Formula MACH Z, the birth of a legend

Who remembers 1993? Those were the wonderful days of Mach 1, Thundercat, Storm and VMax 4. It was a particular, mysterious, mythical period that made us dream and kept our imagination running. At that time, there was no internet in our lives. To keep this dream alive, I used to visit snowmobile dealers regularly and look at the various models. How many hours did I spend looking through magazines and advertising brochures, and listening to promotional videos on VHS. 1993 is the heart of my boundless passion of today for our sport of snowmobiling.

1993 has been an exceptional year for Ski-Doo® in regards of innovations. One of these has been without doubt the introduction of the brand new Formula Mach Z model. At the time, there was a very fierce competition between the 4 major manufacturers to produce high performance snowmobiles with powerful motorization. The Formula Mach Z was Ski-Doo® reply to the snowmobile world. During the last days, along with Mr Guy Pepin, Conservator, the web magazine SledMagazine.com had the privilege to get a close look at the very first production unit of the 1993 Mach Z that is part of the private collection of the Musee J. Armand Bombardier in Valcourt. This unit is in exceptional condition and it shows perfectly the market trend of those days. 

Ski-Doo® 1993 Formula Mach Z © J. Armand Bombardier MuseumSki-Doo® 1993 Formula Mach Z
© J. Armand Bombardier Museum
 – Ski-Doo®  ?1993 Formula Mach Z Serial number 00001
Ski-Doo®  1993 Formula Mach Z
Serial number 00001

What takes the 1993 Mach Z apart from its Formula predecessors is the introduction of the first all-aluminum production chassis. The very strong F-2000 chassis offered a very important reduction of weight that allowed to keep the overall mass of the snowmobile within a reasonable range, despite the addition of a much larger engine. The 3-cylinder Rotax® engine of 774 cc (780 type) with R.A.V.E. valves, is certainly the most important feature of the 1993 Mach Z. In fact, this is the first 2-stroke 3-cylinder liquid-cooled engine to equip a Ski-Doo® production snowmobile. Fuel delivery was provided by 3 Mikuni TM-38 carburetors and it was equipped with 3 tuned  exhaust pipes with spiral. Not only was the Mach Z engine extremely powerful, but its sound was also fantastic. Sweet music to any snowmobile fan. Another very interesting element is that the production model was equipped with a Comet F1 drive clutch type, rather than a TRA as presented in the brochure.

Snowshoot: Renegade X-RS turbo, a trail rocket
Rotax Engine® 780cc 3 cyl. Comet type F1 engine pulley
Rotax Engine® 780cc 3 cyl. Comet type F1 engine pulley
TM-38 Mikuni carburettor
TM-38 Mikuni carburettor
 
Rotax Engine® 780cc 3 cyl. 3 calibrated exhaust pipe
Rotax Engine® 780cc 3 cyl. 3 calibrated exhaust pipe
Pulley guardPulley guard
 

The cab of the 1993 model is also particular because it is made of fiberglass, while models of the following production years were made of RIM polyurethane. There is no protective grill over the numerous air intake openings of the cab, despite the presence of attachment points. The molding over the fuel tank is also made of fiberglass instead of plastic, as seen on the following models.

Glass fibre cab

Another Ski-Doo® innovation that also made the 1993 Formula Mach Z so special, is the introduction of lighter Ultra Glide composite skis. These skis with plastic sole represented an important development at that time as they highly reduced the snowmobile friction and allowed a higher top speed. The DSA (Direct Shock Action) front suspension with articulating arm was also quite an evolution for the Formula models as it provided more stability in turns and a better control in bumps.

Ultra-Glide ski and DSA suspension ©J. Armand Bombardier Museum
Ultra-Glide ski and DSA suspension ©J. Armand Bombardier Museum

The improved C-7 progressive-rate rear suspension with gas shocks was also very comfortable for that time, with its travel of 7.5 in / 19 cm. To transfer to ground the huge power of its engine, the Mach Z was equipped with a track of 121 x 15 in / 306,7 x 38,1 cm strenghtened with polyester. The overall components of this snowmobile have been designed to improve performance. Even the graphics of the Formula Mach Z showed all the power of the snowmobile, even when parked. The instrument panel has also been redesigned by the addition of larger backlit dials called “ night dial ”.

Tracing and graphics
Tracing and graphics

Ski-Doo® 1993 Formula Mach Z in action. © BRP (Bombardier Recreational Products? inc.)
Ski-Doo® 1993 Formula Mach Z in action. © BRP (Bombardier Recreational Products inc.)

During more than a decade, the Mach Z model has been the dream snowmobile for performance fans of the Ski-Doo® brand. Many of us dream to see this legendary name produced again, with the latest technologies, on a Ski-Doo® production snowmobile. Despite many improvements brought to models of 1993-1997 production years on F-2000 chassis, to models of 1998-2003 on CK3 chassis and to models of 2005-2007 on RT chassis, the 1993 Formula Mach Z will remain forever the start and birth of a true legend in the snowmobile world.

The 2023 MXZ XRS is back with an improved Gen5 version!

Ski-Doo® 1993 Formula Mach Z  - © J. Armand Bombardier Museum
Ski-Doo® 1993 Formula Mach Z  – © J. Armand Bombardier Museum

The web magazine SledMagazine.com invites you to go and see the first unit of the 1993 Formula Mach Z at the permanent snowmobile exhibition presented by the J. Armand Bombardier Museum to be reopened in spring of 2016. For more details, please visit the museum website at https://www.bombardiermuseum.com/en/content/jab/jab.htm . We would like to thank the J. Armand Bombardier Museum for their precious collaboration to the production of this article.

1993 Ski-Doo® Formula Mach Z – Specifications 

General 

Manufacturer     Bombardier Ski-Doo® 
Year     1993
Model     Mach Z 
Category     Performance 
Chassis type    F-2000

 
Engine 

Type     Rotax® 2-stroke with flexing valves and R.A.V.E. valves 
Cylinder (s)     3 
Cooling system     Liquid
Displacement (cc3/in3)     774.0/47.2
Bore (mm/in)     69.5/2.8
Stroke (mm/in)     68.0/2.7
Fuel delivery     Carburetors (3x) Mikuni TM-38
Lubrication    Oil injection 
Exhaust    3 tuned pipes with muffler

 
Drivetrain

Drive clutch    Comet F1
Driven clutch    Formula on auxiliary camshaft 

 
Materials

Chassis    Aluminum
Shell    Polythene
Cab    Fiberglass

Suspension

 Front suspension    Direct Shock Action 
Front suspension type    DSA 
Front travel (cm/in)     17.8/7.0
Rear suspension     Gas shocks 
Rear suspension type    C-7 improved 
Rear travel (cm/in)     19.0/7.5

 
Brake 

Brake system    Self-adjusting mechanical disk brake 

 
Fuel capacity 

Capacity (L/gal.us)     42.1/11.1

 
Track 

Track width (cm/in)    38.1/15.0
Track length (cm/in)    306.7/120.8

 
Dimensions 

Ski stance (cm/in)    101.0/40.0
Height (cm/in)     107.2/42.2
Width (cm/in)     109.1/42.9 
Length (cm/in)     280/110.2 
Dry weight (kg/lb)     240.0/530.0 

 
Options and color 

Reverse     Option 
Hand warmer     Standard
Thumb warmer     Standard
Mirrors     Option
Tow hitch     Option
Color (s)     Black / Yellow 

 

Others 

Electric start     Option
Ski type    Ultra Glide Composite