I think the mid 90 cat 580 motors where bad for breaking pistions if you didn't replace them around 2500 3000 miles.
I know my buddie has an 96 ski doo with that 583 motor in it and that sled has 6000 miles on it never had a rebuild and runs out good yet. Weather he is just lucky or they are a good motor i couldn't tell you. I'm more of a cat man
His ski doo and my 95 ext i had seam to ride prity close to the same to me any way.
hope that helps
The 97 580 was called the powder special and the 600 was called the powder extreme. Basically the powder extreme is a zrt 600 with a long track and different shocks. I would go with the doo because it will make a better trail sled and the 583 motors are strong runners. If you do alot of off trail riding then the cat would work better but they are heavy.
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