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

Liquid Force Says:

The WOW v4, with a complete redesign, offers wave seekers and strapless surf freestylers a kite with effortless flying characteristics. This kite lets you focus on pulling the next move, making unmakeable sections, and placing yourself perfectly in the pocket.

Our goals for the WOW v4 were to improve response from the bar, increase turning speed, and tighten the axis point radius of the turning arc while retaining the superior slack line drift the WOW has always been known for. To accomplish this, our design change started with an exploration of a completely new profile and shape. After countless hours of computer-aided design, numerous prototypes and months of testing, we have arrived at a new profile arc and a new “boxey” shape that meet all of our design goals. Increased bar response improves the intuitive feel, rapid pivotal turning axis lets you precisely place the kite where you want it and the smooth power delivery can easily be dumped on demand to handle erratic and gusty wind or to grant complete depower for surfing without the power of the kite.

We didn’t stop with just a new profile and overall shape. The wingtips of the Wow v4 have evolved to be more elongated, so the kite can handle more rear-line tension. This helps eliminate back-stalling and provides rapid re-launch. It also permits a more aggressive use of the new profile in lighter wind, making it possible to size down and ride with confidence. Legendary Liquid Force bomb-proof construction combines with newly added performance features, including the use of Teijin Triple Ripstop canopy and an infused strut connection that adds stiffness to the overall canopy profile, making for a reactive platform that reduces distortion and flutter.

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Our Testers Say:

“Quick, predictable with bar pressure that feels just right to fully exploit the Wow’s terrific drift, quick pivotal turns and surprising jumping abilities.” // Tib Anghel

“Quick and pivotal, loves to jump, great lift and hangtime, fast through the window, easy to position anywhere you want it. Swing it deep and it generates loads of power as well as solid drifting with true to size power. Great bar and chicken loop design.” // Dray Murray

“Stable and responsive, fun, lively, drifts well, always knew where it was. Medium plus bar pressure with smooth power delivery with intuitive feel in the air. Turning is snappy with the perfect amount of feedback. Little bit of flutter when sheeted out in overpowered conditions, but strong performer on all fronts.” // Joe Chehock

Meet Our Testers

TKB Says:

The Wow got a redesign this year with version 4.0 improving steering response and wind range in this 3-strut medium aspect surf kite with a sweptback leading edge with full wingtips. The Wow utilizes a single setting fixed bridle that uses no pulleys to change the angle of the attack on this kite. The wingtip attachment point offers three options to adjust bar pressure. The leading edge bridle ends in a loop and the wingtip attachment pigtails end in a knot. All LF kites come with one of the quickest inflation systems, a large diameter inflation valve which requires a proprietary LF pump nozzle (the Wow also has a standard 9mm valve if you lose the extra wide nozzle that comes with every kite and attaches to the standard pump hose). When you look at this version of the Wow, you can see there have been subtle changes to the wingtips, as well as reinforcements along the trailing edge and back edge of the wingtips. The first thing we noticed about the Wow was the kite’s nice long travel throw on the bar with really predictable progressive sheeting along the kite’s entire sheeting range with really good depower in the canopy. This intuitive bar feeling is both ideal for getting the precise power you need out of the canopy while surfing as well as general freeride kiting of all skill levels. Testers liked the Wow’s medium bar pressure, it being slightly more than the NV, yet very comfortable for excellent feedback. The Wow has good turning response with direct bar feel that continues through the larger sizes, and the turning arc is a fairly tight pivot turn that generates steady but not grunty power through the turns. The Wow is the LF model with the most amount of drift for onshore and side onshore riding; maintaining line tension was not a problem while driving downwind. Those testers that experienced a relaunch reported good to great relaunch. For those that rode the Wow with twin tips, the boost was fun and playful with intuitive middle of the road lift and decent hangtime, but not quite the lift you experience with the LF NV. Overall, the Wow gained converts for its user-friendly flying and strong drift and maneuverability that testers recommended primarily for surf, but also is a good option for general freeride cruising and foilboarding.

This year the Mission bar received a color upgrade, getting a very clear red colored grip on the left and black colored grip on the right. Last year the Mission was an entirely new bar with an expansive list of features while still keeping the design clean and simple. The Mission Control features an adjustable length bar (available in two sizes: 40/46cm, or 49/55cm), durable large diameter PU coated sheeting/throw line, no sliding stopper, and a single center-line safety depower with an adjustable V (high or low by loosening a nut and changing height) – the safety line is routed down the center of the PU coated sheeting/throw line which is new this year and offers less friction when moving the bar up and down the throw. The Mission Control bar uses a stainless steel depower cam cleat and a Velcro on the depower control toggle to keep excess slack from tangling. The Mission Control comes with a new quick release design that features a below the bar hand swivel/release with an integrated travel guard above the push away quick release. The quick release is designed to readily click into an auto reset position when the release handle is pushed away with the idea that reassembly on the water is quick and super easy by pushing the loop back into its gate. We found 80% of the time when you activate the safety system on land that the handle cocks into its locked position, then for reset all you have to do is push the end of the loop back into the gate and the release handle will drop down. Because of the solid force that it takes to push the loop back into the gate, it helps if it is a two-handed operation. 20% of the time we found the release handle doesn’t lock into its cocked position and requires adjustment to put the handle in the lock position. We believe this happens when the handle is orientated with the release gate down and gravity interferes with the lock holding the handle in position (this typically happens when you are demonstrating the release on the beach and not in the water). By no means is this a deal killer, as we still consider this an awesome quick release, but the few times it doesn’t work just think about how you are holding the quick release. The center lines end in a knot (color coded red and gray) and the outside lines end in loops (color coded red and gray); the bar’s throw length is not adjustable and its floats are no longer integrated into the bar ends which is purposeful for a more flexible connection between the bar and the outside lines. The tips of the bar are soft and this year the bar end color coding is a bit more pronounced with both the grip and the bar end in red coloring to set off the left side. The outside leader lines allow riders to adjust the length of the outside lines for stretch or tuning with three knots (stock setting on shortest setting). Testers liked the smooth narrow diameter bar with rubbery grip and tapering that widens as your hands approach the center of the bar, although they noted it fairly dense and not as soft as some of the other EVA bars. Overall the Mission Control bar is a well-thought-out system that offers a good mix of features and safety in a very functional package that exemplifies clean but function-rich bar design.

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With the help of 14 testers from all walks of kiteboarding, Tkb’s staff assembled detailed gear reviews with objective performance criteria of the latest 2019 kites, twin tips and foilboards all packed into one neat and tidy 180-page digital package. Get all the reviews in convenient digital guide here:

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