New Cruisers Yachts 45 Cantius // New Volvo Penta 6.0L V8-380 Tested // 12 Reviews - 10/10/2012
BoatTEST Newsletter October 10, 2012 Click here if you cannot view the newsletter. Tests You Can Trust
- Cruisers Yachts 45 Cantius
- Beneteau Air Step
- Volvo Penta V8-380
- Boston Whaler 230 Dauntless
- Sea Ray 210 SLX
- Formula  350 Crossover Bowrider
- Hatteras Yachts GT54
- Intrepid 475 Sport Yacht
- Beneteau Gran Turismo 44
- Mako 184 Center Console
- Manitou 27 Platinum SES
- Prestige 620S
- Tahoe 215 Xi
- Riviera 4400 SY
- Evinrude E-TEC 150
- PowerTech PowerStop
- Picture of the Week
- Boating Course On DVD
- Capt. Steve's Weekly Lesson
- Ducky Award Winner

Cruisers Yachts 45 Cantius: A Stunning Design with a Huge Mid Cabin

Cruiser Yachts 45 Cantius
Underway the 45 Cantius makes a dramatic statement visually and inside she is built for entertaining and serious cruising.

The new 45 Cantius is the third yacht in the successful Cantius Series built by Cruisers Yachts. In some respects she is the most forward-leaning of the three as the builder has further refined the distinctive Cantius exterior styling. Below the 45 Cantius has two ensuite staterooms with the largest mid-cabin in class. Her enclosed house is large enough to make her a small motoryacht, yet due to her creative aft glass enclosure she makes a versatile day boat for entertaining and sunning in comfort. Visit our full test...

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New Video

Beneteau Air Step Hull:
New Design Innovation

Beneteau Air Step
Pictured here, the dramatic design of the Air Step hull can be seen starting with the air ducts venting through the keel amidship.

Hull design is constantly changing in the boating industry, usually subtle changes in shape, but once in a while a dramatic change comes along that really makes a difference. Beneteau has developed a hull design they call Air Step and after testing four different boat models with this new design, we feel it definitely makes a difference. The key advantages seem to be increased stability, better time to plane and improved performance with less engine power. The innovative design has a very prominent key feature you might not have expected. Here is our full video review...

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New Captain's Report

New Volvo Penta V8-380:
The Test Numbers Are In

Volvo Penta V8-380
This new, smaller block V8 engine takes advantage of several advances in technology allowing it to run smoother, cleaner, have more torque and burn less fuel – and of course to be lighter and take up less space.

With the new 6.0 L Volvo Penta V8-380 being one of the first completely new marine gasoline sterndrive engines introduced by a major manufacturer in years we jumped at the chance to be able to test this new powerhouse and see how she performed. She was tested in both a single and twin application, and our tests found some revealing performance characteristics of this "next generation" engine. More...

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Features Video

Boston Whaler 230 Dauntless:
Taking Family Features to New Lengths

Boston Whaler 230 Dauntless
At 23'6" (7.16 m) this Boston Whaler 230 Dauntless is now the largest in the Dauntless lineup.

Longtime fans of Boston Whaler's Dauntless lineup are familiar with how well these models handle families. Now with the introduction of this new 230 Dauntless, owners of small Boston Whalers thinking about trading up do not have to look elsewhere. She comes loaded to ensure good times on the water, but Boston Whaler also offers options so the 230 Dauntless can be customized for a specific application. Take a look at our features video...

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New Test Video

Sea Ray 210 SLX: 
Bowrider with Premium Features

Sea Ray 210 SLX
In addition to adding more premium features, Sea Ray's design team also had the task of reducing the noise level.

The Sea Ray 210 SLX answers the call for boaters not wanting to compromise on quality and features just because they need to stay in a smallish boat. This handsome bowrider is loaded with upscale features, including a premium trailer.  She performs just as well as she looks and we have the test video to prove it. More...

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Test Video

Formula 350 Crossover Bowrider:
Out-of-the-Box Thinking

Formula 350 Crossover Bowrider
The new Formula 350 Crossover Bowrider has the best of both worlds for day boating
and weekend fun.

Formula has come up with a combination of cruiser and bowrider and made it as upscale as any other boat in the Formula family. While we found the new 350 Crossover Bowrider comfortable to be on, and well laid out for an overnighting couple, we were there to test her performance and see if she rises to the usual Formula standards that we’ve come to expect. See us put the Formula 350 Crossover Bowrider through her paces... 

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Test Video

Hatteras Yachts GT54:
Hatteras’ Latest Sportfish Cruiser

Hatteras GT54
At 53’10” (16.41 m) LOA and a 17’3” (5.27 m) beam, the Hatteras Yachts GT54 is a wide open and spacious cruiser leaving room for fishing and spending extended stays onboard.

The Hatteras Yachts GT54 was made to be an uncompromising sportfishing cruiser providing comfort while offshore or even at the dock. She’s part of Hatteras’ latest efforts to capitalize on the reputation for high-quality the company was built on, while making important styling and performance enhancements. We think she’s an excellent example of the strength and seaworthiness that we’ve come to expect from Hatteras. And the proof is in the test. Step aboard... 

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Features Video

Intrepid 475 Sport Yacht:
Outboard- Powered for Performance & Room

Intrepid 475 Sport Yacht
Because she's powered by outboards the Intrepid 475 Sport Yacht is able to provide much more interior space than she would with inboard power.

Intrepid Powerboats is a builder of one of the most upscale semi-custom powerboat lines in the world. As such, we’ve come to expect a lot of innovation and originality from its designs, and this 475 Sport Yacht delivers in spades. Because she’s outboard powered, Intrepid has opened up the roominess both above and below decks and provided two private staterooms and a roomy salon and galley. The integrity of the build is pivotal in the layout as well. Just take a look at our features video and see... 

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Test Video

Beneteau Gran Turismo 44:
Remarkable Air Step Handling

Beneteau Gran Turismo 44
Here's an express cruiser with the handling characteristics of a sportboat.
Powered by twin Volvo Penta 370-hp diesels her top speed was 37.9 mph with a best cruise range of 221 miles.

If Beneteau ever decided to make a poster child for its Air Step hull’s handling characteristics, we think this Gran Turismo 44 is just the boat to use. While a side-by-side comparison isn't possible, the difference between how this boat might have handled and how she did handle was self evident. Everything from acceleration, to turning, to handling waves exceeded what we expected from a boat in this size and class. It's all in our full test review. More...

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Review Video

Mako 184 Center Console:
Uncomplicated Fishing Boat

Mako 184 Center Console
The Mako 184 Center Console has a LOA of 18’4” (5.6 m) a beam of 8'2” (2.5 m), she carries 5 persons and 56 gallons (212 L) of fuel.

The Mako 184 Center Console has uncomplicated systems, which means more time fishing and less time troubleshooting problems. She's also tough and can take the punishment of fishing hard. Afterwards, a garden hose is all she needs to keep her looking good. She's the result of decades of lessons learned from a brand synonymous with center consoles and she comes in at a competitive price. More...

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Captain's Report

Manitou 27 Platinum SES:
An Upscale Tri-Toon

Manitou 27 Platinum SES
The triple V-TOON pontoons earned Manitou a U.S. patent and were designed to improve performance and handling.

Manitou's 27 Platinum SES combines top-tier features with performance and handling. Her triple tubes give her sporty handling characteristics while being rated to carry up to 300-hp gives her speed and agility. Her long list of features allows owners to dial in exactly the level of comfort they're looking for. And while she may not be for everyone, for the discriminating buyer who only intends to get one boat, it might as well be one that makes a statement. Let's look at the full report...

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Test Video

Prestige 620S:
A Sporty Performer

Prestige 620
Our tests show a top speed of 31.5 kts and a best cruise range of 331 nm with twin Volvo Penta 700-hp diesels.

The Prestige 620S is a natural evolution of the popular Prestige 60. She has a redesigned flying bridge that saves nearly 1,000 lbs. (454 kg) over the 60 and now allows for the addition of a sunroof in the forward salon below. A pair of Volvo Penta IPS900's gives her good cruising performance and the solid feel of a large yacht. With joystick maneuverability, she is a true owner/operator’s yacht. More...

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Review Video

Tahoe 215 Xi:
Fishing/Deck Boat

Tahoe 215 X
The 215 Xi sits in the middle of a popular category with a length overall of 21'6" (6.5 m) and a trailerable beam of 8'6" (2.59 m).

The Tahoe 215 Xi combines the spacious layout and roominess of a deckboat with fishing features. She comes in under $31,000 for the complete package. Take a video look...

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Captain's Report

Riviera 4400 SY:
Improving the Breed

Riviera 4400 SY
The Riviera 4400 SY has a LOA of 49'7" (15.12 m) and a beam of 15' (4.58 m).

One thing that can be said about Riviera is that it strives to continually improve its lineup. Because of customer feedback the 4400 SY has now evolved into what is called Series II, and the changes make a good boat even better. She’s clearly a purpose-built cruising boat with a galley up, so owners can spend the days on deck and nights below.  Let’s take a look...

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New Test Video

Evinrude E-TEC 150:
Big Power/Small Package

Evinrude E-TEC 150
In this video we take a look at the features of the Evinrude
E-TEC 150 that directly affect boaters and the boating experience.
There are a lot of features to the Evinrude E-TEC line, but most are only interesting to the gear-head types, or those having a degree in engineering. Nevertheless, there are still many technical details that directly affect average boaters and their experience on the water. Those are the aspects of the engine that we go over today -- all while we test this workhorse in two different boats. More...


The New "PowerStop!" Prop: Designed to Work in Reverse

PowerTech Prop
Looking aft on this left-hand turning prop the red arrows point to the ridge on the surface of the prop blade that makes all of the difference.

Have you ever wondered why sterndrive and outboard props never seem to work very well in reverse? The reason is that the props are designed to provide maximum performance when going forward. The result is that some types of boats, such as houseboats, pontoon boats and recreational barges are seriously challenged when slowing down, stopping, or maneuvering. Making a prop that was good at going in reverse has historically severely denigrated forward performance. Until now. Last year PowerTech! quietly introduced its revolutionary PowerStop! prop to its target markets and soon it will rolling out this new prop to a far wider audience. Learn more...

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
DVD Boating Course

Smart Boating
Sometimes it's not what you know, but what you've forgotten.  Smart Boating, because safe boating just isn't enough.

Based on the feedback we’ve been getting about's Boating Course it’s clearly not only for beginners, but 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 video course available...period. Order here...

Watch the trailer...


Visit us on Facebook and "like" us to see the latest, plus some behind the scenes looks.

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Lesson of the Week

Throwables, Navigation Lights
and Fire Extinguishers

Lesson of the WeekSmart Boating
Capt. Steve explains requirements for all boaters.

USCG requires throwables (boats over 16’), navigational lights and fire extinguishers on all boats. This week Captain Steve walks the boater through these required safety devices. He will explain the requirements for your boat, types of devices available, and when it is time to replace this necessary and required equipment. These eleven short videos presented this week are part of his USCG-approved boating course called “Smart Boating.” Watch Captain Steve's video boating lessons every week on

To view this week’s lessons --

To order all lessons --

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Ducky Award

Ducky Winner

First Place

“No worries mate...remember this is Australia where everything is the reverse of how it appears Up Above.” - R. Stanard

Second Place

“Don't worry Boudreaux, I been in dis' shortcut many times!” – C. Melder

Third Place

“I parked the boat over here so the fish will never see us coming...” - F. Calia

What's Going
On Here?

WIGOH 10/10/2012

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