2024 Cabrinha Moto XL Apex
The 2024 Cabrinha Moto XL Apex is a new kite to the Cabrinha lineup for 2024. It does replace the Cabrinha Contra, which has been a revamped lightwind kite since 2014. Over the years, the Contra has been improved to make light wind kiteboarding fun. We’ve grown to love the Cabrinha Contra as a kite we teach on and personally ride.
We were skeptical about a lightwind kite replacing the Contra, but the 2024 Cabrinha Moto XL Apex is a major improvement. For the past few months we’ve been testing the 13m and 15m Moto XL Apex kites. The new design and materials applied to this kite has massively improved the performance. Some of our best sessions have been on the 2024 Cabrinha Moto XL Apex.
What We Love
There are three noticeable features that immediately stood out to us. As soon as the kite is launched, the extremely light bar pressure is the first noticeable feature. The second noticeable feature is how responsive the kite turns. These two significant improvements, in our opinion, is why Cabrinha renamed their lightwind kite the Moto XL. Two stand-out features of the Moto X are the lighter bar pressure and responsive turning. However, a third feature is the pop. Both hooked in and unhooked, the pop is incredible with this kite. Combined with responsive feedback, the Moto XL Apex is a fantastic boosting kite.
There is a lot of lightwind (10-15 kt) days in the Tampa Bay area. The Cabrinha Contra has provided the ability to have fun in those conditions for the past nine years. We still love that kite, but we feel like the Moto XL Apex truly is the next chapter of lightwind performance.
What Cabrinha Says
Threshold winds have always been the toughest challenge to any kite designer. Do you make a powerful kite, but sacrifice turning and playfulness, or do you make a light kite, but sacrifice the low end power that gets you up and going. Building off the highly successful Moto X platform with the combination of the materials used in the Apex Series, Pat Goodman was able to skillfully handcraft the perfect blend between power and fun. The lightweight Ultra HT and the new Featherlite bladders bring down the weight, but also aid in the fun lively feel of the kite.
The MotoXL Apex is the kite you need in your quiver. The ultimate session saver, it will have you coming off the water with that look on your face which makes everyone know just how much fun you had.
3 Strut / Moderate aspect ratio hybrid design / Reactive wing
tip / Fast, lean and efficient profiles
• NEW Ultra HT – strong, stable, and responsive material, exclusive to the Apex series
• NEW Apex Bridle – thinner and lower elongation bridle for optimal efficiency and reactive steering
• NEW Bi-directional pure profile panels
• NEW Feather Lite bladders
• NEW Ultra-Reactive steering response
• NEW Refined low end performance for better upwind ability
• NEW Contra DNA, Modernized Moto agility and handling
• NEW Effortless relaunch in the lightest of wind conditions
• Nano Ripstop Canopy, the benchmark in durability, stability and responsiveness
• Trailing edge EVA rigidity battens
• Durable TPU Leading edge bumpers
Moto Apex XL vs Contra
Since the Cabrinha Contra has been in production for nine years (longer if you count the original Contras), we are going to compare the latest Contra with the Moto Apex XL. From a technical perspective, it feels to us the Moto Apex XL sits further forward in the wind window than the Contra. This can be good and bad. The good features are that it gets the rider upwind more efficiently, jumps better, and feels like lighter bar pressure. A downside that we noticed is that in gusty lightwind conditions, the Moto Apex XL is more likely to front stall than the Contra . Over the past few months of testing the Moto Apex XL extensively, the front stall did not happen often. However, we noticed that in similar conditions the Contra would not front stall. In general, the good far outweighs the bad.
The biggest difference, we ride the 13m more often than the 15m. The low-end performance is so much improved that the 13m replaced the 15m as our most used kite. This is surprising as the low-end performance on the Contra is already fantastic. Design alone is not just attributed to this improvement. We did some prototyping earlier in the year of a new lighter weight bladder material that is 20-25% lighter than the stock material. We tested two 15m Contras, one with the lighter bladder and one with the stock material. We were skeptical of how much of a difference it would make. But the performance improvements of the lighter weight materials was astronomical.
Cabrinha wanted to make a lightwind kite that is fun to ride powered up and that boosts extremely well. We were afraid that this would come at the cost of lightwind performance. Some of the earlier prototypes of the Moto XL Apex did not have as good of lightwind performance and not as good pop as the finalized version. The finalized version is a massive improvement in lightwind kite technology. The kiteboarders that have had no interest in lightwind kiteboarding should absolutely try the 2024 Moto XL Apex for themselves.
For those wanting to try the Moto XL in the Tampa Bay area, reach out to us through the form below.