8 Videos // Chaparral 203 // Nordic Tugs 34 // Beneteau GT 35 - 07/02/2014
BoatTEST Newsletter July 2, 2014 Click here if you cannot view the newsletter.
Boattest.com: Tests You Can Trust
IN THIS ISSUE
- Beneteau GT 35
- Chaparral 203 Vortex VRX
- Volvo Penta D3 Sterndrive
- Sun Tracker PB 254 XP3
- Formula 353 FASTech
- Tigé R20
- Cruisers Sport Series 258
- Evinrude E-TEC 115 PS
- Mako 18 LTS
- Manitou 22 Encore Pro
- Monte Carlo Yachts 86
- Nordic Tugs 34
- Prestige 750
- Sea Ray 300 Sundeck
- Carver C37
- Tiara 50 Coupe
- Mercury 8.2 MAG
- Picture of the Week
- Boating Course On DVD
- Capt. Steve's Weekly Lesson

Beneteau Gran Turismo 35:
Designed for Day Boating

Beneteau Gran Turismo 35
Beneteau’s Gran Turismo 35 shifts the design focus to daytime boating and away from wasted space on cruising accommodations that are rarely used.

Beneteau’s new Gran Turismo 35 provides daytime and evening entertaining venues without sacrificing valuable space solely for seldom-used overnight accommodations. From the easy-access bow to the oversized swim deck aft, the Gran Turismo 35 provides the topside living space of a larger boat. Food prep and dining stay mostly outside, and overnight accommodations are secondary, not primary functions below. More...

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New Features Video

Chaparral 203 Vortex VRX:
Bold New Boat -- Bold New Look

Chaparral 203 Vortex
Chaparral’s new jet boats get a new look with bold hull-side color graphics tied to three-tone upholstery and black accents from tower and windshield through to the hull and trailer.

Emphasizing style as well as substance, Chaparral uses bold graphics, offered in six bright colors, to distinguish its new Vortex VRX jet boats. Upholstery, including wrap-around cockpit seating and stern platform seats on the 203 Vortex VRX, continue Chaparral’s distinctive styling with three-color premium vinyl, top stitched with accenting-colored thread. The black powder-coating tow arch, black windscreen, and even a black trailer with bright wheels continue that look cool from top to bottom, from sea-side to home. More...

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Test Video

Volvo Penta D3 Sterndrive:
Benefits of New Diesel Technology

Volvo Penta D3 Sterndrive
Advanced diesel technology matches or betters gas sterndrives in size, weight, emissions and high torque at low rpm.

Volvo Penta’s D3 diesel sterndrive can be an attractive alternative to both gas sterndrives and offshore outboard engines in certain applications. With only 5 cylinders it is smaller and lighter than equivalent horsepower gas sterndrives, and its diesel fuel efficiency puts outboards to shame in terms of range. A variable geometry turbocharger kicks in early for low-end torque and responsiveness. The D3 sterndrive gets counter-rotating props for ease of docking, as well as advanced corrosion protection for saltwater applications. More...

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Captain's Report

Carver C37:
Affordable Cruising

Carver C37
Carver’s new direction shows in the C37's distinct, somewhat retro exterior look, interior décor and features.

“More yacht for less money,” has always been Carver’s mantra and market positioning. The new C37's Wenge-wood joinery and well-crafted luxurious-looking upholstery shows a commitment to a new direction. Stout stainless steel handrails, strong hatch hinges and the salon’s aft aluminum double doors tell the story. More...

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Test Video

Cruisers Sport Series 258 Bow Rider:
An Up-Market Bowrider

Cruisers Sport Series 258 Bow Rider
This Cruisers Sport Series 258 Bow Rider mixes the look of a performance boat with bowrider seating that accommodates a baker’s dozen.

From afar, the Cruisers Sport Series 258 Bow Rider might be seen as a performance boat, but getting closer reveals this bowrider’s roomy interior with seating for 13. A head compartment, freshwater sink and shower, a large convertible sun pad and an oversized stern platform round out amenities not found on most go-fast boats, nor many bowriders for that matter. More...

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Captain's Report

Evinrude E-TEC 115 Pontoon Series:
Powerful Yet Clean and Quiet

Evinrude E-TEC 115 Pontoon Series
Evinrude E-TEC 2-stroke "Pontoon Series" 115-hp engine has more low-end torque, burns cleaner, responds faster, and transmits less vibration than conventional outboards for toons.

Evinrude’s E-TEC 115-hp Pontoon Series maximizes horsepower and torque at the low rpm range where pontoon boats need it. The direct-injection fuel system and unique combustion chambers burn cleaner and the unit is surprisingly quiet at slow speeds. No maintenance for three years saves money and hassle, and also means no wasted oil, gear lube or even spark plugs to dispose of. More...

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Test Video

Formula 353 FASTech:
High Speed with Elegance

Formula 353 FASTech
Striking looks and the bold, 85-mph performance of Formula’s 353 FASTech are sure to turn heads everywhere she goes.

In Texas, they call it "All Hat and No Cattle." In Indiana, it is the difference between Roger Penske's race cars and those look-alikes put together by gas station grease monkeys that make it to the last row of the Indy 500. In the sport car genre, it’s the difference between a finely-tuned Ferrari and a cobbled-together Lotus. The same dichotomy exists in the world of performance boats where it is all noise and bling, but no class vs. highly-engineered Ilmor iron purring inside a graceful, sculptured body polished to a mirror-like Formula-famous finish. Find out about the FASTech 353...

Test Drive

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Captain's Report

Mako 18 LTS:
Designed for Inshore Fishing

Mako 18 LTS
Mako’s 18 LTS gets into and out of shallow water safely.

Boating is a great way for kids to learn responsibility, and inshore fishing lets young anglers explore in a controlled environment. Mako’s 18 LTS blends flats-boat draft and poling ability with bay-boat storage and amenities. Mako’s Rapid Planing System jumps on plane in a short distance, letting dad or the kids find skinny-water fish without finding trouble. More...

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New Captain's Report

Manitou 22 Encore Pro Angler Full Front VP:
Fishing Friendly with Family Fun

Manitou 22 Encore Pro Angler FFVP
Manitou’s V-Toon, a deeper-riding center pontoon, adds to this Manitou 22 Encore Pro Angler Full Front VP the performance and feel of a V-bottomed boat.

Two or four corner fishing seats, a pair of livewells, vertical rod holders, a secured rod locker, and even a Lowrance color fishfinder make this Manitou 22 Encore Pro Angler ready to fish, right out of the box. On the other hand, a tow bar, wakeboard rack, ski mirror and swim ladder make her equally suited for family watersports. More...

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Updated Captain's Report

Monte Carlo Yachts 86:
High Tech Creates Choices

Monte Carlo Yachts 86
Test numbers for the MCY 86 are in. Perhaps one of the most noteworthy aspects of them are the yacht's range at both cruising and displacement speeds.

Monte Carlo Yachts has one of the newest, best-equipped large yacht construction facilities in the world. Many of its techniques and methods come from the aerospace industry. As a result, it can build virtually any interior and flying bridge a demanding owner might want in the hull of the Monte Carlo Yachts 86. Old time yards building two or three boats a year the old fashioned way simply can no longer compete on performance, delivery times, interior or flying bridge customization, or cost. Quality is a given. Find out more...

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Design & Style Video

Nordic Tugs 34:
Practicality in Every Corner

Nordic Tugs 34
We think that the Nordic Tugs 34 is a practical couple’s cruiser or makes a
good petite liveaboard.

The Nordic Tugs 34’s rich, straight-grained African sapele joinery brings classic yacht warmth to this trawler by another name. Amtico teak and holly vinyl decking and steps provide slip resistance with minimal maintenance under wet feet or Topsiders. The galley and salon provide adequate storage, including a pantry and even a hanging wet locker, something usually not found on far larger boats. It seems there is something to like in every nook and cranny of this surprisingly large 34’ cruiser. More...

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Test Video

Prestige 750:
Balancing Weight, Speed & Comfort

Prestige 750
Prestige 750 minimizes weight and horsepower without sacrificing cruising speed
or a solid feel offshore.

Precise resin infusing helps Prestige keep this 750 among the lightest motoryachts in her class. As a result, she requires less horsepower to provide performance on a par with similar-sized motoryachts which are heavier. Yet, with a tested weight of 98,366 lbs. (44,618 kgs.), she has plenty of beef to slice through and mash down normal seas to provide a comfortable ride. In this size range, even “light” boats are heavy enough to exert their authority and the Prestige 750 proves the point. More...

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Captain's Report

Sea Ray 300 Sundeck:
Lots of Room with a View

Sea Ray 300 Sundeck
Sea Ray’s largest deck boat expands the party from bow to stern, and even below.

The supersized Sea Ray 300 Sundeck features seating for at least a dozen people in four separate areas, along with dining in two venues, and a mini outdoor galley. Aft-facing seating brings family face time or sunset socialization to the oversized swim platform, while a private head compartment and a mini sleeping cabin beneath the helm console provides a one-person hideout. More...

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Captain's Report

Sun Tracker Party Barge 254 XP3:
A Flagship Toon for 15

Sun Tracker Party Barge 254 XP3
Beneath her practical layout and solid materials, this Party Barge is built atop a stout platform.

When stepping aboard, the well-finished upholstery along with the sculpted fiberglass helm console and outdoor galley island are the first clues to the Sun Tracker Party Barge 254 XP3’s direction – which is decidedly up-market. But her real strengths are underfoot, where marine-grade plywood (with a lifetime guarantee) is bonded atop sturdy aluminum frames. Three 26” pontoons, each compartmentalized for safety, and a box-beam reinforced aluminum transom, provide rigidity, stability and increased buoyancy to carry a large outboard. More...

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Captain's Report

Tiara 50 Coupe:
World-Class at Any Price

Tiara 50 Coupe
From systems to styling, to performance to materials, to construction, Tiara’s 50 Coupe can go toe-to-toe with any boat in class from anywhere on the planet.

Tiara surveyed both imported and U.S.-built hardtop express cruisers before designing its new 50 Coupe. One of the advantages of being new is the opportunity to cover all competitive bases, and Tiara seems to have done that. Volvo Penta IPS drives and glass cockpit instrumentation provide state-of-the-art propulsion and diagnostic data. Extensive use of hand-finished teak and Wenge, as well as unusual quartz countertops in the aft galley, and designer fabrics in the salon, prove Tiara’s commitment to providing a world-class vessel. More...

Test Drive

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Features Video

Tigé R20:
Only the Right Stuff

Tigé R20
Choose -- and pay for -- only the options wanted and needed on Tigé’s R20, in other words, only the right stuff for you.

Tigé’s R20 provides more boat – and more boat function -- for less cash by offering flexible equipment choices. The standard tower with bungee-secured wakeboard racks, for instance, can be enhanced with locking board racks, overhead lights and speakers, and a powder-coat color finish. A basic sound system can also be upgraded in steps. What is standard is Tigé's unique ConvexV hull with lifetime warranty, cruise control, basic ballast package, and the unique TAPS adjustable wake system. More...

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Test Video

Mercury 8.2 MAG:
Big Power from Big Displacement

Mercury 8.2 MAG
At 8.2 liters (502 cu. in.), Mercury’s big-block is built with 36% greater displacement than competitors’ 380 to 430-hp gas offerings.

Mercury’s 8.2 MAG big-block V-8 pumps out 380 to 430 horsepower with standard 87 octane E-10 fuel. Sequential multi-port fuel injection and advanced air handling maximize low-end torque already inherent with big displacement. Antifreeze, not lake water, runs through the engine, and maintenance points for both engine and stern drive are all atop the engine and color coded. QR code labels even access smart phone maintenance videos. The 8.2 MAG can be paired with a variety of stern drives, including Axius joystick control. More...

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Where in the World?

Picture of the Week

Picture of the Week
Find out where this picture was taken and when.

See the larger picture, when and who took it -- and where!

Send us your favorite boating images.

When sending a photo, let us know when, where and what boat you were on.


Expert Boating

 BoatTEST.com’s
4-DVD Boating Course

Smart Boating
Sometimes it's not what you know, but what you've forgotten. We have the perfect solution for you.

Based on the feedback we’ve been getting about BoatTEST.com's Video Boating Course it’s clearly not only for beginners, but also for veteran boaters as well. Perhaps that is why the NMMA started promoting the course after just one look. It's the most complete boating course available… period. Order your 4-disc box set...

Watch the trailer...
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Lesson of the Week

Basic Rules of the Road:
Rules Pertaining to Different Types of Vessels

Capt. Steve Smart Boating Cover
A vessel unable to maneuver is unable to keep out of the way of another vessel.


This week Captain Steve covers basic rules of the road in ten quick video clips. He covers different categories of boats and who must keep out of the way, restrictions on working vessels, fishing vessels and all other vessels which may not be able to maneuver because the nature of their work, sea planes, and why one should never anchor in the middle of a channel. These are basic procedures which all recreational boaters should be aware of. The videos presented this week are part of BoatTEST.com’s Boating Course which is USCG-approved. Watch these video boating lessons every week on BoatTEST.com.

To view this week’s lessons --

Order all lessons on DVD--

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All articles, Captain's Reports, video content or other material which appear on BoatTEST.com and in its newsletters are accurate and factual to the best knowledge of BoatTEST.com and its staff. All findings, beliefs, experiences, or endorsements presented are the honest opinions of BoatTEST.com or its contributors. In compliance with FTC 16 CFR Part 255 BoatTEST.com advises its readers that content that appears in its newsletter or on its website may have been produced for compensation or the prospect of future compensation. BoatTEST.com makes no claims for the veracity or motivation of reader comments, Owners’ Reports, and other contributions which are all clearly labeled as such.



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