I know it’s spring and the snow has or is beginning to melt.  So for many of us, our thoughts have turned to warmer weather and the motorcycling season.  But some of us aren’t thinking about riding motorcycles, some of us are thinking about snow and winter.   Folks like the people at Arctic Cat.

Purpose built snowbike

Some time ago, Arctic Cat previously teased their own purpose-built snowbike.  However, nothing ever came of it.  But there’s apparently life in Arctic Cat’s snowbike.  They have just filed a patent application for a new, completely purpose-built snowbike.  If Arctic Cat has its way, you’ll no longer need to convert your dirtbike into a snowbike.  You’ll just hop onto your purpose-built snowbike and ride it all winter.

According to Arctic Cat’s patent application, the engine has been placed low for better CG. Image credit: Arctic Cat

Claimed features and benefits

The patent application claims several benefits over kit type snowbikes.  They say that their purpose-built machine will be lighter than the kit snowbikes.  Interestingly, the Arctic Cat’s patent claims that their snowbike will have a continuously variable transmission and an air handling system with a rearward facing air intake.  It will also have an exhaust system positioned entirely within the chassis and tunnel of the vehicle to prevent any contact with a user or their clothing.

The engine will have a CVT transmission. Image credit: Arctic Cat

They also seem to have been thinking about lowering the snowbike’s center of gravity (CG).  The patent application says that the machine has a lower center of gravity with the engine positioned lower and forward in the machine’s purpose-built frame.  Fuel tanks have also been placed to optimize CG for handling and balance.

The fuel tank has been located to optimize CG and balance. Image credit: Arctic Cat

With Arctic Cat emerging from tough financial times prior to its purchase by Textron, it will be interesting to see what the bigger, more financially capable company will bring to market.

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