Nitro Z-7, Yanmar 8LV-370, 14 Tests and Reviews - 11/02/2011
BoatTEST Newsletter November 2, 2011 If you cannot view the newsletter, click here. Tests You Can Trust
- Glacier Bay 2770
- Yanmar 8LV-370
- Beneteau Flyer GT 44
- Sea Ray 500 Sundancer
- Bennington 2275 RCW
- Beneteau Swift 52
- Tahoe Q5 SF
- Cruisers Yachts 540 SC
- Back Cove 30
- Cobalt 276
- Chris-Craft Corsair 36
- Nitro Z-7
- Sea-Doo GTX Limited iS 260
- Volvo Penta DPS
- Scout 210 Dorado
- Shurhold Products
- Picture of the Week
- Boating Course on DVD
- Proper Props
- Capt. Steve's Weekly Lesson
- Ducky Award Winner

Glacier Bay 2770:
New Customer-
Driven Layout

GB 2770
Glacier Bay responsed to customer feedback by completely redesigning the interior layout of the 2770 on their proven offshore hull.

When we heard that Glacier Bay was giving their popular 2670 a makeover, we had our usual concerns about whether they would end up compromising on the classic cat handling characteristics that make the brand so much fun to operate. Of course the only way to find out was to take this new 2770 on a full test. We are happy to report that the classic handling is intact. Find out more...

cross ruler

New Test Video

New Yanmar 8LV-370:
Lightweight and Powerful

Yanmar 8LV-370
Thanks to the small size of the 8LV it can fit into more engine compartments over a wider range of boats.

Yanmar has an all new diesel engine available in two horsepower ratings of 320 or 370. We put a 370 version through a full test in a Back Cove 30 and found more than we expected. In addition to the engine, Yanmar now offers its own electronic controls and displays. This engine can be installed as an inboard, to a Yanmar sterndrive, or even a jet drive. Among other things the test showed this engine is light and powerful. Hit the start button to watch the full video...

cross ruler

New Test Video

Beneteau Flyer Gran Turismo 44:
Two Staterooms and Air Step

Beneteau Flyer Gran Turismo 44
Notice the high rails that far exceed ABYC standards for safety. Dual hull side windows add huge amounts of natural light to the fore and mid cabins.

Beneteau has created a capable cruiser with a warm and inviting feel and an open and airy layout in the Flyer Gran Turismo 44. More importantly, you and your guests will be treated to a comfortable ride, even when the weather starts to turn. That can be an important feature when most of your onboard time is spent away from the dock. With the Air Step hull we found the 44's handling to be outstanding, but you have to see the full test to get an idea of exactly how revolutionary it truly is. To the test ride...

cross ruler

Captain's Report

Sea Ray 500 Sundancer:
New Pod Performance

Sea Ray 500 Sundancer
Not only does the new 2011 model Sea Ray 500 have Zeus pods/joystick propulsion, but it comes as standard equipment. V-drives are optional.

The 500 Sundancer is the largest boat in Sea Ray's Sport Yacht line and she is designed for entertaining 12 to 14 people at anchor or even underway. We think the most exciting aspect of the 500 Sundancer is her excellent handling and performance. We recently tested a 500 powered by her standard propulsion system which is twin CMD 526-hp engines connected to twin Zeus pod drives. Ease into the helm seat and take her out...

Request a brochure

cross ruler

Captain's Report

Bennington 2275 RCW:
Tri-toon with Performance Options

Bennington 2275 RCW
The Bennington 2275 RCW shown here has the optional Elliptical Sport Package.

Pontoon boat manufacturers like Bennington are continually looking for technological design improvements. In the case of the 2275 RCW these improvements are primarily below the deck, with the pontoons to be exact. The builder has developed several design elements with the toons that add to the performance and handling of this premium model. They tell us the goal was to increase the water sports capabilities of this luxury platform. Get wet and take a closer look to see what we mean...

cross ruler

New Features Video

Beneteau Swift 52:
3 Staterooms Plus Crew Quarters

Beneteau Swift 52
We thought those hull side windows looked great from the outside. Wait till you see them from the full beam master.

If you plan on coastal cruising, then there are a lot of considerations for the right cruising boat, and we think the Beneteau Swift 52 has them covered quite nicely. Our test video shows her ease of handling, even when shorthanded, and great range and performance. Now we take a look at the interior layout to see if our typical cruising couple will not only be comfortable, but will be able to entertain in style, even if the plans include guests on an extended stay. More...

cross ruler

New Test

Tahoe Q5 SF:
Family Fun Runabout

Tahoe Q5 SF
The new 19' 5'' (5.9 m) Q5 SF model is a sportboat targeted at families who may want to include fishing in addition to more active watersports.

Tahoe refers to the multi-purpose SF Q-model lineup as “ski & fish” boats, putting a spin on the traditional “fish & ski” designation. It’s a telling juxtaposition. We think the Tahoe Q5 SF is an affordable freshwater candidate for the casual angler who has a family into towing watersports. Let's look deeper...

Request a brochure

cross ruler

Captain's Report

Cruisers Yachts 540 Sports Coupe:
For Long Cruises and Big Parties

Cruisers Yachts 540 Sports Coupe
The Cruisers Yachts 540 is a big yacht no matter how you look at her -- just look at the size of the people in the photo. Down below she has space galore.

We think Cruisers Yachts has made form and function come together without much compromise in the 540 Sports Coupe. With so many standard features, her options list is a breeze to select the few remaining essentials, mostly in the electronics. The cockpit lends itself to entertaining both dockside and underway, and the helm is among the nicest layouts we’ve seen. Moving down below, the interior is total eye candy while remaining functional and airy, offering one of the highest overheads in class. Welcome aboard the 540 Sports Coupe...

cross ruler

New Test

Back Cove 30:
Downeast Day Boat

Back Cove 30
The Back Cove 30 has proved to be an able day boat and weekend cruiser for a couple.

In our recent test, the Back Cove 30 showed what a well-balanced Downeast day boat can deliver when value and performance are at the top of the checklist. She is ideal for sailors ready to hang up the rags and begin the good life in power, as well as for power boaters moving up, down, or out of another boat type for something different. Our test showed that along with style and comfort, she could deliver respectable performance and handling. Fitted with the latest diesel engine from Yanmar, the 8LV-370, with think this is a combination that should be on your short list. Let's take look...

cross ruler

Features Video

Cobalt 276:
A Luxury Bowrider

Cobalt 276
At 5,500-lbs. (2,500 kgs.) the Cobalt 276 is a big bowrider and her interior coachwork detailing is at the top of the boat building pyramid.

When you are at the top of your game, everyone is usually gunning for you, and so it is little surprise that these days Cobalt is under going some withering competition from a number of sportboat builders from around the world. But can they really lay a glove on the venerable Cobalt? Today we look at the Cobalt 276 to see exactly what this builder does to earn its sterling reputation. More...

cross ruler

Captain's Report

Chris-Craft Corsair 36:
Elegance in Motion

Chris-Craft Corsair 36
The Corsair 36 has a 12' 6" (3.81) beam and weight 16,000 lbs. (7,257 kgs.) and has a 20-degree deadrise at the transom. She can be powered to go very fast, if that is her mission.

The Chris-Craft Corsair 36 is so much more than a large runabout with two big cabins below, a galley and stand-up head with separate shower stall. She is a work of art that recalls the glory days of yachting in North American and in Europe in the 1920s. She is also an icon for enduring nautical taste and classic powerboat lines that have been refined with time much the way wind, sea, and sand sculptures sandstone. Let's take a closer look...

cross ruler

New Test Video

Nitro Z-7:
Testing Affordability

Nitro Z-7
Club competitors and recreational bass anglers alike will find a lot to like about the new Nitro Z-7 for 2012. She is 18' 8" (5.68 m) long and has a top speed of nearly 60 mph.

At 18' 8" (5.68 m) the Z-7 is a scaled down version of Nitro’s premium bass boat, the Z-9, and designed to meet the needs of bass anglers who don’t need the size or the higher price tag that a bigger boat brings to the table. The Z-7 is 25 inches shorter and carries two inches less beam than the larger Z. The major compromises most anglers might note between the two Nitros end there. In fact, the 2012 Z with the lucky “7” designation is both more frugal with fuel and more nimble on the water than her larger kin. Take a look at our test and you'll see what an affordable bass boat can give you. More...

Request a brochure

cross ruler

Captain's Report

Sea-Doo GTX Limited iS 260:
More Luxury and Comfort

Sea-Doo GTX-260 Is Limited
From the side, the GTX Limited iS 260 has a sleek and stylish look. Notice the plush driver’s seat with raised backrest.

The team at Sea-Doo tells us they designed the GTX Limited iS 260 as a luxury PWC and after our time reviewing this machine, we have to agree. Cutting-edge Sea-Doo technology is omnipresent in the GTX, but that is only part of the story. In our opinion the overall design and features center on luxury and comfort. Here are the notable factors...

cross ruler

Test Video

Volvo Penta's DPS:
Push-Button Position Keeping

Volvo Penta DPS
The real beauty of this Dynamic Positioning System (DPS) is that it's activated by a button on the joystick, which means no additional holes drilled into your panel. Even the display will likely already be there.

How many times have you had to wait in the middle of a running channel for a bridge to open? How about holding position while you wait for a gas dock to free up? Or the countless other times you just had to wait for whatever reason? Wouldn't it be more convenient to just press a button and have the boat do the work for you? That's the logic behind Volvo Penta's DPS, or Dynamic Positioning System. And if you're a fan of Volvo Penta then you likely have most of the components already installed on your panel anyway. So why not add one more button on the joystick? Press your mouse's button here...

cross ruler

Captain's Report

Scout 210 Dorado:
All-Purpose Saltwater Flyer

Scout 210 Dorado
The Scout 210 Dorado has a beam of 8'4 (2.5 m), draws only 15" (.4 m) with the outboard up and weighs 2,040 lbs. (925 kg.) dry.

The Scout Dorado line of boats is designed for people who want a good all-around boat that they can use in saltwater for skiing, wakeboarding, tubing, diving, cruising, blasting around, a little fishing, or all of the above. The Dorado line of Scout boats runs from 18' to 24' (5.4 to 7.3 m), so the 210 is about in the middle of the range. Equipped with a Yamaha 150-hp four-stroke engine she has an MSRP of $49,200. Let's take a look at her...

cross ruler


Shurhold Telescoping
Handle & Brushes

Shurhold Brushes
Shurhold's Telescoping Handle lets you wash away dirt and grime from transom to the hardtop.

The team at has rolled up their sleeves and gone to work. We took Shurhold’s Telescoping Handle and brushes out to the dock and did some cleaning. The six foot Telescoping Handle was very adaptable with four different lengths between 40” and 72”. We were able to clean the deck and then the hull with the same handle. Next we did a comparison test with the Shurhold Deck Brush, one that has been using for two years. The polystyrene bristles were all still intact and the split fiber ends were still soft. Other than some dirt, the wooden block was not cracked and the rubber bumper was still resilient. Take a look at the video to see the Telescoping Handle and brushes in action...


Where in the World?

Picture of the Week

Picture of the Week
Find out where this picture was taken and when...

See the larger picture, when and who took it -- and where!

Send us your favorite boating images.

When sending a photo, let us know when, where and what boat you were on.

Smart Boating's
Smart Boating DVD Course

Smart Boating
Sometimes it's not what you know, but what you've forgotten. We have the perfect solution for you. Smart Boating, because safe boating just isn't enough.

Based on the feedback we’ve been getting about's Smart Boating Course it’s clearly not only for beginners, but also for veteran boaters as well. Perhaps that is why the NMMA started promoting the course after just one look. It's the most complete boating course available...period. Order your 4-disc box set here...

Watch the trailer...


Change the Prop
To Change the Perfomance

Royal Purple
Your prop could be the key to improving your boat’s performance. Why buy a new engine or boat, when all you might need is a new prop?

Many boaters are not aware that they can change characteristics of their boat’s performance simply by changing the propeller. Want to maximize your top speed? Again, the right prop can do that for you. You can even change the time and speed it takes for your boat to get on plane by changing the prop. We can tell you first hand that the team at PowerTech! Propellers are some of the best in the world at matching the correct prop to every boating application. Find out how to improve speed and performance in this video...

Prop Worksheet...


Visit and "like" our page to watch unedited video found only on Facebook...
cross ruler

Lesson of the Week

How to Survive and Treat Hypothermia

Lesson of the Week Smart Boating
Survival in cold water will depend on how well you are able to minimize your body’s heat loss.

This week Capt. Steve goes over four new lessons and guidelines on recognizing the signs of hypothermia, how to help avoid it, and what you can do to lessen the effects on your body. Hypothermia does not only happen in cold water, even in 70 degree water you can still experience a significant loss of body heat. Do not ignore the signs of hypothermia as the condition will only get worse as time progresses. Capt. Steve will go over some survival techniques and how to treat hypothermia by gradually bringing up the body temperature. The videos presented this week are part of’s Smart Boating Course which is USCG-approved. Watch these video boating lessons every week on

To view this week’s lessons --

To view past lessons --

cross ruler

Ducky Award Winner

Ducky Winner

First Place

"Apparently Bill wasn't completely clear about the coach's suggestion that his new role would be driving the boat for the ski team." - R. DeMott

Second Place

"Are you sure this is how Evel Knievel got started?" - M. Lenoard

Honorable Mention(s)

"Laugh all you want, you'll never find a faster way to scrape off the barnacles." A. Leon

What's Going
On Here?

WIGOH 11/2/11

You write the caption! Will you win the coveted "Ducky Award" for best caption?

Simply fill in your caption and you may get lucky -- quack here.

We need reader help!

If you have a picture that you think needs some explanation, email it to us., LLC
51 Bank Street, Suite 2A
Stamford, CT 06901

All articles, Captain's Reports, video content or other material which appear on and in its newsletters are accurate and factual to the best knowledge of and its staff. All findings, beliefs, experiences, or endorsements presented are the honest opinions of or its contributors. In compliance with FTC 16 CFR Part 255 advises its readers that content that appears in its newsletter or on its website may have been produced for compensation or the prospect of future compensation. makes no claims for the veracity or motivation of reader comments, Owners’ Reports, and other contributions which are all clearly labeled as such.