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Old 08-14-2004, 10:04 PM
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MCX, LQ9, or L-18

I am thinking of ordering a new X-30 but am wavering on the engine. My local dealer is helpfull but I always want to check other sources. I was hoping a few of you actually own one of the three I am looking at and know from experience the advantages / disadvantages... other than just cost and power. I am looking at the MCX, Cadillac LQ9, and GM L-18.

The MCX is the minimum in power I want and seems to be the most cost effective. The Cadillac LQ9 is a little bump in power but I don't know if it is worth the extra $7,000. The L-18 is only a bit more money than the Cadillac and provides sufficient power to tear off my friends arms on occasion but I have been told it has a vibration issue.

I am concerned about the performance and lifespan / maintenance of each engine. I don't want to start a big debate. We all know bigger is better... but can you please help me.
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Old 08-14-2004, 10:53 PM
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JimN JimN is online now
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You're going to need to say how you plan to use it for the majority of the time. That's the only way to realistically and logically make a decision. If you're going to wakeboard 80% of the time, you won't need a go-fast motor or one that will pull stumps.
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Old 08-16-2004, 11:28 AM
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Thank you Jim,

I plan on using the boat about 80% of the time for wakeboarding. About 40% of this time at an elevation of above 5,000 feet. If the MCX engine is powerfull enough at altitude then it is probably the best and most cost effective choice.

But... if running the MCX engine at 90% max opposed to the LQ9 or L-18 at 60-70% max results in more maintenance or other engine problems then it may be wise to go with the bigger engines.

Thank you all for your recommendations and opinions.
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Old 08-16-2004, 11:29 AM
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east tx skier east tx skier is offline
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Boat: 1998 Ski Nautique
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For a comparison, the TBI with 308 horsepower is sufficient to pull my arms out of their sockets and get me up on plane before the wake gets there if the need arises. Unless you have a specific need for more yank, 350 horsepower ought to suit most needs.
Previous: 1993 Prostar 205

Red 1998 Ski Nautique, PCM GT40, 310 hp, , Acme 4 blade, Perfect Pass SG/Zbox.


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Old 08-16-2004, 11:41 AM
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G-man G-man is offline
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My underderstanding on the 6 litre engine is the extra horsepower doesn't kick in until about 5100 rpms and low end pick up is slower in the this engine. My vote is for 5.7 litre engine
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Old 08-16-2004, 01:38 PM
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Anyone know what the HP rating on the LQ-18 is? I can't seem to find it on the Mastercraft site. Also if anyone knows the weights of the LQ-9 & 18, that would be great.
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Old 08-16-2004, 02:12 PM
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Smitty Smitty is offline
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Boat: 2005 Maristar 210, Red, MCX
Location: B-Town, Indiana
Posts: 254
HP Ratings:

Predator - 310hp
MCX - 350hp
LQ-9 - 385hp
L-18 - 450hp

I have a 2001 Maristar 230 w/ the LTR engine @330 hp. It has plenty of power out of the hole and holds speeds quite well. My recommendation would be the MCX. Anything more is a waste of gas. Plus the engine looks awesome.

For technical information go to www.Indmar.com
Life Is Good!

Last edited by Smitty; 08-16-2004 at 02:15 PM.
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Old 08-16-2004, 05:38 PM
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Excellent Information. Thank you all. I am leaning toward the 5.7L MCX. It sounds like it will have all the power I need and I have yet to hear anything bad about it.

Good point on the torque at low RPMs. I didn't even think about that part.

The coolness factor goes up on the MCX when you add the chrome plenum! I saw it in the 2004 brochure
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Old 08-16-2004, 05:59 PM
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DanC DanC is offline
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Boat: 2003 Prostar 209, MCX, custom ballast, tower
Location: Santa Clara, CA
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As the owner of a 2003 MCX I'm not sure if I would get it again. Trouble free and running great for 13 months but it does burn up the gas and I hate not being able to make it through a full day on one tank of gas . Could be that I have just gotten used to it and no longer notice the difference in power. Wish there was a way to see the actual power curves for these engines as well as fuel consumption. I plan on talking to ACME and getting a different prop next year to improve low end torque and give up top end speed.
2003 ProStar 209, 2 flags, 8 cup holders
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Old 08-16-2004, 07:19 PM
jjc jjc is offline
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I just got my '05 Maristar 210 on the lake this weekend and I can tell the the MCX engine is extremely strong . I have not really put the hammer down on it yet, due to trying to break the engine in, but even at 3/4 throttle out of the hole it gets on plane and feels stronger than my '98 LT-1 190 w/ PS tranny - must be my imagination, but the 210 feels a lot stronger than my 190.
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