Glastron’s GTS Series of boats are advertised as having “revved-up” styling, “bold” colors, and “adrenaline-fueled” upgrades over their similar bowrider models. This characterization is correct, and we would add that the GTS model is the top of the line version of the 180 with upgrades and amenities that the GT version does not have as standard. Having said that, since this is the smallest model in the Glastron line, it should be considered an entry-level boat, which means it is affordable and designed to entice boaters into the Glastron line. Customers who aren’t necessarily looking to buy the biggest and priciest sportboat on the market, but still want a bang for their buck with some upgraded features should be looking at the GTS 180.
Moreover, of the GTS 180 is the outboard-powered version of the sterndrive-powered GTS 185. The boat can be ordered with outboard engines, ranging from 90-hp to 150-hp, and Glastron will rig for Evinrude, Mercury, or Yamaha brands.
This is a family watersports boat, and the design is focused on maximizing that experience in an effort to streamline design toward greater affordability. The outboard engine we tested was a 150-hp Evinrude E-TEC G2 with a 25” shaft.
Basic Differences Between 180 and 185
The GTS’ helm follows Glastron’s popular “roadster” design aesthetic from the windshield to the yellow, fog-resistant gauges and push-pull switches. The dashboard has readouts for outboard engine warnings, a tachometer, emergency engine shot off, and a speedometer that has fuel readings and voltmeter. The steering wheel is tilt-adjustable and comfortably designed. The hour meter and depth sounder come as optional add-ons.
The driver’s and companion’s seats
are upholstered with three tones of Aquaflex vinyl and flip-up bolsters on each. The sides of the seatback are curved in to help support passengers in high-G turns. In between these seats is the in-floor locker storage. The rubber mat inside the storage will definitely reduce wear and tear to the boat and anything one puts in the locker. The stereo console rests on the port side in front of the companion’s seat with additional controls at the helm.
As is common on bowriders, the GTS 180 has storage aplenty; a fun day with friends and watersports requires refreshments and equipment, and the GTS 180’s storage conforms ideally to the activities it is best designed to handle. In addition to the aforementioned in-deck locker, both the bow and aft seating areas lift up to reveal storage compartments. The aft bench style seating also reveals a self-draining cooler that comes standard.
The GTS has the popular and ubiquitous bow-seating lounge, upholstered in Aquaflex and featuring guiderails and two cup holders. Moving through the flip-up windshield to the cockpit is the similarly upholstered bench seating, sitting just aft of the driver’s and companion’s seats.
With the understanding that once the fun gets started, one or more guests may be in the water, we found the space a bit tight for the eight-person maximum the GTS 180 is rated to accommodate -- if they are all adults. However, the load carrying capacity is 1,800 lbs. (816 kg), which means each person can average 225 lbs. (102 kg), if there is no gear aboard. On the other hand, the space in the cockpit has good legroom for the bench seating. Remember, that the on-board insulated cooler is under the center seat of the bench, which will necessitate someone getting up, but there is room to stand and maneuver. Glastron’s website mentions the option for an additional flip-up companion bucket seat, although the boat we tested did not have one, and generally, we have not found that the companion seat needs a bolster.
The aft deck
has two swim platforms with non-skid mats flanking each side of the outboard motor. These platforms measure 36” long, and together with the large outboard well, which has a flat bottom, there is actually quite a bit of space on the stern for launching watersports. A three-step retractable ladder is housed on the starboard side under the platform. The GTS 180 comes equipped for towline attachments for tubes and skis, and Glastron offers a wakeboarding tower as an option.
Power and Performance
Glastron offers outboard engines for this boat rated from 90-hp to 150-hp from Evinrude, Mercury, and Yamaha. The Evinrude E-TEC G2 150 H.O., which is effectively 165-hp, is also available for this boat. For boaters planning on towing wakeboarders or skiers, we recommend going for a 150-hp engine or the Evinrude E-TEC G2 150 H.O.
We tested the Glastron GTS 180 with an Evinrude E-TEC G2 150 H.O. engine. The boat measured 17’10 (5.44 m) in LOA, had a 7’5” (2.26 m) beam, a 20-degree deadrise angle at the transom, and a tested weight of about 2,514 lbs. (1,140 kg) with two people aboard and nine gallons of fuel. The test was conducted on a lake with an altitude of 938’, the temperature was 78-degrees, humidity 78-degrees with light winds, and a mild chop on the water.
The top speed
measured was 47.8 mph at 5700 rpm. Best Cruise came in at 21.2 mph at 3000 rpm, burning 3.65 gph, getting 5.81 miles per gallon for a range of 125 statute miles. We suspect that most boaters will want to run the boat at 4000 rpm and a speed of 31.1 mph, and at that speed, there is not much of a penalty as she burns 5.75 gph and gets 5.41 miles per gallon and has a range of 117 statute miles.
Time-to-plane was 3.6 seconds and 0 to 20 mph was 4.4 seconds. 0 to 30 was clocked at 6.3 seconds.
With the throttle punched, we recorded 20-degrees of bow rise, but we never lost sight of the horizon. Once on plane, the GTS 180 rode at 3-degrees, which is a bit better than average.
was excellent during both our sweeping ‘S’ turns and hard over turns, and she showed no sign of cavitation. Her 20-degree deadrise at the transom cushioned our ride in the light chop we encountered. It should be noted that our test engine, the E-TEC G2 150 has adjustable steering control, which means that the operator can dial in the amount of resistance desired in the steering. The rig had iST -- digital shift and throttle -- and iTrim, which automatically trims the boat. We kept the iTrim on for the hole shot tests, but turned it off during our speed runs and trimmed the boat manually. In this way, we were sure the boat was trimmed for max speed at all rpm settings.
The GTS has, first and foremost, 11 different options for its outboard motor, which can greatly affect the specific experience. We tested the Evinrude E-TEC G2 150 H.O. For those planning to tow watersports, we recommend the higher horsepower engines. Likewise, owners planning on Maxing out the boat’s load capacity, we recommend the larger engines. For Ma and Pa cruising around the lake in the evening, the 115-hp options should be adequate. The boat’s sound system comes with the option for upgrade with better speakers and remote control capabilities. The wakeboard tower can expand the scope of what the boat can do, and we highly recommend the ski tow pylon option for wakeboarding.We would recommend getting bolsters for at least the helm seat, snap-in carpet and a cockpit cover.
Beyond that, Glastron offers the ability to upgrade convenience and aesthetics -- the side windshield wings, bow seating filler cushions (turns the area into a large sun pad), pull-up cleats, stainless steel upgrades to the guardrails, cup holders, and speaker covers.
$27,047 base MSRP with an Evinrude E-TEC 90DPL engine.
Glastron knows that not everyone in the market for a sportboat wants to spend money on amenities and features they don’t need. A focus on performance and utility in an affordable range makes the GTS 180 a good option for those looking to maximize their dollar and keep things direct and simple.
Test Result Highlights
- Top speed for the Glastron GTS 180 (2016-) is 47.6 mph (76.6 kph), burning 12.60 gallons per hour (gph) or 47.69 liters per hour (lph).
- Best cruise for the Glastron GTS 180 (2016-) is 21.2 mph (34.1 kph), and the boat gets 5.81 miles per gallon (mpg) or 2.47 kilometers per liter (kpl), giving the boat a cruising range of 125 miles (201.17 kilometers).
- Tested power is 1 x Evinrude E-TEC G2 150 H.O..
Standard and Optional Features
|Carpet: Cockpit||Optional Snap-in|
Full Warranty Information on this brand coming soon!
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