The Kawasaki Brute Force 300 looks like a mini four wheeler when compared to its Brute Force 650 and 750 siblings.
But don’t let that fool you.
This little four wheeler doesn’t ride like a little four wheeler, or even feel like a little four wheeler when you get on.
There are quite a few reasons this model has been considered one of the best overall ATVs money can buy for some time now.
But before you open your wallet for one, there are some things you’ll want to know about this model.
This guide will review all of the good and bad with the Brute Force 300, including the following:
- Why it’s not a true Kawasaki
- Build quality and performance
- Design and durability
- How fast it can and could go
- Key features and accessories
- What owners like
- What owners dislike
About The Brute Force 300
As the title suggests, the Brute Force 300 is not technically manufactured by Kawasaki the way the bigger Brute Force models and Kawasaki Mules are.
This ATV is a very popular make by Kymco in Taiwan, which is then branded and sold under the Kawasaki name.
Minus a few small differences here and there among parts like the tires, headlights, and safety racks, this same Kymco model is also used for the following ATV models:
- Kymco MXU 270 (EFI)
- Arctic Cat Alterra 300
- Tracker 300
That said, there’s a reason this model is used by so many as their entry-level ATV.
That’s because it’s extremely well-made, it’s extremely versatile, and it punches way above its weight limit in terms of power and overall performance.
And at only $5,199 for 2024, it appears to be quite the bargain.
Build Quality & Performance
The Brute Force 300 is powered by a 271cc single-cylinder engine with a max output of around 22 horsepower.
The engine is made by Kymco and is looked at as one of the best engines in the biz, also used in Tracker ATVs and Arctic Cat ATVs.
This truly is the little engine that could, as it has the power to conquer just about any terrain or type of riding you’re up for.
The power it supplies on the trails is awesome, and when you throw it in Low range it can conquer any hill and makes for a great wheelie machine.
Even bigger riders can hop on this model and get out for a good trail ride without the performance suffering.
The engine is noticeably more noisy than some similar models though, but not to the point where it bothers you riding.
One of this model’s main drawbacks is the fact that it’s carbureted instead of fuel injected, which can lead to issues with cold starting, stalling, and running rough occasionally.
|15.9 lb-ft (6,500 RPM)
|Keihin CVK32 Carburetor
|3.2 US Gallons
The Brute Force 300 sits on a double cradle, steel frame that is about as strong as they come.
The engine is mated to an automatic CVT transmission with a centrifugal clutch.
A shaft drive supplies power to the rear wheels only, as this model only features 2WD.
That may be a perceived drawback, as some competitive models offer selectable 4WD, but the Brute Force 300 will surprise you with all it can conquer in 2WD.
And with its single rear axle, this model essentially has an always-locked rear differential that gives you all-wheel drive type traction without actually having 4WD.
Mud is one of the few elements that can cause issues, as you’ll run out of traction without 4WD in some of the thickest muddy terrains.
This model features High and Low gears, along with Neutral and Reverse.
It also offers a Reverse Override button for when you need full power from the Reverse gear in the event you get stuck.
|Double cradle, steel
|Automatic CVT with centrifugal clutch
|H – L – N – R
Up front, the Brute Force 300 makes use of a double wishbone suspension set-up that offers around 5.1 inches of front travel.
In back, there’s a swingarm suspension that offers 5.6 inches of rear travel and a single rear shock in the middle that makes it very easy to use your bodyweight to maneuver.
The suspension set-up is solid for this little model, doing a great job of soaking up chop in the trail and making off-road riding smooth.
And the preload is adjustable so that you can find the best setting for your body type and riding style.
Ground clearance is solid at 6.1 inches, enabling this model to clear most small obstacles and ruts in the trail without bottoming out or getting stuck.
|Independent Double Wishbone
Tires & Brakes
This model comes equipped with 22-inch diameter Maxxis Tubeless tires at all four corners.
The tires are made for off-roading, and offer plenty of grip and traction for this little ATV to conquer the toughest terrain.
The disc brakes in the front and rear are excellent and can stop this model on a dime in any terrain.
There’s a cable-operated parking brake on the left handlebar that you can use when the machine is stopped since there’s no Park setting.
|22 x 7-10 Maxxis Tubeless
|22 x 10-10 Maxxis Tubeless
|Front Brake Type
|Dual Disc (148mm)
|Rear Brake Type
|Single Disc (148 mm)
Dimensions & Capacities
This model is nice and compact, with measurements of 75x42x46. And it’s very lightweight at a curb weight of only 535 lbs.
Being so light and compact, this model handles like a dream even without power steering.
It’s incredibly easy to steer in any terrain, and even the lightest riders will find that they can control it quite easily when shifting their body weight.
This model is also very well-balanced, and while it may feel tippy due to the upright riding position, it’s not easy to flip.
The little beast of an engine provides it with an impressive 500 lbs towing capacity to go along with the 110 lbs hauling capacity provided by the front and rear storage racks.
|Front Rack Capacity
|Rear Rack Capacity
How Fast Does It Go?
The Brute Force 300 is surprisingly fast for its size, able to hit a top speed of around 50 mph before the rev limiter kicks in.
This shouldn’t be a surprise, as all of the Brute Force models are some of the fastest utility side-by-sides out there.
But it has the power to go faster, you’ll just run out of gearing with the stock tires.
There’s a pretty simple adjustment you can make to help push the top speed of the Brute Force 300 to 60+ mph.
Key Features & Accessories
These models are fairly basic from a features and accessories standpoint, but they’re plenty off-road ready right out of the box either way.
They include the following accessories:
- Digital display
- Fuel gauge
- Temperature light
- Gear indicator lights
- Front bumper
- Halogen headlights
- Brake lights
- Turn signals
Another feature to highlight is that while they don’t come with a winch, there is a winch plate mount in front to make it easy to add an aftermarket winch should you want.
What Owners Like
- The rear suspension set-up makes the back end very easy to control and whip around when cornering, all while being plenty stable.
- There are full footwells that surround the grippy, metal foot pegs on either side which offers added grip and stability for your feet.
- The ergonomics of this model make it suitable for all body types and sizes, offering plenty of legroom and a comfortable stance.
- Good storage for such a small model, with a storage cubby under the front hood and front/rear storage racks.
- One of the easiest ATVs to handle and control that you’ll find, this model almost handles like a sport model.
- The CVT belt intake and exhaust are both elevated to just beneath the front and rear plastics to keep them clear of water and mud.
- 12-month Kawasaki warranty is one of best in the industry, with the option to extend the Kawasaki Protection Plan up to an added 4 years.
What Owners Don’t Like
- The turning radius is just a tad wider than you might like on a compact model.
- There’s no Electronic Power Steering, but you won’t need it as easily as this model handles.
- There’s no warning light to remind you the parking brake is on, and driving only a short distance with it still on will toast the left rear brake disc.
- The carburetor is known to cause some issues with cold starting, stalling, and needing the choke to run at times.
- The shift linkage has a tendency to vibrate out of place and cause the gear shift to stick.
- The air intake is known to suck up lots of dirt and debris due to its location, leading to the need to clean the air filter after every ten hours of riding.
- The dirt and debris that get sucked up through the intake can wear down the intake valves, leading to some running problems if not taken care of.
You can read more into some of these drawbacks and how to overcome this in this guide to the Brute Force 300’s most common problems.
While it’s not a true Kawasaki per se, the Brute Force 300 makes for one of the best models in its class and one of the best ATV values out there.
While it does have some drawbacks, so too do it’s bigger siblings which you can read about below: