A deckboat with an outboard? Is it better?
Capt. Steve Says...
While I love the deckboat concept, and was used to the stern drive propulsion, I was curious to see the Kayot S225 outboard version – one of the few sportboat models built in America with outboard power. I like a company that thinks outside the box and takes the road less travelled, in this case, powering a deckboat with an outboard. While we weren’t getting to actually test and compare it with her I/O-powered sister, a casual walkthrough should reveal if this boat has the right stuff to compete in this tough category.
The Kayot 225
Let’s first look at the basic boat, because forward of the aft bench seat in the cockpit, both the outboard and the stern drive versions are pretty much the same. The bow area is roomy, as I would expect. The filler cushions are on the options list (add $240) and I like the separate color to the welting that highlights the cushions. Drink holders are abundant, but here’s an interesting standard feature… lighted drink holders. Haven’t seen that one before, but I can see the benefit. Everybody seems to be adding underwater lights to their options list and Kayot is no exception, even on the outboard version (add $750). But here’s another item I haven’t seen before… lighted rubrails (add $570). So much for not being different.
The company says the boat has a capacity for fourteen. Even a cursory look at the floor plan brings doubt to that claim. Harris Kayot is following the American Boat and Yacht Council (ABYC) “persons capacity” formula and using very thin people at that. How wide is one average butt? We count 12 seating places for thin people, and 14 if you stand one up holding onto the windshield and one standing behind the helm and companion seat holding on. Standing counts under ABYC standards for occupant capacity? Yup, so long as it is a “designated occupant position.”There’s storage for just about everything, including the carry-on cooler and skis & equipment. While Kayot has a lot of items on the options list, their standard features aren’t too shabby either. Docking lights are typically optional as are depth sounders and bow ladders, all standard here.
Outboard vs. Stern Drive...
Ok, so we have an outboard. That means that there is no engine taking up cockpit space, right? Sort of. While I didn’t get to do a side by side comparison, a picture is worth a thousand words.By looking at these two images, it appears that the floor plans are identical. That means that by opting for the outboard version, you’ll gain storage space under the aft sunpad at the cost of having to share the swim platform with the outboard engine. Well… that’s not the only cost. The outboard version is a bit higher priced than the stern drive package. You’ll pay $5,180 more for the 150-hp outboard versions over the I/O-powered with the standard 5.0L 220-hp MerCruiser. The 5.0L 220-hp MerCruiser engine weighs 946 lbs. and its 8 cylinders displace 305 cu. in. The 150-hp XL Verado weighs 510 lbs. and its 4 cylinders displace 105.7 cu. in. What will the difference in performance be? I’d like to test them both and find out.
And The Winner Is...
Of course there are differences in the operation of inboards vs. outboards and such, but it’s mostly a personal choice, and choice is what makes customers happy. Don’t tell me what I want, I’ll tell you. If you can provide it, great, if not, I’ll find someone who will. In a survey done by BoatTEST.com among its members about six months ago we noted outboard owners definitely had a far warmer feeling about their engines than did those owning stern drive engines – and this theme ran across all brand names. Certainly outboards are easier to service and repair, and if our poll is any indicator, they are more reliable, too. Trouble is that the old carbureted stern drives were dragging down their reliability quotient. They are now a thing of the past thanks to the EPA. Choice is a good thing, and it separates the survivors from the strugglers. By offering a choice of I/O or outboard, Kayot has given two more reasons for getting on the water with friends and family… and that means having a boat that will have no “buyer’s remorse” factor. Take your pick. Which would you choose?
Standard and Optional Features
|Washdown: Raw Water||Optional|
|Outlet: 12-Volt Acc||Standard|
Full Warranty Information on this brand coming soon!
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