Goes 80.5MPH on a ’14 FZR SVHO With a V-Tech ECU Reflash

I was debating whether it would be too snarky to begin with saying, “See, I told you so.” About a month ago, The Watercraft Journal had the chance to spend a couple of days with the much improved 2014 Yamaha FZR SVHO, where we claimed that it was “a performance-bred Yamaha that the likes of which no dealership showroom has seen since the GP1200R.”

We later caught some heat online from the doubting Thomases arguing that the SVHO really couldn’t be that much of an improvement over the previous SHO. We, and’s Jerry Gaddis, assured that it was, but simply couldn’t convince everyone. Well, we hope that today’s news will help fix that:

As of Friday afternoon, was able to break the 80-mile-per-hour line with their SVHO with no more than an ECU reflash and removing the spacer plates found between the ride plate and hull. If you think the 80.5mph top speed is impressive, consider that it was at a very mild 8380RPM.

Here’s Jerry’s account in his own words:

“Guys, I’ve been working hard with V-Tech to develop a reflash that will work on the new SVHO ski. We have finally got it nailed down and my ski just hit 79-plus-mph with no other modifications whatsoever. That’s right, this ski is completely stock with the exception of the reflashed ECU.

“When I mean completely stock I mean it. Untouched impeller, stock supercharger, stock intercooler, stock everything!

“I was using an iPhone app called Max speed and initially saw 79.1 mph. I second guessed the accuracy of it and went straight to Wal-Mart to buy a Garmin and went straight back out to the water and BAM! 79.2 mph. So much for iPhone GPS app’s being inaccurate.

“RPM’s were firmly planted at 8360-8380 RPM. It just goes to show you how good of a job Yamaha has done with this ski. Now it’s time to let the mods begin and get some big numbers out of this beast.”

Jerry went back a little bit later and updated the post with the following:

“I just removed the spacer plates from between the ride plate and the hull and went back to the water and the ski hit 80.5 mph.

“Guys, while these preliminary numbers are extremely impressive without any other modifications, it will not be safe to run a ski like this continually without engine cooling and intercooler upgrades. It’s winter time, temps here yesterday during my testing were only 62 degrees and water temp in the 50’s. Dean [Charrier of Dean’s Team – Ed.] has similar numbers during his testing. Despite cooler ambient temps, Dean’s logs show a steady climb in engine temp and a steady climb in air intake temps during a prolonged wide open throttle pull. This means the stock cooling system and stock intercooler are not up to the task at these higher RPM levels. In hot 95 degree summer air and 90 degree summer water these temps will climb at an alarmingly fast and dangerous rate.

“Keep in mind that the stock engine cooling and stock intercooler were designed for a stock ski. A stock ski only turns a measly 7300 RPM when the limiter kicks in… that is nothing! Add 1000, or 1500 more RPM and you better be upgrading the engine cooling and intercooler.

“I will be upgrading mine in the very near future and watch the speed numbers improve even more because of it.”

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Kevin Shaw

Kevin Shaw

Editor-in-Chief – Kevin Shaw is a decade-long powersports and automotive journalist whose love for things that go too fast has led him to launching The Watercraft Journal. Almost always found with stained hands and dirt under his fingernails, Kevin has an eye for the technical while keeping a eye out for beautiful photography and a great story.

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