Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider (2013-)
(w/ 1 x 300-hp MerCruiser 350 MAG)

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Cruisers Yachts recently added a new family member-- the Cruisers Sport Series. A reincarnation of the former Azure build, this 23 to 30 foot (7.01 to 9.14 m) line-up has been revitalized and brought up to the new builder's demanding specs. The smallest in the fleet, the 238 Bow Rider, offers a three-position aft convertible sundeck among its’ standard features.

Key Features

  • Standard gel coat pattern
  • Bimini top & boot with SST frame & trailering struts
  • Bow & cockpit cover
  • Bow scuff plate
  • Color coordinated composite deck vents
  • Extended activity/swim platform
  • Hull mounted recessed halogen docking lights
  • LED activity platform lighting
  • SST telescoping 4-step bow and stern ladder
  • Sony AM/FM/CD player with MP3 port & 4 speakers
  • Simulated leather wrapped helm with silver gauge panel
  • Aft convertible 3-position sunpad
  • Head with portlight

Specifications

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider (2013-) Specifications
Length Overall 23' 8''
7.21 m
Dry Weight 4,640 lbs.
2,105 kg.
Beam 8' 6''
2.59 m
Tested Weight N/A
Draft 22.5''
0.57 m
Fuel Cap 55 gal.
208 L
Deadrise/Transom 21 deg. Water Cap none
Max Headroom open Bridge Clearance 57.5''
1.46 m
Prices, features, designs, and equipment are subject to change. Please see your local dealer or visit the builder's website for the latest information available on this boat model.

Engine Options

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider (2013-) Engine options
Std. Power Not Available
Tested Power 1 x 300-hp MerCruiser 350 MAG
Opt. Power 1 x 260-hp MerCruiser 5.0 MPI B3
1 x 300-hp MerCruiser 350 MAG B1
1 x 300-hp MerCruiser 350 MAG B3
1 x 270-hp Volvo Penta V-8 270C
1 x 300-hp Volvo Penta V8-300C

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider (2013-) Captain's Report

By Capt. John--

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider

Create a custom look with a choice of colors and accent patterns featuring “Armor Plus” gelcoat and “Imedge” colors.

Mission Statement for the Cruisers Sport Series Brand

As a business strategy, the mission of the ten-boat Cruisers Sports Series is to acquaint younger boaters with KCS's big boats down the line. When these owners are ready to graduate up to the cruising lifestyle they will be on a first name basis with the dealers, management, and products of Cruisers Yachts and Rampage Sport Fishing Yachts. Obviously, that is a long-term venture, but it is one that augurs well for the consumer. In addition, KCS expects to impress beginning boaters with the quality and functionality of KCS boats as well as to acquaint consumers with KCS' customer-friendly culture and dedication to consumer satisfaction.

Mission Statement for the 238 Bow Rider

The 238 Bow Rider is designed to be an entry-level, yet luxurious, bowrider that can be used in both freshwater and saltwater for all sorts of watersports activities. By keeping the base MSRP down and providing an extensive option list, customers will be able to customize the boat to suit their specific needs rather than get a general “one-size-fits-all” package. With a relatively high freeboard and deep cockpit the boat should be dry and little ones in the family will be more secure. With a 21-degree deadrise and weighing in at 4,640 lbs. (2,105 kgs.) dry the 238 Bow Rider should be one of the best riding boats in her class in choppy conditions at speed.

Distinguishing Features

Unusual Swim Platform Design -- The swim platform on the 238 Bow Rider is tapered inward at a 30-degree angle from the side of the boat which keeps the stern from hitting the dock when casting off and going forward. It is also raised so that it doesn't drag when getting underway or when making a tight turn. The swim ladder has four steps and there is a special "activity" lighting on the platform which looks cool at night.

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider

Interior of the Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider. Note her U-shaped seating aft and her unusual deck shape.

Self-draining Cockpit -- In our book, this is a biggie. While some other sportboats also have self-draining cockpits, many do not. We have seen too many boats sink at the dock after a prolonged hard rain as a result.

Two Bilge Pumps -- Most sportboats have one, the Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider has two, rated at 1100 gph each.

Halogen Bow Docking Lights – Getting home in the dark after a long day on the water can be an unsettling experience for a new boater. This is a nice little addition which will help, and it’s included as standard equipment on the 238.

Plush, Thick Seat Cushions -- One of the first things that stands out when seeing the 238 Bow Rider is the plush seating. Clearly, the seats are going to be comfortable and guests should feel pampered. We equate them to what one might find in an expensive automobile vs. those found on an economy model.

Freshwater System – A cockpit sink and a shower aft utilize the standard 12 gallon tank and freshwater pump.

Stylistic Molded-in Highlight in the Hull -- When a boat that is supposed to be fast and sleek also has a deep cockpit, designers need to work extra hard to create the optical illusion that the freeboard is low. This builder has gone farther than most by molding in a gentle crease in the hull side from bow to stern which catches the light and makes it look as if there is another cove stripe on the hull side.

Five Standard Hull Color Choices -- Most builders still charge extra for colored hull gel coat. We think that colored hulls add immeasurably to enhancing the pride of ownership as well as to set the boat apart from the pack on the used boat market when that time comes.

Standard Bimini and Canvas Covers -- All boats should have these no matter what the activity and Cruisers Sport Series makes them standard in a choice of colors.

Walkthrough

The forward cockpit offers comfortable seating, and I could even stretch my legs out. A forward swim ladder, drink holders, safety rails, and an optional table are some of the details added for creature comfort.

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider

The comfortable forward seating area.

For those who are going to be using the boat primarily for a sunning and beach-visiting platform, there are two optional filler cushions ($835). Additionally, sun worshipers will like the sun pad on the stern which has a three-position back rest.

The Cockpit

A sturdy walkthrough windshield (with magnet holding the window open) leads to the helm and main seating area. To port is a compartment suitable for a head. It’s a small space, but this is only a 23 footer.

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider

The head compartment is small, but this is only a 23 footer.

There is an optional bow windscreen door ($420) which I recommend because on a crispy, cool morning it will help keep the cockpit cozy.

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider

The 238 offers a sporty, functional helm and instrumentation package.

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider

The helm and companion seats are bucket seats with cut-out backs and bolsters. Both are available as an adjustable height option ($210 each). The adjustable seat gives the option of ducking behind the windshield or raising it up to look over the top. We like this option as it makes sure that virtually no one, no matter how tall or short, needs to look at the windshield frame. Most importantly, the feel from the helm seat is one of a solid, quality boat.

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider

The convenience of standard docking lights for safety while underway at night.

Below the deck are storage lockers for water toys, and there’s storage available under the seats; fore and aft.

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider

The 238 has storage lockers with mat liners below the deck.

Behind the helm and companion bucket seats is a U-shaped wraparound seat surrounding the cockpit. It’s snug but the boat is rated for 12, a sizeable crowd on a twenty-three footer. Folks who like to entertain aboard will go for the optional cockpit table ($565).

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider

The standard cockpit sink is one of those classy little additions that sets this 23 footer apart.

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider

Cruisers Sport Series’ unique three-position sun lounger is positioned aft in the cockpit.

On the centerline, aft, is one of the features that make this boat special-- the convertible sun lounger. Use it facing forward for running or socializing. Flip it facing aft when on the hook and playing in the water or relaxing on the swim platform. It can also be folded fully forward, where it serves as a comfortable sun pad.

A small gate leads to the swim platform; and the deck design provides for a smooth transition in and out of the cockpit. Cruisers Sport Series has done a particularly clever job of designing this passageway. When underway, a filler cushion fits into the passageway to form the U-shaped conversation pit. The transom gate is padded and serves as a backrest and fits in well with the rest of the cockpit.

The Stern

Not just a bolt-on type, the swim platform is the result of a well-considered design process. It’s higher off the water than most, so it doesn’t drag underway, and it extends completely over the outdrive unit for safety.

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider

The cutaway corners of the activity/swim platform help the skipper avoid banging the dock when getting underway.

The height also makes for an easier step on and off the floating dock. But the most striking feature is the tapered shape of the aft, outboard corners. These corners often get pretty beat-up over time; typically a trouble spot as you leave the dock. By trimming away the corners some platform area is lost but it makes it easier to avoid clipping the dock when getting underway. In the end, I like what I see.

Performance and Handling

Our test boat was powered by a single 300-hp MerCruiser 350 MAG engine driving a Bravo III lower unit. With about 25 gallons of fuel aboard, two men, and 50 pounds of gear we had a test weight of 5,290 lbs. (2,400 kgs.) We planed out in 3.8 seconds and we reached 30 in 6.9 seconds. Our WOT speed was 48.5 mph at 5300 rpm. We calculated the best cruising performance to be at 3000 rpm where our speed was 24.6 mph burning 7.5 gph for a range of 162 statute miles. You could trade 15 miles of range per tankful if you want to run at 3500 rpm and 30 mph.

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider

The 238 was dry even as the breeze and chop picked up on the test day.

The Ride. I moved around the boat to experience the 238 from both the helm seat and from the aft bench seat. I felt comfortable and secure in both, even as the breeze increased. Bow rise was minimal, and I didn’t lose vision forward. Steering was smooth, true, and responsive; both at slow speed and when I pushed the throttle up and put her through her paces. The noise level was mostly wind, the engine noise was acceptable and I heard no rattles or other unusual noises. Overall, a quality ride.

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider

Our test model was powered by the optional 350 MAG from MerCruiser, rated at 300-hp.

Our Thoughts on the 238 Bow Rider

The folks in Oconto, Wisconsin (KCS International) have put their experienced yacht building team to work at reviewing every aspect of this model line-up. The results look good so far. In fact, I was given a list of no fewer than thirty different improvements and updates. The molds were re-surfaced, and it shows in the beautiful gel coat work. Attractive color combinations look great, and the attention to detail shows in the upholstery in the cockpit as well as the deck and topsides finish work. Engineering improvements include better cockpit drainage and engine ventilation, changing motor mounts to metal from wood, and updating the fuel system to comply with ABYC and EPA Standards. The effort towards a “job well done” was evident in the attitude of the engineering staff, the quality control department, and the finished product.

The 238 Bow Rider is one of four bowrider models in the Cruisers Sport Series. The other models include three sport deck models, two cuddies and one pocket cruiser. Assuming the Sport Series team can maintain its high standards for quality control, I’d bet that this newest member of the Cruisers/Rampage family will deliver on the new KCS mission.

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider (2013-) Test Result Highlights

  • Top speed for the Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider (2013-) is 48.5 mph (78.1 kph), burning 23.06 gallons per hour (gph) or 87.28 liters per hour (lph).

  • Best cruise for the Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider (2013-) is 24.6 mph (39.6 kph), and the boat gets 3.28 miles per gallon (mpg) or 1.39 kilometers per liter (kpl), giving the boat a cruising range of 162 miles (260.71 kilometers).

  • Tested power is 1 x 300-hp MerCruiser 350 MAG.
For complete test results including fuel consumption, range and sound levels
go to our Test Results section.


Standard and Optional Equipment

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider (2013-) Standard and Optional Equipment
Marine Electronics
GPS/Chart Optional
Systems
Battery Charger/Converter Optional
CD Stereo Standard
Head: Portable Optional
Power Steering Standard
Trim Tabs Optional
Exterior Features
Carpet: Cockpit Optional
Swim Ladder Standard
Swim Platform Standard
Tower: Watersports Optional
Transom Shower Standard
Canvas
Bimini Top Standard
Cockpit Cover Standard
Full Canvas Optional

Standard = Standard Optional = Optional

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider (2013-) Warranty

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider (2013-) Warranty Information
Warranties change from time to time. While BoatTEST.com has tried to ensure the most up-to-date warranty offered by each builder, it does not guarantee the accuracies of the information presented below. Please check with the boat builder or your local dealer before you buy any boat.
Hull Warranty
Years Limited 10-year
Deck Warranty
Years Limited 10-year
Blistering Warranty
Years 3-year
Certifications
NMMA Certification Yes

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider (2013-) Price

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider (2013-) Price
Pricing Range $66,000.00 - $71,000.00
Prices, features, designs, and equipment are subject to change. Please see your local dealer or visit the builder's website for the latest information available on this boat model.


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