Well, first of all there are definitely advantages and disadvantages to both 2 and 4-stroke machines. I have often found out that a persons weight, height and strength are sometimes factors as well beyond the obvious technical engine specs, horse power, and so on. If you are a light weight thin fellow with not much physical strength you might want a lighter 2-stroke. If you are a heavier guy like me with lots of muscle, you might want a 4-stroke due to the higher torque factor.
For years I have been riding 2-stroke trail sleds and have enjoyed them very much. Eventually I got tired of lagging behind and evnying all the rest of the guys out there on thier big powerful mountain machines and so I decided to get one.......The biggest factor for me in deciding on whether to go for a 2-stroke or a 4-stroke was the reliability factor. Owning both, I would have to say that the 4-stroke is much more of a reliable choice. The 4-stroke machines however are heavier and not as snappy and flickable as the 2-stroke machines stock, however, my Viper MTX has a Stage 1 factory turbo kit that puts out about 190 horsepower and acts more powerful than your stock 800cc class 2-stroke snowmobile. My four stroke is even snappier than my old 2-stroke trail sled. I can go on and on about why I NOW prefer the 4-stroke over the 2-stroke but I will list my OPINION of advantages by numbers for both. So here they are.........
2- STROKE ADVANTAGES.
1.Light, nimble and easy to weave through trees
2. Awesome power to weight ratio in stock configuration
3 Purchase price usually less expensive
4.easy to manhandle
5. Easy to rebuild engines
1. Less Reliability
2 Have to add oil to tank every other trip
3. Less Torque than 4-stroke
4. Fuel range not as great
5. Lots of blue smoke (however I love the smell) Pollutes
6. wears out drive belts quickly
1. Extremely reliable
2. better low end torque for getting out of a hole in deep snow minimizing track spin
3. Drive belts tend to last a lot longer due to earlier engagement and more torque and less burn
4 Longer lasting engines (Viper gets a valve adjustment at 20,000 miles)
5. Better fuel economy and longer range for long distances.
6. Torque to haul 2 passengers easily up in steep and deep mountain terrain hill climbing.
7. Do not need to add oil and only perform oil change once per year.
1. Heavier machine by about 70-90 pounds
2 not quite as nimble through trees unless you're strong and experienced.
3. Lesser power to weight ratio stock (Unless you're TURBOED)
4. Higher initial Purchase Price
5. more difficult to rebuild engine
These are just some of my personnal observations and granted the results aren't the same for everyone. However coming FROM the 2-stroke world I am now fully converted to the 4-strokes for my body type, needs and the environement that I ride in. A Tubo 4-stroke machine (Particularily Yamaha) is extemely reliable, climbs mountains vertically like a bat out of hell and has great low end torque for slow and controlled maneuvering without the frap, frap, frap and the fuel range is incredible what you can get on just 10 gallons. For me.........It's the TURBO and the horespower that does it the most. I have never experience anything like it until I got on a turbocharged 4-stroke. The choice is yours.......but I am a 4-stroke guy all the way. ;)\