What Is a 50cc ATV?

Dan Cavallari
Dan Cavallari
Woman holding a book
Woman holding a book

A 50cc ATV is a small all-terrain vehicle usually designed for children. It features a 50cc engine and a much smaller frame to accommodate smaller users. The 50cc ATV is a popular choice for beginner riders of smaller stature, and while the engine size is much smaller, it can produce a fair amount of power. Users should therefore wear all necessary safety equipment at all times when riding the vehicle. The specific design of the ATV can vary depending on the user's preferences.

Some 50cc ATV models are designed primarily for racing or recreational riding, while others are more utilitarian. A sport utility 50cc ATV will feature racks for hauling gear and a low center of gravity for added stability, but the vehicle will tend to be heavier than other models. Sport models are intended for higher speeds and more maneuverability, and they tend to be lighter than other models. These smaller ATV models are ideal for beginner riders because they are lightweight and less powerful than larger models. Despite the smaller engine size, however, these models can reach high speeds and will require some skill to use properly and safely.

It is possible to buy a 50cc ATV that features a remote kill switch that will turn off the engine at any time. This is useful for parents standing by who want to kill power to the engine should a child lose control of the vehicle. Speed limiters are also available. These units will put a cap on how fast a child can drive the vehicle, thereby preventing excessive speeds that can lead to a loss of control of the vehicle. Most 50cc ATV models also feature more than one braking control so a child has more than one option for slowing or stopping the vehicle. Instead of using just one hand control, the ATV may feature a hand brake as well as a foot brake.

Local laws and regulations may dictate how large or small of a vehicle a person can safely ride. This is usually determined according to age, ability level, and size. Beginner riders have a greater chance of injury or death when using an ATV that is too large for them. 50cc ATVs can usually not be customized to be street-legal, as they are often too small for motorists to see while on roadways.

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