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Engine: Four-cylinder 1,494cc
Fuel Capacity: 15.9 gallons
Storage Capacity: 30.8 gallons
Seating Capacity: 3
Virtually any personal watercraft can tow a ski, wakeboard, or wakeskate, but the 2018 Sea-Doo WAKE 155 targets those who take those sports a little more serious. With a trio of towing-specific amenities, and colors and graphics that separate the boat from the rest of the lineup, the WAKE 155 is a step above the norm when it comes to towing the line. At its core, however, the boat remains very much a GTI 155, meaning you get one boat…that can serve multiple masters.
Like its big brother, the WAKE Pro 230, the WAKE 155 includes three primary items that make the boat excel at towsports.
On the practical side, a gunwale-mounted board rack is most obvious. Rather than force riders to clutter the footwells with their gear (and certainly bang a few bare ankles in the process), the rack holds boards above and tilted slightly away from the gunwale. A solid U-shaped base cradles your favorite stick; bungee straps stretch up and over the board edge to secure it underway. And yes, you can actually ride with a board in place. In my experience, “normal” riding won’t tear a board free or cause problems. Should you want to cut loose without the rack in place, it’s easily removable.
The other obvious addition is a slightly elevated tow pylon that attaches at the seat base, just behind the aft-most tip of the saddle. Featuring two convenient handholds to keep a rear-facing spotter secure, the pylon extends to one of three positions. While it certainly provides a more solid pull than the standard ski hook, its biggest benefit is arguably the fact that the pylon elevates the towrope out of the craft’s jet wash. When not in use, the pylon’s lowest position tucks just below saddle level, keeping it out of the way for passengers at the back of the saddle.
The third feature is hidden within the mode controls that alter acceleration. In standard trim, Sea-Doo offers the familiar Touring and Sport modes, the first of which tames acceleration and saves fuel, the latter of which gives the driver access to the engine’s full stock potential. Not as obvious is ECO mode, which offers the best fuel economy. To this mix, the 2018 Sea-Doo WAKE 155 adds another option — SKI. In SKI mode, drivers can choose one of five acceleration profiles, each of which pulls harder out of the hole to match the needs of the rider and the type of ski or board they’re riding. Once the rider is pulled to a preset speed, cruise control maintains that speed to take any jerky throttle fingers out of the equation.
The GTI 155 at the WAKE’s core has several advantages over the WAKE Pro 230 beyond just price. One is the naturally aspirated 155hp, 1503 4-TEC engine below the saddle. Unlike the supercharged WAKE Pro, the lower-horsepower engine may arguably deliver a smoother ride, as it’s less responsive, or in other words, less apt to “jerk” the rider with minor shifts in speed. Of course, it’s also more fuel efficient, meaning you’ll spend less to operate the craft over the course of a season. Top speed is in the 55mph range.
As to the hull, the GTI is a looser, more playful feeling boat than the GTX models, including the WAKE PRO 230. Deadrise is a relatively shallow 16 degrees, meaning you can still skid a little or cut loose when desired. When you want sharp cornering, however, don’t worry…the GTI platform can still bite with tenacity. Just play with your weight placement to find the limits of both personalities. Somewhat surprising is that this shallow deadrise also rides very well in rough water.
One change for 2018 is that the hull is now made of PolyTec, the polypropylene material reinforced with long-strand glass fibers that was first introduced in the Spark and has now expanded to multiple models in the lineup. PolyTec drops the craft’s weight by a full 80 pounds, enhancing the boat’s power-to-weight ratio.
Features on the 2018 Sea-Doo WAKE 155 include Intelligent Brake & Reverse (iBR), variable electric trim, wide-angle mirrors, and a spring-loaded boarding ladder. The aforementioned 2018 colors are a Teal Blue Metallic and Lava Red.
Competitive models? No other manufacturer goes to the lengths of adding board racks, ski pylons, or offering unique acceleration profiles. Yamaha’s comparably powered VX Limited ($11,099), however, does put an emphasis on towing with a color-matched tube and storage strap, tube inflator, 12V outlet, and color-matched towrope, along with a custom cover with solar-panel charger, dry bag, rope bag and cruise control.
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