For no-nonsense family fun, rugged good looks and bang for your buck Sea-Doo’s range of personal water craft are hard to go past. And the Sea-Doo GTI is the sort of PWC anyone thinking of dipping a toe in the water would be crazy not to check out. The GTI is just about perfect for beginners and for nervous owners unsure about those members of the family whose enthusiasm could outrun their skills.
This trim little blaster comes with a learning key – just don’t tell learners that’s what it’s called – that allows the owner to limit the speed of the 130hp Rotax 4-tec motor to either 56 km/h or 72 km/h. It’s the perfect solution for inexperienced riders, allowing them to master the craft at slower and safer speeds before opening the throttle wide. A lot more economical too.
Sea-Doo GTI Power steering
Trouble is, a PWC won’t corner very well with the wick turned down. Well, Sea-Doo have that one covered as well. It’s called OPAS for short, which stands for off-power assisted steering. The OPAS system mounts two fins behind the little craft’s sponsons which help turn the boat when the motor is throttled back or in the advent of a power shut down. But there’s more: Sea-Doos are bad news for joyriders thanks to a key that can be programmed to the individual craft. No Sea-Doo key other than the one programmed to yours will fire it up. Oh, and in case you tip up and land in the drink the GTI rights itself. And there is a thing called TOPS, or “tip over protection system”, which protects the motor from water should you capsize.
Sea-Doo GTI Blaster
While the GTI 130 may be an entry-level machine there’s nothing basic about the 1.5-litre, fuel-injected, single overhead cam, four-stroke which churns out 130hp. Clever too. Where most PWC rely on water cooling – which can be tricky if the water temperature is warm – the Rotax 4-tec has a closed cooling system. As well as being a more efficient form of cooling, the closed loop lessens the chance of the motor hoovering up rubbish which can block the cooling system.
Sea-Doo GTI Comfort
Great seats, well-padded and plenty of room for three with the second passenger having a strap to hold on to. Spotters for wakeboarders and skiers have rear facing footrests for extra security and comfort. Up front there are plenty of dials and gauges such as tachometer, engine hour meter and maintenance indicators. There is even a warning signal to let you know whether you have engaged the standard key or the learning key. The central compartment is deep and roomy and there is a water-proof, sealed removable container under the nose.
Sea-Doo GTI On the water
The GTI offers a flat, stable ride in choppy conditions with more than enough grunt to put a smile on all but the most power-hungry rider’s dial. Sure, it’s not as sprightly in the turns as more dedicated craft but the tradeoff is fail-safe reactions to clumsy inputs from the throttle and the bars.
Sea-Doo GTI Verdict:
A really versatile, well-built PWC, that won’t break the bank while delivering heaps of fun for all the family.