Doral Elite 235 Captain's Report
By Capt. Rob SmithIf you want to have the most exotic looking sportboat on the lake, one with lines as lovely as anything coming off the CAD screens in Northern Italy, then you will want to take a serious look at the Doral Elite 235. These boats are not for everyone, and that is a large part of their appeal. Just like an Aston Martin motorcar, they will turn heads wherever they go.The Elite 235 comes in both a cuddy and a bowrider version. We tested the cuddy, but have been on the bowrider, as well, and we can attest to the breath-taking upholstery work and the tasteful selection of materials and colors available for this model.
Right off the bat, Doral impressed me on the swim platform. The natural stepping on point has a metal plate with aggressive grip surface and sure footing. Optional teak inserts on the swim platform and cockpit really add a beautiful touch. In hot climates you may prefer the cooler snap-in carpet optional instead. The swim platform is plenty large enough to be a hang-out spot or place to strap on the skis or wakeboard.
Sun and Power
The aft sunpad makes a good bench seat for strapping on the skis or room to relax in the sun. Lifting the sunpad and tipping the center of the aft bench forward opens up room to work around the MerCruiser 320hp 6.2L sterndrive with room around her to dry wet life jackets. The heavy padding did a good job of taming engine noise.
Doral fills the aft cockpit with a U-shaped bench so the family has room to lounge together. Ergonomic bucket seats were plush and softened the bounce from jumping wakes and waves. LED lighting lights up the floor at night. Ready to rock, but not done with your beverage? There are stainless cup holders peppered around to manage those. When serving snacks a table is quickly set up in the aft cockpit.The companion seat has the stereo mounted next to it in the wall. The installation leaves you realizing they have a little more thought to put into the location, so expect this to change. It blocks the companion drink holder and part of the storage tray.
From the Helm
The helm is just fine with instruments easy to browse even in the bright summer light. The analog gauges also have a digital depth gauge to keep an eye on the bottom for you. The dash has a Danforth compass set in a glare resistant upholstered top.
A Step Up
The three-piece unobstructed windshield has a nice center walkthrough, but the flip out step in the dash makes it quite a reach to get up and go forward. Once at the bow, the rails are low and offer a grab hold when working with ground tackle. I like the optional bow scuff plate for the protection it adds as well as the optional bow lights for added security when approaching a darkened ramp or slip.
The cabin offers sitting space out of the sun and a good bed for the kids to take a nap. Doral makes getting in easy with a step. The cabin roof had a wooden accent panel that really dressed up the interior. A spacious sole locker can store a lot of gear and has clips to store the anchor running light. As you enter, there is storage to the right with space to put wet suites or small gear. Across is a compact head or storage below the helm. The optional head includes toilet, sink and vanity.
The all-new Elite 235 Cuddy measures 23’7” from her bow to the integrated swim platform. She is a trailerable 8’6” wide and weighs approximately 4600lbs. She has a 70 gallon fuel tank and optional 13 gallon fresh water tank.
The 235 was easy enough to handle that I tested her without help. She is steady and quick out of the hole in just 3 seconds and up to 30mph in just about 8 seconds. Cruise is around 26mph for a range of 177 miles. Top speed was recorded at 5000rpm and 43.6 mph using a MerCruiser 320-hp 6.2 MPI sterndrive.In summary, Doral’s 235 may have a few quirks to work out, but she does offer a small growing family a luxurious option with power and performance.
Test Result Highlights
- Top speed for the Doral Elite 235 is 43.6 mph (70.2 kph), burning 23.5 gallons per hour (gph) or 88.95 liters per hour (lph).
- Best cruise for the Doral Elite 235 is 26.0 mph (41.8 kph), and the boat gets 2.81 miles per gallon (mpg) or 1.19 kilometers per liter (kpl), giving the boat a cruising range of 177 miles (284.85 kilometers).
- Tested power is 1 x 320-hp MerCruiser 6.2 MPI.
Standard and Optional Features
|Outlet: 12-Volt Acc||Standard|
|NMMA Certification Other Certification||Yes CE (Export only)|