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  1. #1
    Site Admin Green Hulk's Avatar
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    Yamaha FZ Series Review

    I guess the big question on everyone's mind is, "will this ski be better than the GPR?"

    For some the answer will be "No" while others "Yes"

    Let's face it, the GPR is an Icon. It's an extremely tunable hull that we have learned to set up for a wide array of riding conditions and a hull we have turned into the fastest PWC hull on the planet. The FZ has some big shoes to fill.

    In anticipation of making the trip to ride this ski I hoped that i would be able to feel some of the same characteristics of the GP hull. It didn't take long on the water to recognize some of these same traits along with a few other surprises.

    Despite the size of this ski it's extremely playful and maneuverable. It feels much lighter and smaller than it actually is. My favorite thing about the handling is the "lean in" feel you get while carving turns. I own a SHO and like the handling characteristics of this big ski as it turns very sharply but it lacks the "lean in" thru the turns that I felt on the FZR. The FZR is much like the GPR in that respect.

    The FZR picks up where the GPR is lacking. For one, the seating is much more comfortable. It's almost like a sport bike where it feels like you are sitting in a saddle. The seat cradles you and you have a place to tuck your knee thru a real hard turn. It handles chop very well and the pump stays loaded. We set out a few buoys and carved some turns and had a blast. I actually liked the handling of the FZR better than the GPR (so shoot me )

    The ergonomics are great. I loved riding with the bars all the way down. It gave me the feeling of having UMI steering. I wished the bars would have been a bit wider but that's where the aftermarket can step in. I also liked riding standing with the bars all the way up. The telescoping steering is a real nice feature.

    The gauges are awesome. I love the analog with red faces. Very easy to read and they have that muscle car look.



    Another thing worth mentioning is the mats are incredible. They look fantastic and work great. I can't see anyone wanting to go with aftermarket mats with these in place.

    Also, the hull is extremely dry. No spray in the face when crossing wakes, etc.


    Here's a picture of the bottom of the FZ hull. It looks strikigly like a GPR hull, but without the trim tabs. Those full length strakes will certainly help us modders in our quest for higher speeds.




    Perhaps another reason why the FZ doesn't feel so big is because the bottom hull is actually much shorter than the top deck. I didn't have a tape measure with me but it looks to be an easy 9" shorter.




    The best top speed i was able to get on the FZR was 68.8 mph. This was with a half tank of fuel and in full superman postion. I checked the elevation of this lake at it's 840' at full level. 69'ish should be a reality at sea level and low fuel. I didn't experience any porpoising whatsoever at top speed. The ski was very stable.

    It pulled hard out of the hole and had real good acceleration. I personally hoped for a bit more power but I'm probably the wrong person to judge the power of stock skis considering the monster skis in my stable.

    No doubt about it though, this ski has the power to hang with the best of them and it will be easy for Yamaha to increase power on future models if necessary to keep up with competition. Just add boost

    Some of you Georgia guys might be familiar with our riding spot, Allatoona Lake.



    Here is Scott Watkins, former Pro Racer, World Champion and Yamaha employee. Scott played a large role in the design of this new ski




    It's not every day that you get to ride with Scott Watkins



    Some various pics of the skis















    Some pics of Watkins carving up the buoys









    I also had the chance to ride the 1800 CC FX HO naturally aspirated model.
    Being that i basically own this ski but in a supercharged version i was impressed as it was extremely peppy and had good acceleration. This is going to be a great ski for someone on a budget and looking for good fuel economy.


    I do have retail pricing of the Yamaha PWC's

    FZR $12,599
    FZS $12,899
    FX SHO $12,599
    FX HO $11,299
    FX Cruiser SHO $13,199
    FX CRuiser HO $11,899
    VX Cruiser $8,699
    VX Deluxe $8,299
    VX Sport $7,899
    VX $7,699
    SuperJet $7,199
    Last edited by Green Hulk; 09-13-2008 at 10:57 AM.


  2. #2
    How does the fzs compare?

  3. #3
    Water4fire's Avatar
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    Jerry thanks for the great review! It looks like you had a blast.

    May I ask? How much Bigger is My sho? I ask because with the one pic of you riding it looks a bit smaller! And honestly you look to tall for it!

    .

  4. #4
    Site Admin Green Hulk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rxplover35 View Post
    How does the fzs compare?
    The FZS is identical to the FZR with the exception of the seat. They both handle/perform the same.

    I personally like the seat on the FZR better. It was real comfortable while in superman position

  5. #5
    Site Admin Green Hulk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Water4fire View Post

    May I ask? How much Bigger is My sho? I ask because with the one pic of you riding it looks a bit smaller! And honestly you look to tall for it!

    .
    Austin, that's a FZS that I'm riding. Length is 132.7", same as a SHO
    The length of a FZR is 131.9" only because it doesn't have the boarding step.
    Last edited by Green Hulk; 09-13-2008 at 11:00 AM.

  6. #6
    BarBayBULL BAR BAY H.O.'s Avatar
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    On the NA/FXHO, how would you compare the acceleration and top end against the FZS?

  7. #7
    Great review Jerry, thank you very much. Is the tach easy enough to read that us modders wont' be needing an aftermarket unit? I'LL TAKE MINE IN BLUE

  8. #8
    Ramming speed Mr Zulu! TeamYamSHO's Avatar
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    Great review Jerry!

    Yamaha did a great job with this ski!
    Congrats!

    Jerry, SHO vs FZR? Which do you like better?

  9. #9
    LOOKING HYNES's Avatar
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    This is everything that I hoped to hear, without a doubt I will be picking the FZR up hopefully in Feb. so I can start modding and be done for the most part be4 riding season.

  10. #10
    Site Admin Green Hulk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BAR BAY H.O. View Post
    On the NA/FXHO, how would you compare the acceleration and top end against the FZS?
    While the acceleration of the NA model was surprisingly good, it's not going to be close to that of the FZR. The FZ is a brute!

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