Yamaha FX140 Specs and Review [Video]
When the Yamaha FX140 hit the market in 2001, it completely amazed the PWC market. It was the world’s first 4-stroke PWC with a super clean engine and outstanding fuel economy.
Because of this, it’s safe to say that this is one of the most famous PWCs ever built.
Thanks to WaveRunners’ legendary durability, you can still see many of them running on the water.
If you are looking for a Yamaha FX140 for sale, this post is for you.
We at JetDrift have compiled everything you need to know about this legendary PWC into this post!
Yamaha FX140 Review
The Yamaha FX140 was introduced in 2001 and became available in the 2002 model year.
It’s an interesting fact that it was released on August 20th, 2001, on the same day as Sea-Doo introduced its first 4-stroke PWC, the GTX 4-TEC. Both manufacturers found out the other’s release date and didn’t want to just win the silver medal.
This unusual timing embarrassed the media, as everyone wondered which event to publicize!
Additionally, in 2002 Honda announced their entrance into the PWC market, with their 4-stroke AuqaTrax PWC.
Ever since, the sit-down type PWCs have essentially remained unchanged. Although new bells and whistles show up every year, the formula is still the same for all sit-down models:
Hull + 4-Stroke Engine + Pump + Controls & Gauges = Modern PWC
Let’s move on and take a closer look at the Yamaha FX140 engine, hull, and features!
Yamaha FX140 Engine
Until 2002, every PWC was powered with a simple 2-stroke engine. Unfortunately, they were less reliable and durable compared to 4-stroke power sources.
The carburetors especially caused the owners a lot of headaches. Cleaning, adjusting, or even rebuilding the carbs again and again were nerve-racking tasks.
But this was not the main reason why Yamaha and competitor PWC manufacturers moved on to 4-stroke technology.
The driving force was arguably the new environmental restrictions. Manufacturers had two choices, cancel their PWC line completely or upgrade their models to meet the EPA 2006 emission standards.
Fortunately, just like its competitors, Yamaha decided to modernize their WaveRunners to significantly reduce their emissions.
The Yahama FX140 engine was based on the power source of the company’s legendary R-1 motorcycle. However, the developers had to “tweak” some things before this engine was completely water ready.
The first tests started in 1998 with the first-generation MR-1 engine. According to the company, they went through around 15-20 generations of the first WaveRunner and spent $10 million on development before reaching the final design.
The final version of the FX140 engine was a 998cc, 4-stroke, 4-cylinder power plant. It featured a fuel-injection system, double-overhead cams, and five valves per cylinder.
Regarding the cooling system, Yamaha used the industry-standard open-loop cooling system, while Sea-Doo moved on to the closed-loop (CLCS) technology.
Thanks to the new power source, the Yamaha FX140 produced an amazing 140HP.
The FX140 was not just powerful, but very reliable and dependable thanks to the new 4-stroke technology.
However, these engines did have some drawbacks as well. The biggest problem was that they were much bigger and heavier compared to 2-stroke engines. To reduce its weight, the FX140 engine came with a one-piece cylinder and crankcase assembly.
As far as lubrication, the MR-1 engine featured two oil pumps and backflow protection. This feature stopped the engine and the oil pumps if the WaveRunner flipped over in the water.
Moreover, the new 4-stroke engine was much less noisy and produced 75 percent less emissions compared to the similar carbureted 2-stroke models.
The FX140 also featured Yamaha’s electric engine management system, water-repellant air filter, and zinc anodes for corrosion protection.
Yamaha FX140 Hull Design
When it comes to the Yamaha FX140 hull, it’s safe to say that it was designed for the new 4-stroke engine. Not just the hull, but the top deck was also manufactured from a sheet molded compound.
It had a stepped draft V-hull design and was equipped with sponsons for better handling. With the new hull, the FX140 was very stable on rough waters, as it could cut through the waves without any issues.
The new design also offered good maneuverability and dry rides. The well-padded saddle and the adjustable handlebar also contributed to improved comfort. All of these are very beneficial on longer PWC tours and PWC fishing trips.
With the extended hull and large seat, the FX140 was already a real 3-seater PWC. This means unlike many smaller-sized 2-stroke PWCs, it had sufficient stability with 3 adult riders, even at lower speeds.
Yamaha FX140 Top Speed and Acceleration
Beyond the stability and maneuverability, this new 4-stroke WaveRunner had an impressive throttle response. Unlike its 2-stroke cousins, this model accelerated very smoothly. Thanks to the powerful 140HP engine, the Yamaha FX140 top speed was around 56-57 mph depending on the rider’s weight and the environmental conditions.
At that time, this performance was more than enough, even for a 3-passenger PWC.
Towing with a FX140
The FX140 was also a good choice for any tow sports, as it could easily pull out a wakeboarder or skier.
Many tow sport enthusiasts welcomed the new technology, since towing with a 2-stroke jet ski was always quite tricky. This is because the speed control on these PWCs wasn’t easy, which made the wakeboarder or skier’s job difficult. It resulted in “rough” starts and a less smooth riding experience. Moreover, it made the learning process more difficult for beginners.
The wakeboarder could easily pull the craft off line, especially with harder cuts. In fact, this is a general issue on any PWC model, but it seems today’s new hull designs do a better job in such situations.
What’s more, you can find some special PWCs on the market specially designed for tow sports like the unique Sea-Doo Wake and Wake Pro.
As a final word, the Yamaha FX140 was a great towing PWC in its time, but better ones can be easily found today.
Yamaha FX140 Specs
For your convenience, we have compiled all of the Yamaha FX140 specs under one roof:
|Dry weight (lbs)||798|
|Power to weight ratio||0.18|
|Fuel capacity (gal)||18.5|
|Storage capacity (gal)||26.42|
|Top speed (mph)||56|
Yamaha FX140 For Sale
If you are considering purchasing one, you may want to know where to find a Yamaha FX140 for sale.
As this model went out of production in 2004, you can choose from quite aged models.
We recommend that you start your research on forums and in Facebook fan groups. Beyond some good deals, you can find a lot of valuable info there about this model.
It’s always wise to be informed about the selected PWC in advance before making your purchase. Each model has its own pros and cons and typical failures, which you should be aware of.
Besides the forums, you can also find some Yamaha FX140s for sale at Craigslist, PWC Trader, or other ad sites.
Yamaha FX140 Prices
Yamaha FX140 prices start from $2,000 and go up to $6,000. The price depends on many factors like the model year, engine hours, but mainly the condition.
Conclusion – Are Yamaha FX140s Still Worth Buying?
Are Yamaha FX140s still worth buying? It’s a common question of many buyers, who are on the market for a vintage WaveRunner.
Many experts (and owners) say that the answer is simply no. This is because these WaveRunners are quite old and their engines are worn out. Beware that rebuilding an FX140 engine is quite an expensive repair.
Because of this concern, it’s usually not worth it to buy such an old 4-stroke WaveRunner.
If you are a beginner rider, our recommendation is to buy a new (or a couple of years old) non-supercharged, 4-stroke PWC. This is because these are considered to be the most reliable models on the market. And you probably want to spend your time on the water instead of continuously servicing your craft.
If you still stuck on buying an aged FX140, here are some vital buying tips to consider:
- don’t buy one that is not water-ready
- make sure that every feature is working properly
- don’t forget to check the compression in the cylinders
- don’t skip the water test
- ask for the service history (if available)
This is our short Yamaha FX140 review. We hope you like it!
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