2022 Yamaha JetBlaster Review

This playful PWC is an absolute Blast to ride

The 2022 Yamaha JetBlaster is a wildly playful three-seat PWC that is ready to kick up a wall of spray and take flight. Let’s dig in with our full review.

Fast Facts

Engine: Three-cylinder 1,049cc

Fuel Capacity: 13.2 gal.

Stowage Capacity: 7.7 gal.

Weight: 549 lbs

Seating Capacity: 3

MSRP: $9,999

Nearly every August, a friend drops me a text with the same question. Does Yamaha have a new WaveBlaster yet? I understand why he so desperately wants it to be true. The WaveBlaster has a rabid fan base, an enthusiastic lot who loved the craft’s small, powerful, and agile feel.

As you can imagine, this year’s reveal of a “Jet” Blaster stoked those hopes for many who share my friend’s enthusiasm. But while I must crush those hopes right up front for those hoping for the WaveBlaster of old, I will say the JetBlaster carries over a fair share of that craft’s soul. Like the ’Blaster of old, it’s small, lightweight, powerful for its size and most definitely agile.

Unlike that model, however, it’s also arguably even more fun and versatile.

Putting The Blast In ‘Blaster

2022 Yamaha JetBlaster Cornering

Months after its introduction, it’s now no surprise that the 2022 Yamaha JetBlaster is heavily influenced by the departing EXR. In fact, for all intents and purposes it IS the EXR, a 10’ 3” long, 3’ 8” wide model from Yamaha’s recreational EX line pumped up with the addition of a 110hp TR-1 HO engine and a 60-pound weight reduction compliments of Yamaha’s NanoXcell hull material in both hull and deck.

What separates the new ‘Blaster from the old EXR are a list of features designed to bring out the craft’s playful potential. That new positioning is evident from the start. Rather than the Rec-Lite category the EXR fell under, the 2022 Yamaha JetBlaster now joins the SuperJet in a new Freestyle category in the manufacturer’s lineup. The craft’s color combo also gets a little more flashy, with a bright Cyan blue deck paired with a near-neon Lime Yellow on the saddle and front hood.

The marquee additions, however, are the trio of wider, 30-inch handlebars on a racey, cast aluminum neck, angled footwell chocks at the tail end of the footwells to provide added leverage, and an electric trim that extends beyond the conventional range. If that sounds familiar, yes, it’s the same basic trio of additions Sea-Doo added to the SPARK TRIXX to bring out its more playful side. On the JetBlaster, however, it’s not so much about wheelies (the craft in fact can’t pull a truly vertical one off, at least not without a lot of effort and a heavy rider) but overall airtime. And aggressive playtime.

2022 Yamaha JetBlaster Left Side

Grab a handful of throttle from idle and the 549-pound craft literally leaps off the line. Punch that throttle over the tiniest of waves and you’re airborne. The JetBlaster’s low-end grunt is on full display thanks to the craft’s power-to-weight ratio, with the craft instantly responding to throttle input. That ability to rapidly introduce a “punch” of speed also brings out the playful side of the hull below. Briefly counter steer, then snap the handlebars the opposite direction and the JetBlaster spins out with ease, the tail whipping around into a 180 or, with the driver’s input at the handlebars, continuing into a 360. With a little more finesse you can also pull off tail slides or even old-school bronco aerials (although be aware the landings can be a little brutal on the ankles and knees). As to top speed, expect to flirt with 55mph; I recorded a peak of 54.8 during my early August test run outside Atlanta.

In short, the 2022 Yamaha JetBlaster is good old-fashioned fun, a craft you want to play with and kick up a spray of water with rather than just carve endless turns.

Not Just Slash And Splash

2022 Yamaha JetBlaster Overhead

That’s not to say the JetBlaster isn’t a versatile platform for other pursuits. Like any EX model, it’s a three-seater, ready to take your significant other or kids on a ride or go for that evening cruise down the shoreline. When you’re not slashing and thrashing, it’s also a pretty dry and stable. The saddle is narrow, yet comfortable. Should you want to tow those kids on a tube, it’s ready with a basic tow hook aft.

Like nearly any similar model, the LCD display is small but features the basics, and for the JetBlaster now smartly includes trim position. In terms of storage, the bow compartment is adequate but shallow, best for dock lines, towrope, or your shoes. The glovebox is surprisingly deep, ready for water bottle, your phone (assuming it’s in a waterproof case or bag), and a few other items. Total capacity is 7.7 gallons, not cavernous by any means but in tune with the RecLite class. Fuel capacity is 13.2 gallons, nearly double that of its competitor.

The standout “standard” feature on the 2022 Yamaha JetBlaster is RiDE, Yamaha’s dual-throttle system. It not only applies reverse thrust to make for simple, intuitive low-speed maneuvering around tight quarters like dock or launch ramp, but also rapidly slows the craft at speed.

Fight Card

2022 Yamaha JetBlaster Fun

The clear competition in most buyers’ minds will obviously be the SPARK TRIXX 3 UP ($8,499).

The TRIXX is $1,500 less expensive, the undisputed wheelie king, and has a unique appearance that allows it to stand out from the pack. The 2022 Yamaha JetBlaster won’t pull off and hold a serious nose-in-the-air wheelie for most riders and, despite the flashy colors, is pretty traditional in looks. It is the more powerful craft, however, and as such capable of far more aggressive playtime, ready to leap out of the water, spin out in a blur of spray and bury itself in a powerful turn. It’s also the more versatile platform when you’re not focused on freestyle fun, and better in rougher water conditions.

Neither, however, will bore you or ever be derogatorily labeled a “couch.” That I’ll guarantee.