Captain's ReportThe On-Water Utility VehicleBy Capt. Vince DanielloUnsinkable. It is a word thrown about by some boat manufacturers in a way that might allow us to think it means one thing—that a boat will stay afloat, no matter what—when in fact it means something else—that at least part of the boat will stay above water, no matter what. What, specifically, is the difference? One look at Boston Whaler’s brochure in the section on hull construction illustrates it well; a photo shows a competitor’s boat with a few feet of the bow bobbing out of the water and next to it is a photo of Boston Whaler’s 190 Montauk with 19 people in it. What that photo doesn’t show is that this grossly overloaded Montauk has its drain plug pulled so the boat is free to fill with water, yet it is floating high. The reason: Boston Whaler’s unibond hull is actually a thick sandwich of foam between two layers of fiberglass, making the entire hull one giant, unsinkable flotation device. In fact every Boston Whaler from their smallest 11 footer to the largest 30 footer is designed so that it can be completely filled to the gunnels with water yet still stay level and hold the engine powerhead out of the water, even with the boat’s maximum rated capacity of people and gear aboard.ConstructionOk, presumably no one is going to put 19 people in a boat designed for eight or cut the boat in half and then start the motor and drive away, another popular Whaler advertising campaign for the last four decades now. Similarly, I doubt anyone would call in the local volunteer fire company to see how much water their boat can hold, but Boston Whaler’s version of unsinkable is certainly reassuring offshore and equally comforting when the boat is unattended at the dock, as the vast majority of small boat sinkings occur in the slip when bilge pumps fail or batteries wear down, something that just cannot happen on a Whaler. UtilitySo Boston Whaler’s construction makes the company’s boat inherently safe, but that alone is not a reason to own a boat; it must suit your needs on the water. I suppose the best way to characterize the 190 Montauk is to compare it to an SUV. Not the posh, heated leather seats, triple climate controlled, power window and door, rear seat DVD player SUV that is common today, but a rugged, dependable, go anywhere with lots of room for people and stuff SUV more common a few years back. The Montauk is finished beautifully, but doesn’t have the bells and whistles of other Whalers. To accomplish its utilitarian role, the Montauk starts with a wide beam for its length, carried all the way to the squared-off bow and adds plenty of comfortable seating, lots of room to move around, and big storage lockers. The locker under the seat in the bow is often used to store the anchor and rode, though it also makes a good insulated fishbox. Another locker under the helm seat, plus the inside of the console will hold a ton of gear, life jackets, towels, and beach toys, and another compartment under the seat in the stern either provides storage or can also be plumbed from the factory as a live/bait well. More Fishing FeaturesThere is also room for a 72-quart cooler just ahead of the console, the removable cooler probably better than a built-in drink box on a utility boat like the Montauk since it can be carried onto the beach, or wherever it is needed. The 190 Montauk also includes two rod holders aft which also hold the removable aft seat backrest in place and additional rod storage mounted behind the seat back on the front of the console, completely out of the way until needed. Thoughtful options include drink holders built into the chocks that hold the cooler in place, an MP3 input jack and stereo remote control at the helm, and a filler cushion for the bow seat that creates a giant sun pad.Boston Whaler’s new 190 Montauk, now the largest boat in the Montauk family, is in many ways the epitome of what Boston Whaler’s founder, Dick Fisher, envisioned when introducing the first-ever center console boat in 1961—a boat that can go anywhere and do anything with lots of room for people and gear, while providing the confidence of a rugged, seaworthy, unsinkable hull.
Test Result Highlights
- Top speed for the Boston Whaler 190 Montauk (2007-) is 38.6 mph (62.1 kph), burning 10.5 gallons per hour (gph) or 39.74 liters per hour (lph).
- Best cruise for the Boston Whaler 190 Montauk (2007-) is 23.7 mph (38.1 kph), and the boat gets 6.00 miles per gallon (mpg) or 2.55 kilometers per liter (kpl), giving the boat a cruising range of 324 miles (521.43 kilometers).
- Tested power is 1 x 115-hp Mercury four-stroke.
Standard and Optional Features
|VHF Radio||Optional Navman 7100|
|CD Stereo||Optional Clarion AM/FM CD Player w/ Optional Sirus Satellite|
|See Engine Manufacturer for Warranty See Engine Manufacturer for Warranty See Engine Manufacturer for Warranty|
|1-Year No No|
|ISO Certification NMMA Certification||Yes|