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  1. #1

    2013 Yamaha fxsho vs 2006 honda aquatrax F12x

    Just for kicks I'll give my impression of my new fxsho compared to my old aquatrax turbo 3 seater. I've only got 6 hrs on the SHO, about 100 on aquatrax so opinions may evolve. Obviously these are not apples to apples, and time has marched on, but it is interesting to me as a casual pwc enthusiast how things have changed and perhaps inform others who may be thinking of upgrading their pwc.
    I should start off discussing the trusty old aquatrax. Reliable, fast, good handling but not particularly dry. It was comfortable, easy to handle and extremely efficient. Could often cruise around under 3GPH! Sometimes turbo lag limited jumping and pulling heavy slalom skiers. Materials held up very well for many years. No turbo/engine troubles. 60 mph given a little wind up time, smooth conditions. Good materials and storage. A reason to change for me was concern over parts availability and no local service.
    The 2013 fxsho is a significantly bigger beast, sort of like comparing a lab to a heavy Rottweiler-at least performance wise. More on that later. As far as "daily driver" convenience the SHO has several big upgrades like true waterproof storage on deck and below seat. There is also some cool faux carbon and nice little glovebox. A nice feature for us skiers is the perfect size tow rope and handle storage that allows one to leave rope attached at all times. Front storage is also good sized. The materials seem similar in quality to the honda.
    Other nice upgrades relative to the older honda are things like cruise control and learner mode. Both great for younger drivers or novices pulling a skier. The same remote that allows learner mode also allows ignition lock which is nice for security at busy marinas but one more thing to forget or lose. The fxsho is also a bit more unwieldy than the aquatrax, for example if using drive on dock-it's a load! The neutral deal isn't really any better than aquatrax reverse half pulled. Under the seat the engine bay seems reasonably spacious for basic maintenance, battery access.
    The sho idles a bit quieter than aquatrax with very smooth throttle control, but with the level of power on boost it is easy to get in over your head in a hurry. Despite being somewhat bigger and heavier the upgraded HP makes for an eye opening experience. While it cruises nicely at 5000-5500 rpm the need for speed is hard to resist and literally makes goggles almost mandatory! (I wonder if some of that is due to the aerodynamics of the hood.) Also it can suck down serious fuel if not judicious but 87 octane is fine. Genuine 69mph out of box should be expected. On water that is a significant difference. Because of that power band there is also a bit more of a hair trigger than I am used to especially when over 6000 rpm. Nonetheless you will experience about 69 out of the box. It is really nice having trim which allows different riding styles. I have slightly mixed feelings on the mechanical trim. Every previous electric trim I have dealt with has failed regularly and this scheme seems pretty solid, but you have to let off throttle to change attitude, a mild inconvenience. This vehicle definitely demands respect. Sometimes at speed it can be a bit "squirrely" if you are not at proper trim - ill advised moves can risk catastrophe.
    In summary the comparison is not to necessarily say one is better than another, just personal impressions before I forget the feel of my much loved aquatrax. Cheers
    Last edited by docH; 09-16-2013 at 10:26 AM.

  2. #2
    Last edited by Jay_32801; 09-15-2013 at 06:03 PM.

  3. #3
    leejax01's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Like my FZR, but wish it had No Wake and Cruise Assist. Not sure why Yamaha didn't include it as it doesn't take away from performance.

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