Yamaha has introduced its 2013 WaveRunner lineup and the results are quite familiar, albeit with a few tweaks. Returning models include the Luxury Performance line of the FX Cruiser SHO, FX SHO, FX Cruiser HO and FX HO; the Performance line which includes the FZR, FZS, VXR, VXS, and SuperJet; and the Versatility line of the VX Cruiser, VX Deluxe, and VX Sport.
Leading the way is once again the FX series, of which Yamaha touts the Cruiser SHO as the industry’s best-selling luxury-performance model. Cruiser models will continue to get the theater seating treatment, meaning passengers are tiered slightly above the driver for a clearer view forward, and that all get hip support from padded bolsters. Other improvements that found their way into the line in 2011 include a mechanical neutral setting, which allows the craft to start up stationary at the dock, and the Command Link instrumentation buttons, which are located in front of the saddle and behind the handlebars for convenience. You’ll also get the nifty little aft trunk to stow towropes and other wet gear. Changes to the NanoXcel hull and deck for 2013 include new metallic colors and graphics. Engines continue to be the familiar 1.8-liter.
“There is not another watercraft in the industry that is as in tune with today’s luxury performance buyer as the Yamaha FX Series,” argues Scott Watkins, Yamaha’s product manager. “Not only does this series feature the largest displacement engine in the industry, but it is packed with the latest innovations and technology. From Cruise Assist to Neutral gear to the Theater style seating, the FX Series offers consumers a fun, fast, comfortable ride with amenities and features that exceed what they thought was possible in a personal watercraft.”
Also returning is the VX series, which once again topped sales charts for an impressive eighth year in a row. VX models get new metallic paint colors and graphics. The VX Performance models (VXR and VXS) also get new colors and graphics, and will continue to exploit their horsepower-to-weight ratio, delivering supercharger-like speeds but not requiring that pricey piece of horsepower – or its associated gas consumption – to get the job done.
The VX models have made it a little harder to choose a Yamaha performance model certainly, but those who want the combo of supercharger and nimble hull will appreciate the return of the FZ line. This line offers arm-jolting acceleration from supercharged 1.8-liter engines, and handling reminiscent of the GP series of old. The two-passenger FZR gets a bolstered sport seat, while the three-passenger FZS is left mostly flat to facilitate an additional passenger or towing spotter.
The SuperJet? Yup, look close and you’ll see it’s there, too, with a closed-course competition-use only disclaimer.
A familiar lineup? Absolutely. But given the brand’s success, Yamaha has obviously decided to stick with the models that are currently getting the job done.
“Yamaha WaveRunners dominate virtually every segment of the personal watercraft industry,” says Bryan Seti, Yamaha’s national marketing manager. “We’ve focused on innovation and luxury to propel the FX Series to the top of the luxury performance segment. Our VX Series offers the reliability, performance and value that entry level buyer demands. And our performance models have demonstrated their leadership on the racecourse with multiple national and world titles.
“This is an exciting lineup for Yamaha and one that offers a model we know connects with every type of consumer.”