The Rakoon is a cool, fun, and simple entry-level snowmobile concept. It would be equipped with a 15 hp engine with direct injection, and it would have a price tag of 5 000$.
My first snowmobile was a 1980 Ski-Doo Élan. It had around 12hp, I had to crank it to start the engine, and it had no reverse, but it was always huge fun to drive! It floated in deep snow, it was easy to maneuver, and it was really affordable for a first family snowmobile. It’s been almost 20 years now since the Elan has been discontinued from production. At the time, the problem was profitability; the vehicle was not generating enough profit margin. There was a small but constant demand for it, but BRP decided to stop producing the model in 1996. The demand is still there, and I think it would be good to re-introduce an entry-level snowmobile like the Rakoon that could be purchased for 5 000$, just like the Sea-Doo Spark, which made its debut this year.
How it works
The Rakoon should be designed to please the whole family. I would install a ski pole in the back so you could pull your friends on their skis or snowboards! I would also try to find a quiet and reliable engine, which is already developed, and mass produced in a low cost country. To keep cost to a minimum, I would develop and offer only one model (SKU). To keep it light, it would have no battery and no electric starter. I would install LED lights on it, and also light the back and the sides for playing after dark. (The sun sets around 4pm in northern climes in the winter, so the lights are essential.) Of course, buyers could install a variety of after-market parts or kits on it.
What it’s used for
The Rakoon is an idea for an affordable entry-level family snowmobile. The images you see here are to start the discussion around such a concept. What would you add to it? Do you think the engine should be a two or four stroke? (Forget electric, the batteries will cost and weigh too much.) Do you have other features you would add? Your input is welcome.
I would like to thank Abhishek Roy who created the images of the Rakoon. Abhishek is a freelance product designer based in Mumbai, India. The Rakoon was Abhishek’s first concept rendering.