Cabrinha Moto X 9m 2023 Kitesurfing Review

Cabrinha Moto X 9m 2023

Reviews / Kites

Cabrinha 56,118

At A Glance

New for 2023, the entire Cabrinha range has had a lot of work put into it, and the Moto is no exception. It's the three strut do-it-all kite in the Cabrinha range and is perfect for the rider who wants to ride a twin tip, foil and surfboard and not be held back by their kite choice. Cabrinha has been putting a lot into development lately, too, investing in the Cab Design Works team, who constantly develops the Cabrinha product range.

The Moto is packed with features and new materials. For 2023 they are using a multi-faceted approach to the material choice, too, with different kites getting built in different ways according to the use case. There are three different frames, the Lite Frame, Hybrid Frame, and Apex Frame. The Moto X is a Lite Frame kite, which uses High Tenacity Dacron Lite for the leading edge and struts. This material is considerably lighter and stiffer than standard Dacron, giving the Moto X a solid frame that should offer unrivalled performance.

It also uses Pure Arc Segments, which are designed to keep the arc of the kite constant. In a traditional kite, there are fewer segments, and the arc is a series of straight edges. By using far more segments, Cabrinha can deliver a much smoother arc offering the exact flying characteristics they want and better aerodynamics.

The bridle is a simple pullyless affair, and the build quality is second to none; the proprietary Nano Ripstop Canopy material has been around for a while now and has proven to be very tough and durable over time. It's quite a light build overall, and we expect this to be a fantastic kite to fly.

Sizes: 5m, 6m, 7m, 8m, 9m, 10m, 12m, 14m

In The Air

I haven't flown the Moto for a couple of years, so I was excited to see what this do-it-all free ride kite was capable of. Kites like this always get me excited. At heart, I'm a pure wave head, but this gives me the opportunity to get out there and send it on a twinny, which I don't do often enough these days. In the air, the instant thing I noticed was the constant pull. The Moto X has bags of power! At the start of the session, the wind was light, and I wasn't sure if a 9m would get me going, especially as I saw someone packing away an 11m in the car park, saying it wasn't windy enough.

Right away, I was off and flying along! The speed of the kite is very noticeable; it's fast - really fast - through the air. It has a fairly open arc, and this develops lots of power, but the speed at which it moves too is very impressive. When I got the strapless surfboard out, I was really having to concentrate as the high speed made it exciting navigating all the chop.

The turning speed is also very progressive. Engage the bar, and the kite moves instantly, increasing the turn rate as it goes. Even depowered, the response is very quick, which lends itself well to jumping. There is a saying: if you go fast, you are gonna go high, and that's true here. The speed into the jumps develops lots of energy for huge pop off the water, and the lightning-quick handling allows you to redirect the kite quickly.

Jumps are big, and the open arc gives plenty of float once you are up there. Loops on the Moto X can be progressive. You can steer harder for a tighter faster loop with less pull, or control it to get more of a yank which is quite powerful. You can also oversheet the kite mid loop to stall the power and add another element of control there if you need to.

In the waves, the fast nature of the kite lends itself well to onshore conditions, and the light nature of the kite offers a good amount of drift too. I did find the kite would hang a little when I wanted it to do really fast pivot-style kite turns when riding backside, something the Drifter does really well, but for most riders wanting a do-it-all machine, this won't be an issue. When the kite was more powered, this pivot turn became easier too.

In terms of wind range, the low end is impressive, and I never really found the top of the wind range. It does have quite a long throw on the bar to depower the kite. For some kites, if you move the bar a few inches, the whole thing depowers, which offers a lot of fingertip control but can make it harder for less experienced riders to control the power. There is good news for riders with short arms, though; the reach on the bar throw is fairly short. The bar pressure is soft to medium on this kite; you can feel it, but it's not going to wear you out.

The Moto X is very much a power on kite - the power is there all the time. Only when the bar gets right out does the depower kick in. By using the trim loop, you can adjust this and also set the bar to deliver the depower whenever you want. This characteristic will make it a great choice for beginners and intermediates, as well as expert riders looking for a kite with plenty of power and speed.

Relaunch is good, and it wants to bounce up off the water with ease. Make sure you pump it up to the upper end of the 7-8psi, though, as this will help it hold its shape and ensure an easy relaunch every time.


I really loved riding the Moto X. It's a fun kite to fly and very intuitive and easy with a forgiving nature too. The power delivery is impressive, and it's always there; this kite just keeps on pulling. Less experienced riders will find this kite very easy to use, and it will definitely help them improve quickly as the power delivery is so good. More advanced riders will unlock excellent wave riding characteristics and exciting jumps and airtime. Well built, light and great fun to ride; we're looking forward to the next session already!


This review was in Issue 97 of IKSURFMAG.

For more information visit Cabrinha


By Rou Chater
Rou has been kiting since the sports inception and has been working as an editor and tester for magazines since 2004. He started IKSURFMAG with his brother in 2006 and has tested hundreds of different kites and travelled all over the world to kitesurf. He's a walking encyclopedia of all things kite and is just as passionate about the sport today as he was when he first started!

Tried this? What did you think?