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Levitaz are an intriguing company. They have over 25 years’ experience in working with advanced composites, and have turned that (very useful!) breadth of knowledge and experience to the world of kitefoils. It is fair to say that they haven’t held back and have been striving to be on the top of the podium with their sponsored riders and commitment to evolution and R&D.
Based in Austria, their foil program has now extended to include two boards along with three front and two back wings, which are all interchangeable onto the full carbon masts. The masts are available in three different lengths with an optional 4-bolt-plate or deep tuttle connection.
We had the Element and the Bionic on test so were able to put most of their kit through its paces. The first thing to say is that the entire range simply oozes quality and class from the minute you unwrap it. From custom padding for the mast through to the simple five stage assembly. The fuselage fits simply but absolutely perfectly onto the mast and their unique system allows you to quickly change both the front and back wings, and it all fits together with an incredibly solid and secure feel. So, before we even had it on the water we were suitably impressed.
In terms of boards we had both the Exo and the Transformer. The Exo is a small, race-specific board which we found perfect for intermediate and above riders, and the Transformer suits more competent beginners upwards. The first wing we tested was the Element, the ‘entry level’ wing. The first thing to say is that this is an ‘entry level’ into top-end foiling! The Element does have a relatively low take off speed but when you put it up against the foils from most of the bigger kite brands it is an entirely different experience. It requires more board speed to get it foiling and once it’s up it’s fast. It can really be put through its paces and is more than happy hitting 27 mph: and then some! You do have to keep your wits about you and concentrate on your riding as the full carbon construction is so lightweight and your foot positioning will affect the yaw quite considerably, but when you get it right it is an incredible feeling. The performance and potential is simply awesome on all points of sailing and will excite (and scare) you continuously throughout your session.
The benefits of a brand with experience in materials has clearly really fed into this foil and – providing you have the skills – this really doesn’t ever put a foot wrong. Once we had savored the performance of the Element, we then put the top-end-racing Bionic wing on. This doesn’t really work until you get up to 15 knots but when you get there you had better buckle up… This is a foil for the top 10% of riders and it feels like it with incredible acceleration, speed and all round performance. It’s nice to taste this level of performance but it would be foolish to pretend that you could get away with riding it unless your skills are truly top-drawer.
In a sentence: For top-end build quality and performance it’s hard to look beyond the Levitaz package. Not for Sunday cruising but if you are looking to get more serious then there is plenty here to get you excited.
Pictured/Rated: Levitaz Element Wing