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The first edition of the Polaris Slingshot was introduced in 2014 to serve as a 2015 model. The design uses two bucket seats, a tilt-adjust steering wheel, and three-point seat belts. There isn’t a crumple zone or airbags, but you can include an optional sun cover and fiberglass wind protector to have the vehicle drive more like a car.

The 2020 Polaris Slingshot uses a 2L inline four-cylinder engine that can be fitted with a five-speed automatic or manual transmission. 

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What Is a Slingshot’s Classification?

The Polaris Slingshot is a three-wheeled vehicle that rides like an open-air roadster. It allows you to enjoy the experience of a fast ride while offering an open cockpit that places drivers and passengers just five inches from the ground.

front side view of a Polaris Slingshot trike

This design makes the Polaris Slingshot an autocycle. Some states have specific designations for this vehicle, while others lump it into a general three-wheel category.

Massachusetts applies some motorcycle definitions to the vehicle. You must have a driver’s license with a motorcycle endorsement to legally operate the Slingshot.

Since the Slingshot has such a low center of gravity, it is built to handle curves like a pro. It offers virtually endless personalization, excellent gas mileage, and lots of fun for everyone.

Can Kids Ride in a Polaris Slingshot?

Children can ride in a Polaris Slingshot if they can safely sit in a standard passenger seat without a child seat to support them. 

The belts lock, but they don’t provide the same ratcheting mechanism that secures the child seat to the vehicle. 

In states like Pennsylvania, where autocycle definitions are more specific, the Polaris Slingshot age limit dictates that no one under the age of eight can ride in the vehicle. Even if they are of the appropriate age, the child must weigh at least 80 pounds, be 4’ 9” tall, and wear a DOT-approved helmet.

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Can You Ride a Polaris Slingshot in the Rain?

The Polaris Slingshot offers waterproof seats and roll hoops made of forged aluminum. You won’t encounter any difficulties if it rains while operating the vehicle. 

Since the standard version doesn’t offer a roof or a windshield, you’ll need to wear wet-weather gear to prevent getting soaked while operating a Slingshot in the rain.

The Slingshot handles wet pavement with ease. It provides a stable platform that feels like an ultra-responsive sportscar while giving you the handles of a motorcycle. Rain bounces off the helmet, and fog could create vision problems with a poorly-fitted helmet, but there aren’t any issues with the SS design. 

Can a Slingshot Be a Daily Driver?

The Polaris Slingshot is more of a toy than a daily commuter for most owners, but that doesn’t mean you can’t turn it into a daily driver. 

3-wheeled on the road

If you’re looking for a commuter vehicle, one of the features to consider must be the comfort it offers. A car at a comparable price will keep you dry, provide a comfy seat, and give you the modern amenities you need for long hours going to and from work.

What a Slingshot doesn’t offer in comfort; it certainly makes up for it in a fun driving experience. It comes with Apple CarPlay compatibility, a Rockford Fosgate stereo system, and some storage areas to keep a few things. 

Some drivers report that the wind can begin knocking you around once you hit freeway speeds, but the ride is smooth for those who stay in town. It had motorcycle driving characteristics that require you to avoid braking mid-corner and maintaining a straight line.

How Far Can You Drive a Slingshot?

Polaris has not offered any official fuel economy statistics for the Slingshot with the 2022 model. 

Online reviews from SS owners have mentioned that they get somewhere between 23 to 33 miles per gallon with standard fuel.

Polaris recommends using 91 octane fuel or higher to maximize fuel efficiency when driving. It comes with a gas tank that holds just under ten gallons. In return, you can hit a top speed of 125 miles per hour, going from 0 to 60 in about five seconds.

If you use 85, 87, or 89 fuel, your miles per gallon rating could be significantly lower. 

What Do You Need to Rent a Slingshot?

Most drivers can rent a Polaris Slingshot with a regular driver’s license. Endorsements are not typically needed, although Massachusetts and Rhode Island are exceptions where you must have a motorcycle endorsement. 

Although some state legislatures debate the benefits of having a specific Slingshot license, autocycles are typically seen as a standard vehicle under current statutes. 

Most Slingshots come with a manual transmission, so you’ll need experience with a clutch to operate the vehicle. Helmets might be required due to local laws.

Rental companies might require you to be 21 or 25 to rent the vehicle.

How Much Is Insurance on a Slingshot?

A full-coverage policy for a Polaris Slingshot costs around $350 to $1,200 per year. The factors in the quote include your age, credit score, driving history, and the purchased SS version.

If you finance the Slingshot, your lender typically requires full coverage (liability, comprehensive, and collision) to protect the vehicle. 

You can lower your premiums by keeping to your area’s minimum coverage and maintaining a high deductible. That also means you’re assuming more of the risk.

Most insurance companies offer autocycle coverage. It helps to request quotes from multiple providers to ensure you’re getting the best deal.

Author

Mike Navarette has more than a decade of experience in the auto insurance industry, but that's not his true passion. He loves getting on a motorcycle to explore roads he's never traveled. You'll find Mike in the garage working on something when he isn't helping clients or leaning into curves. It's sometimes a side hustle, more often a favor, but it keeps his hands busy doing something productive. Since the first time his father strapped on his helmet and took him for a ride, Mike has loved bikes. That passion, along with a desire to help others through a deep understanding of insurance policies, led to the creation of Motorcycle Ride Coverage.

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