Wellcraft 241 // Regal 23 OBX // Mercury Verado 350 // 17 Reports - 12/21/2016
BoatTEST Newsletter December 21, 2016 Click here if you cannot view the newsletter.
Boattest.com: Tests You Can Trust
IN THIS ISSUE
- Regal 23 OBX
- 32'-34' Center Consoles
- Wellcraft 241 Fisherman
- Sea Ray Sundancer 460
- Nitro Z20
- Mercury Verado 350
- Beneteau Gran Turismo 46
- Regency 220 LE3 Sport
- Ocean Alexander 85
- Glastron GTS 180
- Grady-White Freedom 335
- Beneteau Oceanis 45
- Sea-Doo GTI SE
- Maritimo M70
- Formula 350 FX CBR
- Hatteras 60 Motor Yacht
- Key West 244 CC
- Picture of the Week
- Boating Course On DVD

Regal 23 OBX:
New Outboard-Powered Regal Bowrider

Regal 23 OBX
The Regal 23 OBX has more freeboard than most bowriders in class, and she also offers more space up front thanks to carrying her beam well forward.

The Regal 23 OBX is the first outboard-powered boat from the company in over 20 years, adding performance and versatility to the sterndrive lineup. Eliminating the sterndrive makes more interior space available for guests and gear. The swim platform wraps around the outboard motor, and because it’s at water level, it facilitates reboarding. She comes with a comprehensive standard equipment list that includes a Garmin 7607 digital screen, a carry-on cooler, and a Fusion stereo with six speakers. More...

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Comparison

32'-34' Center Consoles:
We Compare Six Big Center Consoles

Sailfish 320CC running
Sailfish 320CC
Mako 334 CC running
Mako 334 CC
World Cat 320CC running
World Cat 320CC
Boston Whaler 330 Outrage running
Boston Whaler 330 Outrage
Grady-White Canyon 336 running
Grady-White Canyon 336
Andros Boatworks Offshore 32 running
Andros Boatworks Offshore 32

This week's comparison compares a sextet of center consoles in what we think is an ideal size range, 32' to 34’. These boats are big enough to be super-functional for many uses -- fishing, family day-cruising, providing a dive platform, or being a tender for a megayacht. They're seaworthy enough to fish way offshore and carry enough fuel for serious bluewater work. But they're also small enough to be easy to handle and maintain and are affordable for many people. There is quite a diversity here in approach, so these boats provide a good basis for comparison. More...

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New Captain’s Report

Sea Ray Sundancer 460:
New Sport Cruiser w/ Sun Roof

Sea Ray Sundancer 460
The Sea Ray Sundancer 460 is all about enjoying the open air and a brisk ride on big water, but she also has below-decks accommodations second to none.

The Sundancer 460 provides luxury entertainment and accommodation, as well as a powerful, smooth ride to distant destinations even in challenging weather, according to our test captain. She features an open and airy salon, highlighted by a retractable sunroof that rolls back and opens nearly half the overhead up to the sun. Her galley is situated just inside the sliding glass doors to the cockpit. More...

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Test Video

Wellcraft 241 Fisherman:
Shallow-Draft Bay Angler

Wellcraft 241 Fisherman
With a draft of just 14” (.35 m), the Wellcraft 241 Fisherman is well designed for fishing the flats, while a 15-degree deadrise and transom pad design should allow her to get on plane quickly.

The Wellcraft 241 Fisherman is notable among bayboats for exceptional finish work. For example, all hatches are finished inside and out, and they are gasketed and guttered to keep water out. Most swing up on gas-assist struts, making access much easier. There's even dedicated bow storage for a five-gallon (19 L) bucket, an essential for all castnetters. A console head makes her family-friendly, but her primary mission is clearly bay fishing. More...

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Test Video

NITRO Z20:
High Performance Bass Boat

Nitro Z20
The NITRO Z20 maximizes fishing space with a 38-sq. ft. forward casting deck and an aft deck that’s only slightly smaller.

With a 250-hp Mercury 250 OptiMax Pro XS outboard turning a 14 5/8 x 25 Fury three-blade stainless-steel propeller, the NITRO Z20 hit a top speed of 71.2 mph at 5800 rpm. She has a 16-degree deadrise at the transom, and the Rapid Planing System helps with quicker holeshots and better handling. She’s also designed with lots of bow flare and a low profile, a combination that helps knock down spray while improving aerodynamic efficiency. More...

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Test Video

Mercury Verado 350:
Supercharged In-Line 6 w/ Reduced Weight

Mercury Verado 350
The larger, straighter intake airflow of the Mercury Marine Verado 350 path is a highly efficient design that cuts turbulence. The unique labyrinth design in the top cowl keeps the powerhead dry.

The Mercury Marine Verado 350 uses a supercharger and an internal oil cooler to produce maximum performance from a 159 CID in-line 6 block that's some 95 lbs. (43 kg) lighter than the nearest competitor, according to the company. The computerized engine has a SmartCraft ECU that allows for plug and play benefits of Mercury's Joystick Piloting for Outboards (JPO). It features a stout 5.44” (0.14 m) diameter lower gear case for the extra-strong gears, and all the internal components are cut in-house at Mercury Marine. More...

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Captain’s Report

Beneteau Gran Turismo 46:
For Day-Boating and Cruising

Beneteau Gran Turismo 46
The Beneteau Gran Turismo 46 features two large glass doors swinging to port and starboard, fully opening the salon to the cockpit in a single-level space.

The Beneteau Gran Turismo 46 is suited for intermediate-range cruising, weekend excursions, or day trips with two couples or a small family aboard. She would also function well as an entertainment platform thanks to her unusual sliding door arrangement and twin moveable settees. The Air Step 2 hull design allows three times more air beneath the underwater portion of the hull, according to the builder, reducing friction and increasing performance. More...

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New Test Video

REGENCY 220 LE3 Sport:
Quality Tri-Toon w/ Rear-View Camera

Regency 220 LE3 Sport
With a single 200-hp outboard, the 220 LE3 Sport tops out at over 35 mph and can run 150 statute miles at cruise between fill-ups.

The REGENCY 220 LE3 Sport is an upscale pontoon boat that offers the performance of a runabout in a well-equipped package with space for up to 10 guests. Aft-facing lounges, two captain’s chairs, and a power Bimini top add convenience. The pontoons, fence rails, Bimini top frame and ladder are all powder-coated, adding eye appeal and durability. A rear-facing camera mounted on the back of the Bimini top frame, comes standard. Most important, she is built to high standards of quality. More...

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Captain's Report

Ocean Alexander 85 Motoryacht:
Long-Range Cruiser w/ 4 Ensuites

Ocean Alexander 85 Motoryacht
With twin MTU 10V2000 1600 horsepower engines, a pair of 32 kW Kohler generators, a Seagull water purifier, and a Sea Recovery 900 gallon (3,407 L) per day water maker, the Ocean Alexander 85 Motoryacht is ready for long-distance cruising with minimal reliance on shoreside facilities.

The Ocean Alexander 85 Motoryacht has four luxurious, roomy ensuites below decks, plus space for several crewmen aft for those who prefer a crewed yacht. The large flybridge includes a day galley and wet bar, flip down 32" TV and A/V system, along with a granite-surface bar and five fixed stools. A 1,750 pound (794 kg) hydraulic davit handles a 14' tender on the aft portion of the bridge. More...

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Test Video

Glastron GTS 180:
47.6 MPH WOT w/ Evinrude E-TEC G2 150 H.O.

Glastron GTS 180
Revved-up styling and bold colors give a distinctive look to the Glastron GTS 180, readily matched by the abundant colors and graphic patterns available on the Evinrude E-TEC G2 150 H.O.

The Glastron GTS 180 combines retro styling in the windshield and helm area with the comforts of a modern outboard-powered bowrider. At an LOA of 17'10" (5.44 m), she fits into most garages with the included factory-matched trailer and weighing just 2,514 lbs. (1,140 kg), including the Evinrude E-TEC G2 150 H.O., she's readily towed by mid-size vehicles. Performance was strong, topping out at 47.6 mph. More...

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Captain’s Report

Grady-White Freedom 335:
Family Dual Console w/ Fishing Features

Grady-White Freedom 335
Like all Grady-Whites, the Freedom 335 comes ready for fishing, but she's also well equipped for an evening of entertaining at the docks or for an occasional overnight.

The Grady-White Freedom 335 has a wet bar with refrigerator, sink, storage drawers, and drink holders plus a pair of fold-away tables in the cockpit. Below decks a settee in the port console converts to a double berth at the touch of a button while a wet head is tucked into the starboard compartment. At the forward end of the cockpit is an electrically actuated sliding lounge seat with storage below. More...

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Captain’s Report

Beneteau Oceanis 45:
Versatility in Layout and Mission

Beneteau Oceanis 45
Both helm stations on the Beneteau Oceanis 45 hug the outward bulwark, improving the helmsman's view on all points of sail over a single, center command post.

The Beneteau Oceanis 45's cockpit and rigging are designed for ease of access, particularly when sailing short-handed, and the high mainsail sheet block arch keeps movement in the cockpit unhindered and safe. The hard chine hull design results in a greater beam relative to the wetted surface than some with increased space both on deck and below as a result. Layout options up to four staterooms, four baths are available. More...

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New Test Video

Sea-Doo GTI SE:
Performance, Plus Safety Features

Sea-Doo GTI SE
We tested the 90-hp Rotax-powered version of the Sea-Doo GTI SE, reaching a top speed of 42.5 mph. More powerful engines are optional.

The Sea-Doo GTI SE features "Intelligent Throttle Control", a digital system that includes three modes, Touring, Sport, and ECO, for varying skill levels and rider needs. Intelligent Braking and Reverse allows backing the PWC off the beach as well as rapid, safe stopping, and the SE model features a three-place seat upgrade with more grab handles and added padding compared to low-end models in the line. More...

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Test Video

Maritimo M70:
Sky-Salon Space, Main Deck Luxury

Maritimo M65
The Maritimo M70 has six foredeck hatches to bring light and air to the cabins below.

The Maritimo M70 has four cabins, including a full-beam master and three heads. She also includes the trademark Maritimo enclosed flying bridge with inside stairway that has come to define the brand. An electric sunroof allows opening the bridge to a bit of sunshine and fresh air. High gloss teak cabinetry and leather upholstery add luxury both to the sky-salon and the main deck entertainment areas. More...

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Test Video

Formula 350 FX CBR:
56.0 MPH WOT w/ 2x Ilmor 6.2L 430s

Formula 350 FX CBR
Imron graphics add to the eye appeal of the trademark high-gloss finish on the Formula 350 FX CBR, and with the optional Ilmor drive package, even the engine valve covers get matching paint.

The Formula 350 FX CBR is a premium-level, high-performance bowrider that manages to fit a comfortable cabin below decks. Twin 430-hp Ilmor MV8 6.2L OPS engines produced a top speed of 56.0 mph, and our test captain was particularly impressed with the smooth operation of the Ilmor electronic shifting drive systems and joystick control. The cabin has a full galley, overnight accommodations for two, and an enclosed head with VacuFlush toilet. More...

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Test Video

Hatteras 60 Motor Yacht:
Beamy Long-Ranger

Hatteras 60 Motor Yacht
With an 18'2" (5.53 m) beam, the Hatteras 60 Motor Yacht is the widest yacht in class, according to our test captain, thus adding lots of usable space both above and below decks.

The Hatteras 60 Motor Yacht is designed for owner operation, and thanks to her 1,200-gallon (4,542 L) fuel capacity and twin C18 Cat engines, she can handle long range travel at displacement speeds without concern for refueling ports. The fly-bridge helm is the only control station: it is enclosable with isinglass curtains and has two vents for the standard air-conditioning/heat system. The lower deck features three staterooms, including the full-beam master and two heads. More...

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New Test Video

Key West 244CC:
Offshore Angler w/ 50.4 MPH WOT

Key West 244 CC
With a rising sheer line forward and lots of bow flare, the Key West 244CC Bluewater is well designed to keep spray out of the cockpit and to deal with big inlet seas.

Powered with twin Evinrude 150 E-TEC G2s turning 20" four-blade props, the Key West 244CC bluewater topped out at 50.4 mph. She had an impressive hole shot of under three seconds and also delivered good fuel economy with best cruise at 3000 rpm and 24.9 mph at which she got 2.8 mpg. She comes fully-rigged for offshore fishing with two oval-shaped 18-gallon (68 L) livewells in the corners of the transom, six vertical rod holders across the stern, an insulated fishbox with overboard drain, and more. More...

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