1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 Specs and Review [Video]

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The 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 was the first member of the deservedly-popular 3-seater GTI family. This model was actually a 1995 GTX powered by a Rotax 717 engine rated at 85 HP.

If you want to learn all about this legendary machine, this post is for you.

We at JetDrift have compiled all you need to know into this 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 review!

1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 Review

The history of Sea-Doo’s 3-seater runabouts started with the 1990 GT. Over the years, this ski was followed by various other 3-seater Sea-Doos like the GTX, GTS, GSX, and the GTI.

From 1996 through 2006, the 2-stroke GTI family underwent three generations, including:

The first Sea-Doo GTI made its debut in 1996 as a mid-range 3-seater runabout Sea-Doo.

This model inherited its outdated fiberglass composite hull and top deck from the 1995 GTX. In contrast, the flagship 1996 GTX got the all-new “rounded” 3-seater Sea-Doo platform.

Regarding dimensions, the 1996 GTI was 119 inches long, 46.9 inches wide, 37.4 inches high, and weighed 484 pounds.

The load limit of the ski was 496 pounds and it was rated for three riders. Despite this, this small craft was only comfortable for two riders. With three adult people onboard, the GTI become very unstable.

Unlike the ’95 GTX powered by a Rotax 657 twin, the ’96 GTI got the more advanced dual-carb Rotax 717 power source.

This engine was a 718cc, oil-injected, 2-stroke twin featuring two diaphragm type Mikuni carburetors, a CDI ignition, electric start, and an open-loop water cooling system.

Thanks to these advanced features, the dual-carb Rotax 717 cranked out 85 HP at 7000 RPM and propelled the ski up to 48-50 mph.

The fuel consumption of the ’96 Sea-Doo GTI 720 was about 10.5 GPH at WOT, so its 12-gallon fuel tank offered a cruising range of 1 hour and 8 minutes. The oil injection system was also equipped with a 1.2-gallon oil reservoir.

Standard features of the 1996 Sea-Doo GTI included:

  • Electric start
  • Tether cord
  • Soft, 2-piece seat
  • 3-position fuel valve (ON, OFF, RES)
  • Removable front storage
  • Overheating warning device
  • Docking eyelets
  • Bilge drain plugs
  • Storage compartment
  • Multifunction fuel gauge
  • Analog speedometer
  • Rear grab handle
  • Water tank trap drains
  • Reverse gate
  • Large, 2-piece seat with seat strap
  • Sponsons
  • Tool kit

The first GTI 720 was also equipped with an advanced multifunction fuel gauge, which came with many useful features, including:

  • Fuel level bar graph
  • Low voltage warning light
  • Engine overheats warning light
  • Low fuel level warning light
  • Low oil level warning light

The 1st generation Sea-Doo GTI 720 was only offered with the original “GS” platform in the 1996 season. By 1997, the GTI had a new rounded body as well as many features from the 1996 GTX.

In this post, you can find out all about the more advanced 1997-2000 Sea-Doo GTI!

1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 Specs Chart

For your convenience, we’ve compiled the 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 specifications into these charts!

1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 Dimensions

1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720Dimensions and Capacities
Number of passengers1 operator and 1 passenger
Overall length302 cm (119 in)
Overall width119 cm (46.9 in)
Overall height95 cm (37.4 in)
Weight220 kg (484 lb)
Load limit225 kg (496 lb)
Hull MaterialComposite (fiberglass)
Fuel tank45 L (12 US gal)
Impeller shaft reservoir - Capacity90 mL (3 US oz)
Impeller shaft reservoir - Oil level heightup to plug
Injection oil reservoir4.5 L (1.2 US gal.)

1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 Engine Specs

1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720Engine Specs
Engine type Rotax 717, 2-stroke
Induction type Rotary valve
Exhaust system Water cooled/water injected
Lubrication - type Oil injection
Lubrication - oil typeSea-Doo Injection Oil
Number of cylinders 2
Displacement 718 cm3 (43.81 in3)
Maximum Power (approximately)85 HP
RPM Limiter Operation @7000 RPM ± 50
Cooling TypeWater cooled, total loss type - Direct flow from propulsion unit
Overheating Beeper, Switch On @na
Fuel - typeRegular unleaded gasoline
Carburetor - type and numberDiaphragm type - Quantity : 2

1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 Propulsion

1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720Propulsion
Propulsion systemBombardier Formula pump
Jet pump typeAxial flow, single stage
TransmissionDirect drive
Coupling Typena
Impeller shaft reservoir oil typeSea-Doo synthetic polyolester oil 75W90 GL5
Pivoting angle of direction (nozzle)~ 26°
Pivoting angle of variable trim systemna
Minimum required water level for jet pump90 cm (3 ft)
Impeller Diameterna

1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 Electrical Features

1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720Electrical Features
Magneto generator output160 W @ 6000 RPM
Ignition system type Capacitor Discharge Ignition (CDI)
Spark plug - Make and typeNGK BR8ES
Spark plug - Gap0.5 - 0.6 mm (.020-.024 in)
Starting systemElectric starter
Battery12 V, 19 A
Starting system Fuse 5 A
Charging system Fuse15 A

1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 Performance

1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720Performance
Horsepower85 HP
Cruising time at full throttle - Fuel tank without reserve~ 1 hour 8 minutes
Cruising time at full throttle - Fuel tank reserve~ 10 minutes
Maximum Speed *48-50 mph
* Top speed may vary depending on operator and passenger weight, water conditions, wind, current, altitude etc.

These charts are for informational purposes only! For exact specifications, please refer to the factory manual.

1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 For Sale

If you are considering purchasing one, you probably want to know where to find a 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 for sale. As this model vanished from the market in 1996, it’s already a collectible item, so finding one is not an easy task!

We recommend that you start your research on dedicated Sea-Doo forums and Facebook fan groups. Aside from some good deals, you may find some valuable info there about this ski.

Besides these sources, you may also find some used 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720s for sale on Craigslist, PWC Trader, and other dedicated jet ski swap sites.

Takeaway

As a takeaway, we’ve answered the most common questions about the 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720!

What is a 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720?

The 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 was a mid-range 3-seater Sea-Doo PWC.

What Year did Sea-Doo Make the 2-Stroke Sea-Doo GTI 720?

Sea-Doo marketed the 2-stroke GTI 720 from 1996 through 2015.

How Many People Could Ride a 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720?

The tiny 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 was rated for three riders, but it was actually a 2-seater ski.

What Size was the 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720?

The 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 was 119 inches long, 46.9 inches wide, and 37.4 inches high.

How Much Did a 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 Weigh?

The dry weight of the 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 was 484 pounds.

What Kind of Engine Did the 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 Have?

The engine of the 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 was a dual-carb 718cc, 2-stroke Rotax 717 twin.

How Much Horsepower Did a 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 Have?

The 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 provided 85 HP at 7000 RPM.

Did the 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 Have Reverse?

Yes, the 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 was equipped with manual reverse.

What Size Storage Compartment Did a 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 Have?

The 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 featured a small removable front storage bin.

How Much Weight Could a 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 Hold?

The total weight capacity of the 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 was 496 pounds.

How Much Fuel Did a 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 Hold?

The 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 featured a 12-gallon fuel tank.

How Much Fuel Did a 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 Use?

The fuel consumption of the 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 was about 10.5 GPH at WOT.

Could the 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 Tow a Skier or a Wakeboarder?

Yes, the 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 was recommended for tow sports.

How Fast Did a 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 Go?

The top speed of a 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 was about 48-50 mph in stock condition.

Was a 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 a 2-Stroke Ski?

Yes, the 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 utilized a 2-stroke twin engine.

How Much is a 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720 Worth?

It’s hard to tell the exact price of a 1996 Sea-Doo GTI 720, as it strongly depends on its year, condition, and location. But as a rule of thumb, the prices typically range from $500 up to $2,500.

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