Most guys could only offer an opinion on the make / model they have. I have a Kawasaki and I'm happy with it. I have friends who have Polaris, Yamaha and John Deere. They are all happy with theirs.
If I was to make a recommendation I would say buy one of the big names. They are all well made and reliable machines. Individual features and cost are going to be more important than manufacture if you stay with the big names.
x2 IRT Dogface comments. Went with the Kawasaki because of the 5 year warranty. When you are dealing with the "big names", hard to decide as they are all good, and the little things like the warranty push you across the line one way or the other. Good luck.
looking for opinions on side by sides, looking to buy new side by side so wife can enjoy trails with me, also will need snow plow for use in winter.
Everyone is going to give you a different answer and that is great because you can see what makes everyone happy and apply it to your purchase. To me it sounds like you are going to be doing easy trail riding with the wife. Any sxs can accomplish this but some do it better than others, you should check out any model that you like and even try and test drive them. I had a base model sxs and while it did the job of easy trail riding it was not as comfortable as my sxs I have now. I would look at seating comfort first because a good comfy seat can make up for a mediocre suspension. Next would be suspension, shocks and suspension geometry can make a rough trail seem easy, the higher end models will have great shocks/springs and great handling suspensions.
My friend bought a knock-off sxs and has had no problems and loves it. He doesn't do aggressive riding, nor does he use it a lot. He was able to get it fully equipped for his needs for the price of a name brand base model.
I have had many sxs over the years. Bought my first Kawasaki this year and love it. Why? Because it suits my needs and provides a comfortable ride for what I do and the bonus is the 3 year warranty it offers. Do research, even watch youtube videos, this is a great place to watch reviews. You do not have to pick the one that wins all the shootouts you are looking for the one that fits your needs.