Yeah im not to worried about wheel bearings i have replaced so many ATV wheel bearings over the years it's like changing oil at this point. My Zuki had Japanese bearings in it but it spent a lot of it's early life in sandy mud/water creeks.Just some thoughts - If you're afraid of the Kodiak because of the sealed brake and wheel bearings, I believe the sealed rear brake is really designed to last the life of the machine (or very close). Yamaha also uses very high quality Koyo brand wheel bearings. Since you don't ride much mud anymore, you would likely go thousands of miles on a Kodiak or Grizzly before needing to replace the bearings.
I would rather pull a caliper off and slap some pads on than have to pull the diff out to replace clutch packs. I think it was this forum lastnight i was reading where a guy in another country had to have his diff clutch packs replaced and his mechanic could not find the right clutches. I think it was a midyear change from solid axle to IRS if i remember right but he did find them. I prefer simplicity and i would pay more for it.