2003-2006 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC Specs and Review [Video]
The 2003 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC was the first supercharged jet ski in history. It shared its hull and features with the base GTX 4-TEC, but thanks to its supercharged engine, the SC provided an amazing performance of 185 HP.
If you want to learn all about the very first supercharged Sea-Doo, you’ve come to the right place.
We at JetDrift have compiled all you need to know into this Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC review!
Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC and GTX 4-TEC Limited
2003-2006 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC Review
Sea-Doo revealed its 3-seater runabouts, the GTX series, for the 1993 season. Over the years, this 2-stroke GTX line underwent many different generations, including:
- 1993 Sea-Doo GTX 580 (Rotax 587)
- 1994 Sea-Doo GTX 650 (Rotax 657)
- 1995 Sea-Doo GTX 650 (Rotax 657x)
- 1996-1997 Sea-Doo GTX 800 (Rotax 787)
- 1998-2001 Sea-Doo GTX RFI (Rotax 787 RFI)
- 2000-2001 Sea-Doo GTX DI (Rotax 947 DI)
- 2002-2003 Sea-Doo GTX DI (Rotax 947 DI)
The first 4-stroke Sea-Doo, the GTX 4-TEC, debuted for the 2002 model year. This ski utilized the all-new GTX platform and a naturally-aspirated, 155 HP, 4-stroke engine.
In 2003, Sea-Doo came out with a more powerful version of this model, the GTX 4-TEC SC. It’s safe to say that this machine was the first supercharged jet ski in history!
(Although the Honda Aquatrax F12X had hit the market a year earlier, that machine utilized a turbocharger instead of a supercharger.)
The engine of the GTX 4-TEC SC was based on the 4-stroke, Rotax 1503 SOHC triple, but its performance was boosted from 155 HP up to a whopping 185 HP with a supercharger. Key features of this powerplant were as follows:
- 1494cc, 3 cylinder in-line
- Rotax Multipoint Fuel Injection
- 12 valves (4 valves per cylinder)
- Dry sump oil injection system
- Closed-loop cooling system
- NGK DCPR8ES spark plugs
- Electric starter
- Induction type: Supercharger
What exactly was the supercharger for?
In a nutshell, the main idea behind using a supercharger on a jet ski was to force more air into the cylinders.
Naturally-aspirated engines rely on atmospheric pressure and a vacuum in the cylinders to feed the engine with air. The reason these engines can’t produce higher performance is simple: they can’t suck more air into the cylinders.
This is where the supercharger comes into play.
Acting like a small air blower, the supercharger force-feeds the engine with extra air. With the extra air, the engine can burn more fuel, resulting in higher performance.
Unlike a turbocharger, which is driven by exhaust gases, the supercharger is linked to the crankshaft with a set of gears. This design defeats “turbo lag,” which is common issue on turbocharged engines.
This advanced technology made the GTX 4-TEC SC the most powerful jet ski of the 2003 season.
Besides its amazing supercharged engine, another remarkable innovation on the GTX 4-TEC SC was its closed-loop cooling system. This system utilized coolant to transfer heat from the engine to the ride plate, which acted as a radiator.
This amazing technology was intended to keep saltwater away from the engine, resulting in zero salt build-ups inside the cooling system.
Sea-Doo introduced its CLCS (Closed Loop Cooling System) on the 2002 GTX 4-TEC and carried it over to each of their 4-stroke models.
Like the cooling system, the platform of the SC was also inherited from its naturally-aspirated sibling.
The ‘02 GTX hull was specifically engineered for Sea-Doo’s 4-stroke Rotax 1503 engine.
Regarding dimensions, this body measured 130 inches in length, 48 inches in width, and 44 inches in height. Compared to the outdated GTX, it was 6 inches longer, and its depth was increased from 17.5 degrees to 22.5 degrees.
It was completed with an all-new top deck, engineered by the award-winning Sea-Doo design team.
This deck housed three separate storage compartments, including a large bow storage, a glovebox, and an under-seat bin, with a total storage capacity of 52.5 gallons.
The supercharged ’03 Sea-Doo GTX offered an amazing performance as it provided an incredible acceleration and topped out at 65 mph out of the box.
At the same time, its massive stable hull offered predictable and smooth rides, even with a passenger.
Another key advantage of this innovative deck and hull design was that it effectively kept water spray away from riders, ensuring better vision and more comfort.
It’s safe to say that 4-stroke GTX models were some of the most stable 3-seater jet skis in the marketplace in the 2000s.
What’s more, GTXs featured the innovative O.P.A.S. (Off Power Assisted Steering) system, designed to provide some off-throttle steering support.
Standard features of the 2002-2006 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC included:
- Handlebar-mounted start/stop button
- Handlebar-mounted function buttons
- Large front storage
- Glove box
- Under-seat storage tray with spare spark plug holder
- Electric start
- Tether cord
- 2 gauges (speedometer, tachometer)
- Fender cleats
- Off-Power Assisted Steering (OPAS)
- Overheating warning device
- Bow and stern eyes
- Ski tow eye
- Bilge drain plugs
- Rear grab handle
- Manual reverse
- Large, 2-piece seat with a seat strap
- Tool kit
- DESS security system
Its easy-to-read dashboard had an analog tachometer, an analog speedometer, and a small display area with many useful functions. The function (MODE/SET) buttons were mounted on the left handlebar, just below the start/stop button.
The Gauge Functions of the GTX 4-TEC SC were as follows:
- Clock: Indicates the actual time in hours and minutes (hh:mm).
- Compass: Displays the cardinal point to indicate the orientation of the watercraft.
- Average Speed: The information center approximately calculates and displays the average speed (AV KM/H or AV MPH) of the watercraft since the last engine start.
- Distance: (KM or MILES). The information center approximately calculates the distance based on the operation time and the watercraft speed and displays the result in kilometers (KM) or miles (MILES).
- Hourmeter: Displays the time in hours of the watercraft usage (HOUR).
- Water Temperature: Displays the water temperature (L TEMP) in degrees Celsius (°C) or Farenheit (°F).
- Exterior Temperature: Displays the exterior air temperature (E TEMP) in degrees Celsius (°C) or Fahrenheit (°F).
- Trip Hour Meter: (TRIPMTR) Allows to measure an interval of time in hours and minutes (hh:mm).
Thanks to its innovative features, well-designed hull, and powerful engine, the GTX 4-TEC SC quickly became popular among families and tow-sport lovers.
Sea-Doo marketed the first-generation GTX 4-TEC models from 2003 through 2006 without any major changes. By 2007, the entire GTX family had gotten a complete redesign.
2003 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC Limited Review
The Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC Limited was a GTX 4-TEC SC with more bells and whistles. It was marketed with a unique color scheme, depth finder, GPS, and some additional accessories as standard.
Aside from these differences, the GTX 4-TEC Limited and the GTX 4-TEC SC were identical.
Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC Problems
Although it was an amazing watercraft in many ways, the GTX 4-TEC SC suffered from some initial design flaws.
Let’s take a close look at each!
Ceramic Supercharger Washers
There’s no question that the biggest problem with this early supercharged Sea-Doo was its ceramic supercharger washers. These washers tended to explode, causing severe engine damage.
Because of this, the ceramic washers in these models had to be replaced with metal units.
Unfortunately, Sea-Doo continued using ceramic washers in their superchargers until early 2008. Since then, Sea-Doo supercharges have come with metal washers from the factory.
GTX 4-TEC SC OPAS Issues
Although the O.P.A.S. was a great idea, it activated itself too easily on choppy waters, causing “bumpy” rides. Since this system was controlled by pump pressure, choppy water conditions easily fouled its sensors.
Because of this, many owners removed O.P.A.S. fins from their Sea-Doos.
Plastic Pump Housing
Despite its extreme engine performance, the pump housing of the GTX 4-TEC SC was made of plastic.
This weak housing caused the wear ring to wear out very quicly, leading to cavitation issues.
Although the wear ring was replaceable, the long-term fix to this issue required replacing the pump housing.
Fortunately, Sea-Doo fixed this issue for ‘04 by installing an aluminum pump housing, and more durable drive shaft and bearings.
Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC Specs Chart
For your convenience, we’ve compiled the 2003 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC specifications into these charts!
2003 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC Dimensions
|2003 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC||Dimensions and Capacities|
|Number of passengers||3 (refer to load limit)|
|Overall length||331 cm (130 in)|
|Overall width||122 cm (48 in)|
|Overall height||113 cm (44 in)|
|Weight||397 kg (900 lb)|
|Load limit||272 kg (600 lb)|
|Fuel tank (including reserve)||60 L (15.3 U.S. gal)|
|Fuel tank reserve||9.8 L (2.6 U.S. gal)|
|Cooling system (coolant)||5.5 L (5.8 U.S. qrt) total|
|Engine oil||3 L (2.7 U.S. qt) oil change w/filter - 4.5 L (4.1 U.S. qt) total|
2003 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC Engine Specs
|2003 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC||Engine Specs|
|Engine type||BOMBARDIER-Rotax 1503, 4-stroke, SOHC (Single Over Head Camshaft) liquid-cooled|
|Number of cylinder||3 in line|
|Number of valve||12 valves (4 per cylinder) with hydraulic lifters (no adjustment)|
|Exhaust system||Water cooled / water injected with regulator|
|Induction type||Mechanically driven supercharger|
|Displacement||1494 cm3 (91.2 in3)|
|RPM Limiter Operation @||7300 RPM ± 50|
|Bore||100 mm (3.9 in)|
|Stroke||63.4 mm (2-1/2 in)|
|Cooling Type||Liquid cooled. Closed circuit. (see also exhaust system)|
|Coolant||Ethylene-glycol 50%/50% antifreeze/water. Coolant containing corrosion inhibitors for internal combustion aluminum engines|
|Fuel injection||Rotax EMS (engine management system). Multipoint Fuel Injection. Single throttle body (52 mm (2.04 in))|
|Lubrication type||Dry sump (2 oil pumps). Replaceable oil filter. Water-cooled oil cooler.|
2003 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC Liquids
|2003 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC||Liquids|
|Fuel type||Recommended: Premium unleaded gasoline with 91 octane (Ron + Mon)/2 specification for optimum performance Minimum: Regular unleaded gasoline with 87 octane (Ron + Mon)/2 specification|
|Coolant||Ethylene-glycol 50%/50% antifreeze/water. Coolant containing corrosion inhibitors for internal combustion aluminum engines|
|Oil type||4-stroke engine oil SAE 10W40 (API service classification SG, SH or SJ)|
2003 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC Propulsion
|2003 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC||Propulsion|
|Propulsion system||Bombardier Formula pump|
|Jet pump type||Axial flow, single-stage. Greased bearings.|
|Pivoting angle of direction (nozzle)||~ 20°|
|Minimum required water level for jet pump||90 cm (3 ft) underneath the lowest rear portion of hull|
2003 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC Electrical Features
|2003 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC||Electrical Features|
|Magneto generator output||360 W @ 6000 RPM|
|Ignition system type||Digital inductive type|
|Spark plug - Make and type||NGK, DCPR8ES, Quantity: 3|
|Spark plug - Gap||0.75 mm (.030 in)|
|Starting system||Electric starter|
|Battery||12 V, 30 Ah, Electrolyte type|
|Fuse - TOPS||10 A|
|Fuse - Cylinder 1, ignition coil and injection||10 A|
|Fuse - Cylinder 2, ignition coil and injection||10 A|
|Fuse - Cylinder 3, ignition coil and injection||10 A|
|Fuse - Electric bilge bump (optional)||3 A|
|Fuse - Starting system, electric fuel pump||10 A|
|Fuse - EMS, start/stop circuit||5 A|
|Fuse - Main||2 X 30 A|
|Fuse - MPEM||2 A|
|Fuse - Charging system||20 A|
|Fuse - Information center||1 A|
These charts are for informational purposes only! For exact specifications, please refer to the factory manual.
Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC for Sale
If you are considering purchasing one, you probably want to know where to find a first-generation Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC for sale. As this model vanished from the market in 2006, 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 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SCs for sale on Craigslist, PWC Trader, and other dedicated jet ski swap sites.
As a takeaway, we’ve answered the most common questions about the 2003-2006 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC!
What is a Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC?
The Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC was a supercharged version of the base GTX 4-TEC. This model was also the first supercharged jet ski in history.
What Year did Sea-Doo Make the GTX 4-TEC SC?
Sea-Doo marketed the first-generation GTX 4-TEC SC from 2002 through 2006. In 2007, the model was completely redesigned with more advanced features.
Was a Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC a 2-Stroke Ski?
As the name suggests, the Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC utilized a 4-stroke engine.
What was the Difference Between a Sea-Doo GTX and GTI?
Sea-Doo’s GTI family was considered the entry-level line, while the GTX models were the flagship 3-seater runabouts. The latter were heavier and more stable, providing predictable and more comfortable rides. In contrast, the smaller GTI models were more nimble and affordable.
What Size Storage Compartment Did a Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC Have?
The Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC featured a small glove box, a large front bin, and an under-seat storage tray, with a total storage capacity of 52.5 gallons.
Was the 2003 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC Supercharged?
Yes, the GTX 4-TEC SC was powered by a supercharged triple engine. (SC here stands for supercharged.)
How Many People Could Ride a Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC?
The Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC was rated for three riders.
What Size was the Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC?
The Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC was 130 inches long, 48 inches wide, and 44 inches high.
How Much Did a Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC Weigh?
The dry weight of the Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC was 900 pounds.
What Kind of Engine Did the 2003-2006 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC Have?
The Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC engine was a supercharged 4-stroke Bombardier-ROTAX 1503. This 1493cc, SOHC triple featured a closed-loop cooling system and a Multipoint Fuel Injection system.
How Much Horsepower Did a 2003-2006 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC Have?
The 2003-2006 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC provided 185 HP at 7,300 RPM.
Did the Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC Have Reverse?
Yes, the Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC was equipped with manual reverse.
How Much Weight Could a Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC Hold?
The total weight capacity of the Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC was 600 pounds.
How Much Fuel Did a Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC Hold?
The Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC utilized a 15.9-gallon (60 L) fuel tank.
How Much Fuel Did a Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC Use?
The fuel consumption of the Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC was about 16.4 GPH at WOT.
Could the Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC Tow a Skier or a Wakeboarder?
Yes, the Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC was rated for three riders, so it could legally tow a skier or a wakeboarder.
How Fast Did a 2003-2006 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC Go?
The top speed of a 2003-2006 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC was 65 mph in stock condition.
How Much is a 2003-2006 Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC Worth?
It’s hard to tell the exact price of a first-generation Sea-Doo GTX 4-TEC SC, as it strongly depends on its year, condition, and location. But as a rule of thumb, the prices typically range from $1,000 up to $8,000.
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