Lighter Better If Not At The Expense of Range

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In regards to Ski-Doo possibly entering the 4 stroke arena with a 120 hp class motor in the XP chassis, I truly believe a statement made by SUPERTRAX two short years ago about Yamaha is very true, “…a sleeping giant is waking up.”

If Ski-Doo decides to counter the new Nytro with a 4-stroke of its own we will have a techno assault by Yamaha that could cause so much damage to the rest of the industry.

I’ve heard that the manufacturers sit down behind closed doors and hash out this type of thing before a loose cannon throws the industry off balance. Is this true?

Also, if you visited the “Totally Yamaha” website and looked up the FX Nytro chat you’d find a thread discussing the need for a larger gas tank. As you folks say “light is right” but not at the expense of range and the public is responding to Yamaha offering the Nytro with a 7 gal tank.

It is just plain wrong to compromise range for a lower advertised wet weight. We who buy the big iron don’t give a fiddlers foot about the extra savings the mpg’s offer we drool over extended range. Let’s break the 200 mile per tank thing.

Manufacturers should be using effective range as a selling point. If you want to lighten up on Kevlar Lake, dump in a couple gallons, if you want to jump in the sand pits don’t fill it. These sleds are going to be mile chasers first and foremost.

Lastly, I just reread the Motorhead column from SUPERTRAX Volume 18, #3 regarding the Lester Family’s racing endeavors over the past decade and was absolutely moved!

I raise my glass to the Lesters for experiencing as a family what they did. Mark, you sir are a credit to our sport and to fatherhood. Thank you for sharing this with you readers and thanks for your contributions to our sport and for a great magazine.


Eric Maki


Your assertion Yamaha might fight back and injure the industry is intriguing. I think all the OEMs are very capable sled builders and innovators. At this point in time some are demonstrating capabilities better than others. However, not even Yamaha could take two of them out, if provoked.

Remember when Yamaha didn’t build anything anybody wanted for over a decade and fell to less than 10% of total market? Yes, they’re on a roll and it is on the strength of good, maybe even great, products.

The new Nytro is the best 4-stroke snowmobile offering so far in this biz. All the OEMs have very impressive products right now – in particular Ski-Doo’s XP. However, the IQ Polaris platform is only the thin edge of a re-born Polaris wedge -intent on gaining back its leadership.

Arctic Cat has more up its sleeve and is fiercely proud of its role in this industry. It’s going to be a great few years as we head for the second decade of the new century.

I agree with your assertions on the Nytro’s fuel range. However, we do need to wait and see how good the mileage is. Even if it’s better than anything so far – and I doubt that will be true – it still will be a 100 mile (160 K) sled.

I look for the Nytro at 135 HP to be about a 18 -20 mpg ride. We’ll see.

Thanks for your kind comments regarding my family. They were appreciated by me, Barb, Luke and AJ.


Motorhead Mark Lester

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