1993-1996 Sea-Doo SPI Specs and Review [Video]

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The Sea-Doo SPI was actually an SP with more features, equipped with a stainless steel impeller, grab handle, and a tuned exhaust pipe. It was powered by the “White” Rotax 587 engine rated at 56 HP. Sea-Doo marketed the popular and reliable SPI from 1993 through 1996.

If you want to learn all about this legendary machine, this post is for you.

We at JetDrift have compiled all you need to know into this Sea-Doo SPI review!

Sea-Doo SPI Review

1993 Sea-Doo SPI 580 Review

The first modern Sea-Doo was the tiny SP, which was introduced for the 1988 model year.

By 1990, Sea-Doo had expanded its offerings with the high-performance XP 580, followed by the three-seater GT in 1991.

Two years later, in 1993, the Sea-Doo fleet consisted of six models, including the SPI and the SPX.

While the latter was a rebranded 1992 XP, the SPI was actually an SP with more features.

The ’93 SP and the SPI were built on the “original” 1988 SP hull. (In contrast, the ‘93 Sea-Doo XP had the all-new, 2nd generation hull.)

This composite fiberglass platform was only 100.5 inches long, 41.5 inches wide, and 36.2 inches high. The power source on the ski was a single-carb “White” Rotax 587 engine rated at 56 HP.

Surprisingly, this early Sea-Doo SPI model was literally a modified SP. This means that the manufacturer delivered the SP to the dealers with an “SPI conversion kit,” including the 17.7-degree stainless steel impeller, gauges, a unique exhaust pipe, and decals.

This impeller was not only more durable than its aluminum counterparts but its geometry was perfectly matched to engine performance. Some modifications also had to be made to the exhaust system.

Thanks to the 8.7-gallon fuel tank, the tiny SPI offered about 1.45 hours of cruising time at WOT. The ski was equipped with an innovative oil injection system featuring a 95 oz. oil reservoir.

The top speed of the 1993 Sea-Doo SPI was about 40-41 mph under ideal conditions.

Although the SPI was marketed as a two-seater ski with an adult passenger, it became extremely tippy. Therefore, this model was only recommended for solo rides.

1994-1996 Sea-Doo SPI 580 Review

In 1994, Sea-Doo dropped the outdated 1st generation hull, and each 2-seater ski was built on a more modern rounded hull.

This platform measured 100 inches in length, 41.5 inches in width, and 36.2 inches in height. The dry weight of the new SPI also jumped from 368 to 387 pounds.

The Rotax 587 engine on the machine remained unchanged, as did its Bombardier Formula Jet Pump.

But unlike its predecessor, the new model arrived as “SPI” in the crate.

It featured different decals and paint jobs, a grab handle, a stainless steel impeller, a tuned exhaust pipe, and a fuel gauge. Additional gauges and mirrors were also offered as options.

Unlike the base SP, the SPI featured a two-position manually adjustable trim system.

Thanks to this new hull, the top speed of the 1994-1996 Sea-Doo SPI was about 45 mph out of the box.

Regarding capacities, the ski got a slightly larger, 9-gallon fuel tank and a 1.2-gallon oil reservoir.

The load limit of the SPI remained 352 pounds, indicating that this ski was still designed for one rider (even if it was marketed as a 2-seater).

Besides recreational riders, the SPI was a widely popular choice of rental shops. Due to its simplicity, it was reliable and durable, which resulted in low maintenance costs.

This model was basically carried over for the 1995 and 1996 seasons in the same form, with the exception of new decals and colors.

Eventually, the Sea-Doo SPI was discontinued after the 1996 model year.

1994-1996 Sea-Doo SPI Specs Chart

For your convenience, we’ve compiled the 1994-1996 Sea-Doo SPI specifications into these charts!

1994-1996 Sea-Doo SPI Dimensions

1994-1996 Sea-Doo SPIDimensions and Capacities
Number of passengers1 operator and 1 passenger
Overall length254 cm (100 in)
Overall width105 cm (41.5 in)
Overall height92 cm (36.2 in)
Weight178 kg (392 lb)
Load limit160 kg (352 lb)
Hull MaterialComposite (fiberglass)
Fuel tank34 L (9 US gal)
Impeller shaft reservoir - Capacity65 mL (2.2 US oz)
Impeller shaft reservoir - Oil level heightup to plug
Injection oil reservoir4.5 L (153 US fl oz)

1994-1996 Sea-Doo SPI Engine Specs

1994-1996 Sea-Doo SPIEngine Specs
Engine type Rotax 2-stroke, type 587
Induction type Rotary valve
Exhaust system Water cooled/water injected
Lubrication - type Oil injection
Lubrication - oil typeSea-Doo Injection Oil
Number of cylinders 2
Displacement 580.7 cm3 (35.43 in3)
Maximum Power (approximately)56 HP @ 6550 RPM
RPM Limiter Operation @6550 RPM ± 100
Cooling TypeWater cooled, total loss type - Direct flow from propulsion unit
Overheating Beeper, Switch On @na
Fuel - typeRegular unleaded gasoline
Carburetor - type and numberDiaphragm type - Quantity : 1

1994-1996 Sea-Doo SPI Propulsion

1994-1996 Sea-Doo SPIPropulsion
Propulsion systemBombardier Formula pump
Jet pump typeAxial flow, single stage
Impeller Rotation (seen from rear)na
TransmissionDirect drive
Coupling Typena
Impeller shaft reservoir oil typeSea-Doo synthetic polyolester oil 75W90 GL5
Pivoting angle of direction (nozzle)~ 26°
Pivoting angle of variable trim systemna
Minimum required water level for jet pump60 cm (2 ft)
Impeller Diameterna

1994-1996 Sea-Doo SPI Electrical Features

1994-1996 Sea-Doo SPIElectrical Features
Magneto generator output160 W @ 6000 RPM
Ignition system type Capacitor Discharge Ignition (Breakerless)
Spark plug - Make and typeNGK BR7ES
Spark plug - Gap0.5 - 0.6 mm (0.020-0.024 in)
Starting systemElectric starter
Battery12 V, 19 A
Starting system Fuse 5 A
Charging system Fuse15 A

1994-1996 Sea-Doo SPI Performance

1994-1996 Sea-Doo SPIPerformance
Horsepower56 HP
Cruising time at full throttle - Fuel tank without reserve~ 1.45 hours
Cruising time at full throttle - Fuel tank reserve~ 20 minutes
Maximum Speed *45 mph
* Top speed may vary depending on operator and passenger weight, water conditions, wind, current, altitude etc.

These charts are for informational purposes only! For exact specifications, please refer to the factory manual.

Vintage Sea-Doo SPI For Sale

If you are considering purchasing one, you probably want to know where to find a Sea-Doo SPI for sale. As this model vanished from the market in 1996, 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 SPIs for sale on Craigslist, PWC Trader, and other dedicated jet ski swap sites.

Takeaway

As a takeaway, we’ve answered the most common questions about the Sea-Doo SPI!

What is a Sea-Doo SPI?

The Sea-Doo SPI was a mid-range vintage jet ski manufactured by Sea-Doo.

What was the Difference Between Sea-Doo SP and SPI?

The SP was the base model, while the SPI was a higher-range model featuring a stainless steel impeller, grab handle, SPI decals, and a different exhaust pipe. Mirrors and gauge kits were also available for the SPI as options.

What Year did Sea-Doo Make the SPI?

Sea-Doo marketed the SPI from 1993 through 1996.

How Many People Could Ride a Sea-Doo SPI?

The tiny Sea-Doo SPI was rated for two riders, but riding with a passenger on this ski was virtually impossible!

What Size was the Sea-Doo SPI?

The 1993 Sea-Doo SPI was 100.5 inches long, 41.5 inches wide, and 36.2 inches high, while the 1994-1996 models measured 100 inches in length, 41.5 inches in width, and 36.2 inches in height.

How Much Did a Sea-Doo SPI Weigh?

The dry weight of the 1993 Sea-Doo SPI was 368 pounds, while the 1994-1996 models weighed 387 pounds.

What Kind of Engine Did the Sea-Doo SPI Have?

The engine of the Sea-Doo SPI was an oil-injected “White” Rotax 587 engine. This 580cc, 2-stroke twin featured a single Mikuni carburetor and CDI ignition.

How Much Horsepower Did a Sea-Doo SPI Have?

The Sea-Doo SPI provided 56 HP at 6,550 RPM.

Did the Sea-Doo SPI Have Reverse?

Yes, the Sea-Doo SPI was equipped with manual reverse.

What Size Storage Compartment Did a Sea-Doo SPI Have?

The Sea-Doo SPI featured only a tiny removable front storage bin.

Was a Sea-Doo SPI a 2-Stroke Ski?

Yes, the Sea-Doo SPI utilized a 2-stroke twin engine.

How Much Weight Could a Sea-Doo SPI Hold?

The total weight capacity of the Sea-Doo SPI was 352 pounds.

How Much Fuel Did a Sea-Doo SPI Hold?

The Sea-Doo SPI utilized a 9-gallon fuel tank.

How Much Fuel Did a Sea-Doo SPI Use?

The Sea-Doo SPI fuel consumption was about 6 GPH at WOT.

Could the Sea-Doo SPI Tow a Skier or a Wakeboarder?

No, the Sea-Doo SPI was not recommended for tow sports.

How Fast Did a Sea-Doo SPI Go?

The top speed of a 1994-1996 Sea-Doo SPI was 45 mph out of the box.

How Much is a Sea-Doo SPI Worth?

It’s hard to tell the exact price of a Sea-Doo SPI, as it strongly depends on its year, condition, and location. But as a rule of thumb, the prices typically range from $300 up to $3,000.

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