A lot of people mistakenly think any motorcycle mount can be applied to an ATV or UTV. Typically an ATV is ridden off-road and requires a rugged mount that includes a cradle to grip and hold your device securely. Most ATVs do not have standard handlebars (if any). The mounts are often wrapping around thicker diameter roll bars. Some are attached to a fork stem or brake reservoir.
The better mounts are going to take some effort (and tools) to attach securely. The ideal mount provides a means to remove your device easily but not necessarily remove the mount. We highly recommend avoiding suction and sticky mounts on ATVs and UTVs. Bolts good, sticky bad. A GPS comes in mighty handy when riding out in the desert, but using the suction mount that came in the box might not be the best idea.
Take the challenges that a motorcycle rider has and multiply it. While a motorcycle is typically ridden on a highway, an ATV is normally taken off-road. You not only need to worry about the vibrations of the vehicle, but also the huge bumps you will ride your vehicle over.
If you ride your vehicle crazier than most and relish a roll over, then a mount may not be in your future. There are no mounts that I know of that will make it through a roll over. While you and your vehicle might be ok, the device that you have mounted as well as the mount is likely to get crushed from the weight of the ATV.
For those that want to mount something on their ATV, there are many manufacturers that offer metal mounts and secure cradles for your device. Most mounts on ATVs and UTVs will attach to the toll bar. A basic handlebar is not likely to work well because although a handlebar diameter is typically an inch, the roll bar is two inches or more.
Get a mount with a pipe clamp attached to it. You will need a screwdriver or wrench to install this and once you have it attached, leave it where it is. Be sure to install the mount very tightly so it doesn’t loosen from the bumps and vibrations.
The cradle should be a custom fit if possible. If a universal cradle is used, select a one that locks around your device. A cheap plastic cradle will not work well in this environment and your GPS or phone will become a Frisbee with a cheap cradle.
The RAM Mounts V-Base Strap Mount With Universal Finger-Grip Holder is one of the most rugged mounts that we know of. The base has a strap that fits bars up to 2.1 inches diameter. The rugged cradle will fit extremely tightly around almost any phone. The holder is spring-loaded and the arms are attached with bolts. This mount carries a lifetime warranty from the manufacturer. Be sure to use a good rugged case on your phone to prevent any damage from road debris. I recommend an Otterbox Defender if it’s available for your model of smartphone.
With the advancements made in action cameras such as the GoPro Hero, a lot of ATV and UTV riders like to video off-road adventures. If your video cam has a standard 1/4 inch – 20 threaded tripod hole on the bottom, select a mount that has a tripod screw on it. Screw your camera very tightly to that screw to avoid a Frisbee effect.
Like the mount pictured in this article, if possible, select a mount that has a plate for your camera to rest on for added stability. If you are using a GoPro, use the weatherproof case, and select a mount with the custom GoPro adapter.