Jet Ski Buyers Guide 2014

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Yamaha Waverunner Jet Ski

New Flagship

Yamaha WaterCraft Group, has introduced its 2014 line of WaveRunner Jet Ski highlighted by two new flagship luxury performance models and the debut of the most powerful motor ever in a Yamaha WaveRunner — the Yamaha Super Vortex High Output (SVHO) marine engine.

Also making news is Yamaha’s FZ Series of high-performance, race inspired watercraft that will feature the new SVHO engine, and the value focused VX Series that will now come with Yamaha’s proprietary nanotechnology- engineered NanoXcel hulls and decks, which sheds 65 pounds compared to 2013 models.

“This is a huge year for Yamaha WaveRunners with the introduction of the most powerful, highest performing engine we’ve ever placed in a WaveRunner,” said Scott Watkins, Yamaha’s product manager. “And we didn’t just stop at the engine. We enhanced every single performance component surrounding this new engine to get the absolute most performance and dialled in handling we could get. The models featuring our new SVHO engine deliver race ready performance right out of the box.” The new Super Vortex High Output engine is a purpose-built 1812cc, four-stroke, four-cylinder, supercharged and intercooled Yamaha Marine engine. All models featuring the SVHO engine will also come with a new 160mm, eight-vane jet pump for maximum thrust volume and hook up.

In addition, cooling efficiency has been increased by 25 percent, the supercharger air intake by 20 percent with a larger diameter supercharger impeller and Yamaha increased supercharger boost by 60 percent. Yamaha increased oil-cooling efficiency by 110 percent with an all-new oil cooling system and the SVHO engine features an advanced fuel injection system to increase fuel flow and added high-performance forged pistons to deliver peak power.

For 2014, Yamaha’s FX Series of luxury performance WaveRunners are led by the new FX Cruiser SVHO and FX SVHO models. These models offer the ultimate combination of luxury features with the most powerful engine ever in a Yamaha WaveRunner. Designed for the consumer who wants it all, the new FX Cruiser SVHO and FX SVHO raise the bar of what’s possible when luxury and performance meet on the water. These models are fast, packed with features while remaining lightweight thanks to Yamaha’s proprietary NanoXcel hull and deck.

The Yamaha FZR and FZS have always been the epitome of high performance, race inspired engine design and achievement. For 2014, they get a double digit power boost from the SVHO engine that is matched with a new 160mm, 8-vane pump, new sponsons, a new ride plate and a new top loader intake grate, that together help this unit stay glued to the water during high speed turns.

The value oriented VX line gets Yamaha’s exclusive NanoXcel hull and deck material that is lighter and stronger than before. In all, the Yamaha VX Cruiser and VX Deluxe are 65 pounds lighter, making them the lightest weight three-person watercraft today. Along with the weight savings, these models see enhancements in acceleration, fuel efficiency and handling.

The 2014 Yamaha Waverunner line up for New Zealand/Australia consists of 11 models, including the competition-only Yamaha Superjet. The FZR models are not available in New Zealand or Australia.

Sea-Doo Jet Ski

Spark it up

Say hello to the new Sea-Doo Spark, the latest breakthrough watercraft. The Sea-Doo Spark is playful and easy-to-ride and yours for around $9500. It boasts the most fuel-efficient engine available and is available in many colour and customisation options.

The Spark comes in two different versions, the 2up and 3up. They are essentially the same, but the 3up has a longer seat and an additional section bolted onto the back for additional stability and buoyancy.

The hull and deck are made from a material called Polytec, which is a low density (lightweight) and high-impact composite material that is also 100% recyclable. They chose this because it was lighter than the typical fiberglass that is used in pretty much every other Jet Ski on the market. It also has  the added benefit of a matte finish that is often seen in the automotive space. In real life though, it just looks like plastic. The structure of the Spark is created by the Exoskel, an all-new aluminum skeleton that keeps the essential parts in the front of the watercraft while maintaining a strong but lightweight frame. Instead of gluing the hull to the deck, as is customary on other jet ski’s, they found a way to screw them together while maintaining structural integrity and a proper seal. Why? You can literally unscrew the deck from the hull in about 10 minutes, giving you completely open access to work on any of the internal bits that need attention.

The engine is the same Rotax 900 ACE engine found in many of the new Ski-Doo models. They offer two versions, the regular Rotax 900 ACE and the Rotax 900 ACE HO (high output), which is chipped to offer more horsepower. As with motorcycles, the Spark uses a fly-by-wire system that, in the HO engine, allows you to electronically choose between a Touring and Sport fuelling options.

The Spark also incorporates features found in many of its higher priced siblings. The iBR (intelligent brake and reverse) can stop the watercraft up to 100 ft sooner than others on the market and also makes docking incredibly easy with the reverse function. The D-Sea-Bel system is basically a giant muffler in the rear of the Spark, which greatly reduces any exhaust noise. Sea-Doo uses a closed loop cooling system in the Spark, which basically acts as a radiator. This means you don’t have to worry about flushing the engine out when you finish riding and are loading the ski.

Other hot products for 2014 are the Sea-Doo Performance lineup which includes five models led by the RXP-X 260, model that changed the definition of watercraft in this family with the T3hull and Ergolock system. It also includes the Sea-Doo RXT-X aS 260, RXT-X 260 and RXT 260 models as well as the popular, entry-level performance watercraft, the GTR 215 model. In 2014, the Performance models including the X-Packages’ debut in all-new Viper Red colouration.

The 2014 Sea-Doo RXP-X 260 model is the ideal watercraft for closed course racers and performance enthusiasts. The T3 hull design allows the RXP-X 260 model to aggressively lean into corners and penetrate chop better than any of its two-seater counterparts The Sea-Doo RXT-X aS 260model provides riders with the ultimate in adjustable suspension ideal for riders who prefer larger bodies of water or offshore riding where conditions are choppy. 

The RXT-X aS 260 watercraft features a high output, super- charged Rotax 4-TEC engine with intercooler and race-inspired features, making this open water runner the ultimate offshore watercraft. The Adjustable Suspension (aS) system features a compression-adjustable FOX damper and mechanical spring preload adjustment mechanism.

BRP’s 2014 Sea-Doo RXT-X 260 model is equipped with advanced X-Series racing components that attract racing enthusiasts who strive for speed and always finish ahead of the competition. The RXT-X 260 watercraft is equipped with standard race specific features including: steering system with A.E.S, digital infocentre with integrated lap timer and boost indicator and high-performance Variable Trim System (VTS). The Sea Doo RXT 260 model is equipped with a high output, supercharged Rotax 4-TEC engine with intercooler. The RXT 260 model comes equipped with all the benefits of the Sea-Doo exclusive iControl technologies including iBR and iTC systems with customizable power delivery modes including ECO mode.

The Sea-Doo GTR 215 model lowers the barriers for enthusiasts to enter the Sea-Doo performance family at an affordable price. The GTR 215 model is based on the nimble yet predictable handling of the GTI platform while offering more power from its supercharged Rotax 4-TEC marine engine for a superior power-to-weight ratio. The 2014 Sea-Doo performance family includes the right model for every high-performance enthusiast.

Kawasaki Jet Ski

More Power, More Features, 5 Models Kawasaki surprised the industry when it debuted the Ultra 300X in 2011. Now the 310hp Ultra 310X raises the jet ski stakes – the most in any production jet ski. With 310 horsepower on tap, the 1,498cc engine is the reigning king of thrust. Along with Kawasaki’s Electronic Throttle Valve system, the high-tech Eaton TVS supercharger gives the engine exhilarating yet linear power, and its race-derived hull design is capable of carving precise turns in a wide range of water conditions.

Futuristic electronics are standard on the 310X such as the DFI system that routes the optimum air/fuel mixture into the engine with help from the electronic throttle valve system and the fuel economy assistance mode for maximum economy and a one-touch 8 k/mh mode. There’s also Cruise Control, and a SLO mode, so new riders can learn to ride safely. The Ultra 310X’s ergonomics are designed for supreme rider comfort with a 5-way adjustable handlebar and new gun-grip style handgrips.

The 2014 ULTRA 310LX gives enthusiasts exactly what they want: the ultimate combination of class-leading power, handling and luxury. The Ultra 310LX features the new Jetsound audio system, which allows riders to listen to their favourite music while touring their favourite waterways. The Kawasaki Jet Ski Ultra 310R jet ski is perfect for riders seeking an adrenaline rush on water. The R-model draws from decades of Kawasaki’s championship-winning racing experience to create the ultimate “sport” Jet Ski ideal for recreation and racing.

The Ultra 310R’s new ergonomic appointments are designed for hard-core sport riding and comfort. Borrowing a cue from Kawasaki’s championship-winning KX motorcycles, the Ultra 310R features a motocross-style handlebar complete with a crossbar pad for hard sport riding. The handlebar is 12-way adjustable.

The new Sportseat with KX-style seat material and graphics, seats three. The seat features a slimmer shape for more comfort along with good hip support, and its narrower width makes it easy to grip when stand-up riding. The Ultra LX incorporates many of the advanced features from the Ultra 310 family. Its advanced hull design allows motorcyclelike turning performance and rough water stability.

The propulsion system shares its basic design with the 310 series converting the Ultra LX’s 160 horsepower into thrust. The powerplant is a non-supercharged version of the 1,498cc. The Kawasaki STX-15F is one watercraft that doesn’t compromise performance for value. With a powerful four-stroke engine, a sportyhandling hull and plenty of rider-friendly features, the STX-15F is sure to be the bargain of the summer for enthusiasts seeking fun on the water.The STX-15F engine, the same powering the Ultra LX. This engine blends snappy performance with excellent fuel economy and low emissions.

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