An SUV For The Water
Now that winter is finally over, it's only natural that we begin to turn our collective attention toward outdoor summer toys. When we do that, it's a no-brainer to conclude that the quintessential summer toy probably is a watercraft.
Here at Four Wheeler we think that a watercraft should share the same overall characteristics as a good 4x4-it should be versatile, capable, and dependable. With these criteria in mind, the 2002 Kawasaki Jet Ski 900 STS caught our eye. This cool machine is capable of pulling double-duty as either a sport or touring machine, it has adequate horsepower to tow a water-skier or wake-boarder, and it's designed and built by one of the leaders in personal watercraft manufacturing.
Under the cowl of this sit-down mid-class watercraft is a powerful three-cylinder 100hp 891cc two-stroke engine. It comes with loads of functional features including a Superlube oil-injection system (this guarantees proper oil supply at all engine speeds), waterproof, maintenance-free, digital direct-current capacitor-discharge ignition system (ensures durability, and easy, reliable starts), a water-jacketed exhaust system (reduces noise level and underhood temperatures for better power), and constant-velocity Keihin carburetors (for better throttle response, increased fuel economy, and reduced emissions).
A simple squeeze of the comfortable finger-type throttle sends power to the shielded jet propulsion system that features a three-blade stainless-steel oval-edge impeller for maximum efficiency and incredible durability. Maneuvering the STS in tight places is made easier thanks to standard Reverse, and you won't be heading for shore to refuel every half-hour, thanks to a large-capacity 14-gallon fuel tank.
The hand-laid fiberglass hull features a cab-forward design that provides space for up to three adult passengers, an open rear deck that offers room for putting on skis or a wakeboard (there's also an optional reboarding step that makes deep water reboarding easier), and a splash deflector, designed to help keep spray off the operator and passengers. The design of the STS integrates huge watertight storage areas in the bow and under the three-person seat, and high-performance sponsons help the hull get up on plane and provide grip in turns. The deep-V hull design provides tight, lean-in turning and low-speed handling, while the overall length delivers exceptional high-speed agility on open water.
If you're looking for fun on the water, the jack-of-all-trades 900 STS is just one of eight Jet Ski models that Kawasaki offers. That sounds like eight good reasons to jump in your 4x4 and head off to your local dealer for a test ride.
|Vehicle model||'02 Kawasaki Jet Ski |
900 STS Watercraft
|Color||Jet White/Firecracker Red|
|Type||Two-stroke, three-cylinder with crankcase |
|Bore x stroke (in.)||73.0 x 71.0|
|Intake||Triple Keihin CDCV 38s withsingle fuel pump|
|Mfg.'s power rating @ rpm (hp)||100 @ 6,750|
|Cooling system||Inducted water|
|System||Jet pump, axial flow, single stage|
|Dry weight (lbs.)||613|
|Overall length (in.)||122|
|Overall width (in.)||46.1|
|Oil tank capacity (gal.)||1.3|
|Fuel tank capacity (gal.)||14 including |