2003-2004 Sea-Doo XP DI Specs and Review [Video]
The Sea-Doo XP DI was the last model in the legendary Sea-Doo XP series, manufactured from 2003 through 2004. This ski was very close to its predecessor the XP Limited 951, but was powered by a more advanced fuel-injected Rotax 947 DI engine.
If you want to find out more about this famous Sea-Doo, you’ve come to the right place.
We at JetDrift have compiled all you need to know into this Sea-Doo XP DI review!
2003-2004 Sea-Doo XP DI Review
The 4 Sea-Doo XP Generations
The story of Sea-Doo’s XP line started in 1991 when the manufacturer released the “SP-based” XP 580. During the following years, the XP family underwent numerous changes over several generations, including:
- 1991-1992 Sea-Doo XP 580 (587) – 1st GEN
- 1993 Sea-Doo XP 650 (657) – 2nd GEN
- 1994 Sea-Doo XP 657x (657x)- 2nd GEN
- 1995 Sea-Doo XP 720 (717) – 3rd GEN
- 1995 Sea-Doo XP 800 Limited (787x) – 3rd GEN
- 1996 Sea-Doo XP 800 (787) – 3rd GEN
- 1997 Sea-Doo XP 800 (787) – 4th GEN
- 1998-2002 Sea-Doo XP Limited (951) – 4th GEN
- 2003-2004 Sea-Doo XP DI (951) – 4th GEN
You can learn all about the other models by following the links above!
The 4th generation Sea-Doo XP was introduced for the 1997 model year.
Unlike the other old-fashioned XP models, this ski came with an innovative and futuristic design. Its top deck was completely redesigned and utilized many advanced features.
Sea-Doo also dropped the X4 platform and replaced it with the new “concave” XP hull, which was continued with minor changes until 2004.
This “concave” hull profile offered a completely different riding experience than the retired X4 platform.
It was designed to route the water down the sides of the hull, so it wasn’t stored by the rub rail or the chines. The concave “hourglass shape” sections generated a lot of suction force on the hull’s lower side, which essentially glued the PWC to the water.
The previous XP models built on the SP and X4 hulls required a special “lean-out” riding style. In contrast, the operator on this 4th gen. concave XP hull had to lean into the turns.
The first model built on this 4th generation platform was the 1997 XP 800 (with a Rotax 787 engine), followed by the carbed 1998-2002 XP Limited 951.
2003-2004 Sea-Doo XP DI Review
By 2003, Sea-Doo had made a final major improvement on the XP line and introduced the innovative Sea-Doo XP DI. Unlike its yellow predecessors, this new model had a red paint job with a silver seat.
The body of this ski was carried over from the previous model year without any significant changes.
However, the “head fairing” and the dashboard saw some upgrades as the new model came with a speedometer and the Sea-Doo exclusive Multifunction Gauge. The latter had many useful functions, which were as follows:
- Trim indicator
- Digital bar-graph fuel level gauge
- Low battery voltage warning light
- Engine overheating warning light
- Low oil level warning light
- Low fuel level warning light
(In contrast, the carbed XP 951 came with four gauges, including a tachometer, speedometer, fuel gauge, and trim indicator.)
Besides the gauges, the Sea-Doo XP DI was manufactured with many advanced features, including:
- Watertight front storage tray
- Safety lanyard
- Dual adjustable mirrors
- Rear grab handle
- Integrated GP-style air intake system
- Electric trim system (VTS)
- Tow hook
- Front and rear eyes
- Multifunction gauge
- Monitoring beeper
- Bilge drain plug
- Fuel valve
- Tool kit
- D.E.S.S. key
- Direct Action Suspension seat
Unlike its body and features, the engine of the XP saw some major upgrades for the 2003 model year. The most important of these was that the dual Mikuni carburetors were replaced by a more advanced fuel injection system.
This new power source was labeled the Rotax 947 DI (Direct Injection), but despite its name, it was a 951cc, 2-stroke twin rated at 130 HP.
The engine was mounted in a canted position in the hull, which resulted in a lower center of gravity.
It was moved towards the bow and placed beneath the front hood. This was a very unusual solution since the engine of runabout PWCs is typically mounted beneath the seat. (Unfortunately, this unique design made the engine harder to work on.)
This advanced Rotax 947 DI engine came with many advanced features, including:
- R. A.V.E. (Rotax Adjustable Variable Exhaust) valves
- Orbital Direct Fuel Injection System
- Variable Rate Oil Injection (VROI)
- GP-style vents
- Handlebar-mounted start/stop button
- Reed valve air intake system
- Electric start
- Chokeless starting
- CDI Ignition
- Water cooling
- RPM limiter
- Open-loop water cooling system
- Power pipe with hydro regulated injection
- Digitally encoded theft-deterrent system (D.E.S.S.)
- Overheat warning device
- Canted engine position
The most advanced feature of this engine was arguably its Orbital Direct Fuel Injection System. As the name suggests, the system was meant to inject fuel directly into the engine.
Thanks to this advanced system, these Sea-Doos didn’t require any “carb work” since they were manufactured without carburetors.
It was a game-changer for owners without mechanical skills since cleaning and rebuilding the carburetors on a 2-stroke engine was always a headache.
Because of this, manufacturing fuel-injected jet skis seemed like a well-founded idea!
And there’s no question that direct-injected Sea-Doos were amazing machines that offered an amazing performance along with great fuel economy.
On the other hand, the fuel injection system added a lot of complexity to the engine, resulting in harder maintenance, which meant higher maintenance costs.
Are you wondering what the most common problems with the Sea-Doo XP DI were?
2003-2004 Sea-Doo XP DI Problems
Let’s face it, the Sea-Doo XP DI had a very picky engine, which had many problems. The most important of these were the following
- The direct injection system made the engine much more complicated (= more things to break)
- It was more sensitive to battery voltage and cylinder pressure
- It had constant issues with fuel pumps
- It required more expensive synthetic injection oil
- It was much harder and more costly to fix
- It was less reliable than its carbureted counterparts
- It required a special diagnostic cable and software to identify malfunctions
- It suffered from counterbalance shaft issues
Generally speaking, due to its complexity, the direct-injected Sea-Doo 947 was less reliable than any other carbureted Sea-Doo with a Rotax engine.
Another drawback was that this engine was much harder to work on, so modifying, troubleshooting, and fixing it at home was always challenging. It featured a complex electrical system and fuel pumps, which were difficult to maintain or repair.
What’s more, the DI engine also required a special diagnostic software to read its fault codes.
Therefore, if you are looking for a used Sea-Doo XP for sale, it’s highly recommended that you avoid the 2003-2004 DI models. Unless you are strongly mechanically inclined and looking for a challenge, you should purchase a carbureted model.
Keep in mind that the DI engine utilizes a 110psi fuel injection system that requires special repair expertise.
What should you buy instead?
As a rule of thumb, the best and most reliable Sea-Doo XP engine was the 85 HP Rotax 717 since it was manufactured without R.A.V.E. exhaust valves. You can find this dual-carb engine in the 1995 XP 720, which was built on an X-4 platform.
If you are looking for more power, you can choose the 110 HP Rotax 787 R.A.V.E. twin with the 1996 X-4 or the 1997 4th generation “concave” XP platform.
This engine offered slightly less reliability than the 717 but was virtually bulletproof compared to the DI.
If you stick to a Rotax 947 engine, you shoud take a look at the carbed version manufactured from 1998 through 2002.
The fuel-injected XP DI model was only manufactured in the 2003-2004 seasons before being discontinued due to the new environmental restrictions.
(But again, the aged XP DI is not a good buy! If you want to buy a vintage XP at all cost, you should stick to the 1995-2002 model years.)
2003-2004 Sea-Doo XP DI Specs Chart
For your convenience, we’ve compiled the 2003-2004 Sea-Doo XP Limited specifications into these charts!
2003-2004 Sea-Doo XP DI Dimensions
|2003-2004 Sea-Doo XP DI||Dimensions and Capacities|
|Number of passengers||2 (refer to load limit)|
|Overall length||272 cm (107 in)|
|Overall width||112 cm (44.1 in)|
|Overall height||103 cm (40.6 in)|
|Weight||274 kg (605 lb)|
|Load limit||181 kg (400 lb)|
|Fuel tank||51 L (13.5 U.S. gal)|
|Impeller shaft reservoir - Capacity||100 mL (3.4 U.S. oz)|
|Impeller shaft reservoir - Oil level height||up to plug|
|Injection oil reservoir||4 L (1.1 U.S. gal)|
2003-2004 Sea-Doo XP DI Engine Specs
|2003-2004 Sea-Doo XP DI||Engine Specs|
|Engine type||Rotax 947 DI, 2-stroke|
|Induction type||Reed valve|
|Exhaust system||Water cooled / water injected with regulator|
|Exhaust valve||Rotax Adjustable Variable Exhaust (RAVE)|
|Lubrication - type||Orbital direct fuel injection, twin throttle body - (46 mm (1.81 in))|
|Lubrication - oil type||BOMBARDIER Formula XP-S II synthetic injection oil|
|Number of cylinders||2|
|Displacement||951.2 cm3 (58 in3)|
|Maximum Power (approximately)||130 HP|
|RPM Limiter Operation @||7300 RPM ± 50|
|Cooling Type||Open circuit. Direct flow from propulsion unit|
|Fuel - type||Regular unleaded gasoline|
|Fuel Minimum octane number||Inside North America: 87 (R + M)/2, Outside North America: 91 RON|
2003-2004 Sea-Doo XP DI Propulsion
|2003-2004 Sea-Doo XP DI||Propulsion|
|Propulsion system||Bombardier Formula pump|
|Jet pump type||Axial flow, single stage|
|Impeller Rotation (seen from rear)||na|
|Transmission||Direct drive / split front and rear|
|Impeller shaft reservoir oil type||SEA-DOO synthetic polyolester oil SAE 75W90 GL5|
|Pivoting angle of direction (nozzle)||~20°|
|Pivoting angle of variable trim system||na|
|Minimum required water level for jet pump||90 cm (3 ft) underneath the lowest rear portion of hull|
2003-2004 Sea-Doo XP DI Electrical Features
|2003-2004 Sea-Doo XP DI||Electrical Features|
|Magneto generator output||270 W @ 6000 RPM|
|Ignition system type||Digital inductive|
|Spark plug - Make and type||NGK, ZFR4F|
|Spark plug - Gap||1.1 mm (.043 in)|
|Starting system||Electric starter with reduction gear|
|Charging system (REG)||25 A|
|VTS system||7.5 A|
|Information center (ACC)||na|
|Injection system (INJ)||15 A|
|Fuel pump (FP)||15 A|
These charts are for informational purposes only! For exact specifications, please refer to the factory manual.
Sea-Doo XP Comparison Chart
We’ve also compared the key specs of the different Sea-Doo XP models head-to-head in one chart:
|Gen.||Name||Year||Engine||cc||HP||Top Speed (mph)||Weigth (lbs)||Hull Design|
|I||XP 580||1991||"Yellow" 587||580||55||45||365||I gen. SP|
|I||XP 580||1992||"White" 587||580||56||45||365||I gen. SP|
|II||XP 650||1993||657||650||70||45||373||II gen. SP|
|II||XP 650x||1994||657x||650||80||50||412||II gen. SP|
|III||XP Limited 800||1995||787x RAVE||786+||110||56||434||X-4|
|III||XP 800||1996||787 RAVE||781||110||56||434||X-4|
|IV||XP 800||1997||787 RAVE||782||110||56||525||Parabolic|
|IV||XP Limited||1998||947 RAVE||951||130||60||551||Parabolic|
|IV||XP Limited||1999||947 RAVE||951||130||60||551||Parabolic|
|IV||XP Limited||2000||947 RAVE||951||130||60||561||Parabolic|
|IV||XP Limited||2001||947 RAVE||951||130||60||561||Parabolic|
|IV||XP Limited||2002||947 RAVE||951||130||60||561||Parabolic|
|IV||XP DI||2003||947 DI||951||130||60||561||Parabolic|
|IV||XP DI||2004||947 DI||951||130||60||605||Parabolic|
2003-2004 Sea-Doo XP DI For Sale
If you are considering purchasing one, you probably want to know where to find a Sea-Doo XP DI for sale. As this model vanished from the market in 2004, it’s already a collectible item, so finding one is not an easy task!
We recommend that you start your research on dedicated vintage 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 XP DIs for sale on Craigslist, PWC Trader, and other dedicated jet ski swap sites.
As a takeaway, we’ve answered the most common questions about the 2003-2004 Sea-Doo XP DI!
What is a Sea-Doo XP DI?
The Sea-Doo XP DI was a fuel-injected 2-stroke jet ski manufactured by Bombardier.
What Year did Bombardier Make the Sea-Doo XP DI?
The Canadian manufacturer marketed the Sea-Doo XP DI from 2003 through 2004.
What Kind of Engine Did the Sea-Doo XP DI Have?
The engine of the Sea-Doo XP DI was a 2-stroke, 951cc, Rotax 947 DI twin featuring an orbital direct fuel injection system, R.A.V.E. exhaust valves, CDI ignition, and a variable rate oil injection system.
How Much Horsepower Did a Sea-Doo XP DI Have?
The Sea-Doo XP DI provided 130 HP at 7,300 RPM.
How Many People Could Ride a Sea-Doo XP DI?
The Sea-Doo XP DI was rated for two riders, but it was actually a solo ski.
How Much Weight Could a Sea-Doo XP DI Hold?
The total weight capacity of the Sea-Doo XP DI was 400 pounds.
What Size was the Sea-Doo XP DI?
The Sea-Doo XP DI was 107 inches long, 44.1 inches wide, and 40.6 inches high.
How Much Did a 1998-2002 Sea-Doo XP DI Weigh?
The dry weight of the Sea-Doo XP DI was 605 pounds.
Did the 1998-2002 Sea-Doo XP DI Have Reverse?
No, the Sea-Doo XP DI was manufactured without reverse.
Was a Sea-Doo XP DI a 2-Stroke Ski?
Yes, the Sea-Doo XP DI utilized a 2-stroke, fuel-injected twin engine.
What Size Storage Compartment Did a Sea-Doo XP DI Have?
The Sea-Doo XP DI had a total storage capacity of 5.5 gallons.
How Much Fuel Did a Sea-Doo XP DI Hold?
The Sea-Doo XP DI utilized a 13.5-gallon fuel tank and a 1.1-gallon oil reservoir.
How Much Fuel Did a Sea-Doo XP DI Use?
The Sea-Doo XP DI’s fuel consumption was about 12-13 GPH at WOT.
How Fast Did a Sea-Doo XP DI Go?
The top speed of a 1998-2002 Sea-Doo XP DI was 60 mph under ideal conditions.
Could the Sea-Doo XP DI Tow a Skier or a Wakeboarder?
Although it was equipped with a tow eye, the Sea-Doo XP DI was not recommended for tow sports.
How Much is a 2003-2004 Sea-Doo XP DI Worth?
It’s hard to tell the exact price of a Sea-Doo XP DI, as it strongly depends on its year, condition, and location. But as a rule of thumb, the prices typically range from $1,000 up to $6,000.
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