I’m not going to lie; I was about to give up on Kawasaki jet skis, but the 2022 Ultra 310 Series release has got me excited about Kawasaki again. I haven’t been this excited since they went over 300HP.
We expected the brakes, and glad Kawasaki is now doing it, but it’s the other features that have me more excited. This isn’t just slight changes; what Kawasaki released are industry-changing features, in my opinion.
The Full Details
The Watercraft Journal got the full scoop on everything about the new 2022 Ultra 310 Series so go check them out for more details.
See the new Ultra’s on Kawasaki’s website here.
This article will be my take and how Kawasaki has outdone themselves this year.
“Brakes” – KSRD ( Kawasaki Smart Reverse with Deceleration)
Sea-Doo started the brake trend back in 2009, then Yamaha got its version in 2015, and now in 2022, Kawasaki has its version.
What’s interesting about the brakes on a jet ski is not that you have brakes on a boat, but how each manufacturer does it.
Sea-Doo has the word “braking” for a PWC on lockdown, so that is the wording they use. Yamaha calls it a “dual throttle”, and it seems Kawasaki is calling it a “smart reverse.”
Both Sea-Doo and Yamaha use triggers; the right hand is forward, and the left hand is the reverse and braking. While very similar, they work slightly different, but you’ll get the hang of each quickly.
Kawasaki has done it differently from Sea-Doo or Yamaha; both forward and reverse are on the right side of the handlebars. You still have the right trigger for throttle but below that is a thumb lever for braking.
Doing it from one side means better one-hand control. I would still try to keep both hands on the handlebars for safety.
I also like how Kawasaki makes the “R” for reverse very visible, and with push-button reverse and park becoming the norm in cars these days, this BIG “R” I can see it being more intuitive to new riders.
Kawasaki getting the brakes is a big deal, and it’s about time, but to be honest, it’s not the most important thing they released today.
High on my list is the backup camera.
At first, the backup camera made little sense to me until I saw it can be used for tow-sports. I don’t see people using this much for backing up, the blind spots on a jet ski are not as bad as a car, but this will be huge for tow-sports.
What Kawasaki should call this camera instead is the “Spotter’s Camera.“
Let’s be honest, mirrors on jet ski nowadays suck! Most can’t even be adjusted, and at best, gets your elbows and not the people behind you.
With Kawasaki coming out with a spotter’s camera is kind of a big deal. The camera sits above the tow line and gives you a wide-angle view of the person you’re towing.
Kawasaki is the only jet ski manufacturer to have anything like this, and it begs the question of why was this not done sooner? I hope this spotter’s camera feature catches on with other manufacturers. This feature is so new that there are no laws about it yet, and it will be interesting to see if this will be a legal replacement for mirrors.
The next exciting feature Kawasaki released is the side glovebox.
Instead of having one glove box right in front of you, they put two on each side and gave you 10.5 gallons of storage. Let me repeat that, 10.5 gallons!!! That is more storage than some other jet skis have as total storage and Kawasaki gave it to you for a glovebox.
You still have the other bigger storage for wet items like life jackets, anchors, ropes, but the glovebox gives you a dry place for your towels, phones, and clothes.
Total storage is 44.5 gallons.
The glovebox is so huge on the new Kawasaki 310 series that I bet many people won’t even realize there is more storage as 10.5 gallons is enough for most casual riders.
It sure does feel like Kawasaki is getting a lot of features you have in a car and putting them in a jet ski.
One of those features is an adjustable seat.
This will be a big deal for the taller riders as you can move the seat back and forward. You notice these things, especially for taller customers, and how the seat’s back support never supported them as they would sit on top of it due to their long legs.
Kawasaki allowing you to adjust the whole seat is a big deal.
New Color Display
Kawasaki is also putting a new color display on their 310 models.
It’s not a touch screen, which is fine for a jet ski as controlling the display with physical buttons is far easier especially in choppy water.
The rear deck of the new Ultra’s is longer and has two multi-mount bars for adding more accessories.
You can add a cooler rack, fishing gear, cargo box, and much more.
You can even add eyelets for strapping whatever you want to the rear of the jet ski.
The headlights are standard on the Ultra 310LX-S and 310LX, but can be added to the 310X.
Kawasaki says these headlights are for design only.
The backup camera makes sense, but I’m still trying to grasp the headlights. It may come in handy when coming home at sunset to see your dock, especially if it’s a dark corner, but otherwise, I don’t see the point.
Most countries don’t allow you to drive your jet ski after sunset.
While LED lights on a jet ski are cool, you can’t really use them due to current laws of driving at night. The way Kawasaki makes it sound, the lights may not be useful beyond design.
If we play with the idea a bit more, lights on a jet ski could be useful in the future. It could be the same reason motorcycles have daytime running lights, or if it starts raining while on your jet ski and it gets foggy, the headlights could help. Shoot, as I write this, I’m slowly convincing myself that it actually might be a good idea to have lights on a jet ski. Who knows, this might be a start to something?
I bet DJ Khaled wished he had lights on his jet ski when he got stuck on the water after dark.
This can happen to anyone, and while it’s illegal in many places, things happen to the best of us, and having some kind of light would be better than no lights when it’s at night time.
Either way, you shouldn’t drive your jet ski after sunset.
7 thoughts on “2022 Kawasaki Jet Ski – What’s New”
Hi Steve, I am old and bought two used Sea Doos for my family. They were in terrible shape. I purchased them subject to inspection on delivery. I had a service come and test them. They not in good shape at all. So I called the dealer and after finally they took them back and are taking them out of my name. That was helpful. But now I am in the market to two, I think I will try and purchase new ones if I can find them. The new Kawasaki sounds like a better fit for me. I don’t like the back water spout in the rear on the Yamaha. Don’t think I will be pulling people I have a boat for that. I want the one that is most stable for me as I am 85 and no racing or temptation. I want decent speed and equpment. Like the rear view mirror. Where and who to I buy from?
Right now is a good time to be looking to buy but depending on where you live you may have to wait for your model to come in. I really love what Kawasaki has done with the new Ultra 310’s. If you can I would spring for at least the 310LX-S or even better the 310LX. The backup camera and the adjustable seat on the 310LX is just amazing, I didn’t add this link to this post but you can see more info here… https://content2.kawasaki.com/ContentStorage/KMC/PressReleases/683/fb972ff4-5dc0-452c-966c-58168e4ecde8.pdf
The best way to buy is to go to Kawasaki’s website and find the 3 nearest dealerships near you. Here is Kawasaki’s dealer locator… https://www.kawasaki.com/en-us/research-tools/dealer-locator?cm_re=MPP-_-JETSKIULTRA310:VEHICLENAV-_-LOCATEADEALER
Talk to each dealer to see what they got coming and work up a deal with one that you like.
Hi Steven do you know when you’re doing the big comparision?
It’ll be out in November.
Hi Steve… I recently bought my first waverunner a new seadoo and thought I was missing a bilge drain plug so I put a plug in but it ended up being the exhaust flush Port I plugged and I drove the Sea-Doo with that plugged up….. can that harm the engine ?
It’s not good to do that but I’ve had someone do it before and the jet ski was fine but did throw a check engine light a lot and he did shut the engine off after and let it sit to cool down. What I would do is back the jet ski down to a ramp, keep it attached to the trailer, and while the rear is in the water let it idle for a minute to see if the hull takes on water. If it does not take on water I would take it for a quick ride and check the hull to see if there is any water. If there is no water you should be fine but if you start to take on water then it needs to be fixed.
I really wished Sea-Doo made the drain plugs look different or kept the old style as I had other people do this before.
Oh it’s fine I’ve ridden it for a few hours after the fact with no issues ….surprisingly it felt faster when I had that whole plugged ….is that because it was running hot maybe ?
It was during the break in process when I did this…. I was out with it plugged up for maybe 30 minutes 45 minutes tops…. Thanks for your feedback it’s greatly appreciated…. I did a search and couldn’t find anything on the subject over the internet….