2023 Kästle MX83 Review
If speed is your friend, this ski belongs in your quiver
This article was first published by SkiMag.com.
The Scores (out of 10)
- Overall Score: 7.78/10
- Rank: #5
- Hard-Snow Integrity: 8
- Stability at Speed: 8.2
- Carving: 7.8
- Quickness: 7.6
- Responsiveness: 7.8
- Playfulness: 6.8
- Forgiveness: 7.2
- Crud Performance: 6.8
- Versatility: 7.6
- Price: $1,249
- Lengths: 154, 161, 168, 175, 182
- Dimensions: 126-83-112
- Radius: 16.3 (175cm)
- Level: Advanced, Expert
In a Nutshell
- Pros: Hard-Snow Integrity (#5), Stability at Speed (#3)
- Cons: Playfulness (#6), Crud Performance (#7)
The Kästle MX83 is a beast—in a good way. It arcs perfect turns down hardpack at high speed, allowing for the throttle to be pushed and new edge angles to be discovered. While this ski is truly designed early morning laps on firm groomers, it could bop around in the afternoon bumps once the snow warms up (if your legs are still feeling springy enough to actively steer this ski through the mogul field).
Ex-racers loved the ride, and Kästle is proud of its race-inspired construction that makes the ski damp and powerful. But that makes this ride best suited to a more advanced skier with strong legs. The MX83 performs optimally when it’s driven, not ridden. “This ski’s carefully crafted construction yields a home run for the groomer-loving, wind-in-the-face soul skier,” said tester Matt Schiller. Tester Otto Gibbons, a buyer for Sturtevant’s ski shop in Bellevue, Wash., added, “A nice, wide GS ski that is not overly demanding. Lay them over and let ’em rip.”
While this ski is truly designed for those early morning firm groomers, it could bob around in the afternoon bumps once the snow warms up—if your legs were feeling strong. At 83mm underfoot, looks more like an all-mountain ski than some of the other skis at that waist width and handles the crust on the sides of the trail nicely because of its shape. The ski lacks a little liveliness and snap at the end of each turn and prefers medium-radius arcs, which didn’t surprise, given the absence of rocker in the ski and its stiffer construction. “Classic Kästle: power and dependability, but lacking energy,” said tester Dylan Hall.
Kästle is proud of its race-inspired construction that leaves the ski damp and powerful, which means this ride is best suited to the advanced and expert skier with stronger legs. It might even inspire those skiers to jump into the local beer league race or NASTAR course.
“Best for the accomplished skier,” said tester Tracy Gibbons. “Great for ex-racers or technically savvy skiers.” And Hall agreed. “For the advanced skier,” he said. “And probably best for the East Coast.”
Courtney Harkins grew up ski racing, starting on the icy slopes of New England and finishing at the University of Colorado at Boulder. She now lives in Park City, Utah and works as the Director of Marketing & Communications at the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Team. She also freelance writes and consults in the skiing and Olympic industry. When she’s not traveling with the team, her home mountain is Deer Valley Resort, where she loves to arc turns on groomers, but also knows all of the secret spots for days-old powder. Harkins has been testing skis since 2016 and has been a SKI gear tester for three seasons.