ATV Sizes By Age: Which Quad Size Is Best For Your Kid?

In ATV Reviews by Kevin

In the world of ATVs, there are different sizes that will obviously have different specs and characteristics. if you are reading this article, then it’s probable that you have a toddler and you want to buy an ATV for him or her, but you are not sure which quad size to get for his height and weight. the ideal size for your kid is obviously going to depend on several factors that I’ll talk about below.

In short, I would recommend that you let your kid sit on the quad that you are interested in buying for him and ask how he feels on it. is he comfortable when seating? can he get to the handlebars without stretching his arms? is the quad easy to operate? these are all things that you must find out before making the purchase. in the paragraphs below, I provide a general guide saying which ATV size is best for which age. I also talk about several safety precautions to follow when your kids starts riding.

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Recommended ATV Sizes By Age

Like I said above, there are different ATV sizes and they are each made for a specific age group. and while there are other factors in play when it comes to the ideal quad for your kid like for example his weight, age is the #1 consideration that you must keep in mind. anyways, below I provide the ideal ATV sizes by age. keep in mind that this is just a ballpark estimate of what size is best according to the kid’s age.

  • 50cc ATVs: 6-10 Year Olds. These are the smallest quads that major brands have in their lineup. examples of 50cc quads include the Yamaha YFZ 50, Kawasaki KFX 50, Polaris Outlaw 50, and Can-Am DS 70. like their name implies, these quads have 50 cubic centimeters of displacement, which to put it simply, is a calculation of how big the engine is. all of these quads are between 25 to 35 inches tall, which is perfect for the average 6-year-old. 99% of 50cc quads have a throttle limiter, which allows you to set a maximum speed limit so that your kiddies don’t go too hard on the thumb throttle. if your kid is between 6 to 10 year old, then this is the ideal size for him, as long as he’s not too tall or too short.
  • 90cc ATVs: 10-16 Year Olds.  After the 50ccs come the 90ccs, which are modestly bigger and more powerful. examples of these quads include the Honda TRX90X, Can-Am DS 90, And Yamaha Raptor 90. since these quads are more punchy than 50ccs, they are best ridden by kids between 10 to 15 years of age. just like the 50ccs, these quads feature rev limiters to slow the quad down to an appropriate level. be on the lookout for a quad like this if your kid is between 10 to 16 years old. this quad size will also be appropriate if you have a kid that’s too big to fit in a 50cc comfortably even if he’s younger than 10, or if he’s more than 16 years old but he’s too small for an adult quad.
  • 250cc ATVs and up: Over 16 years old. If the person that is going to ride over 16 years old and not too small, then anything over 250cc will be okay. most people over 16 will not fit in Mini-ATVs, and even if they did the quad might be overtaxed because it’s not made to handle that much weight. while it’s not impossible for a kid under 16 years old to ride these quads safely, keep in mind that many quads over 250cc do not have a rev or throttle limiter.

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What Are The Best Quads For Kids?

After deciding to get a 50cc, a 90cc or anything over that, its time to look for the actual quad. over the years, there have been a lot of new kid ATVs, and some of them are better than the others. Below I mention which are the best for a child in my opinion:

50cc Range – Yamaha YFZ50: Yamaha is currently my favorite ATV Brand and for good reason. all of their quads are very solid in pretty much everything, such as offroading, track use, utility work, you name it. I have a Yamaha Raptor 700 which I personally think is the best quad that I have ever had. anyways, the YFZ is Yamaha’s 50cc offering and it’s going to have everything that you are looking for when it comes to kid’s ATVs: a rev limiter, an automatic transmission, and affordable pricing. this model is also great for when kids really start to get the hang of riding because this model has very torquey engine, perfect for riding on dunes or riding fast in general.

90cc Range – Honda TRX90X: This should be your number 1 choice in the 90cc range, which is ideal for kids between 10 to 16 years. Honda has always the togo ATV brand when it comes to beginner quads for both kids and adults. the TRX90X is also ideal for those who are going to buy used because these machines are very reliable, being able to function even if neglected. Honda ATVs have always been known as being very reliable machines, so if you are looking for a more stripped down quad that is cheaper than most 90cc quads in the market, then go right ahead and get this model.

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When Should Kids Start Riding Quads?

A general answer to the question is to wait until the kid is 6 years old, and maybe even that might be too young depending on your child. the smallest quads in a brand’s lineup are usually made for kids aged 6 and up. children under that age will probably not have enough strength and dexterity to handle the quad safely. so while I don’t have small kids, if I were to have one, I would wait until he is at least 6 years old to make sure he has the dexterity to ride safely.

While most safety or government organizations will state that only 16-year-olds and up should be riding quads in the first place, my point of view is that younger kids can also ride without an issue, as long as they follow safety protocols of course. the ideal age that kids should start riding will depend on a lot of things, such as how lively your kid is, how tall he is, his weight, among other things. When I mentioned lively, I was referring to how athletic, and energetic your kid is. so if your child is not clumsy at all, then he probably will not have any issues riding small quads, as long as the quad has a throttle limiter, and he’s riding while supervised.

Another factor is how tall your kid is. children that are shorter are going to have trouble grabbing the handlebars because their arms might not be as long as a kid that’s taller. if this is the case with your kid, then I would wait a year or 2 before buying him a quad or letting him ride in one.

Your kid’s weight is another consideration. like you saw at the beginning of this article, there are different quad sizes available, with different engine displacement. if your kid’s weight is normal for his age, then don’t worry about this. but if your kid is significantly overweight or underweight, then riding quads might not be the best ideal for them, at least at that specific moment. this is simply because in the case of too much weight on the quad, then it might not be as easy to handle because of the extra bulk, and in the case of too little weight, then the quad might be too overpowering for the kid.

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Kids Safety Precautions When Riding Quads

Even if you got a quad that fits your kid’s needs, there are still other things to keep in mind, like safety. if you didn’t know, ATVs are actually very dangerous, especially for kids, So I would recommend that you take some measures to protect them, such as getting them safety gear. while getting a complete set of safety gear is the best thing you could do for them, the most important stuff is a helmet and a chest protector. the helmet is pretty obvious. more than 30% of deadly ATV injuries involve either the head or the spinal cord, so this is super important. and the chest protector will cover your kid’s torso in case of a roll-over occurring.

Also, most mini-ATVs have throttle limiters, which is a way to limit the speed of the quad to a certain limit. this is the safety feature that you should be looking for if you are going to be looking for a quad for your son or daughter. even if the machine that they are riding on has a lot of power, it can be easily controlled so that they do not abuse of the quad. something to keep in mind is that even though throttle limiters are very useful to avoid your kids over-speeding, it’s still important to keep an eye on them while they ride, which brings me to my next point.

Make sure you never let them ride unsupervised. many people have the perception that ATVs are safe, or that they are a good way to distract kids while dad and mom do stuff inside the home, which is completely asinine. even though ATVs are 4 wheeled machines, they are still accident-prone because of the higher center of gravity. add that to a kid accelerating and turning sharply and you got yourself a recipe for disaster. I have never witnessed an ATV accident involving a kid thanks to god, but the statistics are out there. strapping a helmet and a chest protector isn’t enough, they must have an adult checking them out constantly, especially when riding on paved roads.