPH and drag race. Here is where the TRX has a slight advantage. It’s a bit easier for the TRX to launch on the pavement. The Maverick launches well too, but its knobby tires are not meant for pavement traction. At a mile above sea level, the TRX finally registered a 4.73 sec 0-60 MPH. The best time I managed on the pavement was 4.94 sec 0-60 MPH.