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The 3 Best 4-Seater Jet Skis for Families [Comparison Chart]

The 3 Best 4-Seater Jet Skis for Families [Comparison Chart]

Based on our research, the three best 4-seater jet skis are as follows:

If you want to discover and compare these iconic jet skis head-to-head, you’ve come to the right place.

We at JetDrift have compiled all you need to know into this 4-seater jet ski comparison post!

Is There a 4-Seater Jet Ski?

The first jet skis on the market were small personal watercraft primarily designed for solo rides. Their tiny hulls and low-powered 2-stroke engines were only able to carry one adult rider.

But over the years, the dimensions of jet skis began to grow, as did their performance. The culmination of this process was the appearance around the Millennium of the large 4-seater jet skis.

Surprisingly, only three 4-seater jet skis have ever been produced: the Yamaha SUV 1200, the Polaris Genesis 1200, and the Sea-Doo LRV. These machines were only marketed for a few years, from 1999 through the mid-2000s.

Ironically, these skis started to become really popular only after their production had been ceased.

Since then, to the greatest regret of many PWC enthusiasts, no 4-seater PWCs have been made! This means if you need all that seating capacity, you can only choose from these aged machines.

However, keep in mind that although they were marketed as jet skis that can carry four passengers legally, they were actually comfortable for only three adults or a family of four.

They were built on large deep-V platforms that offered outstanding stability even in offshore conditions. Because of this, they were virtually the “station wagons” of the jet ski industry rather than playful machines.

4-seaters were commonly used for various tow sports as well as offshore jet ski fishing. Since today’s jet skis can’t beat their stability, many PWC anglers choose these aged machines over the latest Sea-Doo Fish Pros or dedicated fishing WaveRunners.While many riders love them, others don’t like these large skis and consider them boats rather than personal watercraft.

Let’s drill into the details and compare these three iconic 4-seater PWCs, the Sea-Doo LRV, Yamaha SUV 1200, and the Polaris Genesis 1200!

The 3 Best 4-Seater Jet Skis

Sea-Doo LRV- The Only 4-Seater Sea-Doo

Let’s start with the largest model, the Sea-Doo LRV, the largest jet ski ever made.

This 4-seater Sea-Doo was built on a 156-inch long and 61-inch wide hull that featured a sun deck behind its seat. Yes, you read correctly, this platform was so huge that it could accommodate a sun deck on its rear.

However, the key advantage of this model was arguably its incredible capacities.

Under the sun deck, the ski had two large storage compartments that could even hide water skis or wakeboards. With the conventional front storage bin and an under-seat compartment, the total storage space of the LRV was not less than 180 gallons, along with a load limit of 750 pounds.

Regarding power source, the LRV utilized a 951cc, 2-stroke engine rated at 170 HP. Surprisingly, this unit featured only two cylinders, while the competitors all came with triple engines.

The fuel capacity of the LRV was also an impressive 25 gallons.

This is why this model is still a popular fishing jet ski! Many of these vintage 4-stroke Sea-Doos have been completely rebuilt, some lucky few even got a 4-stroke engine replacement.

The biggest drawback of the LRV was its incredible weight (952 pounds) and boat-like hull, which resulted in harder maneuverability and less playful rides. But let’s face it, these Sea-Doos were built to be small boats with handlebars rather than agile “personal” watercraft!

Yamaha SUV 1200: The 4-Seater WaveRunner

The medium-sized model in this trio was the Yamaha SUV 1200, the only 4-seater Yamaha WaveRunner ever built.

This oversized craft utilized a hull that was 151.6 inches long and 59.5 inches wide, which was slightly smaller than the competitor Sea-Doo’s platform.

Although the SUV 1200 came with a conventional seat without a sun deck, it still offered two large compartments in the rear sides of the hull. It had a total storage capacity of 117 gallons and a fuel capacity of 18.5 gallons.

The dry weight of the SUV was 816 pounds, along with a total weight capacity of 660 pounds.

The key advantage of this 4-seater WaveRunner was arguably its outstanding reliability. Like virtually any other Yamaha watercraft, these machines were also among the most dependable and durable jet skis on the water.

Drawbacks?

Sadly, the SUV 1200 provided lower performance than the challengers.

Although it housed a 1131cc 2-stroke triple, its 130 HP combined with a heavy weight (816 pounds) resulted in the worst power-to-weight ratio in the class.

Polaris Genesis 1200

The smallest 4-seater jet ski in the marketplace was the lesser-known Polaris Genesis 1200. Compared to the rival Sea-Doo and WaveRunner models, this craft was significantly smaller as it featured a hull measuring 131 inches long and 49 inches wide.

The Genesis was smaller and significantly lighter as it weighed “only” 675-760 pounds, depending on its year and engine option.

For adequate performance, this model was powered by a 1165cc, 2-stroke triple rated at 135 HP. This engine was available in both carbureted and fuel-injected (FI) configurations.

This performance and the significantly lighter weight resulted in a class-leading power-to-weight ratio. Thanks to its outstanding performance and smaller hull, the Genesis was easier to ride and offered more fun than the big boys.

Also, the hidden advantage of this 4-seater Polaris jet ski was that it could fit on a regular 2-place PWC trailer. In contrast, the competitor models required a special longer trailer due to their dimensions.

On the other hand, the Genesis lacked a large rear storage, so it only offered a moderate total storage capacity of 41.6 gallons.

What’s more, this craft was far less reliable than the competitor Sea-Doo and WaveRunner 4-seaters. Its fuel injection and electric system produced various malfunctions that caused many headaches for owners.

4-Seater Jet Ski Comparion Chart

Let’s compare the key specifications of these 4-seater jet skis in one chart!

SpecsSea-Doo LRVYamaha SUV 1200Polaris Genezis
Length (")156.0151.6131.1
Width (")61.059.549.3
Height (")42.544.940.4
Fuel cap. (gal.)251917
Dry weight (lbs)952816675-740
Storage cap. (gal)18011741.6
Load limit - Total (lbs)750660625
Rider Capacity444
HP170130135
Displacement (cc)95111311165
Stroke222
Cylinder233

4-Seater Jet Ski for Sale

Are you in the market for one of these models, but you don’t know where to start your research?

You can find a 4-seater jet ski for sale on Craigslist, eBay, and dedicated jet ski swap sites with a bit of luck.

It’s also a good idea to visit some online jet ski communities. Besides potential deals, you can find a ton of valuable info on 4-seater jet skis there!

Keep in mind that finding a good machine is not easy as there are only a few of these large vintage jet skis out there!

4-Seater Jet Ski Alternatives

If dealing with these old jet skis is not for you, here are some alternatives to consider:

  • Two jet skis on a tandem trailer
  • Jet ski boat combos
  • Hauling a jet ski on a boat
  • Sea-Doo pontoon boats and jet boats
There’s no question that the best alternative to a 4-seater model is to invest in two 3-seater jet skis.

Hauling two jet skis on a double trailer is still much easier than dealing with a large boat.

Two regular jet skis can carry 2-6 passengers along with plenty of gear, and playing around on two skis always doubles the fun! However, it also means doubled maintenance costs.Jet ski boat attachments are also gaining in popularity, and with good reason. These versatile converters can turn a jet ski into a boat in a second, which translates into increased passenger capacity.

Your other option is to invest in a jet ski and a boat, even if it’s not the cheapest setup! Larger 40+ foot boats can usually accommodate a jet ski on their swim platform, which can even be used as a tender.

Last but not least, we have to mention the innovative Sea-Doo pontoon boats. Sure, they do not handle like jet skis, but they are powered by jet ski pumps and handlebars, offering an outstanding riding experience.

https://youtu.be/PfDviDh6420

Conclusion – Is There a 4-Person Jet Ski?

Yes, as you’ve already known, 4-seater jet skis do exist even if they are a little old and outdated. These legendary crafts made their debut around the Millennium and remained in production for only a few years. Like the largest Sea-Doo LRV and Yamaha SUV 1200, the legendary Polaris Genesis 1200 was also revealed in 1999. (To the greatest regret of fans, Kawasaki has never manufactured 4-seater jet skis.)

Surprisingly, these short-lived models didn’t sell well, but they became widely popular after production had ceased!

Since the supply is so limited, there is a strong market demand for these vintage 4-seaters!