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2011-2014 Yamaha VXS Review and Specs [Video]

2011-2014 Yamaha VXS Review and Specs [Video]

The Yamaha VXS was a simpler version of the top-of-the-line VXR WaveRunner. These skis were almost identical, except that the VXS featured a different color and seat design, and lacked a reboarding step. They shared the lively VX hull (made of NanoXcel) and the naturally-aspirated, 1812cc, 180hp engine option.

If you want to find out more about this popular Yamaha WaveRunner, this post is for you.

We at JetDrift have compiled all you need to know into this Yamaha VXS review!

2011-2014 Yamaha VXS Review

The Yamaha VX Series

Yamaha revealed its Recreation VX PWC line in 2005 with the introduction of the VX110s.

In 2007, this family was rebranded to VX and expanded with the more advanced Cruiser.

The VX series shared the same hull, top deck, and the 1052cc, 102hp big-bore MR1 engine.

For the 2011 season, the Japanese manufacturer introduced the VXR and the VXS, as “Performance Recreation” WaveRunners. They were built on the VX hull but had a slightly different hood, seat, and a much more powerful 180hp engine option.

In a nutshell, first-generation VX WaveRunners were as follows:

Yamaha VXS Hull and Top Deck

Like any other VX WaveRunner in the late 2000s and early 2010s, the VXS was also built on the first-generation VX hull.

This mid-sized Yamaha PWC hull was introduced in 2005 and phased out by the GEN2 VX hull in 2015.

While the hull and the deck of the VX models were completely identical, the sporty VXS had a slightly different hood and seat deck design. In terms of dimensions, the ski measured 126.8 inches in length, 46.1 inches in width, and 45.7 inches in height.

Since the body of the VXS was made of NanoXcel, its dry weight was only 721 pounds. (Due to the lack of reboarding step, the VXS was 1.9 inches shorter and 7 pounds lighter than the VXR).

As far as capacities go, VX models had a maximum load capacity of 530 pounds, which meant that they could carry 3 people, and the VXS was no exception.

It was designed with a 13.2-gallon bow storage and a 1.8-gallon glovebox, which lacked the not-really-essential removable beverage holder.

In the 2011-2013 model years, the VXS was manufactured with a 15.9-gallon fuel tank. It was upgraded to an 18.5-gallon unit for the 2014 season.

Yamaha marketed the VXS with the first-generation VX hull from 2011-2014 and upgraded it with the second-generation shell in 2015.

Yamaha VXS Engine

The VXS shared its hull with base VX WaveRunners but housed a much larger power source.

This power mill was a naturally-aspirated, 4-stroke, 1812cc, DOHC, 4-cylinder Yamaha marine engine that produced 180hp at 7600 RPM.

Yamaha commonly used this unit in many performance WaveRunners like the VXS, VXR, and across the entire FX series.

The key features of this 1812cc, 180hp marine engine were as follows:

  • 4-stroke, Inline-4 architecture
  • Bore x stroke: 86 x 78 mm
  • Compression ratio: 11.0:1
  • Wet sump lubrication
  • DOHC
  • TCI ignition system
  • Fuel injection system
  • Electric start
  • Open-loop cooling system
  • LFR6A spark plugs
Engine power was delivered to a 155mm axial-flow, single-stage jet pump, featuring a manual reverse system and a 3-blade, stainless steel impeller.

Yamaha VXS Features

The Yamaha VXS came with many advanced features, including:

  • Yamaha Security System
  • Remote control transmitter (With “L-Mode”)
  • Dual mirrors
  • Front storage compartment (13.2 US gal)
  • Glovebox (1.8 US gal)
  • Fire extinguisher container
  • Tool kit
  • Deck mats
  • Bow and stern eyes
  • Engine cut-off switch
  • Engine shut-off cord (safety lanyard)
  • Tilt steering
  • Drain plugs
  • Rope holes
  • Rear grab handle
  • One-piece saddle
  • Fuel cock knob
  • Ski tow eye
  • Sponsons
  • Finger throttle lever
  • Cooling water pilot outlet
  • Visibility spout
Unlike the VXR, the VXS lacked a reboarding step and a removable beverage holder.

The ski also housed a digital information center. This innovative dashboard had many useful functions, including:

  • Tachometer
  • Speedometer
  • Hour meter/Voltmeter
  • Fuel level meter
  • Check engine warning indicator
  • Fuel warning indicator
  • Oil pressure warning indicator
  • Engine overheat warning indicator
  • WARNING indicator light
  • SECURITY indicator light
  • L-Mode indicator light

Yamaha VXS Top Speed and Performance

The lively VXS instantly became popular among performance-minded riders, and with good reason.

Combining the lightweight VX hull with the 180hp engine option, the VXS offered an amazing power-to-weight ratio of 0.25 hp/lb.

As a comparison, the high-performance supercharged FZS and FZR offered 0.26 hp/lb.

This means that the VXS produced an outstanding performance even without a high-maintenance supercharger.

The top speed of the ski was electronically restricted to 66-68 mph due to safety considerations. With some aftermarket modifications, this could be increased into the ballpark of 70-75 mph.

The VXS could also accelerate from 0 to 30 mph in 1.8 seconds, 0.6 seconds faster than the 1052cc VX models.

You could expect the fuel economy of the VXS to be 12.8 gph at WOT, so its 15.9-gallon fuel capacity ensured a cruising range of 1.24 hours. (It jumped up to 1.44 hours with the 18.5-gallon tank.)

At a cruising speed of 24-25 mph, the fuel consumption decreased to 3 gph, which ensured 8 mpg.

Yamaha VXS Problems

Even though the VXS built its reputation on its reliability, the early (2011-early 2012) models had some common problems, which were as follows:

  • Jet nozzle issues: The 2011 and early 2012 VXR and VXS WaveRunners suffered from a weak jet pump nozzle, which was prone to breaking. Since broken nozzles caused very dangerous situations, the manufacturer issued a recall on these models.
  • Water leaks: The intake grate and ride plate of the aforementioned models were not properly sealed, which caused water to leak around the mounts. This design flaw could easily be fixed by simply resealing around the intake grate and ride plate.
  • Bilge siphon valve: The bilge siphon system of early VXS WaveRunners featured a simple elbow instead of a one-way valve. When the ski moved backward, this elbow allowed a noticeable amount of water to enter the bilge. Replacing the elbow with a one-way valve solved this issue immediately.
  • Porpoising: Porpoising was also a common issue on the VXS, especially when the ski ran at full speed on calm waters. Installing an aftermarket intake grate and ride plate helped the problem somewhat.
  • Poor fuel level accuracy

2011-2014 Yamaha VXS Spec Charts

For your convenience, we’ve listed the key specs of the 2011 Yamaha VXS in these charts:(Please note that the specs may vary by the model year!)

Yamaha VXS Engine Specs

2011 Yamaha VXSEngine Specs
Type4-stroke, Liquid-cooled, DOHC
Number of cylinders4
Displacement1812 cm³
Bore and Stroke86 × 78 mm (3.39 × 3.07 in)
Compression Ratio11.0:1
Lubrication systemWet sump
Cooling SystemWater cooled
Starting SystemElectric starter
Ignition SystemT.C.I.
Spark Plug Gap0.8-0.9 mm (0.031-0.035 in)
Spark Plugs TypeLFR6A
Battery Capacity12 V 19 Ah
Charging systemFlywheel magneto

Yamaha VXS Drive Unit

2011 Yamaha VXSDrive System
Propulsion SystemJet pump
Jet Pump TypeAxial flow, single stage
Impeller RotationCounterclockwise
Jet Thrust Nozzle Horizontal Angle24 + 24 degree

Yamaha VXS Performance

2011 Yamaha VXSPerformance
Maximum Output180hp (132.4 kW) @ 7600 RPM
Maximum Fuel Consumption12.8 US gal/h (48.6 L/h)
Cruising Range at full throttle1.24 hr.
Trolling speed1,300 +/- 100 r/min

Yamaha VXS Dimensions

2011 Yamaha VXSDimensions
Overall Length126.8 in (3220 mm)
Overall Width46.1 in (1170 mm)
Overall Height45.7 in (1160 mm)
Dry Weight721 lb (327 kg)
Maximum capacity3 riders/530 lb

Yamaha VXS Fuel and Oil

2011 Yamaha VXSFuel and Oil
FuelRegular Unleaded Gasoline
Minimum Octane Rating86 PON /90 RON
Recommended engine oil typeSAE 10W-30, 10W-40, 20W-40, 20W-50
Recommended engine oil gradeAPI SE, SF, SG, SH, SJ, SL
Fuel tank capacity15.9 US gal (60 L)
Engine oil quantity (w/ oil filter replacement)3.28 US qt. (3.1 L)
Engine oil quantity (w/o oil filter replacement)3.17 US qt. (3.0 L)
Engine Oil Total Quantity4.55 US qt. (4.3 L)
These charts are for informational purposes only! For exact specifications, please refer to the factory manual.


As a takeaway, we’ve answered the most common questions about the ’11-’14 Yamaha VXS:

What is a Yamaha VXS?

The VXS was a high-performance Recreation Yamaha PWC featuring the VX hull and the 180hp engine option.

When did the Yamaha VXS Come Out?

The Yamaha VXS was revealed in 2011.

What Years Did Yamaha Manufacture the VXS?

Yamaha offered the VXS from 2011 to 2014 with the first-generation VX hull.

What was the Difference Between the Yamaha VX and VXS?

It’s safe to say that the Yamaha VXS was a VX with a larger engine. While smaller VXs were manufactured with the 1052cc, 102hp, MR1 engine, the VXS had an 1812cc, 180hp engine option.

Also, the VXS enjoyed a slightly different seat and hood, while its hull and deck were made of the NanoXcel from 2011 onwards. (This lightweight material only found its way onto the smaller VX models in 2014.)

Aside from these differences, the VXS was almost equivalent to the more featured 1052cc VX WaveRunners like the Deluxe and Cruiser.

What Size was a Yamaha VXS?

The ’11-’14 Yamaha VXS measured 126.8 inches in length, 46.1 inches in width, and 45.7 inches in height.

How Much Did a Yamaha VXS Weigh?

The dry weight of the ’11-’14 Yamaha VXS was 721 pounds.

How Many People Could Ride on a Yamaha VXS?

The Yamaha VXS was rated for three riders.

What Kind of Engine was in the Yamaha VXS?

The Yamaha VXS had a 4-stroke, 1812cc, fuel-injected, DOHC, inline-4 Yamaha Marine engine.

Was the Yamaha VXS Supercharged?

The Yamaha VXS utilized a naturally aspirated engine configuration.

Was the Yamaha VXS a 2-stroke?

The Yamaha VXS had a 4-stroke engine.

Was the Yamaha VXS Fuel Injected?

The Yamaha VXS featured a fuel injection system.

How Much HP Did a Yamaha VXS Have?

The Yamaha VXS delivered 180hp at 7600 RPM.

How Much Oil Did a Yamaha VXS Hold?

The 2011-2014 Yamaha VXS held 4.55 US quarts of engine oil, of which 3.28 quarts were replaceable (w/ filter).

How Much Fuel Did a Yamaha VXS Hold?

The 2011-2013 VXS was designed with a 15.9-gallon fuel tank which was increased to 18.5 gallons in 2014.

How Much Fuel Did a Yamaha VXS Use?

The claimed fuel consumption of the ’11-‘14 Yamaha VXS was 12.8 gph at WOT.

What was the Cruising Range of the Yamaha VXS?

The cruising range of the Yamaha VXS was 1.24-1.44 hours at full throttle depending on its fuel tank size.

How Fast Did a Yamaha VXS Go?

The top speed of a Yamaha VXS was 66-68 mph under ideal conditions.

Could the Yamaha VXS Tow a Skier or a Wakeboarder?

Thanks to its three-seater saddle, stable hull, and powerful engine, the VXS could tow a wakeboarder or skier with ease.

Did the Yamaha VXS Have a Trim System?          

The VXS was engineered without a manual trim.

Did the Yamaha VXS Have a Reverse?   

The VXS came standard with a manual reverse system.

Did the Yamaha VXS Have a Brake?       

The Yamaha VXS was designed without a brake system.

How Much Does a Yamaha VXS Cost?

The asking price of a used 2011-2014 Yamaha VXS varies between $4,000 and $10,000 depending on the year and its condition.