Instead of having a passenger ride behind the driver, a side-by-side vehicle, also known as an SSV, SxS, or UTV, has actual seats that slot into the chassis side by side. In some Can-Am models, there are two rows of seating for a total of four passengers. In addition, a side-by-side has far more storage and convenience features than an ATV.

If you are interested in buying a Can-Am Defender, here is everything you need to know about this magnificent piece 

POLARIS RANGER EV Photo by can-am.brp

Can-Am Defender

The Can-Am Defender was designed to pull practically anything you could throw at it, including boulders, hay bales, and even game. The base Defender costs $10,399, with prices ranging from $28,199 depending on the configuration.

When it comes to selecting the right Defender for your needs, there’s a lot to consider. The Defender fleet comprises of 18 various trim styles, including the Defender Max, 6×6, and Pro lines. While this guide only covers the six three-seat versions of the Defender, the whole Defender fleet consists of six three-seat versions of the Defender.

To select through, there are three distinct engine performance levels, different tire sizes, and various dimensions and capacities. At any performance level, Rotax power is a good thing, and you’ll be hard-pressed to find a UTV that works harder than the Can-Am Defender.

Engine, Transmission, and Performance

There are three engine options:

The HD5, which produces 38 horsepower, the HD8, which produces 50 horsepower, and the HD10, which produces 82 horsepower.

For added traction and towing capability, the Defender is also available in a 6×6 configuration. The offered 4.5-by-6-foot bed is one of the largest in the segment, and a power tilting bed for easier dumping is also available. A winch, heating and air conditioning, and Cryptid tires for crawling through mud are among the additional amenities.

A CVT belt-driven gearbox sends power to the wheels in all of them. Can-Pro-Torque Am’s transmission with Quick Response System (QRS), which includes high airflow ventilation and Electronic Drive Belt Protection, is now available on the HD8 and HD10 models. Turf mode, 2WD, and 4WD with Visco-Lok QE auto-locking front differential are available. There’s also Electronic Hill Descent Control, Eco mode, and several Work modes.


All Defender models are equipped with dual 220mm ventilated disc brakes with hydraulic twin-piston calipers up front. The less powerful HD5 receives a single 220mm ventilated rear disc brake with hydraulic twin-piston calipers, and the HD8 and HD10 get dual 220mm ventilated disc brakes with hydraulic single-piston calipers.


When it comes to suspension travel, the Defender is at the top of its class, with up to 11 inches available at all four wheels. Gas-charged twin-tube shocks are ideal for both work and enjoyment. Dynamic power steering isn’t required, but once you’ve tried it, you’ll never go back.


The speedometer, tachometer, odometer, trip- and hourmeters, fuel gauge, gear position, Eco mode, work modes, seatbelt and 4×4 indications, front and rear diff-lock indicators, diagnostics, clock, battery voltage, and engine temperature are all displayed on a 4.5-inch digital display. The Defender Limited and Defender X MR now have 7.6-inch displays.


A dump bed is standard on all Defenders. The HD5 can pull up to 1,500 pounds with the integrated 2-inch receiver and can carry up to 600 pounds of freight in the bed. The HD8 and HD10 variants can tow 2,500 pounds and transport up to 1,000 pounds of stuff in the bed.


Up to a year of standard factory warranty coverage. BRP B.E.S.T. Protection provides additional coverage for up to 30 months.

Pricing: From most expensive to least

2021 Can-Am Defender Limited MSRP$25,499
2021 Can-Am Defender DPS Cab MSRP$20,999
2021 Can-Am Defender X MR MSRP$20,399
2021 Can-Am Defender XT MSRP$16,199
2021 Can-Am Defender DPS MSRP$11,899
2021 Can-Am Defender MSRP$10,399

2021 Can-Am Defender Specs

EngineRotax liquid-cooled single-cylinderV-twinV-twin
Bore x StrokeN/AN/AN/A
Compression RatioN/AN/AN/A
TransmissionCVT w/ high and low range, reverse Pro-Torq w/ Quick Response System w/ high and extra low range, reverse 
Claimed Horsepower38 hp


50 hp82 hp
Claimed Torque50 lb.-ft50 lb.-ft69 lb.-ft
Fuel SystemEFI w/ Intelligent Throttle ControlEFI w/ Intelligent Throttle ControlEFI w/ Intelligent Throttle Control
SteeringDynamic Power Steering on all but base model


Dynamic Power Steering on all but base modelDynamic Power Steering on all but base model
Drivetrain 2WD/4WD w/ Visco-Lok QE auto-locking front differential / Turf mode  2WD/4WD Trail/4WD Mud/Turf mode
Front SuspensionDouble A-arms ; 10.0 in. travelDouble A-arms ; 10.0 in. travelArched double A-arms w/ sway bar; 10.0 in. travel
Rear SuspensionTTA w/ sway bar; 10.0 in. travel Arched TTA w/ sway bar; 10.0-11.0 in. travel Arched TTA w/ sway bar; 10.0-11.0 in. travel
Front BrakesHydraulic 2-piston calipers, dual 220mm ventilated discsHydraulic 2-piston calipers, dual 220mm ventilated discsHydraulic 2-piston calipers, dual 220mm ventilated discs
Rear BrakesHydraulic 2-piston calipers, 220mm discHydraulic 1-piston calipers, dual 220mm discsHydraulic 1-piston calipers, dual 220mm discs
Tires, Front/RearMaxxis M923J; 25×8-12 , M924J 25×10-12Maxxis Bighorn 2.0 or XPS Trail Force; 27×9-12 or -14, 27×11-12 or -14ITP Cryptid; 30×9-14, 30×11-14 (X MR)
Length121.0 in. 121.0 in. 121.0 in. 
Width62.0 in.62.0 in.64.0 in.
Height76.0 in.76.0-79.0 in.78.0-82 in.
Wheelbase83.0 in.83.0 in.83.0 in.
Bed Capacity600 lb.


1,000 lb., 600 lb. CA-only1,000 lb., 600 lb. CA-only
Towing Capacity1,500 lb.


 2,500 lb. 2,500 lb.
Seating Capacity3 3 3 
Ground Clearance10.5 in.


11.0-12.0 in.12-15 in.
Turning RadiusN/AN/AN/A
Claimed Dry Weight1,305-1,323 lb.


1,460-1,585 lb. 1,537-1,928 lb.
Fuel Capacity10.6 gal.10.6 gal.10.6 gal.
Warranty1-year factory limited warranty. Extended terms available up to 30 months.


1-year factory limited warranty.

Extended terms available up to 30 months

1-year factory limited warranty.

Extended terms available up to 30 months








There are several model options available, as well as Rotax power and outstanding freight and hauling capacities.


Only one X-package model (Defender X MR) has a Smart-Lok differential, and all variants have halogen headlights.