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7 Best Jet Skis for the Ocean [Sea-Doo vs. Yamaha vs. Kawasaki]

7 Best Jet Skis for the Ocean [Sea-Doo vs. Yamaha vs. Kawasaki]

Based on our research, the best Sea-Doos, WaveRunners, and Kawasaki Jet Skis for the ocean are as follows:

  1. Sea-Doo Fish Pro Trophy
  2. Sea-Doo Explorer Pro 170
  3. Sea-Doo GTX Limited 300
  4. Yamaha FX Cruiser HO
  5. Yamaha FX Cruiser SVHO
  6. Kawasaki Ultra 310 LX
  7. Kawasaki Ultra 310 LX-S
If you want to compare these models head-to-head, this post is for you.

We at JetDrift have compiled all you need to know under one roof!

Which Type of Jet Ski is Best for the Ocean?

Unlike their 2-stroke predecessors, today’s boat-like jet skis can even be used for offshore rides.

In a nutshell, the most important characteristics of a great off-shore jet ski are as follows:

  • Large, stable runabout platform
  • Deep-V hull design
  • Heavy
  • Powerful 180-310 HP engine
  • High reliability
  • Great fuel range
  • Luxury features (GPS, reboarding step, etc.)
General wisdom says that if you are looking for a jet ski for offshore rides, you should avoid the Rec-Lite and Recreation categories.

Why?

These machines are simply too small and unstable for rough waters, which is why they are mainly recommended for rivers and small lakes.

In contrast, large runabout jet skis can even be used for offshore trips. These models are typically classed in the Luxury, Performance, and Tow Sport/Fishing categories.

Thanks to their large heavy platforms, they offer much better stability and predictability while their deep-V hull can cut through small waves with ease.

These skis are typically powered by 180-310 HP engines, which are paired with sizeable fuel tanks.When it comes to offshore PWC rides, the fuel range and reliability of the machine are paramount. This is why many riders prefer naturally-aspirated (non-supercharged) models.They offer less power than their supercharged brothers, which translates to fewer malfunctions and lower fuel consumption figures.

Let’s get down to the nitty-gritty and talk about the best offshore jet skis in detail!

The 7 Best Jet Skis for the Ocean

The Best Sea-Doos for the Ocean

The best Sea-Doos for offshore rides are arguably the ST3-based models like the RXT-X 300, Fish Pro Trophy and Sport, Explorer 170, and the Wake Pro.

These machines enjoy the same ST3 hull that offers industry-leading stability. They also house a unique, easy-access front storage, which can easily be reached from the saddle.

All good points on an off-shore jet ski ride!

One of our picks from this series is the Fish Pro Trophy, which is a purpose-built fishing PWC.

This ski comes standard with a rear deck extension, amazing storage capacities, and many useful jet ski fishing accessories.If you are considering taking offshore jet ski fishing trips, you can’t go wrong with a Fish Pro Trophy!

1. Sea-Doo Fish Pro Trophy specs:

  • Category: Fishing
  • Engine: 1630cc, 3-cylinder, Rotax
  • Hull: ST3
  • Performance: 170 HP
  • Supercharged: No
  • Length: 146.8 inches
  • Width: 49.4 inches
  • Wet weight: 1023 lbs.
  • Brake and reverse: Standard
  • Fuel capacity: 18.5 gallons
  • Storage capacity: 39.6 gallons
  • Rider capacity: 3
If you are looking for something really special, the Sea-Doo Explorer Pro 170 is for you.

This ski shares its extended hull with the Fish Pro Trophy and Explorer Pro 170, but it’s built more for adventures than for fishing.

Standard features of the ski include heavy-duty bumpers, a windshield, extra storage units, and GPS.

It can be used for various purposes like touring, PWC camping, and even offshore rides.

2. Sea-Doo Explorer Pro 170 specs:

  • Category: Adventure
  • Engine: 1630cc, 3-cylinder, Rotax
  • Hull: ST3
  • Performance: 170 HP
  • Supercharged: No
  • Length: 146.8 inches
  • Width: 49.4 inches
  • Wet weight: 984 lbs.
  • Brake and reverse: Standard
  • Fuel capacity: 18.5 gallons
  • Storage capacity: 52.3 gallons
  • Rider capacity: 3
The flagship ST3-based Sea-Doos are the GTX 300 and GTX Limited 300, which enjoy the 300 HP engine configuration.

Although these models can also be taken out into the ocean, keep in mind that they offer lower reliability due to their outstanding performance.

3. Sea-Doo GTX Limited 300 specs:

  • Category: Tow Sports
  • Engine: 1630cc, 3-cylinder, Rotax
  • Hull: ST3
  • Performance: 300 HP
  • Supercharged: Yes
  • Length: 135.9 inches
  • Width: 49.4 inches
  • Wet weight: 974 lbs.
  • Brake and reverse: Standard
  • Fuel capacity: 18.5 gallons
  • Storage capacity: 26.1 gallons
  • Rider capacity: 3

The Best WaveRunners for the Ocean

When it comes to offshore rides, Yamaha FX WaveRunners are worthy competitors of full-size Sea-Doo models.

The best WaveRunners for the ocean are arguably the FX series including the luxury FX Cruiser HO and SVHO. The latter comes with a 250 HP supercharged engine while the HO is the base model, housing a naturally-aspirated, 180 HP unit.

Like any other WaveRunner, the FX line is known for having outstanding reliability, which makes these models the perfect choice for offshore rides.

The main characteristics of these skis are as follows:4. Yamaha FX Cruiser HO specs (non-supercharged model):

  • Category: Luxury
  • Engine: 1812cc, 4-cylinder, Yamaha
  • Hull: FX
  • Performance: 180 HP
  • Supercharged: No
  • Length: 140.9 inches
  • Width: 50 inches
  • Wet weight: 970 lbs.
  • Brake and reverse: Standard
  • Fuel capacity: 18.5 gallons
  • Storage capacity: 44.5 gallons
  • Rider capacity: 3
5. Yamaha FX Cruiser SVHO specs (supercharged model):

  • Category: Luxury
  • Engine: 1812cc, 4-cylinder, Yamaha
  • Hull: FX
  • Performance: 250 HP
  • Supercharged: Yes
  • Length: 140.9 inches
  • Width: 50 inches
  • Wet weight: 1001 lbs.
  • Brake and reverse: Standard
  • Fuel capacity: 18.5 gallons
  • Storage capacity: 44.5 gallons
  • Rider capacity: 3

The Best Kawasaki Jet Skis for the Ocean

Many riders agree that the best Kawasaki Jet Skis for offshore rides are the Ultra 310 models.

This line was completely revamped in 2022 with a new hull, top deck, and many innovative features.

The power source of these machines is the same supercharged, 1498cc, 4-cylinder engine rated at 310 HP. Their heavy deep-V platform has built a reputation for great rough-water handling.

The mid-range model in this class is the Ultra 310 LX-S while the flagship ski is labeled the Ultra 310 LX.

6-7. Kawasaki Ultra 310 LX-S and LX specs:

  • Category: Luxury
  • Engine: 1498cc, 4-cylinder, Yamaha
  • Hull: Ultra
  • Performance: 310 HP
  • Supercharged: Yes
  • Length: 140.9 inches
  • Width: 47 inches
  • Wet weight: 1065/1089 lbs.
  • Brake and reverse: Standard
  • Fuel capacity: 21.1 gallons
  • Storage capacity: 44.5 gallons
  • Rider capacity: 3
Besides these latest models, the “old” Ultra hull was also known for having outstanding rough water capabilities.

Kawasaki has built many great skis on this hull, including the Ultra LX, and the supercharged Ultra 250-300 families (including the Ultra 250X, Ultra 260X, Ultra 300X, Ultra 310X, and Ultra 310R).

The non-supercharged Ultra LX was an especially popular choice of offshore PWC riders.

Conclusion

The best jet skis for the ocean are the largest, 3-seater runabouts with 160-310 HP engines. Besides adequate engine power, the design of the hull is no less important. As a rule of thumb, the best offshore jet skis are built on heavy touring hulls, featuring a deep-V design.

Although they are cheap to run and fun to ride, Rec-Lite and Recreation jet skis are not recommended for the ocean.

These small lightweight skis feature shallow-V hulls that can’t cut through the waves effectively. They also lack stability and can flip over very easily in rough water conditions.

Unlike their smaller brothers, the Luxury/Touring and certain Performance models are built on large hulls and deliver plenty of engine power.

If you are looking for a jet ski for offshore rides, you can’t go wrong with the largest Sea-Doos built on the ST3 platform.

These models include some great non-supercharged models like the Fish Pro Trophy and Sport, and the Explorer 170. All of these feature a rear platform extension, which increases stability, buoyancy, and storage space.

Their bigger brothers lack this extension, but they do house more powerful supercharged engines.

Japanese rivals are the Yamaha FX WaveRunners and the revamped Kawasaki Ultra 310 Jet Skis.