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Tahoe 500 TS (2015-)

1 x 220-hp MerCruiser 4.3



Brief Summary

Tahoe’s new 500 TS features a newly designed Powerglide II hull that offers a deeper V for better handling, and bigger wakes over the water. Her built-in storage compartments and slide-out cooler offer impressive storage space for her size, while keeping the main deck clear for easy access to the swim platform. The addition of the new 2-tone upholstery coupled with a Bluetooth-capable stereo with MP3 and USB ports offer the buyer an exciting entertainment platform for endless watersport adventures. When the buyer is ready to call it a day, Tahoe’s standard custom color-matched trailer with Galvashield protection will carry the new 500 TS home in style.

Key Features

  • Longer, wider and deeper hull for bigger and better wakes
  • Powerglide II hull
  • Full-width oversized aft swim platform with boarding ladder
  • AM/FM Bluetooth-capable stereo with MP3, USB ports and 4 speakers
  • Walkthrough tempered safety glass windshield with aluminum frame
  • Adjustable driver and passenger bucket seats with slide and swivel
  • 2-tone high-density marine-grade vinyl upholstery with stain-resistant coating
  • Premium stainless steel hardware and fasteners
  • Factory-matched Galvashield trailer with color-matched, powder-coat finish

Test Results

RPM MPH Knots GPH MPG NMPG STAT. MILE NM dBa
680 3.9 3.3 0.9 4.28 3.72 127 110 77
1000 5.6 4.8 1.3 4.27 3.71 127 110 79
1500 7.3 6.3 2.15 3.4 2.95 101 88 82
2000 10.7 9.3 4.25 2.52 2.19 775 65 82
2500 24.2 21 4.7 5.15 4.48 153 133 84
3000 31.3 27.2 6.55 4.78 4.16 142 123 87
3500 37.1 32.2 8.6 4.31 3.75 128 111 89
4000 42.9 37.3 12.1 3.55 3.08 105 92 92
4500 47.2 41 16.35 2.88 2.51 86 74 93
4600 49.7 43.2 17.45 2.85 2.48 85 74 96
tahoe_500ts_chart_15.jpg

Specifications

Length Overall 19' 10'' / 6.05 m
Beam 7'10''
2.34 m
Dry Weight 2,963 lbs.
1,344 kg
Tested Weight 3,503 lbs.
1,589 kg
Draft Up 18.5''
0.47 m
Draft Down 34''
0.86 m
Deadrise/Transom 16-deg.
Max Headroom open
Bridge Clearance 7' 2''
2.18 m (max)
Weight Capacity 1,372 lbs.
622 kg
Person Capacity 8
Fuel Capacity 33 gal.
125 L
Water Capacity N/A
Total Weight 3,503 lbs.
1,589 kg

Price

Base Price $30495.00
Price Range
Prices, features, designs, and equipment are subject to change. Please see your local dealer or visit the builder's website for the latest information available on this boat model.

Acceleration Times & Conditions

Time to Plane 2.3 sec.
0 to 30 8.3 sec.
Ratio N/A
Props N/A
Load 2 persons, 2/3 fuel, no water, 50 lbs. of gear
Climate 81 deg., 75 humid.; wind: 0 mph; seas: calm

Engine Options

Tested Engine 1 x 220-hp MerCruiser 4.3
Std. Power Not Available
Opt. Power 1 x 200-hp MerCruiser 4.5L MPI ECT
1 x 250-hp MerCruiser 4.5L MPI Alpha® ECT

Captain's Report

Tahoe 500 TS running shot

Tahoe’s 500 TS has a LOA of 19’10” (5.82 m), a beam of 7’10” (2.34 m), and a draft of 19” (48.26 cm).

Major Features

• Exclusive Powerglide II hull with a deep V bottom and Hydrolift strakes

• Custom-matched trailer with swing-away tongue and Galvashield protection

• Standard stereo with Bluetooth streaming audio plus MP3 ports

• Removable 36 quart (34 L) cooler under aft bench seat

• Full-width platform with self-draining storage compartment

• Tahoe warranty: 5 years on structure, 1 year on components

Features Inspection

Tahoe 500 TS floor planTahoe 500 TS storage floor plan

One positive aboard the 500 TS is the amount of storage space for gear and watersports equipment. Said compartments shown above keep clutter off the sole and leave a clear path from bow to stern.

Bow

Anchor Locker.

The bow of the 500 TS features a removable cushion that sits firmly in place with the support of neighboring cushions and indented bulwark. When the bow cushion is removed we found a non-skid hatch for added safety during boarding, as well as the actual anchor locker. Tahoe engineers designed the hatch with an indent so the extra lengths of rode can store inside the locker, and then run to a nearby stainless steel bow cleat while the hatch remains closed. We would like, however, to see Tahoe provide a way to attach the bitter end of the rode in the locker.

Tahoe 500 TS anchor hatch

Note the indent in the front of the anchor-locker hatch. An anchor rode could easily run to the two cleats immediately off the centerline of the bow.

Tahoe 500 TS bow cushion

When the bow cushion is returned to place, notice how it’s supported by the chaise cushions as well as the curved bulwark that houses dual cup holders. Stainless steel grab handles are conveniently placed for added security.

Cushions/Storage.

An impressive feature on the 500 TS is the amount of storage that the builder manages to engineer into the cockpit. Aside from the anchor locker and walkthrough forward, the two hinged chaise cushions both feature self-draining storage compartments underneath. Dry storage is also available behind the hinged backrests.

Tahoe 500 TS chaise seats

The lift-up chaise style seats have a polymer base with drainage holes that reduce the possibility of rot and mold. Tahoe did a good job of positioning the recessed navigation lights with the naturally curved bow.

Tahoe 500 TS lift up back rest

The lift-up backrest provides a dry space. The builder also uses a rubber gasket and dual corner stops to eliminate rattling hatches while underway.

Cockpit

Seating.

The main cockpit features dual bucket seats with optional built-in bolsters ($225) for added height. The boat is finished in a new two-tone high-density marine-grade vinyl upholstery with stain-resistant coating, according to Tahoe. Each captain’s seat slides and swivels for added functionality and ergonomic support.

Tahoe 500 TS dual captains chairs

Dual captain’s chairs mount directly to the deck through built-in fiberglass bases. The wraparound design provides support while underway. Also note the gunwale storage with bungees for additional storage.

Tahoe 500 TS storage wells

On each side of the dual captain’s chairs, Tahoe incorporates secure storage wells and cup holders. Also notice the lockable ski locker in the sole for housing wakeboards and skis.

Stereo and Wakeboard Tower.

The 500 TS comes standard with a four-speaker AM/FM Bluetooth-capable stereo with MP3 port and Jensen head unit. Two speakers are in the bow while the other two are in the cockpit outboard of the bench seat. The stereo head unit is mounted below a lockable glove compartment. The optional folding wakeboard tower ($2,595) adds two speakers above as well as a foldaway Bimini top.

Tahoe 500 TS port console

Note that the two-tone colors found in the upholstery continues throughout the boat. The glove box hatch is equipped with a rubber gasket to eliminate water access and rattling.

Tahoe 500 TS stereo

A water-resistant Jensen remote unit is below the glove compartment. Inside the glove compartment, a standard USB port is placed in the front left for easy connection.

Tahoe 500 TS wake board tower

In addition to the optional wakeboard tower shown above, Tahoe offers racks ($2,875) that free up cockpit sole space.

Dashboard and Windshield.

Tahoe’s walkthrough tempered safety glass windshield with aluminum frame ties into a dashboard that features a sport steering wheel with optional tilt ($100). The dashboard houses a molded fiberglass shroud that holds a speedometer, tachometer and gauges for fuel-level, trim position, oil pressure and engine temperature. Within the shroud, a small center compartment is designed to hold a cell phone or wallet, and a 12-volt accessory plug sits directly above. The retro-style theme continues below with water-resistant toggle switches and an additional 12-volt accessory plug. Tahoe offers an optional automatic bilge switch ($50), which we’d recommend for any boat owner.

Tahoe 500 TS foot rest

The raised footrest on both sides adds ergonomics and overall support for the helmsman while underway.

Tahoe 500 TS dash compartment

Notice how the center compartment is sized for a cell phone or iPod. The small hatch offers protection from water and UV rays.

Tahoe 500 TS toggle switches

The water-resistant retro-style toggle switches are listed in order of importance, and include a master switch to the left for all electrical components aboard. Also note the illuminated red indicators for the blower and bilge pump.

Stern

Aft Bench Seat and Sun Pad.

The aft bench and sun pad are clearly thought out designs because of the overall functionality, in what would be a simple structure is quite generous. Let’s start by looking at the bench itself. From a distance three standard cushions line the aft bench, but a closer look shows that the starboard side cushion slides back revealing a non-skid platform for easy access to the swim platform, as well as an additional self-draining storage lockers for tow ropes and vests. The center cushion sits on a hinge that lifts to reveal a 36-quart cooler with dual grab handles for easy removal. The port side cushion is also hinged and lifts up to reveal another self-draining storage locker.
The sun pad itself has a fold-away cushion on the starboard side that compliments the slide away starboard bench seating. Beneath the fold away cushion we find a non-skid finish that offers the rider convenient and safe access on and off the swim platform. Beneath the non-skid walkthrough the builder incorporates additional storage for extra lines and gear. When servicing the engine, the entire sun pad lifts up with dual hydraulic arms offering access with additional storage on the port side. There are removable partitions on either side of the engine that provide storage and make it easier to service the motor.

Tahoe 500 TS aft bench

The aft bench and sun pad continue to incorporate the dual color theme of white and red as well as the diamond stitching that we find throughout the entire interior. Also note the location of the second set of speakers facing the passengers at the stern.

Tahoe 500 TS walk way

The dual fold/slide-away cushions reveal a non-skid walkway from the cockpit to the swim platform. Dual self-draining storage compartments on stainless steel hinges offer additional storage. Key features to note include ergonomic placement of the stainless steel grab rails, built-in cup holders, as well as dual scupper valves built into the sole for a self-draining deck.

Tahoe 500 TS cooler

The 36-quart (34 L) cooler is conveniently located beneath the hinged center seat. Notice how the bench frame has built in indents for the cooler handles. LED courtesy lights are located directly behind the built-in deck cup holders.

Tahoe 500 TS storage

Self-draining storage is also found on the port side of the aft bench. Notice how all the rear cushions have built-in snaps to secure them while underway.

Swim Platform.

The extended swim platform on the 500 TS offers ample room for boarding and gear assembly. A built-in self-draining compartment to port allows for stowage of lines and gear. The platform is finished in non-skid, and the swim ladder is recessed into the platform, making it flush and eliminating the rider from potential cuts or scrapes. The ladder folds out on an angle away from the sterndrive for added safety when boarding or picking up passengers. We’d like to see the stainless steel boarding handle mounted directly to the bulwark instead of the swim platform, decreasing the likelihood of someone tripping.

Tahoe 500 TS engine compartment

The engine compartment is supported with two hydraulic arms on either side. Notice the added storage on the port side of the engine compartment. This would be a great place for a toolbox and safety gear.

Tahoe 500 TS tow eye

A stainless steel tow eye comes standard on the 500 TS for those who choose not to opt for the optional wakeboard tower. Also note the built-in cup holders on either side of the swim platform.

Tahoe 500 TS flush storage

A flush storage compartment is built into the swim platform for storage of lines and gear.

Tahoe 500 TS swim ladder

The built-in swim ladder sits flush with the deck, decreasing the chance of someone cutting themselves on the platform or ladder hardware. Note that the ladder has four steps -- something we rarely see, even on more expensive sportboats.

Trailer.

The standard factory Galvashield trailer with color-matched powder coat finish completes the Tahoe watersports experience. The trailer offers numerous upgrades from axle configuration through built-in brakes. All of these options are available on the Tahoe website. In addition to the boat warranty, the trailer is also backed for three years against structural failure due to corrosion.

Tahoe 500 TS trailer

The standard Galvashield trailer matches whatever hull color the buyer chooses. Also note the diamond plated back steps for easy boarding.

Power and Performance

The Tahoe 500 TS has a LOA of 19’10’’ (6.05 m), a beam of 7’10” (2.34 m), and a draft of 19’’ (0.48 m). With an empty weight of 2,963 lbs. (1,344 kg), 67% fuel, two people on board and test power, we had a test weight of 3,503 lbs. (1,344 kg).

Tahoe 500 TS running shot

During our test runs, the 500 TS had a top speed of 49.7 mph at 4600 rpm while burning 16.35 gph, which gave her a range of 85 miles.

The 500 TS comes with a 4.5L 200-hp MerCruiser ($30,495) or a 4.5L 250-hp MerCruiser ($33,095). In our test with a 4.3L 220-hp MerCruiser V6, we hit a top speed of 49.7 mph at 4600 rpm and burned 16.35 gph, giving the boat a range of 85 miles at wide open. Best cruise came at 2500 rpm where we ran 24.2 mph and consumed 4.7 gph, giving the 500 TS a range of 153 miles and an endurance of over six hours.

Tahoe 500 TS running shot

Our 500 TS test boat had a time-to-plane of 2.3 seconds, then went to 20 mph in 5.6 seconds, and lastly, went to 30 mph in 8.3 seconds.

Tahoe claims that the Powerglide II bottom and its Hydrolift strakes and reverse chine are designed to improve holeshot. The boat planed in 2.3 seconds before running to 20 mph in 5.6 seconds and accelerating to 30 mph in 8.3 seconds. That should be plenty of grunt for towing boarders, tubers and skiers.
In handling tests, the 500 TS felt responsive and a little better balanced than the outboard version of the boat. The boat carved cleanly through the water in slalom and circle turns and when we ran through wakes and lake chop, our test captain thought the 19’10” (6.05 m) hull liked the added weight of the sterndrive.

Price

Tahoe says additional engine options are possible for the boat by request depending on availability at the factory. Anyone interested in this would have to call Tahoe directly. The boat with trailer included is listed at $30,495 or $33,095, depending on engine configuration.

Observations

The 500 TS is one of the newest boats in the Tahoe lineup, boasting the Powerglide II bottom and a 4.5L MerCruiser all for $30,495 with a matching trailer included. The hull certainly lives up to its billing with a time to plane of 2.3 seconds. She should be good at towing sports.

Tahoe 500 TS running shot

The optional wakeboard tower includes a black Bimini top.


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