Wellcraft 222F // Oceanis 38.1 // Bavaria 420 // 17 Reports - 10/12/2016
BoatTEST Newsletter October 12, 2016 Click here if you cannot view the newsletter.
Boattest.com: Tests You Can Trust
IN THIS ISSUE
- Mako 334 CC
- 39'-41' Express Cruisers
- Bavaria Virtess 420 Coupe
- Beneteau Oceanis 38.1
- World Cat 255DC
- Regal 3200
- Wellcraft 222F
- Beneteau Monte Carlo 5S
- Tidewater 280 CC
- Formula 34 PC
- Grady-White Freedom 275
- Hargrave 116
- Nitro Z21
- Beneteau Oceanis 35.1
- Sailfish 275DC
- Manitou 25 X-Plode
- Sea-Doo GTX Limited iS 260
- Picture of the Week
- Boating Course On DVD

MAKO® 334 CC:
New Tournament Fisherman w/ 64.4 MPH WOT

Mako 334 CC
The Sportfish Edition of the MAKO® 334 CC includes the tower shown here, very useful in spotting fish as well as helping the skipper to navigate shoal areas safely.

Getting to the fish fast is a major advantage in offshore tournament fishing, and there are not many center consoles that are going to beat the new MAKO® 334 CC powered with triple 350 Mercury Verado’s: she ran 64.4 mph in our tests. A dive door in the port gunwale adds versatility as well as making it easier to haul a really big fish aboard. The Sportfish Edition includes an upper station with controls and Mercury VesselView, a windlass, and recessed trim tabs among other premium features. Two 34-gallon (128 L) aerated baitwells at the transom are standard. More...

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Comparison

39' - 41’ Express Cruisers:
Same Size Range but Quite Different

Formula 40 Performance Cruiser running
Formula 40 Performance Cruiser
Beneteau Gran Turismo 40 running
Beneteau Gran Turismo 40
Cruisers Yachts 39 Express Coupe running
Cruisers Yachts 39 Express Coupe
Formula 400 Super Sport running
Formula 400 Super Sport
Cruisers 41 Cantius running
Cruisers Yachts 41 Cantius
Sea Ray 400 Sundancer running
Sea Ray 400 Sundancer

Express cruisers from 39’ to 41’ are in a transitional range. While the lengths are close to being the same there is a great diversity in this range -- for example, a couple of the models are nearly half the displacement of others. This is also the size range that is the cross-over from predominately sterndrive propulsion to straight shafts, V-drives and pod drives -- and, for Americans, from gas to diesel engines. With such a diversity in displacement, power selection, and drive systems, it naturally follows that there is a significant spread in MSRP pricing. All of these builders are trying hard to build what the market wants, keep up with current technology, provide reasonable performance, and of course, keep the price down. Check them out here...

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Test Video

Bavaria Virtess 420 Coupe:
New 3/2 Express w/ Hardtop Sun Lounge

Bavaria Virtess 420 Coupe
The Bavaria Virtess 420 Coupe has maximized space and functionality inside yet still has a cockpit for entertaining and a bow for sunning.

The New Bavaria Virtess 420 Coupe has three staterooms, two heads, unusual in a yacht of her LOA where 2/2 or 2/1 are more common. She also has an open transom somewhat like a sailing yacht with no aft bulwark, which effectively adds usable space to the aft cockpit for entertaining and watersports. She has many premium features standard that are extra-cost items on other yachts, including a chilled water cooling, a diesel generator, windlass, power sunroof, and a touch screen helm. Because Bavaria Yachts are sold factory-direct in the U.S., their pricing is competitive. More...

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New Captain's Report

Beneteau Oceanis 38.1:
Versatile Sailing Yacht w/ New Galley Plan

Beneteau Oceanis 38.1
The Beneteau Oceanis 38.1 accommodates shorthanded sailing with jib winches aft, adjacent to the dual helms, while the boat is equally well suited to a crowded cockpit with the mainsheet well out of the way atop an optional arch above the companionway.

The modern lines of the Beneteau Oceanis 38.1 produce good performance under sail, and her twin rudders and steering wheels maintain precise control even when heeled, according to our test captain. Her wide beam carried well aft provides not only speed off the wind, but a large, comfortable cockpit suitable for both sailing and entertaining at anchor. Located just to port of the companionway below decks, the new L-shaped galley makes room for more seating around the salon table than in the original version of this yacht. More...

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Test Video

World Cat 255DC:
Roomy and Stable Power-Cat

World Cat 255DC
With an 8'6" (2.59 m) beam carried nearly all the way to the bow, the World Cat 255DC offers lots more space up front than monohulls of similar dimensions.

The World Cat 255DC is one of the company's more popular models, combining generous space and family-friendly functionality with classic catamaran advantages of deep-water capability, unmatched stability and shallow-water draft. A walkthrough transom and large swim platform provide access to the water; ample space, storage and rod holders will satisfy fishermen. A hardtop complete with rocket launchers, speakers and courtesy lights is standard. Whether it's a day of fishing offshore, a diving expedition, relaxing with the family or cruising with friends, the 255DC's versatility shines through. More...

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Test Video

Regal 3200:
Seaworthy Day Boat w/ 10'4" Beam

Regal 3200
With lots of freeboard, a 21-degree deadrise, and a 10'4" (3.15 m) beam, the Regal 3200 is an exceptionally seaworthy and comfortable day boat for her size.

The Regal 3200 is a large, upscale bowrider that comes loaded with extras. An enclosed head with sink and soft-step floor, dual UltraLounges with six position recline, a refreshment center, PowerTower, and a Fusion 700i marine stereo with Bluetooth are all part of the base package. Dual teak cocktail tables can be mounted in any of six locations around the boat, and there's seating for 14 aboard. Blue LED lights throughout the seating areas add safety for night operation. More...

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Captain’s Report

Wellcraft 222F:
New Versatile Center Console

Wellcraft 222F
The bold Scarab graphics package adds eye-appeal and premium extras to the many practical fishing features of the Wellcraft 222.

The Wellcraft 222F with Scarab Offshore Package adds styling and practical features to the company's tried and true 222 center console model. She has a higher sheer line and more deadrise at the transom (21-degrees) than many bayboats, yet floats in only 16" (0.41 m) of water. This makes her a good compromise for those who enjoy both inshore and coastal fishing action. With an 8'6" (2.59 m) beam and a dry weight of about 3,400 lbs. (1,542 kg), she's readily trailerable. More...

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Captain’s Report

Beneteau Monte Carlo 5S:
49'6" Sedan Cruiser w/ 14' Beam

Beneteau Monte Carlo 5S
In the Beneteau Monte Carlo 5S model, she has space on the upper deck for sun bathing and entertaining.

The Beneteau Monte Carlo 5S features a classic tulip-shaped bow design with a narrow stem, hard chines, and steep deadrise to deliver a soft, dry ride. The design also adds to the overall classic retro look of the yacht, as do her round portlights and nearly plumb bow. She has modern touches as well: the bulwarks of the flying bridge are low, Italian-style, and the windshield is swept back at a low angle. Taken all together, the combination of old and new gives her an unmistakable style that's all her own. More...

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Test Video

Tidewater 280 CC Adventure:
59.1 MPH w/ 2x Evinrude E-TEC G2 250s

Tidewater 280 CC
With her 9’10” (2.99 m) beam and 33” (83.8 cm) of amidships cockpit depth, the Tidewater 280 CC Adventure has a big-boat feel, according to our test captain.

The Tidewater 280 CC Adventure is a center console that comes with a notable list of standard features including an integrated hardtop, leaning post with bolsters, padded bow seating, and a porcelain toilet. She's got plenty of fishing space thanks to a 9'10" (2.99 m) beam carried well forward. Her tested weight was 6,820 lbs. (3,093 kg). Performance with the twin Evinrude E-TEC G2 250s was impressive, reaching a top speed of 59.1 mph, one of the fastest we've seen in class, particularly with outboards under 300-hp. Economy was also good with a 2.1 mpg reading at 3500 rpms and 33.1 mph for a range of about 380 statute miles. More...

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New Captain’s Report

Formula 34 Performance Cruiser:
Fully-Loaded Cruiser w/ 48.3 MPH WOT

Formula 34 PC
The flawless high-gloss painted finish of the Formula 34 Performance Cruiser is one of this high-end company's trademarks.

The Formula 34 Performance Cruiser is an upscale performance cruiser designed to deliver comfortable weekending as well as the speed and handling of a sportboat. She comes loaded with standard equipment, including an electric windlass, remote control search light, radar arch, Bennett tabs, fire suppression system, and an 18,000 BTU cool/heating system. She sleeps four, two in a master suite and two more in the convertible salon. Powered with twin 380 MerCruiser 8.2 MAGs, our test boat reached 48.3 mph. More...

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Test Video

Sailfish 275DC:
New Multi-Tasking DC w/ Angling Essentials

Sailfish 275DC
Though the Sailfish 275DC looks, like a full-on sportfishing boat, and like all in the line she rides on the company's Variable Deadrise Stepped hull and comes with a full complement of coastal angling extras.

The Sailfish 275DC has been designed from the keel up as a real multi-tasking, full-featured boat that can easily appeal to a family of watersport enthusiasts, yet, she doubles as a serious bluewater fishing boat on occasion. The high windshield provides true protection at the twin consoles and allows the captain full forward visibility without straining to see over or under the windshield header. Cockpit depth is considerably greater than most runabouts of similar size with 40" at the bow, 30" at the stern -- a big safety factor with kids and pets aboard. More...

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Test Video

Hargrave 116 Raised Pilothouse:
Smart Engineering in a New 5 Ensuite Yacht

Hargrave 116 Raised Pilothouse
The Hargrave 116 Raised Pilothouse, with bulwarks all the way to the bow peak with seating, welcomes guests to the bow as a safe, comfortable place to relax even at speed.

The Hargrave 116 Raised Pilothouse features five cabins, including a full-beam owner’s suite forward on the main deck. A huge, 10’ long bar complete with six barstools, high-gloss teak countertops, a corner mounted sink, an icemaker, Sub-Zero beverage drawers, and a wine cooler all under a large and stylish hardtop will make the flying bridge one of the most popular spots on this elegant yacht. An interesting combination of engineering and luxury is seen in the marble flooring below decks, in which aluminum honeycomb cuts the weight in half and adds strength and stability to the stone. More...

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Test Video

NITRO® Z21:
New Bass Boat w/ 71.1 MPH WOT

Nitro Z21
The NITRO® Z21 offers lots of fishing room fore and aft and an abundance of LED-lighted locking storage below decks.

The NITRO® Z21 comes fully equipped with all the necessities for serious tournament fishing, including a bow-mount Minn-Kota® trolling motor, Lowrance® depthfinder, locking rod storage, and twin 19-gallon NITRO-exclusive Guardian™ livewells. The console area includes extra-wide, slide-adjusting tournament-style suspension seats plus a removable third seat and integral net holder. A useful feature is the tie-in of the trolling-motor batteries to the starter batteries, ensuring a quick jump should the starter batteries ever go dead. More...

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New Captain's Report

Beneteau Oceanis 35.1:
New Version has 2 or 3 Cabins

Beneteau Oceanis 35.1
The Beneteau Oceanis 35.1 marries a high-performance hull and sailplan with a variety of below deck options that let buyers fine-tune the boat to suit their needs.

The new Beneteau Oceanis 35.1 offers two-cabin and three-cabin arrangements, and a new L-shaped galley that will make cooking easier and safer underway. Her large cockpit proves equally useful for daysailing, cruising, club racing, or entertaining on the hook. An optional fold-out transom makes for easy boarding from the dock, a convenient step into a dinghy for a night ashore, or an ideal snorkeling platform. Twin rudders and wheels are handy in a boat that carries her wide beam well aft. More...

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Test Video

Grady-White Freedom 275:
Offshore Fishing Dual Console w/ Family Features

Grady-White Freedom 275
The trademark sheer of the Grady-White Freedom 275 increases her offshore capabilities, while dual consoles, comfortable bow seating, and a console head make her a pleasing venue for the family.

The Grady-White Freedom 275 dual console provides anglers with a proven offshore fishing platform while also offering family entertainment, cruising, and watersports capabilities. A portable table inserts into a deck socket for lunch or cocktails, and a filler section on centerline converts the bow into a roomy sun pad or, with cushions removed, a big casting platform. An electro-mechanically extendable, aft facing lounge seat mates with the transom seat in the aft cockpit, adding even more lounge space. An optional deluxe wet bar directly behind the helm seat includes a Corian countertop, drink holders, a fire extinguisher holder, sink, storage drawers, and a trash compartment. More...

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New Test Video

Manitou 25 X-Plode XT SHP:
0-20 MPH in 3.5 Sec.
w/ 2x Evinrude E-TEC G2 200s

Manitou 25 X-Plode
The fiberglass sidewalls in the Manitou 25 X-Plode XT SHP model are color-matched by the Evinrude E-TEC G2 panels to make this vessel look cool on the water.

The Manitou 25 X-plode XT SHP is in a class of her own in eye appeal thanks to the sculpted fiberglass sidewalls, lime green color, and bold graphics. She's also faster than many triple-sponson pontoon boats thanks to a maximum 600-hp rating. She ran 52.4 MPH WOT with twin Evinrude E-TEC G2 200s in our tests. On plane, she rides on an oversized center pontoon that not only increases speed but also allows her to lean into corners, making for a more comfortable and safer ride. More...

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Captain’s Report

Sea-Doo GTX Limited iS 260:
New High-End PWC w/ Extras

Sea-Doo GTX Limited iS 260
The Sea-Doo GTX Limited iS 260 includes a suspension system that allows the hull to move independently of the upper deck, implementing a shock absorber and rear swing arm to smooth out the ride.

The Sea-Doo GTX Limited iS 260 is a high-end PWC loaded with high-tech features including a suspension system, activity-specific cruise control, and an on-water braking system. The Variable Trim System (VTS) allows riders to adjust the running attitude of the bow by changing the position of the jet pump nozzle. Integrated mooring lines, a dry storage bag, and a full cover are also included. An integrated lumbar bolster is designed to support the driver's back while providing a soft ride. More...

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