Being a center-console, there’s functionality that only a 360-walkaround boat can provide, and that’s the heart and soul of why these are legendary fishing machines. Nevertheless, there’s no mistaking that each area of the boat has qualities that support both the fishing and cruising needs.
At 6’4” x 3’6” (1.93m x 1.07m), the cockpit offers plenty of room to bring the fight to the fish. Safety is enhanced with 25” (64cm) of cockpit depth. The 8” (20.32cm) cleats are under the gunwales and accessed through stainless hawse pipes. Courtesy lights are strategically placed throughout. Two under gunwale rod holders are to each side.
The livewell has been moved from the leaning post to the port side transom and measures in at 16-gallons (60.57L). This location keeps it closer to the action and frees up space on the leaning post. Rod holders are located throughout, so feel free to load up the 230 with enough rods to present a formidable spread.
As expected, there’s the usual flip out transom bench seat, but it bears noting that few can get the mechanics of this feature down like Boston Whaler can. We’ve consistently found that these bench seats are among the easiest to deploy and stow of all the boats we’ve tested. A cockpit sunshade that attaches to either the T-top or hard top is offered as an option.
The new convertible leaning post is probably the most notable item in the cockpit. Boston Whaler won an innovation award with it, and we aren’t surprised by that. Its primary function is to serve as a helm bench seat with dual flip up bolsters. The seatback is adjustable to three different positions making for comfortable runs. Additionally, the backrest conceals a flip-down workstation that can serve as a prep and rigging station during fishing trips or as a buffet table for food and drinks when family and guests are aboard. Rotate the entire seatback down a full 90-degrees and it converts to an aft-facing seat opposing the flip out transom bench seat -- entertainment at its best on a 23-footer. A 54-qt (51L) cooler has dedicated storage below, so for the party, load it with food and drinks at home and bring it aboard. For the fishing trips, load it with ice. As an option, this can be swapped out for a Fishing Leaning Post that includes rod holders and a 30-gal (113.6 L) livewell.
The helm has been completely redone for this model year and features several key improvements, all brought about as a result of customer feedback. First off, the console is a darker tone to further knock down glare. This is may not be noticeable for those casual trips, but run offshore for long hours at the helm, and it becomes very noticeable. And speaking of glare, there is now a vinyl wrapped sun visor over the panel -- a classier approach over the previous fiberglass visor. The switch panel has been moved from the base of the electronics face to the top of the panel. This gives better visibility to the switches and, in our opinion, makes them more user friendly. All are lighted and identified with icons. An acrylic windshield has the usual minor distortions at the edges only. We appreciate how the cast stainless wheel has a steering knob.
A 4” Vessel View providing selectable information on the engine status is optional. Two electronics packages are offered.
• 9” RAYMARINE eS97 ELECTRONICS / NAVIGATION PACKAGE
This includes a 600 watt transducer connected to a Raymarine eS97, 9” (22.86cm) hybrid touch screen (GPS, chart plotter, fishfinder)
• 9” RAYMARINE eS98 ADDITIONAL DISPLAY ELECTRONICS PACKAGE
With the first display, a second includes the second Raymarine eS98, 9” (22.86cm) screen (GPS, chart plotter, fishfinder) and a CPT100 Transom Mount Transducer
The 220 was offered without a top, but as an option, a canvas T-top was offered. While the same version is still available, now Boston Whaler has gone one better and also offers a fiberglass hardtop. This is a huge benefit over the canvas model as it better lends itself to adding outriggers in addition to things like a radar antenna. Additionally, the frame is powder-coated and integrates seamlessly into the console rather than mounting outboard of the console. In this manner, the mounts do not impinge on the 16” (40.6cm) of available side deck space.
The console has been made taller, providing more headroom inside the compartment. Access is to the starboard side. Inside the console, there’s the head with standard Porta-Potti. An upgrade to a pump-out head is available. A stainless steel opening portlight provides ventilation and natural light. There’s dedicated storage for the optional bow table against the aft bulkhead. With the gunwales moved farther out, there’s also more room in this model to walk around the console.
The bow is where the major differences are between the old 220 and the new 230 are most evident, even to the uninitiated. Gone are the old V-seats, replaced by this new and much more functional bow lounge area. It consists of wraparound forward seating with storage underneath, and stainless drink holders to the sides. Bow cushions are optional. A pedestal table allows for drinks or snacks. Ahead of the console is the usual padded seat, but drop the table down, add a filler cushion, and a two-across forward-facing lounge seat is created. All with the comfort of optional wraparound bolsters.
Additional storage is under the deck, and this is a major improvement over previous models that had none. Still more storage is under the console seat, and this in addition to the previously mentioned storage under the forward seats. The JL Audio package includes four speakers, two in the bow area and two outboard on the console, creating a significant upgrade to the two forward-facing speakers on the previous model. Now the sound is carried throughout the boat. For fishing, remove the cushions, and a heavy-duty non-skid casting deck will be the envy of cast-netters. A recessed bow rail ensures a no snag cast. Four more rod holders are in the caprails.
Many of the most popular options are offered in a more cost effective packages, and so it goes with the 230 Outrage. Five are offered…
REVERSIBLE PILOT SEAT WITH LIVEWELL
FISHING PACKAGE (SINGLE ENGINE)
FISHING PACKAGE (DUAL ENGINE)
The 230 Outrage can be powered with a choice of Mercury Verado outboards in either the standard 225 XXL or upgrade to a single 250 L6 Verado, 300 L6 Verado, or a 350 L6, or twin 115 or 150 four strokes all available in black or white. All with power steering, except the 225 and the 115’s.
With a single Mercury 350 Verado turning a 14.2x18 Reliance prop, we reached our top speed of 52.7 mph at 6278 RPM. At that speed, we were burning 31.9 gph for a range of 164 miles. Best economic cruise seemed to be reached at 4000 RPM where the 230 outrage was running at 27.3 mph. Her fuel burn of 10.6 gph translated into a range of 255 miles, all while still holding back a 10% reserve of the boats 110-gallon (416L) total fuel capacity. She’s also quick to plane, coming on top in 4.2 seconds. We reached 20 mph in 7.9 seconds, and 30 came and went in 12 seconds.
As for her handling, she’s all Whaler. No chine walk during the hard performance turns, and a solid feel to her ride all tell of a boat with solid construction. She seems to part waves cleanly with spray going wide and low. And we found her quite responsive to the helm inputs. But the fact is, this is a Boston Whaler, and they’re built to take more than what the average person would dish out, so to test that aspect, we dished out more than the average person. We made an offshore run in four-to-six-foot seas with close frequency, and it was rather telling. Naturally head seas were the hardest, and we did do a bit of pounding, but surprisingly, the re-entry wasn’t as bad as expected. We braced for an impact that didn’t come. Running just off the seas proved much more tolerable, and now we could pick up the speed and get to where we wanted to go. If long offshore runs are the goal, then tacking across the seas are the way to go. Beam seas were even easier with the 230 riding up and over each swell while remaining on an even keel. And it should come as no surprise that following seas were the most comfortable, and the most fun, with the 230 showing no hint of stuffing the bow, regardless of how hard we rode her in.
It’s always refreshing when we see a model being upgraded rather than just featuring a color change to differentiate between model years. With this newest model, Boston Whaler is continuing to expand on its core models that make up the Outrage lineup and, in doing so, creates more of the offering that made the brand what it is -- the “go-to” line for well-built, unsinkable, and hardworking models. While the Outrage will always be thought of as a fishing boat, the line between fishing and family cruising is now becoming harder to define as the crossover between the two becomes more and more apparent. Such is the case with the new 230 Outrage.
Test Result Highlights
- Top speed for the Boston Whaler 230 Outrage (2016-) is 52.7 mph (84.8 kph), burning 31.9 gallons per hour (gph) or 120.74 liters per hour (lph).
- Best cruise for the Boston Whaler 230 Outrage (2016-) is 27.3 mph (43.9 kph), and the boat gets 2.6 miles per gallon (mpg) or 1.11 kilometers per liter (kpl), giving the boat a cruising range of 255 miles (410.38 kilometers).
- Tested power is 1 x 350-hp Mercury Verado.
Standard and Optional Features
|Outlet: 12-Volt Acc||Standard|
Full Warranty Information on this brand coming soon!
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