Off-Road Go Karts Aren’t Dune Buggies. But They Sure Are Fun!
There are so many awesome off-road vehicles on the market right now. Dirt bikes, ATVs, dune buggies, and off-road go karts have all become some of America’s favorite leisure time toys. Every off-road riding enthusiast has their preferred machine, but one of these has become wildly popular over the last few years. The off-road go kart has taken its place among the most loved all-terrain machines in America. There are a few different reasons for this, but it’s mainly the fact that they are a lot of fun to operate and are extremely practical.
To the uninitiated, an off-road go kart might look like or even be called a dune buggy. This isn’t exactly accurate. While they share many traits, an off-road go kart is very much its own thing. More accurately, it is a cross between more traditional off-road vehicles like ATVs and dune buggies and the track go-kart. Another point of separation between the two would be that dune buggies are often hacked cars that can be used on the street, while off-road go karts are exclusively for recreation in off-road environments. Most off-road go karts for sale on the market also do not have a front differential. They are essentially born of the same idea, which is to have a ripping good time off road.
The off-road go kart is different from its cousin the dune buggy in several ways. One of their main similarities is they were both born in the USA. They are the best kind of representation of American ingenuity and technical know-how. Companies from all over the world make these machines now, but it was good old American gear heads who got the ball rolling.
Let’s look at the evolution of the off-road go kart. Dune buggies and go karts basically evolved around the same time. In the mid-1960s, Americans were even more in love with their automobiles and motorcycles than they are now. In California, hobbyists modified old Volkswagen chassis to be able to better ride on the sandy beaches. The invention of dune buggies was just one of many experiments with auto engineering at the time. Across America the love for anything with wheels and an engine was at a fever pitch.
Around the same time, a different set of gear heads were putting lawn mower engines on mini car chassis and running them on tracks. These nippy little recreational vehicles became known as go karts. It wasn’t long before more professional outfits started building go karts for sale to the public. Go kart tracks became very popular in the 70s and 80s. There were even professional go kart racing leagues.
Running alongside the dawn of the go kart age was the evolution of off-road racing and ATVs. Dirt bikes, followed by three-wheelers and quad bikes, exploded in popularity right around the same time as go-kart racing. Dirt bikes especially grew to be even more popular than go karts. Supercross dirt bike races became stadium sized events in the 1980s.
It was inevitable that the two styles of recreational vehicles would merge into some kind of hybrid. Big advances happened when the U.S. military got involved. Engineers took the basic concept for the dune buggy and turned it into what became known as Desert Patrol Vehicles (DPV). Similarly to the Jeep in World War II, DPVs were first deployed in the Middle East and became popular with the service people that used them.
Back at home, there were various attempts to cross an ATV with a go kart by civilian companies. They had varying degrees of success but, when the military designs for the DPVs became widely available, there were big breakthroughs for off-road go karts. The practicality of these new models appealed to people living and working in rural areas. They offered more versatility than traditional four wheeled ATVs and were much safer to operate. Outdoor enthusiasts and game hunters took to them as well. Dealers and online retailers who offer off-road go karts for sale have seen unprecedented demand in the last two years. These same retailers don’t see the market cooling off any time soon either. For lots of people, off-road go karting has become the perfect family escape. These machines even come in four-seater models so you can bring the kids along. They are great for people who love getting out in nature. One of the biggest reasons people cite for going off-roading is to blow off steam. So, you can say that go karts are great for family bonding and stress reduction. It could be good for your general health and your family’s unity to find some go karts for sale today.