Working from a template that is traditionally geared toward fishing, Robalo’s new R247 dual-console widens the scope of its capabilities to include watersports, cruising, and general entertaining. The Robalo R247 has a hull designed for offshore fishing with an evolution in design that caters to a wider variety of on-the-water activity.
The biggest boat on Robalo’s dual-console line, carrying its fishing features forward and adding cruising and entertaining amenities, the R247 sits on the market ready for those looking primarily for a fishing boat, but one that can handle other activities in a pinch.
- • Transom fishbox. Situated just above the transom seating, this fish box is well-insulated (advertised by Robalo as “best in class”), maximizing the ice reserves lifespan while absorbing summer heat.
- • Hydro-Lift Multi-Angle Hull Design. The R247’s hull design has an extended running surface, which allows the “v-plane” to continue aft of the transom, creating stability in many different types of driving conditions. Wide reverse chines and pronounced hull strakes in the design should deliver greater stability.
- • Kevlar Reinforced Hull. The R247’s hull is laminated with premium bi- and tri-axial hand-laid fiberglass, and then taken one step further -- Kevlar reinforcement, which Robalo touts as the “strongest and best power-to-weight ratio in the fishing world.” The boat is also 100% rot-free construction, owing to Robalo’s use of composite corings. The R247 also utilizes poured ceramic composite transoms, which produces three times the tensile strength of others in class, according to Robalo.
- • Premium Hull Gelcoat and Resins. Robalo’s gelcoat is high quality, with UV protection that guards against fading or chalking. The gelcoat also resists scratch and scuffmarks, says the builder. The Hydropel vinylester resin prevents osmotic blistering and is a substantial upgrade from lower cost polymer resins.
- • Tournament-ready Livewells. Robalo counts among its customers professional fishermen and industry leading fishing guides, and so the fishing features need to cater to that demand. Robalo describes the R247’s livewells as “tournament ready,” with rounded corners, a blue gelcoat finish, insulation, LED lighting and high-pressure pumps.
Bow Casting Platform. For many of these entertaining boats, the bow seating space will be convertible into a larger sunpad. Using the same design concept, the R247 has a bit more versatility in its conversion. The footwell can be filled with another cushion to create the sunpad, or, the cushions can all be removed and a fiberglass insert installed for a large bow-casting platform.
Enclosed Head. The R247 comes with an enclosed head standard that includes a locking door, incandescent lighting, and a storage shelf. An upgrade is also available -- the “Comfort Package” -- that includes teak and holly flooring, cabinet and countertop space, and a sink with a faucet.
Fishing Rod Holders and Storage. Between the in-floor storage, the horizontal tube storage in the gunwales, and multiple rod-holders positions throughout the boat, the R247 protects and maximizes fishing equipment stowage.
General Note on Seating. The R247 has a 12-person capacity (or 1,800 lbs./ 816 kg). The entertainment center option, however -- one of many available on the R247 -- will cut into the available seating.
Bow seating. The bow on the R247 has the familiar lounge-seating area that bests competitors due to its versatility. A removable table for footwell comes standard, and can actually be used in the cockpit as well.
The boat comes with an optional filler panel that converts the bow’s U-shaped seating to one all-flat cushioned space, perfect for sunbathing as a sunpad, or, with the cushions removed, as a platform for casting.
The bow seating area also comes with recessed speakers, cup holders, and a wraparound guiderail for safety.
Bow storage. Located below the bow seating, the storage here is insulated, with a total capacity of 55 gallons. Robalo refers to these as fishboxes, and they are self-draining. They can also be used as coolers or storage.
Robalo offers an anchor windlass in the bow section, with different packages available for galvanized or stainless steel anchors. These come with 200’ rope and 10’ of stainless steel chain as well.
Cockpit seating. Standard seating in the cockpit consists of the helm seat, and a doublewide bench-style companion seat to port that can lock-in to face forward, starboard, or aft can be added as an option.
There is also a foldout transom seat that can be tucked away for more space when fishing or entertaining. The seat also lifts up for easy access to the engine, and sits just under the boat’s fishbox.
Cockpit storage. The boat’s largest locker comes via a hatch on the deck in between the helm and companion seats. At 9’6” long, 30” wide, and 20” deep, it can fit fishing rods (with dedicated racks) or wakeboards comfortably.
Just inside the helm console is a locking storage compartment for larger items, accessed from the side in the passageway between bow and cockpit.
Outboard and under-deck are fishing rod holders both on port and starboard, capable of stowing eight rods each.
When tucked away, the transom seat increases space for fishing, and there is a fishbox and tackle storage just above the seatback, as well as a 19 gallon LED-lit livewell portside.
Fishing Features. Coaming panels lining the cockpit are a nice touch when wrestling against the gunwales for a fish. Further, just below the rod holder storage along the deck is a stainless steel toe rail that can help when reeling in fish.
Cruising Features. Port side just forward of the companion bench seating, sits the enclosed head compartment. With a locking door (and integrated glove box), the head comes with an optional “comfort” upgrade that includes an electric toilet, teak and holly decking, as well as a sink and storage compartments.
Just aft of the helm seat is where the optional entertainment center sits—with this option, the R247 is equipped with a wet bar, sink, cup holders all on a granite countertop. The island also has power outlets and the removable cooler storage that comes standard with or without the entertainment center.
The stereo system is Bluetooth ready with USB and auxiliary hookups, speakers throughout the boat, and options to upgrade.
Access to the stern is through a small latched gate, and has a telescoping stainless steel ladder as well as a fresh-water shower.
Watersports amenities. One major option on the R247 is the hardtop.
The hardtop also comes with integrated speakers, a towline point, and the option to add outriggers. It can also be customized to include further storage that can lock valuable items away.
Robalo offers a ski-tow pylon as an option as well; a small but highly recommended upgrade.
The Dashboard. The R247’s helm comes standard with an aluminum instrument panel that has weatherproof switches and circuit breakers, Lenco recessed electric trim tabs with indicator lights, compass, Yamaha digital gauges, Sea Star tilt hydraulic steering with a stainless steel wheel equipped with a control knob, 12V DC receptacle, bilge pump, dual battery system, navigation lights, and a voltage regulating system.
The dash also has the stereo system with all auxiliary and USB jacks. Robalo offers a series of electronics options as well, including Garmin GPS, Garmin VHF radio, Simrad radar and VHF radio as well.
The helm seat. The R247’s helm seat is a Dura-Flex suspension and has the side cutouts that allow for maneuverability.
The upholstery is 36 oz. expanded vinyl that is higher in quality than the more common 28 oz. vinyl. The upholstery is UV protected and held together with triple-French stitching.
We tested the R247 with twin Evinrude E-TEC G2 150 H.O. engines. They turned 15” x 18” 4-blade SS props.
Test results. Our test boat had an 8’9” beam and weight 6,569 lbs. We recorded a top speed for the R247 of 45.1 mph at 5700 rpm. It took 3.2 seconds to plane, 4.8 seconds to 20 mph, and 6.9 seconds to 30 mph. Our best speed on the R247 came in at 26.8 mph at 3500 rpm, which yielded 2.68 mpg and a 325 statute mile range.
When punching the throttle from a full stop, we experienced minimal bow rise, leading to clear sight lines in the fully seated position. Robalo has a Hydra-Lift multi-angle bottom, which lead to it handling ripping across our own wake with ease. Robalo advertises a “feather-soft ride,” which we found to be the case particularly in handling turns at speed. Our test experienced limited seas, but in choppier conditions the Lenco trim tabs will be very useful.
Options to Consider
- • Hardtop Options (Bimini Top with Boot and Windscreen, Hard Top Complete, Hard Top Complete (Powder Coated))
- • Anchor windlass with galvanized/ stainless steel anchor
- • Pull-up stainless steel cleats
- • Ski-tow pylon
- • Underwater LED lights
- • Garmin/ Simrad electronics (GPS, radar, radome, radio)
- • Bow filler cushion
- • Entertainment center with sink and pedestal seat
- • Electric toilet with 8-gal holding tank (with or without overboard discharge)
- • Taco “Grand Slam” outriggers
One concern for those in the market for a family boat that can cover many types of activities is that it provides token functionality for many but dedicated capability for none. Any concern over half-measures in the fishing, watersports, or cruising design of the boat can be put to rest. The R247 proves capable in everything it’s designed for, in our opinion.
The litany of options available can help fine tune the experience if needed. The hull design delivered on a smooth ride in our test, and Robalo’s popularity with professional fishermen suggests what we found -- a fishing boat made by people who fish.
Test Result Highlights
- Top speed for the Robalo R247 (2017-) is 45.1 mph (72.6 kph), burning 24.05 gallons per hour (gph) or 91.03 liters per hour (lph).
- Best cruise for the Robalo R247 (2017-) is 26.8 mph (43.1 kph), and the boat gets 2.68 miles per gallon (mpg) or 1.14 kilometers per liter (kpl), giving the boat a cruising range of 325 miles (523.04 kilometers).
- Tested power is 2 x 150 H.O. Evinrude E-TEC G2 25" Shafts.
Standard and Optional Features
|Outlet: 12-Volt Acc||Standard|
10 year limited
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