It’s no secret that the PWC rental market is huge. Most popular tourist lakes and waterways have some type of outlet on them that rents out PWC for a reasonable rate. The new 2019 GTI Pro 130 is Sea-Doo’s first unit purpose-built for the rental business; giving rental operators the ability to offer their customers a reliable, fuel-efficient and fun unit that remains easy to ride. This model was developed after working with rental outlets to determine what best suited their needs. The result is absolutely fantastic.
Due to the unique and exclusive purpose of the GTI Pro 130, we at The Watercraft Journal really didn’t expect to ever get the chance to test one of these babies out. Yet, as luck would have it, we got our chance! On a recent house boating trip, we decided to rent a PWC to play with for the weekend. Much to our surprise, we were given a brand spanking new 2019 Sea-Doo GTI Pro 130 with literally zero hours on it. In fact, our butts were the first to sit on the seat!
Featured in White and Krypton Green, the GTI Pro 130 retains all of the current GTI (Recreation segment) dimensions; meaning it comes in at just over 11-feet in length and 4-feet in width, offering the ability for 3 riders at a time (with a max capacity of 600-pounds or 272 kg) while having the largest storage space in its category at 30.8 gallons (116.6 liters)!
The GTI Pro 130 uses a medium-V shaped hull that comes to plane quickly and rides smoothly through wind-whipped chop. The unit remains totally stable while being playful and remained very predictable. We tossed it around pretty good in both smooth and choppy waters and never once felt any type of tipping or high-centering motion.
It’s powered by a naturally aspirated 1,494cc Rotax 1503 engine producing 130-horsepower that runs on normal 87 octane fuel (15.9 gallon or 60 liter fuel capacity). It features a D-Sea-Bel exhaust system and a Closed-Loop Cooling System (CLCS) that prevents corrosive saltwater and damaging debris from entering the engine for increased reliability and peace of mind while riding.
To make sure the GTI Pro 130s would remain reliable in the rental market for years to come, they pulled out all of the stops with strengthening everything up. The 100-percent fiberglass GTI Pro 130 comes in with a dry weight of 718-pounds (326 kg), which is 78-pounds heavier than the Polytec-hulled GTI (powered by a 900 ACE) but nearly the same difference less than the 790-pound GTI SE 155.
A dedicated impeller with thicker blades and a straight leading edge was installed to reduce debris intrusion along with a reinforced, larger diameter drive shaft. Further strengthening includes a highly resistant wear ring (a 60-percent compression strength gain and 42-percent tensile strength improvement) along with a heavier duty wiring harness (18 gauge wire, F6 braided sleeve, silver plated fuse box terminals and high-temperature insulated XLFE wire was added to critical spots).
Thanks to BRP’s Intelligent Throttle Control (iTC) offers two riding modes; Sport and ECO. Sport mode turns the GTI Pro 130 into a whole different monster that quickly puts a huge smile on your face. ECO mode optimizes power output for up to 46-percent improved fuel efficiency while maintaining a strong fun factor. We spent a good 5-6 solid hours blasting around on it and only used about $50 worth of fuel.
The seat has been upgraded with 80-percent thicker thermoformed vinyl material making it more resistant to tearing or premature wear. The heavy duty handle grips feature higher wear resistance and stiffness. The Sea-Doo exclusive iBR (Intelligent Brake and Reverse) system stops the watercraft sooner and provides more control at low speeds and in reverse.
With both hands on the handlebars, riders can engage forward, neutral, and reverse for stable, worry-free maneuvering at low speeds. The iBR system starts you in Neutral and allows docking – be it loading or offloading a trailer, or pulling up to a dock – a worry-free exercise. We used it when pulling up to the side of our houseboat and found it to be a very useful system to have. It allowed us to pick up and drop off riders without bumping into the side of the boat.
The gauge cluster is clutter-free and easy to read with a center LCD screen reading vitals in real-time. The speedometer is fed by GPS, so you’re actually going as fast as it tells you, and the Mode toggle allows you to cycle through the various displays. As with a SE, we also enjoyed Sea-Doo’s VTS control, allowing us to adjust the trim setting at will. The unit is also fitted with a Digitally Encoded Anti-Theft Security System (D.E.S.S.) unique to your watercraft that serves as an effective theft deterrent. It’s also equipped with an iControl Learning Key that allows you to limit the speed for beginners.
With a starting US MSRP of $8,799, the 2019 Sea-Doo GTI Pro 130 provides proven reliability and great performance along with stellar fuel-efficiency. Overall, these units are an absolute fantastic addition to any rental fleet – and we must emphasize that these are only available for rental fleets. They are sure to provide many years of worry-free usage that is guaranteed to put a huge smile on the face of any renter.