Key Largo 2486 // Four Winns H290 // Maritimo M48 // 17 Reports - 04/13/2016
BoatTEST Newsletter April 13, 2016 Click here if you cannot view the newsletter.
Boattest.com: Tests You Can Trust
IN THIS ISSUE
- Chaparral H2O 21 Ski
- Volvo Penta Next Generation
- Monte Carlo Yachts 105
- Key Largo 2486 WA
- Maritimo M48
- Sea-Doo SPARK
- Jeanneau Merry Fisher
- SUN TRACKER PARTY
- World Cat 230CC
- Mercury Remanufacturing
- Regal 30 Express
- Beneteau Sense 55
- TAHOE 195
- Evinrude E-TEC G2 200
- Beneteau Gran Turismo 35
- Scarab 255 Impulse WAKE
- Four Winns H290
- Picture of the Week
- Boating Course On DVD

Chaparral H2O 21 Ski & Fish:
Cost-Effective Multi-Mission I/O

Chaparral H2O 21 Ski & Fish
The Chaparral H2O Ski & Fish is laid out like most bowriders, but remove the cushions, reposition the aft seats, and snap out the carpet, and she's ready to go fishing.

The Chaparral H2O Ski & Fish has the eye-appeal and comfortable seating of a stylish runabout, but she quickly converts to a very workable fishing rig for freshwater or coastal work. Included (but hidden) fishing features include bow and stern casting platforms and swiveling fishing seats, a 70-quart livewell, trolling motor mount, wiring and batteries, and gunwale rod holders. The Minn Kota bow mount trolling motor is standard but is easily removed when the mission is watersports or day-boating. At a suggested price of $34,495 including trailer, she's cost-effective. More...

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Builder Video

Volvo Penta "Next Generation" Engines:
Automotive Reliability in a Marine Engine

Volvo Penta Next Generation
The FEAD housing (Front Engine Accessory Drive) on Volvo Penta's ''Next Generation'' engine bolts to the front of the engines and supplies all of the plumbing and mounting locations for the units' accessories, eliminating leaking cooling hoses and significantly reducing associated hardware.

Volvo Penta’s lineup of "Next Generation" engines, including the V6-200, V6-240, V6-280, V8-300 and V8-350, are built on the latest models of GM aluminum blocks and heads. That means these designs have been proven by millions of automotive units in service all over the world. Volvo Penta says this platform choice was based on features including common rail fuel injection, competitive cost and reliability, variable valve timing, and fresh-water cooling as standard components. In-cylinder fuel-injection allows increased compression ratios and fuel economy, while the VVT improves torque and greatly reduces emissions. Engines registered in North America have a five-year factory warranty. More...

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Captain’s Report

Monte Carlo Yachts 105:
New Flagship Yacht w/ Italian Panache

Monte Carlo Yachts 105
The stunning, modernistic lines of the Monte Carlo Yachts 105 are supported by a high-tech build in a monocoque structural concept.

The Monte Carlo Yachts 105 offers a fully-customizable interior, but efficiencies in build keep the pricing within the norm for top-end production yachts, according to the company. The full-beam master includes large hullside windows as well as a skylight, making it unusually bright. MCY's signature four concentric circle portlights illuminate the full-beam VIP stateroom below. The open flying bridge adds a large entertainment venue, but wind screens keep the ocean breezes at bay. More...

Test Drive Dealer Contact

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New Captain’s Report

Key Largo 2486 WA:
Saltwater Rig with Evinrude Power

Key Largo 2486 WA
The Key Largo 2486 WA is a trailerable walk-around fisherman with plenty of fishing room in the cockpit as well as a cabin large enough for occasional overnights.

The Key Largo 2486 WA produced impressive performance in our test runs considering that she was powered by a single Evinrude E-TEC G2 250 H.O. outboard. "H.O." stands for "High Output", which, in this case, means she produces something like 275-hp at wide-open-throttle. She got on plane in 4.8 seconds, reached 30 mph in 8.1 seconds and topped out at 49.5 mph, turning a BRP 4-blade 15 x 18 stainless steel propeller. She draws around 20'' (.51 m), making her suitable for bay and lake fishing as well as offshore work. More...

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Test Video

Maritimo M48:
A Bluewater Cruiser

Maritimo M48
The Maritimo M48 has an enclosed flying bridge which creates more all-season living space.

The Maritimo M48 has three staterooms, including a full-beam master. The flying bridge is enclosed to provide a second smaller salon, adding to the functionality and comfortability of this boat. Because she’s built in Australia, she is designed to be comfortable in blue water, and she has a remarkable 422 nmile range at 17.8 knots, with a 10% reserve. More...

Test Drive Dealer Contact

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Test Video

Sea-Doo SPARK:
Entry-Level Price, Maximum Fun

Sea-Doo Spark
The Sea-Doo SPARK is the company’s entry-level watercraft that is designed to provide maximum fun for all skill levels.

The Sea-Doo SPARK is, for most people, the first foray into the world of personal watercraft. It’s affordable, fun, easy to ride and easy to transport. For about the price of a big screen premium TV, family fun can take on a whole new meaning. Options such as storage compartments and Intelligent Braking and Reverse are available to increase the functionality, but for most, the base machine is just the ticket for safe, affordable family fun. In fact, in our test video, we even swapped Captain Steve in favor of an entry-level operator. Take a look and see...

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Captain’s Report

Jeanneau Merry Fisher 855:
28' Outboard Cruiser w/ Accommodations

Jeanneau Merry Fisher 855
Outboard power up to twin 200s allows the Merry Fisher 855 to maximize her 28' (8.53 m) LOA for living space.

The Merry Fisher 855 combines innovative interior design solutions in an outboard powered cruiser. With a draft of just 1'10" (.56 m), she's capable of exploring backwaters, yet she has lots of freeboard and a 9'9" (2.99 m) beam, assets for taking on offshore passages. Two cabins below decks receive lots of natural light from the hullside windows, and a convertible dinette in the salon adds space for a third couple or grandkids to overnight on occasion. More...

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Captain’s Report

SUN TRACKER PARTY BARGE 20 DLX:
Economy-Priced Pontoon w/ Full Swim Platform

Sun Tracker Party Barge 20 DLX
A full-width swim platform is a welcome feature of the SUN TRACKER PARTY BARGE 20 DLX, providing extra space for swimmers as well as making it easier to get to the outboard for maintenance checks.

The SUN TRACKER PARTY BARGE 20 DLX is a value-priced pontoon boat, but she features quality touches including pillow-top, multi-layer foam furniture finished with UV resistant, marine-grade 26-ounce vinyl. The carpet is 28-ounce marine-grade and is easy on bare feet. The swiveling captain's chair tilts, has an elevated head rest and flip-up armrests for easy entry. She comes with a Bimini top with LED courtesy lights, standard. More...

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Test Video

World Cat 230CC:
For Both Blue and Skinny Water

World Cat 230CC
Here, Captain Steve demonstrates the 230CC’s ability to soar through the air at speed but have a relatively soft landing because of the twin hulls -- with high deadrise -- of the catamaran design.

World Cat designed the 230CC to be an all-purpose boat to appeal to all types of anglers. She comes well-equipped to handle skinny water, drawing only 9’’ (23 cm) with the outboard up. With their standard version, there’s few additions the average angler will need to make. More...

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Test Video

Mercury Remanufacturing
383 MAG Stroker Inboard:
How to Make An Old Boat New

Mercury Remanufacturing 383 MAG Stroker Inboard
The inboard version of the 383 MAG Stroker is identified by its blue flame arrestor cover. The sterndrive version is flaming orange.

Repowering is a tried and true way of revitalizing an old boat at a fraction of the cost of buying new. The 383 MAG Stroker Inboard is designed to be a lighter, higher-output replacement for various gasoline inboards. We tested the Stroker on a single engine, pocket cruiser 1999 Donzi 275 Z, weighing approximately 8,200 lbs. (3,719 kg). Despite being heavily loaded on test day, the single-engine cruiser got on plane easily and accelerated quickly to her top speed of 44.7 mph. More...

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Captain’s Report

Regal 30 Express:
Loaded Express Sleeps 4

regal_30express_nl_041316.jpg
Windows to both the front and side of the trunk cabin as well as hull side portlights bathe the interior of the Regal 30 Express in natural light.

The Regal 30 Express features lots of top-shelf extras not found standard on most boats in class, including (for a limited time) a generator and air-conditioning as well as a water heater and electric head, all included in the $158,140 price. Cherry cabinetry and Corian counters enhance the good looks in the convertible dining area/galley below decks, while a mid-cabin queen berth serves as the master. More...

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Design and Style Review

Beneteau Sense 55:
A Modern, Versatile Yacht

Beneteau Sense 55
The Beneteau Sense 55 has a LOA of 56’5” (17.2 m), a beam of 16’4” (4.98 m), and a draft of 7’10’’ (2.39 m). She has three large staterooms with en suite heads.

With the Sense 55, Beneteau sets out to provide a capable bluewater cruiser for families. Her versatile accommodations can be suitable for living aboard or long-distance cruising, thanks to the large spaces provided. Her cockpit is open and comfortable for both entertaining and cruising. Sleek, modern, and loaded with the latest equipment, the Sense 55 has the flexibility of being single-handed or to be comfortably cruised in with multiple guests. More...

Test Drive Dealer Contact

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Captain’s Report

TAHOE 195:
Roomy Deckboat w/ Fishing Options

Tahoe 195
The TAHOE 195 includes two-tone seating for eight, and also offers a pair of swiveling fishing seats at the bow.

The TAHOE 195 has the space of a family-oriented deckboat thanks to the beam-forward design, a sink/entertainment center, Bimini, ski-tow eye and bow and stern swim ladders. But lots of angling amenities make her a dual-mission rig. Two swiveling fishing seats can be mounted side-by-side at the bow, while one can be placed on the port quarter aft, and wiring for the optional bow-mount trolling motor is standard, as is the bow livewell. More...

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Test Video

Evinrude E-TEC G2 200 H.O.:
Innovative, Second Generation Design

Evinrude E-TEC G2 200 H.O.
The Evinrude E-TEC G2 engine platform is truly innovative in the opinion of BoatTEST.com.

The Evinrude E-TEC G2 200 H.O. is the most advanced and innovative outboard engine available on today’s market. With its remarkable low-end torque, fuel economy, and lowest emissions in class, the E-TEC G2 200 H.O. combines the best attributes of the 2-stroke and 4-stroke engines. For boaters who want low-maintenance and high reliability, having over 100 fewer parts and a 5-year warranty should solve the equation. More...

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Test Video

Beneteau Gran Turismo 35:
Express Cruiser for Day Boating

Beneteau Gran Turismo 35
The Beneteau Gran Turismo 35 with her Bimini and open deck makes her a good cruiser on which to entertain. The high side windows protect guests from wind and spray.

While she's designed for day boating, the Beneteau Gran Turismo 35 serves equally as well at night. She is the smallest boat in the GT line, but she is designed to maximize entertaining space. On deck, she has a large swim platform for launching watersports and her transom grill is a clever use of space. Her “U”-shaped cockpit settee maximizes seating and her port side built-in chaise is made for sunning. Below, she has a pedestal table forward with surrounding banquet seating that makes for cozy cocktails or dinner at night. More...

Test Drive Dealer Contact

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New Captain’s Report

Scarab 255 Impulse WAKE Edition:
53.2 MPH WOT w/ 2 x 250-HP Rotax Jets

Scarab 255 Impulse WAKE Edition
The Scarab 255 Impulse WAKE Edition is all about speed and performance, but note she has seating for up to 13.

With twin 250-hp Rotax 4-TEC jet power, the Scarab 255 Impulse WAKE Edition is a spirited performer, with a 3.1-second hole shot and a top speed of 53.2 mph. She comes loaded with upscale features including a folding wakeboard tower with Bimini, four-speaker stereo with Bluetooth and MP3 connectivity, and a tandem-axle trailer with brakes, chrome wheels and swing-away tongue. More...

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Test Video

Four Winns H290:
Upscale Bowrider w/ Overnighting Cabin

Four Winns H290
The hullside windows on the Four Winns H290 hint at an unusual feature in a bowrider, a compact cabin for overnights tucked under the starboard console.

The Four Winns H290 is a big bowrider, with a 9'5" (2.87 m) beam and a weight of more than 9,500 lbs. (4,309 kg), yet she delivered impressive performance in our tests, powered by the base package of twin Volvo Penta V8-300s. She jumped on plane in just 3.4 seconds and reached a top speed of 51.9 mph. The company says their Stable Vee stepped hull, along with running surfaces carried aft of the transom, contributes to the strong performance. More...

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Picture of the Week

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