2023 Scarab 165 ID

The Scarab 165 ID serves up big fun.

Looking for a little excitement? Consider the Scarab 165 ID. Though small in size, we think you’ll find it big on fun. This 15-foot-9-inch runabout can be ordered with up to 300 jet-drive horsepower, and it weighs about only 1,700 pounds with a full tank of gas. That’s an exciting power-to-weight ratio—one that easily ripped from zero to 30 mph in a tick over 4 seconds and quickly topped 55 mph with two aboard during our test.

Scarab 165 ID running
The 165 ID packs a lot of excitement. Courtesy Scarab Jet Boats

Fun aside, this boat’s size offers a number of advantages. On its trailer, the Scarab 165 ID measures just 18 feet, 4 inches long and will weigh a little more than 2,300 pounds. That makes it an easy tow with even a modest vehicle. As for storage, it will take up the same garage space as a couple of trailered personal watercraft.

While rated for five passengers, the Scarab 165 ID practically seats three across in individual buckets. Settle in at the helm and you’ll feel like you are at the thick-rimmed wheel of a racing go-kart, embraced by the seat bolsters and footrests. The twin-lever control adds to the racing feel. The Rotax 300 ACE is a $7,710 option over the base 170 hp Rotax engine, but according to Scarab, 80 percent of buyers get the bigger motor. The boat’s small size, lack of windshield and proximity to the surface enhance the experience of speed while running—the water seems to rush toward you, and the bow lifts and gets just a little floaty. The boat handles like a PWC, with super-quick steering.

Scarab 165 ID helm
The twin-lever control adds to the racing feel. Courtesy Scarab Jet Boats
Scarab 165 ID cockpit seating
Comfortable seating is found throughout. Courtesy Scarab Jet Boats

Make the scene at the sandbar and hang out on the transom seat pads, enjoy the music cranking from the premium JL Audio package ($2,740) with transom speakers, and stash beverages in the convenient drink holders. Our test boat featured optional MarineMat decking on the cockpit sole and swim platform ($1,040 combined). Scarab also installed the aluminum sport arch ($3,140) aboard our tester. 

Scarab 165 ID bow seating
Customize the 165 ID with 30 color and graphics options. Courtesy Scarab Jet Boats

We think the Scarab 165 ID is an excellent choice for those seeking the easy ownership and dart-and-dash fun that a pair of PWC can offer, while also providing seating for five, unrivaled style and a cool factor. 

Scarab 165 ID engine
The Rotax 300 ACE is a $7,710 option over the base 170 hp Rotax engine. Courtesy Scarab Jet Boats

High Points

  • Comfort Ride seats smooth rough water.
  • Jet-power advantages include minimal draft, no prop, no trim and self-draining.
  • Customize with 30 color and graphics options, including soft 3D Impact graphics that protect the
    hull from dock rash.
Scarab 165 ID performance data
Scarab 165 ID Certified Test Results Boating Magazine

How We Tested

  • Engine: Rotax Marine 300 ACE
  • Drive/Prop: Jet drive/166 mm diameter, 14/22-pitch, 4-blade stainless-steel impeller
  • Gear Ratio: 1.00:1 Fuel Load: 20 gal.

Pricing and Specs

Price:$44,225 (with Rotax 300 ACE)
Draft (max):1’0″
Dry Weight:1,600 lb.
Seat/Weight Capacity:6/850 lb.
Fuel Capacity:20 gal.

Scarab Jet Boats – Cadillac, Michigan; scarabjetboats.com

More Boats