Captain's ReportVersatile Family Fun BoatTested By Capt. Bob SmithCaravelle continues its history of building quality boats without wood construction. The builder uses the same Total Composite System from Cook Composites to build the 187 LS as they use on the popular Interceptor models. Kelron composite seats are sturdy and non-degrading, unlike most used on other builder’s boats. G&T expanded vinyl help insure years of performance and great looks to the seating throughout.LayoutSeveral friends will find it comfortable up front on the bow bench seats that wrap from port to starboard. Under the hinged port seat bench is a finished, gel coated compartment that doubles as a cooler for the beverages and snacks up front. No more crawling all the way to the back for the next cold one! Under the bow section is space for the ground tackle, and below the starboard bench seat is padded storage for more gear. Add filler cushions and one or two can stretch out and enjoy the sun up front. Our test model had the carpet option for more comfort under foot in the sun. Even if you don’t choose this option, you have high traction skid resistant finish to the floor. Enough SeatingIn the cockpit, the bucket seats are really comfortable. They have leaf spring suspension seat bottoms that don’t leave your brain rebounding after every large wake. They also have a large bolster for view out of the hole and swivel and adjust for personal comfort. Each side pocket has two additional cup holders for beverages in the cockpit. The companion station has a deep glove box and sturdy grab rail for better safety during some of the high speed turns I know you will do. In the floor between this and the helm station is a large storage compartment for boards and other gear. Rubber mats protect those valuable boards from damage against the interior gel coating.At the HelmThe helm station has rich burlwood accents for the family look on board. The wheel tilts for each driver’s specific setting. To the left is a 12 volt socket for portable gear and cell phones. Rocker switches have handy red lights to indicate what is on at night. Faria gauges are warranted for life and this set includes a digital depth gauge. The driver controls the AM/FM/CD player on board which is just to the right of the wheel. A speaker, courtesy light and two more cup holders are in the side wall next to the helm.Transom FeaturesThe stern pad is a huge sun worshippers rest. A starboard walkthrough is wide, yet doesn’t steal too much space from the pad. This walkthrough isn’t wasted space, either. In the floor is another finished compartment that also doubles as a cooler. Now when the people in the back get thirsty, or when they’re on the platform, they can help themselves to cold ones. The sun pad doubles as the engine hatch and lifts nicely up out of the way for daily checks and for servicing the engine when needed. A folding navigation light fits into clips under the pad so you don’t have to fish around for the stern light when the sun goes down before you get back.SpecsThe Caravelle 187LS Bow Rider measures 18 feet overall and has a beam width of 8 feet. She weighs in at approximately 2,500 pounds dry weight and has a fuel capacity of 30 gallons for a good day of fun on the water. This model is rated for up to a 225-hp sterndrive for power.PerformanceI tested this boat in good weather on an inland lake in South Georgia. The only weather problem was some persistent fog. The 187 handled turns with ease, losing little power proving her ski performance. We found her cruise speed to be about 23.8mph and wide- open-throttle speed was 50.9mph. The cruising range works out to be about 108 miles on a full tank. The 187 was also quick to plane in only 3 seconds, and was turning 30mph in only 7.2 seconds.If you are looking for a family bowrider with strength, durability and longevity, you need to take a close look at Caravelle’s all new 187LS Bow Rider.
Test Result Highlights
- Top speed for the Caravelle 187 LS Bow Rider is 50.9 mph (81.9 kph), burning 19.2 gallons per hour (gph) or 72.67 liters per hour (lph).
- Best cruise for the Caravelle 187 LS Bow Rider is 23.8 mph (38.3 kph), and the boat gets 3.99 miles per gallon (mpg) or 1.7 kilometers per liter (kpl), giving the boat a cruising range of 108 miles (173.81 kilometers).
- Tested power is 1 x 190-hp Volvo Penta 4.3GL.
Standard and Optional Features