What Happened to Moto-Ski Snowmobiles

Moto-Ski was a brand of snowmobiles for about 20 years, from the mid-1960s to the mid-1980s. The machines had a reputation for being very durable, and they were one of the most popular Canadian snowmobile brands for a while. 

I’m a lifelong snowmobiler with a huge passion for everything about these amazing machines. I love to get out and ride as often as possible, and I also love researching and learning about different brands. 

This post will highlight Moto-Ski snowmobiles. I’ll provide you with some history of the brand and explain what made the machines popular. I’ll also address some common questions riders have about Moto-Ski. 

Let’s jump in.

Who Made the Moto-Ski Snowmobiles?

Moto-Ski snowmobiles were made by a company named Les Industries Bouchard in Canada. They quickly became one of Canada’s most popular snowmobile brands and were well known for being reliable and durable.

After about a decade of production, Les Industries Bouchard and Moto-Ski were purchased by another snowmobile company called Bombardier. Under this new ownership, the brand remained in production for about another decade.

When Were Moto-Ski Snowmobiles First Made?

Moto-Ski snowmobiles were first made in 1963. Les Industries Bouchard, the company that created Moto-Ski, first started manufacturing the machines in 1962, but they didn’t go into widespread production until the following year. 

Where Were Moto-Ski snowmobiles Made?

Moto-Ski snowmobiles were first made in La Pocatiere, Quebec, Canada. The Les Industries Bouchard production facility was located on the south side of the St. Lawrence River in La Pocatiere. 

Moto-Ski Snowmobile Models

Moto-Ski put out machines for about 20 years, which is a good stretch for an early snowmobile brand. But they were bought by another company in the mid-1970s, so Moto-Ski models only cover about ten years. 

They had many different models over those years, and the brand always had a solid reputation for durability and reliability. 

Moto-Ski did not technically have model names during the first two production years. Instead, machines that came out between 1963 and 1964 were listed based on their year and the size of the engine built into them. 

Here are the Moto-Ski models from 1963 and 1964: 

  • 148 JLO
  • 300 Hirth

Those model names are just the engine sizes, so if you have a 1963 with a 148 JLO engine, the model number is just listed as 1963 148 JLO. 

In 1965, Moto-Ski kept up with no real model names, but they started using long track and short track sleds. Below are the Moto-Ski models from 1965. 

  • 247 JLO Short Track 100
  • 300 Hirth Long Track 200H
  • 300 Hirth Short Track 100H

In 1966, the company finally started coming up with actual model names, like most of the other brands in the industry. All models this year had different sizes of Hirth engines. The models from 1966 are listed below: 

  • Cadet 101H
  • Capri 150H
  • Zephyr 201H

In 1967, Moto-Ski only came out with two models:

  • Zephyr 202H
  • Capri 151H

1968 Moto ski models include: 

  • Capri 152H
  • Zephyr 203JE (JLO ES Engine)
  • Zephyr 303H (372 Hirth Engine)
  • Zephyr 203H (300 Hirth Engine)
  • MS-18
  • Cadet 102H

1969 Moto-Ski models include: 

  • Cadet 11
  • Capri 22
  • Capri 23
  • Capri 24
  • Capri 25
  • Capri 26
  • Capri 27
  • Zephyr 32
  • Zephyr 33
  • Zephyr 37
  • MS-18 43
  • MS-18 44
  • MS-18 52
  • SM-Racer 52
  • SM-Racer 55

1970 Moto-Ski models include: 

  • Cadet A1J
  • Capri B2H
  • Capri B3H
  • Capri B3J
  • Capri B9H
  • Capri B50J
  • Zephyr C2H
  • Zephyr C3H
  • Zephyr C4H
  • Zephyr C5J
  • Zephyr C50J
  • Zephy C7H
  • MS-18 D4H
  • MS-18 D5JR
  • MS-18 D50J
  • MS-18 D7H
  • MS-18 D70H
  • MS-18 D8H
  • Mini-Sno F11J
  • Grand Prix G3H
  • Grand Prix G3S
  • Grand Prix G6H
  • Grand Prix G8H
  • SM-295 BR1S
  • SM-295 BR12J
  • SM-438 BR6H
  • SM-760 CR13J
  • SM-793 CR14H

1970 Moto-Ski models include: 

  • Capri 1B3H
  • Capri 1B2H
  • Capri 1B2J
  • Capri 1B4J
  • Mini-Sno 1F1J
  • Mini-Sno 1FR3H
  • Zephyr 1C3H
  • Zephyr 1C30H
  • Zephyr 1C4J
  • MS-18 1D4J
  • MS-18 ID50H
  • Grand Prix 1G3J
  • Grand Prix 1G4J
  • Grand Prix 1G40J
  • Grand Prix IG5H
  • Bullet 1XR2K
  • Bullet 1XR3K
  • Bullet 1XR7K
  • Bullet 1XR5H
  • Bullet 1XR5K
  • Bullet 1XR6H
  • Bullet 1XR8K

1972 Moto-Ski Models include: 

  • Capri 2B3J-2
  • Capri 2B4J-2
  • Capri 2BH2
  • Capri-M 2BH2-M
  • Capri 2B3H
  • Capri 2B30H
  • Cadet 2A9S
  • Zephyr 2C3S
  • Zephyr 2C7S
  • Zephyr 2C7S-2
  • Grand Prix 2N3S-2
  • Grand Prix 2N7S
  • Grand Prix 2N7S-2
  • Grand Prix 2N7S-3
  • MS-18 2D4J
  • MS-18 2D7S
  • Moto-Skeeter 2W12S
  • Moto-Skeeter 2W13S

1974 Moto-Ski models include: 

  • Capri 3A9S
  • Capri 2B2S
  • Capri 3B3S
  • Capri 3B7S
  • Capri 3B7S-2
  • Capri 3B7S-3
  • Cadet 3A9S
  • Zephyr 3C3S
  • Zephyr 3C7S
  • F 3T2S
  • F 3T3S
  • F 3T7S
  • S 3M4S
  • S 3M7S
  • SR
  • SR 3P3S

1974 Moto-Ski model numbers include: 

  • Capri S 4202
  • Capri B 4203
  • Cadet 4101
  • Futura 4305
  • Chimo 4405
  • Grand Sport 4506
  • Grand Sport T.S. 4507

1975 Moto-Ski model numbers include: 

  • Capri 3121
  • Sonic T.S. 3555
  • Cadet 4101
  • Futura 4310
  • Grans Sport 4506
  • Grand Sport T.S. 4507
  • Nuvik 5103

When Did Moto-Ski Go Out of Business?

Moto-Ski was purchased by a larger company (more on that below) in 1971. But there will still Moto-Ski sleds made until 1975. After the sale, the machines were still in production into the 1980s, but not necessarily under the Moto-Ski name. 

When Was Moto-Ski snowmobiles Acquired by Bombardier?

Bombardier purchased Moto-Ski from Les Industries Bouchard in 1971. This wasn’t the end of the Moto-Ski brand, but it did start to decline around this time. There were still Moto-Skis produced in the 1970s and available until the 1980s. 

Moto-Ski was doing well as a brand from a sales perspective, but other financial factors led to the brand being sold in 1971. The machines were still popular with riders and durable in many ways. 

Moto-Ski Snowmobiles for Sale: Where to Look

Moto-Skis were popular snowmobiles during their glory days, but they can be more difficult to track down today. A good place to start looking for a used one is online through resale sites such as eBay and Craigslist. 

You can also look through the popular snowmobile forums to see if you can track down an old Moto-Ski. Vintage Sleds can be a good resource, but nearly all of the most popular snowmobile forums have classified sections to help you with your search. 

I also recommend asking around with your local snowmobile community. If there are snowmobile clubs or get-togethers, you can ask other riders if they know of or have seen any Moto-Skis around. It never hurts to ask!

Moto-Ski Snowmobile Parts: Where to Look

Tracking down Moto-Ski parts can also be a bit challenging, depending on the make and model of the machine you own. Again, starting with an online search is a good idea. Just search for the sled model and part name through Google or eBay to see if anything turns up. 

If that doesn’t work, ask around on the snowmobile forums or call your local snowmobile or small engine repair shop. If you know a skilled mechanic, they will usually have some ideas on what to do if you can’t locate the exact part you are looking for. 

References

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moto-Ski
  2. http://www.motoskisnowmobiles.com/
  3. https://www.supertraxmag.com/features/moto-ski-not-known-as-an-innovator/n3170
  4. https://snowgoer.com/vintage-sleds/timeline-the-1985-moto-ski-mirage-iii-was-the-last-of-many/2457/
About Chaz Wyland
I’m a snowmobile fanatic. I live for riding and am out on the trails or backcountry as often as possible during the winter months. I was born and raised in the Rocky Mountains and have snowmobiled in dozens of North American locations. When the snow is falling, you’ll find me on a sled.

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