Cobalt 323 Test:
One Classy Dayboat
If anyone knows how to add “class appeal” to a day boat, it has to be the design team at Cobalt. Everywhere we looked we saw only examples of going a step further to bring out the best in quality and features: touches like quilted upholstery on the bulkheads, high-end custom-made hardware, and a stainless steel retractable walkthrough ladder that sets a new industy standard. Throw all this together with a boat load of other features, add a top speed of over 50 mph, and you’ve got a very cool ride. All aboard...
New "Details" Video
ZF 2800 Single Pod Drive System:
It Could Be a Game Changer
Three weeks ago when we ran our test of the 34' center console powered by a single diesel engine driving through a single ZF pod the article scored as one of our all-time highest in reader interest. What is not to like about a clean transom and incredible range thanks to diesel fuel efficiency when used with a single pod? Now we take a close video look at the details that make this a ground-breaking system. See history in the making...
Sea Ray 185 Sport:
Revisiting a Classic Bowrider
We have been testing new versions of the Sea Ray 185 Sport for nearly 10 years now, and each new version has been a step forward thanks to Sea Ray's professional engineering and design staff. The builder takes aboard owner feedback so a good boat has just gotten better. Today's 185 Sport incorporates a deep cockpit and bow area which we like for safety, especially for a family. Let's take a video look...
New Test Video
Evinrude E-TEC 150 H.O.:
A Challenging Twin-Toon Test
We recently ran a video tour of the features of Evinrude’s E-TEC 150, and then we wondered what its performance would be like in a challenging application -- a 4,000
lbs. (1,814 kg.) twin-toon boat. With only two logs and lots of weight this
boat is far heavier and sinks far deeper than most toons we have tested with a 150-hp
outboard. We were impressed by her hole shot time, top speed and speed at
3500 rpm. Take a look...
New Beneteau Swift Trawler 44:
Light, Fast, Modern
The newest boat in Beneteau's Swift Trawler series is the ST 44, which replaces the ST 42, the model that started Beneteau's foray into the trawler market back in 2004. Like the ST 42, she is intended for coastal work, inter-island exploration, and serious cruising. This twin stateroom, two-head boat weighs 24,019 lbs. (10,895 kgs.) and is powered with twin Volvo Penta D4 300-hp diesel engines. Her price is a very pleasant surprise.
Larson Cabrio 857:
The Birth of a New Series
After a long line of boats that get almost everything right, Larson still decided to plunge ahead and create a series that will introduce new styling, features and layouts in direct response to customer feedback. The first of the series is this new Cabrio 857. To make it quite clear what market Larson is targeting, the
us an 857 (as in 8.57 meters) powered by a single sterndrive diesel engine. Find out how the diesel-powered 857 performed...
New Marquis 420 Sport Bridge:
In Style For The Long Haul
Hull #1 of the Marquis 420 SB was on display at the recent Miami Boat Show and we got aboard for a good look. The flying bridge model is a development of the express cruiser Sport Coupe version that was first introduced a few years ago -- which we have tested. The new Sport Bridge version keeps all of the great styling and innovative concepts of the coupe but adds a sleek flying bridge that has been expertly designed. Take off your Guccis and step aboard...
Rinker Has Big Promotion
On 4 Express Cruisers
Rinker is holding a dramatic sale promotion from now until May 1st that offers discounts worth from $27,754 up to $117,055 off the MSRP base price of four express cruisers in its line. The four boats are: 310 EC, 340 EC, 360 EC, and 400 EC. The discounts range up to 30%. To find out the details and to get a $10,000 voucher toward options,
start right here...
New Cutwater 26 & 28:
Downeast Goes Out West
Cutwater trailerable and affordable Downeast cruisers were unveiled last winter by the Pacific Northwest boat builder Fluid Motion, builder of the successful Ranger Tugs. The Cutwater Downeaster will come in two sizes -- for now -- 26' (8 m) and 28' (8.61 m). They are both powered by single Yanmar diesel engines to save weight, and fuel, and to provide the low-end torque necessary to get these boats quickly on plane. The company has targeted couples in their 50s and 60s who want the cruising dream without having to mortgage their retirement nest egg. The MSRP starts at $139,937. Let's take a look...
New Scout 345 XSF Center Console:
Most Innovative of the Scout Fleet
Scout's newest boat, the 345 XSF center console, is also the company's largest boat and she is a beauty. With a 10'9" (3.30 m) beam and a displacement of about 10,300 lbs. (4,681 kgs.) with twin Yamaha 350s strapped to her integrated bracket/swim platform, she has the heft to handle just the kind of seas pictured above. As striking as the 345's curves are on the outside, you ain't seen nothin' yet. Let's climb aboard...
Nord Star 40 Patrol:
Built in Finland with IPS Power
You can always count on the Scandinavians to produce interesting boats, and the
Nord Star Patrol line is no exception. Top of the line is this 40 Patrol, which
combines a quasi-military profile with an inviting flying bridge and wide swim platform.
Built by Linex-Boat Oy, a family-owned company based in Kalvia, Finland, the 42'6"
(12.98 m) LOA x 12'6" (3.85 m) beam 40 Patrol is designed for folks who cruise in
a wide range of sea and weather conditions, not all of them friendly. Join us for some herring and aquavit...
Cruising Around Holland
In a Meridian 459 Sedan
Few countries boast more waterways than the beautiful Netherlands, which is probably why the Dutch are some of the most avid boaters in the world. So then, how would
an American-designed and -built motor yacht do in these waters when owned and operated by a local couple?
For this Dutch treat...
Seaswirl 2105 CC:
For Fish or Family
Striper made the 2105 CC as an offshore fishing boat that’s also designed to keep
the family happy. Her relatively high freeboard forward will help keep mom dry,
and her deep cockpit will keep the kids where they belong. And there's a head!
For fishermen we found the 2105 CC to be a virtual blank canvas,
waiting to be painted with the options that are specific to the mission intended,
whether it is trolling, casting, jigging, or any combination. Sounds good, but how does she handle?
High-Tech "Tigé Touch" Delivers a Programmable Wakeboat
“Tigé Touch” is the newest feature to grace the Tigé line of performance wakeboard boats. This amazing instrument not only gives you complete control of the boat’s speed, but it also controls the ballast tanks, lights, tunes, bilge pumps, and a host of other accessories and equipment. It is similar in concept to the expensive Octoplex system which we have seen on megayachts, but the “Tigé Touch” was designed and engineered by the team at Tigé strictly for the systems on board a complex sportboat. Captain Steve made a video to show us how it works. All you need is a finger...
Yamaha VXR Waverunner:
Fast, Fuel-Efficient and Stable
The team at Yamaha tells us that the mission of the VXR is to provide the best possible
high performance watercraft in a no-frills, low-cost package. With this in mind,
we set out to test and review the VXR. The first thing we noticed was that the production
weight of this watercraft is only 728 lbs. and that the 1812 cc four-stroke, four-cylinder
marine engine is NOT supercharged. What's more, the dash and handle bars are not decorated like a Christmas tree with lots of things to look at and fiddle
with. Yamaha certainly got the no-frills part right, but what about the performance
and handling, and who is the VXR really designed for? Hop aboard and find out...
Lesson of the Week
How to Anchor Your Boat
This week Capt. Steve will go over nine
short videos and guidelines on the different types of anchors and anchoring procedures. Learn about how to select a good spot to anchor, how to correctly set an anchor, and the step-by-step process to ensure the anchor is secured to the bottom. The videos presented
this week are part of BoatTEST.com’s Boating Course which is USCG-approved. Watch
these video boating lessons every week on BoatTEST.com.
To view this week’s lessons --
Order all lessons on DVD--
Ducky Award Winner
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“If man thinks... it's not worth it! it's not worth it!” – R. Justice
Honorable (almost) Mentions
“Trust me honey, in ten years you'll look back at this and laugh about it.” – J. Wilson
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