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What Used Sea Doo Should You Buy?

I’ve been working on and selling Seadoo Watercraft for quite a few years. I’ve seen and driven just about every model Seadoo has come out with. I also worked on them too.

What I want to do is go through every model of Seadoo Watercraft and point out the ones that I would consider good machines to buy used. I’ve gathered this information throughout the years, and I know which ones are good and which ones you just want to avoid.

I’m going to be only doing Seadoo since they have the biggest market share, and it is what I know. If it’s not a Seadoo, then the golden rule is not to get it if it’s a 2 stroke.

If you want to learn more about used jet skis then I have a “Used Jet Ski Guide” that explains more.

2001 and below

If the Seadoo is a 2001 or below, I would avoid it as all the models are 2 strokes. 2 Strokes are a dying breed, and parts are hard to find for them. You want to only have 4 strokes; the way you can tell is that a 4 stroke has a dipstick on the top of the engine, just like what a car has.

The last 2-stroke Sea-Doo made was in 2007 which is well above the 10-year mark that manufacturers build them to. It’s simply best to avoid 2-strokes at this point.

2002

2002 was the first year for the 4 stroke engine, and Seadoo has been using this engine block for all its modern engines even in 2016. This engine is slowly being replaced by the 1630cc, which is in there 300HP in 2016. This engine works well, but not all the models in 2002 got that engine.

The only two units that I would even consider is the GTX limited and the GTX 4-tec from that year. The other models are 2 strokes and I would avoid them.

2003

2003 is much like 2002, where I would pick the GTX Limited and GTX 4-tec. There is another model, and that is the GTX SC or GTX 4-tec Super Charged. This was the first year the supercharged models came out; it brought the 155Hp engine up to 185hp.

I would make sure to check out the supercharger on the GTX SC, but the supercharger being a problem was not that big of an issue for the 185HP since it never spun as fast as the later supercharged models.

2004

2004 was the year you start to see more 4 strokes than 2 strokes. You have the GTX 155, which is a great machine if you ask me! You still have the GTX Limited and GTX SC, but now the RXP came to be. The RXP was the first 215Hp supercharged and intercooler 4-Stroke engine from Seadoo. The RXP was a 2 seater while most other models were 3 seaters.

The RXP was a racing machine and was top dog in power for its day. The only thing about the RXP 215 I would worry about is to make sure it had the supercharger job done to it.

2005

2005 we saw even more 4 strokes added to the lineup. You still have the RXP 215, GTX Limited, GTX SC, but now you also have the RXT 215 added to the mix. The RXT is just a 3 seater RXP. Also new is the GTX Wake, which is a great machine since it has a ski pylon and wake board rack.

You still have some 2 strokes like the GTI and 3D that I would avoid in the 2005 line up; all the other models are great. The best one out of the bunch was the GTX 155.

2006

At this point, it gets easier. If you’re looking at buying a used Seadoo and its a 2006 or older, then its going to be a great machine. The only one I would avoid would be the 3D since it’s a 2 stroke. You got several winners in this year that really seem bulletproof.

The 2006 GTI and 2006 GTX 155 are some of the best units ever. The 2006 GTX 155 is a really comfortable and long-lasting ski. The RXP and RXT of that year are super fast and have great color schemes, and feel bulletproof proof too.

2007

Just like 2006, all models are great except for the 3D, 2007 was the last year for it, and the last year Seadoo had a 2-stroke in the lineup. Some of the best watercraft were created this year and still run strong to this day.

The GTI 130, GTI SE 130, GTI SE 155, GTX 155 are the best watercraft ever created, and this holds up to this day. A personal favorite of mine was the 2007 RXT 215 in the black and yellow; love that watercraft! Another good ski was the GTX Wake; this was one of the best value ski’s on the market and still very popular to this day.

From This Point On

From this point on, you could draw some Seadoo’s out of a hat and still pick a good unit. There are some that stick out better than others; those are the golden boys.

I would say the machines with the 130HP, 155HP, or 170HP engine are the best ones you can get. It’s not too fast, and it’s not too slow; it’s just right. If you want a workhorse of an engine, then the 155HP models are the ticket.

2008

The big old recession hit us hard, but some of the best Seadoo’s were created during this time. This was the year of the RXP-X 255 and RXT-X 255. For some odd reason, these two models, especially the RXT-X, sell really well. These models are a huge hit in other countries besides the United States, so if you have one, then you got a good machine.

Just like the 2007 GTI’s and GTX 155 and GTX Wake – these are one of the best skis on the market that are bulletproof. Really any machine beyond this point is bulletproof and great.

This was the year that Seadoo did ballast tanks on the GTX Wake, it was not popular and they never did it again. So if you have a GTX Wake with ballast tanks then that is rare.

2009

2009 was a good year for Jet Ski world. This was the year that Seadoo came out with iBR (brakes, starts in neutral, and reverse) and iS (suspension) for a Jet Ski. This stuff was groundbreaking and never seen before on a boat. Only two models got these features, the GTX Limited iS and RXT iS. The GTI SE models got a really nice blue color that looked sharp.

This was the year we got a GTI Wake and the GTX wake as separate models. Later Seadoo would just start to call the GTI Wake the WAKE and the GTX Wake the WAKE PRO in the coming years. The GTI Wake is a great ski, and so are the other GTI models and the GTX 155; they will last forever.

2010

In 2010 all models except the RXP-X and GTI models got the new S3 body. The S3 body is still used today and is the most comfortable body around. From this point on, you can’t go wrong with any model Seadoo. Really they’re all good. The Suspension has been super reliable, and the iBR system works great. In 2016 Seadoo Went to iBR 2.0, which works even better.

This was about the time Seadoo Started working the Spark. During the recession, people could not afford this expensive watercraft. So Seadoo started project CAFE, which was the Spark that was released in 2014.

The Spark is a new watercraft that cost $4,999 when it was released in 2014; this was groundbreaking as no one was doing this. The GTX and RXT now all have iBR, which is brakes, neutral, and reverse. The watercraft starts in neutral every time and makes docking the watercraft easy. Trust me, you want a watercraft with iBR since it’s so easy to drive.

2011

2011 was the year that the GTI’s got their new body style, which is nicer than the old body style they got in 2006. The GTI’s got iBR to them, same as what the GTX and RXT have been having. You also got more features like sport mode and touring mode.

2012

This was the year that the RXP-X finally got a new body. The RXP-X was really made for racing, so it stupid fast even for today’s standards. This was the year the GTR 215 came out.

The GTR is a GTI with a big engine in it, so they took a small, lightweight ski and slapped a big engine in it. This was also the last year for the RXT-iS, not really a big deal as Seadoo was cutting back on the models. They were making room for the GTX-S 155, which is a great ski if you want suspension combined with the bulletproof 155HP engine.

2013 and up

There is no point for me to write about the 2013 and up models as they all are just good. You can’t go wrong with any of them.

Some of the best watercrafts Sea-Doo made had the 130HP, 155HP, or 170HP engines.

2014 was when the Sparks came out, and they use an engine that BRP (parent company of Seadoo) has been using since 2008 in their snowmobile line up and its bulletproof too. The Spark is much simpler and should last for a long time. I also notice the Sparks have a great resale value and don’t lose too much if you plan to re-sell it in the future because of the demand for them.

The Spark also hurt the used market since you can get a new Spark with a warranty for about the same price as a used machine, so why would you buy used?

Other Tips

It’s a lot to take in when looking for a used jet ski and that is why I created an ebook to help answer some of the questions you might have. You can find my ebook (Used Jet Ski Buyers Guide) Here. 

237 thoughts on “What Used Sea Doo Should You Buy?”

  1. Hello, Steven. Brian in Canada. Yesterday i found a matching pair of GTX Limited skis. Model year 1999, on a trailer. Had no way to check the hours and no sevice records available. Dealer stated they belonged to a retired judge who went old and senile and just left them uncovered in the sun, rain and snow. Some deteriorated upholstery. He stated also that he wants $14000 for them both and the trailer, then said just one is worth $14000. After reading this column, I chuckle and thank you. I am a total newbie here. Just wanted something fun for me ‘n the wife to do. She just likes the color, LOL

    Reply
  2. Good morning / afternoon. I feel selfish asking my 3rd question here, thanks so much for your replies to date. After reading your last few replies, I am moving towards a GTX S, due to lower back issues and we currently have a 2017 GTX S which hasnt caused any problems to date. A few friends bought 2021 models and they are having some issues with their tailbone when riding 2+ hours. Could be their own issues…

    My question is this. I’ve located a 2016 GTX S 155 with 75 hours. Fair price. In talking with seller, and I also talked with his service mechanic, apparently the reverse motor failed. I may have terminology wrong here as I dont know anything about engines / machinery. As a result, the following was replaced costing approx. $3000 recently:
    Reverse motor, wear ring, Haul seal, prop, shaft, seals in pump, spacer in pump, rings in pump, bearings, grease, cone on pump, carbon ring, and while they had it apart decided to install new impellar. Both his service provider that did the work and a local seadoo repair guy I talked to said this shouldnt be an issue going forward and it was a safe purchase.

    Could this really be manufacturing issue after 75 hours, or was this caused by possible misuse. Due to 2016, nothing was covered under warranty when repaired weeks ago.

    Can you share your thoughts, please and thanks.

    Reply
    • All the stuff replaced sounds like they sucked something big up and it really did some damage. It pretty much has all new “transmission” at that point. That is a little worrying and it sounds more like a user error than a manufacturer error to me as you don’t replace the wear ring unless you sucked something up. I would tread lightly on this one and go over it with a fine-tooth comb.

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  3. Good afternoon. I have a choice to make.
    2020 GTX 170 with 55 hours for $18000 Cdn
    2017 GTI SE 130 with 16 hours $13500 Cdn
    From what I can tell both are great deals. The 2020 looks to be in great shape and the 2017 is showroom shape. Basically touring in coves and some light ocean chop. Both in our 50’s and not looking to do any stunting, which is probably apparent from the seadoo choices here 😉

    On a side note, I have stayed away from considering 230 models due to the superchargers and local seadoo shop indicating majority of problems come from the supercharger. I know 2016 onwards they are labelled as maintenance free. Do you agree with that?
    And I suppose there is also mileage difference. If driven reasonably, i.e. the 230 at 35 – 40 mph, will it burn that much more fuel than the others would at that speed?

    Thanks so much for your time, much appreciated.

    Reply
    • If you want comfort and ride with more than one person at a time then the GTX would be the better fit. But I personally would go with the GTI SE as that was a good year for that model and that body is very comfortable, plus it’s cheaper. The 2016 was maintenance free but you still need to get it “looked at” every 200 hours or 2 years whichever comes first. You will be doing more maintenance and spending more on gas with the supercharged models that is for sure so the local shop is not wrong. Unless you want to go fast all the time the extra 5 to 10mph you get from supercharged models is not always worth it. Maybe in pull sports it can be useful, but even the “slow” Sparks are fast for many riders.

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  4. Good day Sir.

    Considering one of two options. 2013 GTR 215 with 112 hours with supercharger rebuilt 5 hours ago which includes trailer and seadoo port for $13000 Cdn. Maintenance records available. I’m concerned with it being used for 9 seasons already.

    The other a 2017 GTX 260 Limited $15000 Cdn with 70 hours and ICatch trailer. Do supercharger seadoo require more ongoing maintenance, or does it just require owner ensure supercharger is rebuilt / replaced before issues arise? Does rebuilt / replace make that much of a difference maintenance wise and cost wise?

    Prices for 2020 used models are asking more than new ones which aren’t available

    Thanks

    Reply
    • In 2016 Sea-Doo went with a “maintenance free” supercharger but it still requires you to get it looked at 200 hours or every 2 years whichever comes first. You should do this for all supercharged models and some may need to be rebuilt every 2 years. The GTR will be cheaper to deal with as the suspension model requires more effort to work on certain things. The iCatch trailers were never that great especially the ones with the rolling bunks, I tend to avoid them these days. One big perk of the GTX iS is that if you have a bad back that suspension is very nice but if you want something that is more playful the GTR is the one to go with.

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  5. Outgrew our matched pair 2003 gti le rfi two strokes . Bought them to get our feet wet in the jetski hobby . Have an opportunity to upgrade to a matched pair 2006 GTX 4 TECH , non supercharged. Both skis are immaculate with about 65 hours on each . 14K for the pair with trailer and matching OE covers. Any issues I should be aware of ? Good skis in your opinion ?

    Reply
    • The non-supercharged models had the 155hp engine and it is one of the best engines Sea-Doo ever made. Super low hours too. It’s a great find if you ask me, nothing major comes to mind. I always like taking in GTX 155’s as they sell well as they’re a good all-around jet ski.

      Reply
  6. Hey Steven , thoughts on a used 2016 wakepro 215.? It has 140 hours on it.

    New to the jet ski world so not sure what questions I should be asking

    Thanks
    Mark

    Reply
  7. Pontoon owner looking to add a jet ski. Looking at 2009 Sea Doo rxt iS 255 for $9000. He’s having the supercharger work done before selling. 185 hours on it. New battery and cover. No trailer. Pictures look great. It will be used on a smaller lake mostly by teenagers.

    Reply
    • It’s great he’s doing the supercharger and getting a new battery. That was the very first-year Sea-Doo came out with iBR and iS. iBR is still around but iS is not, which is a shame because it worked very well especially if you had a bad back. If it’s being used mostly by teenagers I would take a pause because that model had the biggest engine Sea-Doo made at that time, still very fast today, and no sport or touring mode by default so it was always fast all the time. It’s also a suspension model and the biggest downside was that it was top-heavy. Fast and top-heavy machine equals one that is easy to spin out and flip people off, even though it was a large machine I found it easy to play on because I could make the suspension go all the way to the top and easily spin it out. You can add a learning key to slow it down but it still a top-heavy machine. Also, don’t forget to take all the required boater safety courses and follow all laws for rider age.

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      • Thanks for your input and I agree with your conclusion about this one. We are now debating between a new GTI 90 with trailer and fees for about $12000. Or 2) 2007 GTX 155, 198 and 227 hours, with trailer and covers for $14,500. Both have new impellers, sleeves, and starters. Priced a little based on NADA. Thoughts on which direction to go?

        Reply
        • That was a good year for the GTX 155, very good engine. The GTI will be slower, around 40mph, but a very predictable jet ski. The GTX has more room to grow compared to the GTI because it’s faster but the GTI is a very good starter jet ski. An even better option than the GTI 90 is the GTI 130, it has more than enough power and you won’t outgrow it as fast as the 90. Plus, if you plan on doing any pull sports the 130 will do it a lot better than the 90. A GTI 130 is a very good middle ground between a GTI 90 and a GTX 155 if you can get one.

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  8. Hi Steven. Looking to buy my first ski from a work colleague 2008 GTX WAKE. Yes with ballast tanks I read in your ratings as ‘rare.’ It has done 181hrs so I will check and see if the supercharger has been rebuilt. Asking $6500 Aussie dollars with cover, 2 keys and trailer. Good deal? Anything else to check.Any other advice. Cheers for all your information. Have learnt a good deal here.

    Reply
    • For sure check the supercharger on that one. The ballast tanks are cool but never really took off and never really help that much to create a wake. The price looks fine to me with what you get but I would for sure double-check the supercharger.

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  9. Hi Steven,

    Looking used and found a some I would like you opinion on:

    2007 Sea Doo GTX Wake 215 ($7,500) – 125 hours. Owner completed engine rebuild himself, 20 hours. Owner says all maintenance updated to the service manual. Estimated 125 hours on machine. Recent tune up this year including coolant flush, oil, spark plugs, rectifier, start relay, and more. Very well maintained. Included is a E-Z Loader 2 place trailer.

    2008 Sea Doo GTX 155 ($8,495) – full annual maintenance records available to the buyer. Stored indoors, has never seen saltwater, and has never been in an accident. It has 171 hours. Also included is the manual, learning key, battery, battery tender, and cover. A trailer not included. Owner has completed all maintenance himself and moving out west reason for selling. Excellent condition from pictures.

    2014 Sea Doo GTI SE 130 – ($8,500) Excellent condition. Very well maintained. Fresh oil change, new battery, cover. Includes Karavan trailer. Always stored inside. 150 hours

    Reply
    • If it was me I would be looking more at the 2008 and the 2014 models as the WAKE 215 is supercharged and 2004 to 2008 was a rough years for those supercharged models. They’re fine now if the right shims are in place but you’ll still need to do a rebuild of it every 2 years to be on the safe side. The 155HP and 130HP engines are near bulletproof if you ask me.

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  10. Looking to buy a pair of Seadoos. One is a 2012 GTI SE model and other one is a 2012 GTI.
    Any idea what the new purchase price would have been 9 years ago ??
    Thanks for your feedback !

    Reply
  11. Hi,

    I’ve been looking all over for a GTX IS. There are hardly any to be found, There is really nothing good to be found that isn’t way overpriced. I found a 2015 GTX IS Limited for 14,000 firm with a Karavan trailer in near mint condition. 50 hours on it. It’s the best I could find that isn’t a piece of crap. Am I nuts to pay that?

    Reply
    • Prices are really high this year due to current events. For that much, I would strongly consider looking at new models especially since the suspension models are not made anymore.

      Reply
  12. Hey I just bought a 2016 gtx 155 s with 49 hours on it and I was thinking about having it chipped what are my pros and cons

    Reply
    • I’ve never had any luck with the ECU upgrades. They often mess up timing and the engine runs worse. Plus, the little speed boost is not worth the cost if you ask me.

      Reply
  13. Steven,
    Could you comment on pro/con
    Can’t decide btw 2 machines
    2016 gtx155 w 120 hrs vs 2017 130 gti w40 hrs
    $ 6k vs $ 6500
    Haven’t ridden either one yet ….

    Reply
    • If you want comfort and not upgrade for a long time then the GTX 155 is the better option. If you want something slightly more playful then go for the GTI. If you’re a taller person the GTX will feel a lot better as it has a deeper footwell. The hull of the GTX is better for choppier water where the GTI is made to be more playful and less stuck in the water. Me personally, I would lean more towards the GTX 155, that is not a lot of hours for that engine, and that hull is very nice.

      Reply
  14. Hi I was wondering your thoughts on the 2014-15 seadoo gti I am looking at one of these atm 3 actually all low hours below 100, I am just looking for a cruiser not wanting a supercharged model, pricing is Australian $ is about 9-11 some with and without trailers, anything in particular to look out for ?.
    I also considered the Yamaha vx same years but price is a few more thousand for them, seadoo fits the budget just hope it’s the right decision, plan to buy 2 pretty soon one for my wife and I, we have 2 kids and can throw them on the back when they want to come and also take them on the tube, ski is, wakeboards when they want, we had been using my 90hp run about for this, but just sold that, any feedback/advice is welcome as I am super keen to get one.
    There is a few 2016s around the 12k mark as well not sure if any real reason to step up to those models ?

    Reply
    • The 2014 and 2015 Sea-Doo GTIs were great, those 130HP and 155HP Sea-Doo engines are near “bulletproof”. I would rather have the Sea-Doo over the Yamaha mostly for the seat, Yamaha seats are too wide I feel around that time. I would go with the 14 or 15 Sea-Doo before spending the extra on a 2016, nothing majorly changed.

      Reply
      • Awesome thanks heaps for that, I will look at the slightly older ones as the plan is to get one for my wife and i might save a few thousand going slightly older and can get me closer to a second one.
        One other question and unsure if you would know but are there any issues towing a Dual Trailer with a jetski on it, eg if I get the ski + a dual trailer now and then get my second ski a little later, are they stable enough with a ski on one side, my trips will be 20k’s or less in 60-80km speed zones.

        cheers mate you have been super helpful, bought your ebook to, will be taking the main points out of that when looking at new ones.

        Reply
        • Yes, a double jetski trailer will haul one jet on one side fine. I’ve done 2-hour trips with a jet ski on one side with no issues. Just make sure to tie down the front and rear of the jet ski to keep it from bouncing around. I would also rotate sides every so often to keep the wear and tear on your tires even. Avoid potholes when you can too. Thank you for buying my ebook!

          Reply
  15. Hi Steven, I’m thinking of buying a 2009 Sea doo wake pro it’s only done fifty hours, is there any way of checking the hours and I’m not mechanically minded, do you think that there has been many issues with this model in the past, also have they been a great ski to wake board behind for say young adults, TIA and thanks for your time cheers.

    Reply
    • The gauge on that one will display the hours all the time at the bottom center. That model will have the supercharger so you need to ask if it had its supercharger rebuilt recently. You have til 100 hours on that one but since it’s that old I would go ahead and get the supercharger rebuilt. The Wake Pro is a great machine for tow sports, the 2009 didn’t have the SKI MODE or Cruise Control but it’s still fine.

      Reply
    • In 2008 they went to metal but the 2009’s were slightly better. Then in 2016 Sea-Doo went to “maintenance-free” superchargers on the ACE engine (still needs to be inspected at 200 hours).

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      • Steven, their is so many discussions on the internet still sayin that the Seadoo superchargers need to be rebuilt at 100 hours. Given that seadoo says that since 2016 they are maintenance free…did they upgrade the superchargers in 2016? what did they change? I have a 2015 GTX 260 Ltd is, and you said I am ok to 200 hours? Thanks so much, I just want to make sure I do proper service. Thanks Bob

        Reply
        • Yes, many guys recommended it at 100 hours every 2 years due to the bearings but Sea-Doo says 200 hours. I tend to lean more towards what the manufacturer recommends, I figure their engineers thought of this. But I do have a few buddies that change their oil in their cars before the manufacturer recommends. Ultimately it will come down to what you think is best and how you ride. You can confirm with the owners manual here, they say 200 hours on page 133. It won’t hurt to get your supercharger job done at 100 hours if you want especially if it’s used and you don’t know how the previous owner rode it.

          Reply
  16. Hi Steven, confused about the 100 hours or 200 hours rebuild of a supercharger? I have a 2015 Seadoo GTX Ltd 260 is with 86 hours on it. when should the supercharger be serviced? 100 or 200 hours? Many thanks.

    Reply
  17. Steve, great info on your website. 1st time buyer, have a few hours of riding experience, considering a ’03 SeedooGTX supercharged, limited edition. Seems like a large stable machine which is what i need for my passenger that doesn’t want to get bounced around. Great looking unit, dealer says they went thru it and replaced whatever it needed, asking $6800 Canadian (call is $5K US) no trailer,
    thoughts? might seem expensive, but anything less $ look old and abused.

    Reply
    • $5k US seems a little high, $4,500 US seems more than fair to me depending on the hours and condition. Though, 2020 was a year where new and used jet skis sold like crazy because everyone was at home so the dealer might find someone to pay that much.

      Reply
      • thanks, i agree seems a little overpriced, guess the comfort level comes from knowing the dealer went over the machine. Other unit i was considering was a ’08 GTX 155, but it is about more at about $6K US, but has a trailer, although not supercharged. both units just over 200 hours.

        Reply
        • I would for sure go for the 2008 GTX 155 over a 2003 GTX limited. Both ride the same but the 155HP engine is far more reliable and way better on gas. That supercharged 2003 engine was only 185hp so it’s not a huge loss of HP to go with the 155hp. Plus, the engine improvements on the 2008 are far better. I had several early 4tec engines that would click all the time and drain the battery because of the ECM was malfunctioning and this was not an issue on the 2008 engine because it didn’t have that switch that kept flipping.

          Reply
  18. Im looking to buy my son a 2019 GTX with 26 hrs or 2019 RXT with 50 hrs. The price is $2,000 higher for the Gtx with the lower hours. I can get the Rxt in great shape for $12,000 with a trailer in great shape. Which do you recommend? Thanks

    Reply
  19. Hi Steven,

    My husband and I are new to the jetski world and are looking to buy our first set of jetski’s. We found a pair of 2004 supercharged seadoos for sale. One is a 3 seater 4tec supercharged GTX and the other is a 2 seater 4tec supercharged RXP. One has 185 hours on it and the other has 200 hours on it. They appear to be in great shape cosmetically the owner is asking for 11,500 including a trailer. Does that seem like a fair price to you and what do you suggest we look out for? Thank you in advance!

    Reply
    • I would want to see if the supercharger has been rebuilt on them especially the RXP. If not I would avoid them as the 215HP engine in the RXP was bad about blowing the supercharger shims. The GTX 185HP not so much because it spun slower but still possible. The supercharger problem for Sea-Doo didn’t get better until 2009.

      Reply

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