A 25' center console is a popular size -- not too small, not too big. However, 25' is large enough to go offshore in reasonable conditions and go to, say, the Bahamas, or to Nantucket. In order to get to both of the those places from the continental U.S. one must traverse the Gulf Stream and Block Island Sound, or Buzzards Bay. All of these bodies of water can get nasty fast if there's a wind shift or a summer squall comes through. And that is why -- in essence -- knowledgeable boat buyers are willing to pay what it takes to get a Boston Whaler 250 Outrage.
- Urethane console visor
- Power steering
- Portable head with pump-out
- Optional molded tempered glass windshield with power actuated vent
- Electronics surface that accommodates two displays (12")
- Transom-mounted rod holders (3)
- Transom door with stainless steel latch
- Integral swim platform with covered telescoping swim ladder with stainless steel grab rail
- Deluxe leaning post with livewell
|Length Overall||24' 6'' / 7.4 m|
3.14 m w/ radar
Currently no test numbers
1 x 300-hp Mercury Verado Four-Stroke
2 x 200-hp Mercury Verado Four-Strokes
2 x 150-hp Mercury Verado Four-Strokes
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by Captain Steve Larivee
The 250 Outrage is an ideal size boat for both inshore and offshore fishing and because of its sea-keeping abilities and 18" draft can do both handily. She was designed for anglers, but the fact is that most people use boats like this one for family outings, picnics, cruising, and even watersports, as well as fishing.
A Special Owner
It takes a special kind of boater to appreciate a boat like the 250 Outrage. Typically they are not owned by new boaters, or ones trying to find the longest boat for the buck. Nor are they popular with boaters that have a hard time deciding between a new or used boat. Rather, the 250 Outrage is purchased by someone who has become successful over the years making careful, well-considered decisions.
That is why usually why they can afford this quality of boat.
Boston Whaler is one of only a couple of other builders which have built their boats over 20' so that they will "float level" if swamped. Virtually all builders of cc boats will say they float if swamped, but what they don't say is only a foot or so of the bow will be above water. When we have asked some other builders why they don't build in this feature, the answer is "the added cost."
Remarkable Hull & Deck Connectivity.
Part and parcel of the 250's ability to float level is the way she is built. No boat that we know of is built quit like a Boston Whaler. Essentially, the hull and deck are put together in a clamshell top and bottom mold and filled with expanding flotation foam. This means that the hull and deck are not attached just at the perimeter of the hull as is virtually every other boat in the world, but completely united over thousands of square inches of surface.
Below are a number of pictures taken of the 250 Outrage by BoatTEST.com captains at a boat show, which illustrate aspects of the boat that set it aboard from others on the market. Further, we asked our resident testing Captain, Capt. Steve, to take a good look at her and add his observations to the mix of information in this report.
Other things that caught our eye are as follow--
• Seat backs
The 250 Outrage has redesigned the hull with the intention of giving it a smoother, drier ride. The fully integrated helm console with three windshields and hardtop is Boston Whaler's continuous evolution of its product line.
Some Unique Features
The deluxe leaning post with livewell aft has a flip-up bolster and backrest . The companion seat is stationary. The 40 gal. (151.4 L) aerated livewell is pressurized to keep the bait alive through the chop, and with a clear top window and blue interior, the critters should feel right at home. There’s also a trash can. That’s an item that’s missing from a lot of boats and I never know why. This will prevent any scrap of line and general trash from going overboard from the spot that generates it the most. There’s also a freshwater system with 26 gallon (98.4 L) tank and sink at the leaning post.
Of course, the boat I saw, and virtually every picture I’ve seen of the 250 Outrage, had the optional hardtop (add $13,196). It includes an electronics box, an integrated tempered glass split windshield, two cockpit floodlights, a single bow area floodlight, two built-in speakers, a dome light, five rod holders, and the requisite life jacket storage.
There’s a second version that includes radial outriggers as well ($15,260). And man… does all this add to the look of the boat. It’s all molded right into the console so there’s no fishing room being taken up by bulky aluminum pipes getting through-bolted into the deck. A power actuated windshield vent and optional wiper round out the features.
The console itself has plenty of real estate for either dual 8.4” screens or dual 12” units with radar. I also like the fold-away jump seats on either side of the console. These are an ideal place for anglers to sit while trolling. Because they are under the T-top, they may even be in the shade.
The aft seat on the transom can fold-away in a hurry. This gives anglers a comfortable place to sit while speeding out to the fishing grounds. Boston Whaler uses heavy stainless steel hardware to make sure this cantilevered seat can hold even the heaviest anglers. Most center consoles these days have a fold-away transom seat, but some builders cheap-out on the hardware that holds the seat and folds it away.
Standard power on the 250 Outrage is a single 300 XXL DTS Mercury Verado 4-stroke. Because Boston Whaler is owned by Brunswick, all of the engine choices are black. Twin 150-hp Verados add $12,718, twin 200-hp Verados add $21,470, and twin 225 Verados add $27,028 to the base MSRP. If alternative power is wanted, the boater will have to talk to their Boston Whaler dealer about that.
Based on Boston Whaler’s performance numbers, I’d pick the twin 150s option, even if price were no object. Rigged with the 150s the 250 Outrage is said to have a WOT of 44.4 mph (38.6 knots) and a best cruise of 26.8 mph (23.3 knots) and gets 2.27 mpg. Powered by the 300 XXL, Boston Whaler says that the 250 has a WOT of 43.0 mph (37.3 knots) and a best cruise of 24.7 mph (21.4 knots), getting 2.23 mpg. (These are Boston Whaler's numbers, not ours.) While the twin engine set-up is only slightly faster and very slightly more fuel efficient, I like the redundancy of two engines.
There is an argument for going with just a single 300 besides price -- less noise. Unfortunately, Boston Whaler does not publish noise readings so we do not know if the single 300 is quieter than the twin 150s.
Noise considerations aside, the real trade-off between these two engines is subjective: The added get-home capability of twin power vs. a single and the $13k savings in initial cost. I'll let the boater pick that one. As far as the large twins go, they are faster at both WOT and best cruise and burn more fuel, says Boston Whaler, top speed being 56.3 mph (48.9 knots) with twin 225 Verados. I don't need to go that fast and when it's rough one can't go that fast without beating up the boat and oneself anyway. So, who needs it?
The Boston Whaler 250 Outrage has a base MSRP of $104,237, plus dealer prep, taxes, etc. with the 300-hp Verado. If one is inclined to check off every option, including everything that isn't needed, the price can reach a max of about $190,000. But why would one want to do that?
I would want to have options that amount to about $26k for things like a console cover, VacuFlush toilet, deluxe T-top, premium package, and some other "necessities." In addition to that the boater can add whatever electronics makes them happy. So, the MSRP is probably looking to be about $150k, plus taxes.
Boston Whaler is the only builder that I know of that publishes its "swamped capacity" for each boat. It states that the "swamped capacity" of the 250 Outrage is 2,890 lbs. (1,311 kgs.). That means that it will hold that much weight and still float level when swamped. I think that actually the "level flotation" claim is even more important because a boat that is swamped, no matter how many people it is holding, will easily capsize because of the free surface effect of the water in the hull.
When a boat capsizes, particularly in cold water, level flotation offers the only possible hope for avoiding hypothermia. While it is unpleasant to think about the ultimate boating disaster, the fact is that Boston Whaler has made its reputation on this very scenario, so I don't mind bringing it up. That unpleasant mental image has been the primary ingredient of Boston Whaler's secret sauce since its founding in the 1960s. It is the reason that Boston Whaler has been the best-selling center console in its class for decades.
Ironically, after all of these years, while salespeople for a number of other builders will say that their boats float level, only one or two other builders make the level flotation claim in print, the only place that it counts. And it is that simple concept which founder Dick Fisher came up with in 1960 that has seen this brand successfully through good times and bad. For the last 20 years or so the Brunswick Corp. has owned Boston Whaler, and it has steadily gotten better over that period. Today, its boats can go toe-to-toe with nearly anything in the marketplace on quality, fit-and-finish and performance.
The 250 Outrage is a finely finished boat that has most of the fishy amenities one could ask for. It is well built, performs on a par with other boats in class, and has a sterling reputation as noted. Like a lot of things in life, making the right decision in boat buying is largely a matter of avoiding a mistake. If one can afford the 250 Outrage, it is not a mistake, in my opinion.
At something on the order of $150,000 the 250 Outrage is expensive compared to other good boats on the market in this size range, but in my opinion the premium being paid for the brand name, its level flotation, and its potentially faster sale on the used boat market, makes it a vessel well worth serious consideration.