Sea-Doo GTX 215 // Oceanis 48 // Monte Carlo Yachts 76 // 15 Reports - 04/27/2016
BoatTEST Newsletter April 27, 2016 Click here if you cannot view the newsletter.
Boattest.com: Tests You Can Trust
IN THIS ISSUE
- Jeanneau Velasco 43F
- Sea-Doo GTX Limited 215
- Sailfish 270CC
- Cruisers Yachts 390
- Beneteau Oceanis 48
- Regal 1900 ESX
- Key West 239FS
- Monte Carlo Yachts 76
- TAHOE 550 TS
- Hysucat 8.5
- TRACKER Targa V-18
- Sea Ray 400 Fly
- World Cat 295CC
- Cruisers Sport Series 238
- Robalo R160
- Picture of the Week
- Boating Course On DVD

Jeanneau Velasco 43F:
2-Stateroom Flybridge Cruiser

Jeanneau Velasco 43F
Though she has the lines, space and seaworthiness of a modern trawler, the Jeanneau Velasco 43F provides planing yacht performance with twin 380-hp Cummins diesel power.

The Jeanneau Velasco 43F has been designed for easy operating. She has standard bow and stern thrusters, an electric windlass, a starboard sliding door next to the helm, and a teak walkway to the bow that's 3" wider (.91 m) on the starboard side than on the port side. We have no test numbers on the flybridge version, but the Velasco 43 (sans flybridge) with the same 2 x 380-hp Cummins QSB 6.7L diesels reached a top speed of 27.8 knots in our test runs, and best cruise was at 2200 rpms where she ran 22.7 knots. The broad forward windshield with narrow mullions offers a clear view over the bow both at take-off and at running attitude, according to our test captain. More...

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Captain’s Report

Sea-Doo GTX Limited 215:
High-End 3-Person PWC With Extras

Sea-Doo GTX Limited 215
The new Sea-Doo GTX Limited 215 is a high-end three-person watercraft that will appeal to riders who want the latest high-tech accessories such as the intelligent brake and reverse system, variable trim, and cruise control.

The braking system on the GTX Limited 215 lets riders stop up to 160’ shorter than without iBR at 50 mph, according to Sea-Doo. When a lever on the left handlebar is squeezed, the throttle immediately drops to idle, and an aluminum brake gate mounted on the transom drops into the flow of water, creating drag and eventually applying reverse thrust automatically to bring the vessel to a stop. Additionally, the system allows for neutral starting, and the reverse operation is electronic to improve slow-speed maneuverability. The Ergolock seat design is sculpted to the riders’ bodies with a narrower section between the knees slightly widening towards the rear. More...

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Captain’s Report

Sailfish 270CC:
Roomy CC with High-Tech Build

Sailfish 270CC
The leaning post of the Sailfish 270CC includes everything from a live bait well to tackle storage drawers, pliers, and knife racks, and rocket-launcher type rod holders.

Sailfish keeps the 270CC light yet strong in part with carbon-fiber reinforced deck beams, which run athwartship every few inches to stiffen the deck and save weight. Prefabricated stringers ensure exact proportions of foam, glass and resin, maintaining strength without added weight -- Sailfish says this alone sheds more than 200 lbs. (91 kg) from the 270CC’s dry weight. Kevlar is used in key areas for strength, including where the transom attaches to stringers. More...

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Test Video

Cruisers Yachts 390 Express Coupe:
Express w/ Mini On-Deck Galley

Cruisers Yachts 390 Express Coupe
The arched roof line and sweeping windshield of the Cruisers Yachts 390 Express Coupe give her an unmistakable appearance, whether at full speed ahead of the twin 8.2 MerCruisers or at the docks.

The Cruisers Yachts 390 Express Coupe is a stylish, fully-equipped dayboat that has all of the necessities for weekending aboard, including an optional summer kitchen in the cockpit and a full galley below decks. A standard power sunroof lets in light and air at the helm, while below decks large hullside windows give an open feel to the large convertible salon/sleeping area in the bow. With Pullman style bunks in place, the boat can sleep four. More...

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New Captain’s Report

Beneteau Oceanis 48:
Easy-Sailing w/ Clever Living Spaces

Beneteau Oceanis 48
The Beneteau Oceanis 48 was engineered by French naval architect Berret Racoupeau with a canoe-style hull that exhibits low drag and is easily driven under sail or power.

The Beneteau Oceanis 48 is a fast, easily driven design with ample beam that carries well forward, providing excellent room below as well as on deck. The foredeck offers a safe, wide platform for sailing, docking or simply lounging, while the cockpit is roomy and efficient. The long, low deck profile provides excellent visibility and sheds water easily, according to our test captain. The interior layout is highly versatile: a simple two-cabin, two-head layout can be increased to a five-cabin, three-head layout while maintaining much of the interior space of the main salon. More...

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Test Video

Regal 1900 ESX:
Edgy Entry-Level Bowrider

Regal 1900 ESX
Multi-colored hull-side graphics and two-tone interiors along with the swept-back, powder-coated windshield frame give the Regal 1900 ESX a sporty appeal for a younger demographic.

With its stepped hull, which the company calls FasTrac, air is drawn in from the sides as the Regal 1900 ESX gets on plane. That air is then channeled under the hull to break the surface friction and drag, resulting in a faster and more efficient boat. A useful upgrade on the ESX model is the double-wide bench seat with a convertible backrest that gives it utility both forward and facing aft. The seatback also slides fore and aft to be more comfortable for taller or shorter guests. More...

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Test Video

Key West 239FS:
48.9 MPH WOT w/ Evinrude E-TEC G2 250

Key West 239 FS
A built-in setback in the transom of the Key West 239FS is ideal for the uncluttered mount made possible with the Evinrude E-TEC G2 250's integral steering system and single-tube rigging.

The Key West 239FS has a moderate step in the hull designed to reduce drag at speed and improve efficiency. She proved an able performer in our test, reaching a top speed of 48.9 mph and getting on plane in just 3.5 seconds powered by an Evinrude E-TEC G2 250 turning a 15 1/2" x 17" Rebel propeller. The package also proved to be fuel-efficient, with a best cruise at 26.5 mph at 3500 rpm, getting 3.4 mpg. More...

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Accommodations Video

Monte Carlo Yachts 76:
4 En Suites, Primo Interior Decor

Monte Carlo Yachts 76
The luxurious master suite of the Monte Carlo Yachts 76 features a sofa, walk-in closet, and a large bath with a lavish use of travertine. Textured teak, leather, and bronze relief art make up the wall decor.

The Monte Carlo Yachts 76 can be finished as either a three or four en suite yacht, with the master much larger in the three bedroom version. All feature world-class interior decor, including textured Italian leather flooring, if desired, in many areas. Large circular hullside windows and opening portlights provide natural light and ventilation. Powered with twin 1200-hp MAN diesels and ZF drives, she's ready to cruise at speeds to nearly 30 knots. More...

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Test Video

TAHOE 550 TS:
Competitively-Priced, Fully-Equipped

Tahoe 550 TS
The 19'10" (6.05 m) TAHOE 550 TS is a turn-key package that comes complete with a color-matched trailer, including a swing-away tongue for fitting into most garages.

The TAHOE 550 TS delivered strong performance on the 150 Mercury XL 4-stroke in our tests, topping out at 48.8 mph. The helm seats offer upscale styling and both swivel and slide. The boat has exceptional storage, particularly under the aft sun pad -- where the engine fits in the sterndrive equivalent -- and in the 7'-long ski locker under the aft deck. A four-step stainless steel ladder makes reboarding easy for swimmers. More...

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Test Video

Hysucat 8.5:
Soft-Riding Hydrofoil RIB

Hysucat 8.5
Though she looks like a standard RIB from above, the Hysucat 8.5 has twin hulls with three hydrofoils below the waterline to provide a smooth ride at speed.

The Hysucat 8.5 is a functional platform for a wide range of uses -- day boating, fishing, marina hopping, diving and snorkeling, acting as a tender to a larger yacht -- any activity in which a rigid-hull inflatable boat (RIB) usually excels. But she adds unique running characteristics thanks to the sharp bows of her catamaran hull and a large stainless steel hydrofoil amidships. There are two more foils in the stern. The foils raise the hulls at speed, reducing wave impact as well as increasing speed and fuel efficiency, according to the company. With twin 140 Suzuki outboards, she topped 50 mph in our test runs, and best cruise, at 3500 rpm and 23.0 mph, delivered 4.1 mpg. More...

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Captain’s Report

TRACKER Targa V-18 Combo:
Multi-Mission All-Welded Aluminum Deep Vee

Tracker Targa V-18 Combo
The TRACKER Targa V-18 Combo features four swiveling seats that can be mounted in the cockpit for cruising, then quickly shifted to the bow and stern to become fishing seats.

The TRACKER Targa V-18 Combo is an all-welded deep-V aluminum dual-console that's designed primarily for fishing big northern lakes, but she can also double nicely for a bit of day-cruising, swimming, and tow-sports. The aft deck flips up for additional seating and supports an easily mounted ski pylon. Cushions forward make the bow a comfortable seating area. The powder-coated exterior paint with clear coat gives shine and durability approaching automotive paint. She’s equipped with a Bluetooth-capable AM/FM stereo with MP3/USB ports. More...

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Test Video

Sea Ray 400 Fly:
Stylish 2 Stateroom Yacht
Equipped to Entertain

Sea Ray 400 Fly
The raked windshield and arched salon roof along with the hullside windows give the Sea Ray 400 Fly dramatic exterior lines, as well as bringing lots of light into interior areas.

The Sea Ray 400 Fly is built with outdoor entertaining in mind; a grill on the transom platform, a refreshment center on the spacious flybridge, and a wine chiller, as well as a full galley on the main level, should keep visitors happy. A broad sun pad with chaise-type backs is found forward, and a sun shade can be deployed for all-day comfort. The test boat was equipped with 6.7 H.O. Cummins diesels feeding V-drive systems, and in combination with the standard bow thruster and the optional joystick, the set-up made docking a simple matter for our test captain. More...

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Captain’s Report

World Cat 295CC:
Roomy Upscale Center Console Cat

World Cat 295CC
The luxurious and abundant seating in the broad bow area is a distinguishing feature of the World Cat 295CC, which carries her 9'6" (2.90 m) beam almost all the way to the bow.

The World Cat 295CC’s high freeboard combined with broad twin hulls makes her among the safest and driest boats in class, and the sharp forward entry softens the ride as well. With a dual fuel system, she has redundant systems to get home. She's distinguished from most pure fishing boats by upscale upholstery, which features diamond-stitching and contrasting piping, as well as far more foam padding than the norm in standard fishing boats. Upscale features also include a standard hardtop, twin 300 quart macerated fishboxes, and flip-down armrests and individual flip-up bolsters at the console. More...

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Test Video

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider:
Upmarket Sportboat w/ Extras

Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider
With a 21-degree deadrise, a sharp forward entry, and plenty of freeboard, the Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider keeps the cockpit dry even when throwing spray.

The Cruisers Sport Series 238 Bow Rider focuses on watersports, as well as dayboating. The oversized swim platform extends past the lower unit in the down position, providing a huge area for staging and putting on skis or wakeboards, and a ski pylon and transom shower are standard. The aft seat is convertible, to face forward, to face aft, or to fold down as a sun pad. A compact head compartment is an unusual feature in a boat this size. A cockpit sink is also included. More...

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Test Video

Robalo R160:
Entry-Level, Shallow-Draft CC

Robalo R160
The Robalo R160 features hard chines running all the way to the bow, helping her to stay dry in bumpy water.

The Robalo R160 is an entry-level center console that's the right size for fishing shallow flats and inland waterways but with enough freeboard to make occasional forays into large bays or even off the beach when things are calm. With a draft up of just 10" (25 cm), she's capable of being poled into the shallow flats where redfish hide, and she's equipped with the fishing basics, including both horizontal and vertical rod storage and several spots to hide a 5-gallon (19 L) bucket with cast net. The base package, including a 4-stroke 50-hp Yamaha and an aluminum trailer, comes in under $20,000. More...

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