|Max Headroom||open||Bridge Clearance||N/A|
|Std. Power||1 x 220-hp MerCruiser 4.3L Alpha 1|
|Tested Power||1 x 220-hp MerCruiser 4.3L MPI|
1 x 260-hp MerCruiser 5.0L MPI ECT
1 x 190-hp MerCruiser 4.3L TKS Alpha I
We recorded the Sea Ray 205 Sport at 50.4 mph WOT powered by a single MerCruiser 220-hp 4.3 L engine during our test on a river in Tennessee.
The Mission of the Sea Ray 205 Sport
Twenty-one feet (6.40 m) is an ideal size for a bowrider on most inland lakes and river systems. She is both big enough to handle the chop on larger lakes, yet small enough to be easily handled and trailered. By making her a low and sleek Sea Ray, she appeals to the nautical eye of the young enthusiasts who will be using her for all sorts of towing sports. By making her functional and giving a choice of standard and optional hullside graphics, she will catch the eye of veteran boaters who want a boat with sizzle.
The emphasis of the 205 Sport is on her cockpit, which is designed to be large and easy to negotiate for water sports of all kinds. The snap-in carpet is standard.
Port and starboard recumbent seats are accented in the bow with contrasting vinyl upholstery. Note the arrow-shaped foot well which creates more foot room so guests can face each other when sitting at anchor. The gray padded back rest in the bow makes it more comfortable for a guest sitting there and facing aft.
• Four gel-coat and 2 graphics packages are offered for customization. Colors for the 2014 model year are Rally Red, Seabring Green, Onyx, and Vibrant Blue.
•There are two cockpit layouts from which to choose.
•Custom-fitted tandem-axle trailer with swing-away tongue and surge brakes comes standard.
•Fiberglass cockpit sole with diamond pattern finish and optional snap-in carpet.
•Hi-Lo aft jump seats.
•Boat and engine built by the same company.
Cockpit Layout Options
Standard Seating Plan
This layout maximizes the interior room of the cockpit providing plenty of space for occupants to move around when getting ready for watersports. The companion seat swivels to turn aft for the spotter when towing.
By eliminating the jump seats and pushing the seating forward of the engine box the designers have created a curved bench seat that seats three. There are fold-down arm rests with cup holders. In this way a large sunning pad has been created astern. Port and starboard of the centerline engine are stowage compartments for water toys and gear. These compartments become a place to quickly dry out wet bathing suits and clothing. Even more storage is available in two bins under the bench seat. The companion seat swivels aft for towing.
As can be seen in the drawings above, both two cockpit layouts have their advantages. Sea Ray offers a choice to consumers so that the best layout can be selected for the intended application.
We like the gull wing hatches over the port and starboard storage compartments straddling the engine room in the Optional Seating plan. Note all hatches are gas-assisted and have ss piano hinges for durability and proper alignment.
In the Optional Seating Plan there is added storage space under the bench seat for all sorts of gear.
Important Standard Features
The Sea Ray 205 Sport is a relatively small bowrider but that does not mean that the builder has skimped on the fabrication and hardware that should be on a well-found boat. For example the 205 has six ss cleats for tying up, has a ss insert in the PVC rubrail, and the prop is stainless steel for higher performance. Other standard features of this boat which we like are—
•Proper Anchor Stowage in the bow with hatch and ss latch. (Some boats in class don’t have a dedicated anchor locker.)
•Integrated Swim Platform. The boat was obviously designed from the beginning to be 21’ overall including her swim platform. It is not a tacked-on after thought as seen on some boats in class. There are several advantages to this integral design including a longer waterline, more buoyancy aft and the absence of under-platform struts. The platform does not extend past the lower unit when it is in the down position.
•Gel-coated Engine Room. This is an important feature because it not only makes it easy to keep the engine room clean, but it also allows thorough clean-up if oil is spilled inadvertently.
The 205 has a small insulated ice chest for drinks forward of the companion seat. The hidden glove box is lockable and contains the Sony stereo controls.
The cockpit sole locker has an extra-wide hatch making it possible to fit in a wakeboard as well as conventional skis.
•Cockpit Sole Storage. Cockpit sole storage is typical in this class of boat. What is not so usual, however, is the extra wide hatch between the seats, wide enough to permit a wakeboard or to be stored there.
•20-degree Deadrise at the Transom. This is a fairly deep deadrise – it qualifies as being “deep-V” – for a boat of this length. The advantage of this bottom shape is that it provides a comfortable ride in a chop. If the boat catches air it will come down with the deep-V cushioning effect rather than with the jarring typical of a flatish bottom.
The disadvantage of a deep-V is often a penalty in speed and fuel consumption, but as we will see below, the 20-degree deadrise does not seem to have hampered this boat’s performance.
•32” (80 cm) Average Cockpit Depth. Cockpit depth is important because it helps keep everyone where they belong – inside the boat. This is particularly important with small children aboard. 32” is on the deep side for this size and type of boat. A deep cockpit also usually means a higher freeboard which usually also means a drier boat.
Both the helm and companion seat in the model tested have flip-up bolsters that allow vision over the windshield frame. Note the three-tone upholstery, piping and “Sport” log stitched into the seat back.
The instrument panel of the Sea Ray 205 Sport is simple and easy to read at a glance. The steering wheel has tilt and power-assist features.
Performance and Handling
Powered by a 220-hp Mercury 4.3 L engine with an Alpha I drive and with a dry weight of 3,150 lbs. (1,429 kgs.), half fuel, and two men aboard, we recorded a WOT speed of 50.4 mph in the Sea Ray 205 Sport.
Best cruise came at 3000 rpm where the boat traveled 28.4 mph, burned 6.7 gallons per hour for an endurance of nearly 5 hours with a 10% fuel reserve.
At a towing speed of 18.6 mph (2500 rpm) the 205 had a fuel burn of 5.5 gph and an endurance of 6 hours with a 10% fuel reserve.
The 205 Sport got on plane in 3.8 seconds and went from 0-to-30 mph in 6.9 seconds during our test runs, on average.
Handling. When it comes to handling, our test captain reported no bad habits. In hard-over turns at speed he found no prop ventilation which is noteworthy on this size boat. All turns were reported to be smooth with no buffeting or grabbing. The power assist steering was effective and our captain reported that he could easily steer with just his finger tips.
The low engine box of the 205 Sport is designed to make putting on boards easy. Note that the waterline extends beyond the transom providing added buoyancy aft.
The optional towing arch allows the tow line to be elevated for easier jumps and acrobatics.
Sea Ray offers the 5.0 L 260-hp Mercury engine as an option. While our test captain urges consumers to upgrade to this engine which will make the boat a “monster” in his words, we’re not sure that is necessary in all applications. For those planning on having a full load of people aboard and pulling a heavy skier, then we think the 5.0 L engine is probably the way to go.
Check out our performance tables by clicking on the “Test Results” tab at the top of this page.
This photo illustrates sightlines forward with and without the bolster. The captain is sitting on the bolster and looking over the black anodized windshield frame; the companion is sitting on the seat with the bolster down and is looking through the windshield. This is good design.
As we look down the extensive list of options that Sea Ray offers we see a couple of things that are necessary: a Bimini top and a canvas cover. While these two items can be bought in the aftermarket for less money, we don’t advise it. The builder or dealer can best affix the Bimini to the boat, and factory-made canvas is guaranteed to fit right out of the box.
Anyone planning on doing serious towing should consider the black towing tower with integrated Bimini top. We also would opt for the automatic fire suppression system in the engine room.
Otherwise the boat is fully equipped and ready to use right from the dealer’s showroom.
The 205 Sport has a running angle of a 5-degree bow rise which is the industry norm. The wake tower and boards attached will slow the boat several mph due to weight and windage.
We think the Sea Ray 205 Sport is not only a good boat for people moving up, but it should also be a good ''entry level'' boat for many people in the first place. At 21’ (6.40 m) she is large enough to avoid the mistake of buying too small and having to buy twice.
|Carpet: Cockpit||Snap-in liner|
|Outlet: 12-Volt Acc|
= Standard = Optional
|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.|
Full Warranty Information on this brand coming soon!