Sometimes a manufacturer comes up with a boat that succeeds because it simply is “right”.
Right price, right specs, right look, and most of all the right “feel” for the segment of the market at which it is aimed.
All this is true of Yamaha’s VX Cruiser, a so-called entry level model that comes with enough bells and whistles to keep a big smile plastered across the face of the most jaded personal water crafter.
Yamaha did have one advantage over the opposition in that it was one of the first manufacturers to serve up a convincing four-stroke engine package in a PWC.
The twin overhead-cam, 20-valve four-cylinder which displaces just over one-litre is a compact crackerjack.
Like all Yammies, this little engine loves to rev its head off and while it’s never going to stop a tug in its tracks, it is guaranteed to deliver more buzz than a martini at sunset.
Better still, it does so without breaking the bank. A number of independent tests have confirmed what many of us have long suspected, that the VX can go quite a distance on what owners of larger-engined PWCs would consider a ridiculously small amount of juice.
And to keep throttle-heads in line, a key-fob remote can be used to engage a low RPM mode that limits engine speed which is particularly useful for those users new to PWCs.
In another useful electronic twist it’s possible to cut out the ignition, which prevents the motor from being accidentally fired up or stops some beach bum deciding your bright blue VX would be just the ticket for a joyride.
Confirming the impression that the VX is no stripped out recession special there’s a boarding platform which is great for snorkellers, skiers or wake-boarders preparing to step off as well and a handy way of clambering back on board after a spill.
There is plenty of info for riders with a nifty bike-like display that delivers speed, fuel, and RPM and also, critically, keeps tabs on engine hours.
Nothing special about the concave rear-view mirrors, but there is a more than useful glovebox complete with a couple of foam cupholders plus a decent sized stowage area.
Ok, so it ticks all the obvious boxes, but how does it handle?
Well, Yamaha has drawn a rising V hull that in practice delivers the sort of stable, dry-ish ride that newcomers to PWC will certainly appreciate, with enough nimbleness to satisfy all but the most aggressive helmer.
It all adds up to a convincing package that should deliver sprightly fun to beginners and experienced PWC users alike.
Yamaha VX Cruiser Specs
Colour Deep Blue
Length 3220 mm
Width 1170 mm
Height 1150 mm
Dry Weight 322 kg
Storage Capacity 67.2 litres
Vehicle Capacity 3 People
Engine Type 4-stroke, 4-cylinder DOHC 5-valve
Displacement 1052 cc
Bore/Stroke 76 x 58 mm
Compression Ratio 11.4 :1
Carburetion Electronic Fuel Injection (EFI)
Ignition Direct Ignition
Lubrication Dry sump
Pump Type 155mm Axial Flow
Fuel Capacity 60 litres
Oil Capacity 4.3 litres