Once upon a time, every new model year brought a number of all-new craft from every PWC manufacturer. Lately, however, the economy and other influences have all conspired to make a number of manufacturers just simply trot out the tried-and-true, existing models that may have been freshened up with new graphics or colors, but little else. True, Sea-Doo brought out a number of new models last year, but beyond the market leader, not much was seen from Yamaha and Kawasaki, and Honda seemed almost non-existent.
Fair warning: I won’t be spilling any big news at the moment. That will come following the various dealer shows or press intros sometime later this Summer and early Fall, when writers are no longer obligated to keep their mouths shut, or fingers off the keyboard. What I can tell you, however, is that I’m hearing murmurs that we might indeed see some new machines for 2011.
Sea-Doo will certainly continue to trot out new twists on its current line — the expansion of Intelligent Brake and Reverse seems almost a given. The company shot their 2011 promotional campaign virtually right in my backyard just before the start of summer, but I respected the ban on my presence and resisted the urge to get out a long camera lens to check things out. I did have my former next-door neighbor call to tell me a plane almost crashed into her new waterfront condo on the bay — it turned out to be part of the Sea-Doo photo shoot — but she didn’t spill any juicy details or take video. Evidently, I’ll have to prep her better next time.
Yamaha also appears to have something new up its sleeve. I’ve heard rumors, but nothing concrete. Last year gave us some tweaks to the VX line, but I have a feeling this year will see something more substantial.
Kawasaki? I haven’t heard what to expect, so that one will be a total surprise, as will Honda.