Captain's ReportAn Open Layout with Room for Eight By Capt. Bob SmithThe Tahoe 195 I/O has impressive topside space, plenty of amenities, and makes a smart choice for an active family that loves to ski and fish. The deep interior freeboard on this model also makes it safer for little kids. While she handled like a skiboat, this deckboat style certainly lends itself well to the family and multi-function boating style.Bow FeaturesStarting at the bow, the deck is nearly beam width. Tahoe pre-wires each boat for trolling motors so you don’t have to fish lines from the battery. And when it does come time to fish, there are two positions for the fishing chairs; one in front, and the other at the stern. A wide anchor locker with clips for a Danforth makes the task of anchoring just a bit easier. A pop-up style stainless steel anchor cleat is forward, and helps keeps the deck flush when not in use. On the starboard side is a handy covered beach boarding ladder. Stepping down into the bow cockpit there’s an aerated livewell located in the step for your day’s catch. Bench cushions on either side provide comfortable seats for two adults, and there’s also room below for your gear. Refreshment Center and StorageLocated between the helm and the refreshment center is a large locker in the sole. This locker is deep and wide enough to stuff skis, a wakeboard, and even the trolling motor inside. This is a functional locker, but the only thing I would have liked here is for the locker to be a bit longer, like the 196 O/B model, which has more room for added gear. The port side entertainment center has a covered sink with pull-out sprayer head, drain, and drinkholders to keep the cups corralled. A removable table can be popped into a base in the center of the aft cockpit when you need room to spread out lunch.At the ControlsThe helm features an adjustable bucket seat with flip-up bolster for a better view when climbing out of the hole, and heading for planing speed. The windshield on this model is very much like what you see on classic bass boats. The low profile and smoke tinted windshield provides enough protection for your eyes so you can drive comfortably. Analog gauges are well arranged for a better view behind the wheel. For your tunes on the water, the 195 I/O is outfitted with a stereo with AM/FM/CD, two directional speakers, and an IPod jack for when you get tired of the station’s mix. In the starboard wall next to the helm is a handy rack for three rods for storing fishing gear.Seating and Storage The spacious aft seating wraps from the refreshment center, around to the step-through transom. This L-shaped seating completes the accommodations for eight on board. The fishing seats have dedicated storage on the port side under the bench. Even the seat posts and table leg fits in clips inside, so nothing will rattle and roll around while you are underway. In the aft section is a carry-on cooler to keep all the beverages properly chilled. When it comes time to get out of the sun a bimini top can be easily set up back here for some shade. This model also features a fiberglass sole with molded-in, non-skid surface and marine grade upholstery. Engine Access and OptionsThe engine cover provides a small area to relax in the sun, and it lifts easily on two pneumatic arms giving open access to the power plant. This model is rated for engines from 135 horsepower to 260 horsepower (as tested). Stepping through the transom door, is a wide walkway to the swim platform. On the starboard side is a concealed boarding ladder with two generous handles to easily pull yourself on board. A heavy-duty stainless ski tow ring is in the center ready for your water toys, and over on the port side is a locker for ski ropes. This locker can also double as a swim platform cooler if needed. Just forward of this locker is another seat base for a fishing seat.Specifications and PerformanceThis new model measures 19’11” length overall with a beam of 102”. She weighs in at 2,697 lbs. dry without the engine, and carries 45 gallons of fuel for a full day on the water.I tested the 195 I/O on a freshwater lake with minimal chop. She handled well, cutting turns just like a skiboat, handled close quarters at speed without hesitation or cutting back on the throttle. The 195 I/O jumped on plane in 3.8 seconds and was passing 30 mph in 10 seconds. I found her best cruise at 2500 rpm going 26.5mph, which will give a full tank range of about 182 miles. Top speed was a quick 54.3 mph turning 4800 rpm.If you enjoy fishing and skiing, the 195 I/O deckboat can handle both well. She maneuvers easily and is accurate at low speeds for trolling. For skiers in the group the 195 gets up on plane quick, with low-end torque for good ski action. And best of all you can tow this deckboat without a problem, as it will fit behind most family SUVs.
Test Result Highlights
- Top speed for the Tahoe 195 I/O (2006-) is 54.3 mph (87.4 kph), burning 18.0 gallons per hour (gph) or 68.13 liters per hour (lph).
- Best cruise for the Tahoe 195 I/O (2006-) is 26.5 mph (42.6 kph), and the boat gets 4.49 miles per gallon (mpg) or 1.91 kilometers per liter (kpl), giving the boat a cruising range of 182 miles (292.9 kilometers).
- Tested power is 1 x 260-hp MerCruiser 5.0L Sterndrive.
Standard and Optional Features
|Outlet: 12-Volt Acc||Standard|