Last Updated on
How fast can a Jet Ski go? – This is a typical question of the majority of the PWC enthusiasts, as well as curious newbies.
In the world of motorsports, the majority of the owners have a performance-minded perspective. They buy their toys to experience the thrill and rush of riding on the waters.
To have the best experience, they want to own the fastest Jet Ski or Sea-Doo available on the market and hunt for the best models one season after another.
If you are here, you probably also want to know the current Jet Ski top speed as well as WaveRunner and Sea-Doo top speed numbers.
For your convenience, we, at JetDrift, have collected the top speeds all of the current PWC models into one chart. Along with these, we have also collected some tips for how you can make your watercraft faster.
If you are curious about the top speed of the fastest PWC in the world, you can find a summary, as well as a video about the current record holder in this article.
Without further ado, let’s check out the current Sea-Doo, WaveRunners, and Jet Ski top speed numbers in one chart!
Sea-Doo vs. WaveRunner vs. Jet Ski Top Speed Chart
In this chart, you can find the top speeds of all current Jet Ski, WaveRunner, Sea-Doo, and Krash models head to head. You can shorten the rows by clicking on the headline to short the models by the specs or by manufacturers.
If you would like to discover each model, don’t hesitate to click on the names. You can find specs, pictures, videos as well as head to head comparisons by clicking on the links!
|Brand||Model||Top Speed (mph)||Acceleration 0-30 mph (s)|
|Kawasaki||ULTRA 310X SE||67||-|
|Sea-Doo||GTX Lim. 300||67||-|
|Yamaha||FX Cruiser SVHO||67||1,5|
|Yamaha||FX Lim. SVHO||67||1,5|
|Sea-Doo||Wake Pro 230||65||-|
|Yamaha||VX Cruiser HO||65||1,8|
|Yamaha||FX Cruiser HO||63||2|
|Kawasaki||STX - 15F||62||2|
|Sea-Doo||GTI SE 155||55||-|
|Sea-Doo||GTI SE 130||52||-|
|Sea-Doo||SPARK 2up 90HP||48||2,4|
|Sea-Doo||SPARK 3up 90HP||48||2,4|
|Sea-Doo||SPARK TRIXX 2up||48||2,4|
|Sea-Doo||SPARK TRIXX 3up||48||2,4|
|Sea-Doo||SPARK 2up 60HP||42||3,6|
The numbers used in this chart are for information purpose only and not provided by the manufacturers. We used different sources to gather this information and the sources of this data include Boattest, Boatingmag, Boatingworld, PWCExtreme, Topspeed, Watercraftjournal, PersonalWatercraft.
The Top Speeds of Different PWC Categories
Based on the comparison chart above, we have concluded.
As you can see, the top speed of a PWC is highly depended on its engine power.
Not only the horsepower, but the curb weight of the watercraft is also one of the biggest factors, as it affects the power to weight ratio, which is as important as the power itself!
Beyond the PWC’s specifications above, the top speeds may change due to several conditions like:
- US Coast Guard speed limiters
- Your weight
- Your riding style
- Weight of the gear and fuel on you
- Water conditions
- Air conditions
It means the top speed measured by you on the same model could be different and vary from ride to ride!
And don’t forget that the most accurate way to measure your speed is a GPS unit, as PWC speedometers usually show higher numbers than the actual speed.
The top speed of the entry-level stock PWC models
As you can see, even the slowest PWC models can run as fast as 42 mph. If you wondering if this speed is too slow for a PWC, you should know that in a car, 42 mph does not seem fast at all!
Even this speed is good on the water, as the feeling of riding the water is different compared to in a car.
It’s mainly because you’re more exposed to external factors, especially to the wind. PWCs are not equipped with windscreens or other protective gear, so you feel like you going much faster. And you sit much lower to the surface of the water than in a boat!
In conclusion, riding a watercraft with 42 mph feel so much faster than in a car. You will find it fast, especially if you are a beginner!
The top speed of the average stock PWC models
When it comes to the average PWC’s top speeds, it’s safe to say that it is usually somewhere around 50-60 mph.
Beyond their cost-effective operation, they offer plenty of storage space with great weight capacity and convenient seats for 3 riders.
If you are not looking for the fastest PWC on the market, rather the best family Jet Ski or Sea-Doo, the Recreation category is definitely for you.
The top speed of the fastest stock PWCs
If you are looking at the top speed numbers of the fastest PWC models, you can see that all of these models can reach 67 mph.
Are you wondering why all of these models have the same top speed?
Before the year 1999, there were no regulations regarding PWC speeds in the United States. This led to some serious accidents and dangerous situations.
Later on, the U.S. Coast Guard took control of the situation and put a speed limit in place according to which the newly manufactured watercraft in the U.S. could not go above the top speeds of 65 mph.
The manufactured had to install speed limiter units into the U.S. models that could limit the power of the engine. Due to this, the top speeds were artificially capped. It means that you can achieve only 67-70 mph with top performance stock watercraft.
All of these performance PWCs are powered with supercharged engines, offering 180-310HP depending on the model.
If you have no experience with PWC, you need to be careful because it’s not recommended to start with these crafts. If you are looking for the best PWCs for beginners, don’t miss our latest post on the topic.
If you would like to discover the top speed of each PWC brand, as well as some advantages and disadvantages, don’t stop reading here!
Kawasaki Jet Ski Top Speed Specs
How fast can a Jet Ski go? Depending on the model, Kawasaki Jet Ski top speed numbers vary from 54 – 67 mph.
The slowest Jet Ski is the Ultra LX Jet Ski with a top speed of 54 mph. This model arrives with the same hull as the performance models, while it produces only 160 HP.
Thanks to its good fuel range and reliability, the Ultra LX is popular among average buyers and considered as the best fishing Jet Ski as well.
If you want something more nimble and playful, you should look at the new 2020 Kawasaki STX 160 series. These models are the upgraded version of the STX-15F, which offered the same 160 HP engine and can reach 62 mph.
However, there aren’t real tests for the new STX 160 series available, regarding the fact that these models arrive with the same engine and in the same weight range as the STX-15F, we can expect around the same top speed on these Jet Ski models.
It’s the same issue with the SX-R Stand Up Jet Ski’s top speed, powered with the same engine it can reach around 62 mph again.
Top speeds of the performance Jet Skis are definitely the highest in the Kawasaki’s fleet, they hit the 67 mph in stock condition. You can choose from four different models:
- Kawasaki Ultra 310X Jet Ski top speed: 67 mph
- Kawasaki Ultra 310LX Jet Ski top speed: 67 mph
- Kawasaki Ultra 310SE Jet Ski top speed: 67 mph
- Kawasaki Ultra 310R Jet Ski top speed: 67 mph
Yamaha WaveRunner Top Speed Specs
Would you like to know how fast can a WaveRunner go? When it comes to Yamaha WaveRunner’s top speed numbers, they don’t get left behind Kawasaki’s Jet Skis.
If you looking for a bigger WaveRunner, the VX series is for you. They can reach the top speed of around 53 mph.
Yamaha’s luxury WaveRunners, the FX series, arrive with supercharged and non-supercharged engines as well.
You can expect the same top speed on the performance WaveRunners, namely, the GP1800R HO and GP 1800R SVHO.
Sea-Doo Top Speeds
Would you like to know how fast can a Sea-Doo go?
Sea-Doo top speed numbers vary widely, as they have the largest fleet from all manufacturers. It also means that you can choose from several good models if you consider buying one.
How to reach the top speed on your PWC?
As you would have understood by now, the top three fastest Jet Skis, Waverunner, and Sea-Doo models have it in them to go much faster than 65 – 67 mph, although they can’t do so straight off the shelf.
PWC fans know it pretty well that if you wish to have a faster ride, the best thing for you to do is modify your craft so you can achieve more power. But everybody does not want to modify or bring changes in their craft.
Due to this, before you delve into the PWC modifications, here are some easy tricks you can adopt for getting higher top speed on your PWC.
Calm Weather conditions: When you want to increase the speed of your PWC, the preferred type of water is rough. Although it is not only choppy water that could decrease your speed, it does play a part. So, it is better that you first test out on smooth waters. It is not recommended that you test the PWC top speeds during high winds.
The best thing to do would be testing when there is no wind, as air conditions also act as a factor and could impact your ride’s speed. Your PWC would move quickly in low humidity instead of high. Air pressure and high humidity make the engine work harder, as a result, engines become slowed down. Another important factor is the temperature. Your energy’s power could be affected on a hot sunny day.
Get rid of the gear: PWC owners are prone to carrying a lot of useful gear with them. (and some less useful as well) It’s good to know that the more gear means extra weight, which reduces your power to weight ratio, and finally the top speed of your Jet Ski or Sea-Doo. Because of this, except for the PWC safety accessories, it’s wise to leave the other gear in your car.
No passengers: For the same reason, if you want to go as fast as possible, it’s wise to leave your passengers on the shore. Keeping safety in mind, this is a good decision in any case if you want to ride your craft at a high speed.
Less fuel: PWC tank sizes go from 6 gallons to even as high as 20 gallons. A full tank with 20 gallons, means around 130 lbs (60 kg) weight, which is a noticeable extra weight! If you want to reduce your curb weight and ride faster, attempt with less fuel. But be careful, and never drain your tank completely as you always need fuel to get back to the shore. Safety should always come first!
Safety first: Riding on the full-throttle can be quite dangerous, so please ensure that the waterway is clear, and conditions are safe before testing out your Sea-Doo or Jet Ski’s top speed. Don’t forget to wear safety gear whenever you ride. Goggles/sunglasses are essential, but there are many other clothes you can consider or even a helmet.
Learn how to ride properly: If you want to get the maximum from your PWC, you have to know how it works, and learn how to ride it properly. Beyond the basics, for the highest speed, you have to know how to set the trim position of the pump’s nozzle. Also, just like on motorbikes, air resistance is a factor as well, so try to take a position like you would on a street bike. (A little retro feeling: Yamaha WaveBlaster 1993):
Modifications – Make your PWC faster
As far as the modification is concerned, there is a wide range of tunings kits and aftermarket parts you can choose from.
A common method of PWC modification is installing a special speed control override module, through which you can make your engine perform to its full capacity. You would have to install a different impeller with this unit too.
You can find these units at the famous watercraft performance specialist including RIVA Racing or PWC Muscle. You could reach up to 75 mph on the basis of this modification only. Do you want to make your watercraft more faster?
If you require more performance and speed from your PWC, there are many ways to do so.
You can install racing kits and
aftermarket performance parts that could make
your PWC’s top speed into the 80-90 mph range.
You should also know that only those manufacturers offer you the option of modification who are planning to enter some contest or competition.
It is not recommended that casual PWC users modify their PWC, it is possible and many are doing it. You just need to find a service shop that would assist you.
Last but not least, know that your watercraft’s warranty might get affected if you go through with the modification. But it is not a definite thing. At the end, everything depends on the manufacturer and your dealership.
The top speed of the world’s fastest modified watercraft
Depending on the above information, you might wonder about the fastest modified PWC present in the world – that also has made it to the world record.
The top speed ever to be achieved on a watercraft was by Uva Perez, who made a record by riding a modified Yamaha Waverunner at a whopping 127 mph.
The fastest and the most powerful of WaveRunner models are famed because of their capacity for modification and to achieve amazing speeds. Perez’s modified Yamaha was no exception.
As you must have known by now that Sea-Doo, WaveRunner and Jet Ski top speed numbers vary at large, depending on the model.
We have also described how PWC speeds depend on many factors including the climate and even your weight.
If you wish to boost your PWCs power or want to participate in a racing competition, you could modify your machine. But always remember to take the necessary safety measures and ride safely. Do not forget to follow the rules when you are out on the water.
For detailed information regarding available models, you can find specs, pictures, and videos in our Sea-Doo vs Waverunner vs Jet Ski comparison tool here.
Become a fan on Facebook
News, reviews, videos and more…