Mercury 60-hp BigFoot // Marquis 420 // Princess 52 // 11 Reports - 12/04/2013
BoatTEST Newsletter December 4, 2013 Click here if you cannot view the newsletter. Tests You Can Trust
- Marquis 420 SB
- Cruisers Sport Series 328
- Intrepid 245 CC
- Mako 284 CC
- Grand Banks 47 Heritage
- Manitou 25 Encore
- Scout 177 Winyah
- Princess 52
- Monte Carlo MC5
- Mercury 60-hp EFI BigFoot
- Tracker Targa V-18 WT
- Picture of the Week
- Boating Course On DVD
- Capt. Steve's Weekly Lesson

Marquis 420 Sport Bridge:
Renaissance on the Water

Marquis 420 Sport Bridge
The exterior color of the Marquis 420 sets the tone of this vessel both inside and out. She is a boat designed for the French Riviera but built in Pulaski, Wisconsin.

The Marquis 420 Sport Bridge is one of the most Italian-styled sun bridge boats built in the U.S. While this yacht’s strong suit is styling -- both exterior and interior -- there are many other things going for her as well. In fact, she has more "distinguishing features" than almost any boat in class. More...

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New Test Video

Cruisers Sport Series 328 Bow Rider:
Premium Bowrider with Cuddy Cabin

Cruisers Sport Series 328 Bow Rider
The new Diamond Edition of the Cruisers Sport Series 328 Bow Rider is taking its place at the very top of a new class of boats – bowriders with cabins.

From our perspective the Cruisers Sport Series 328 Bow Rider is remarkably functional for people who want to do a lot of day boating with friends and then sneak away as a couple for a long weekend to a distant location. Because she has two large cockpits that each function independently with an enclosed head in between, she can be used with adults in one end and their kids in the other, or golfers and tennis players, or whatever. Icing on this cake is the cabin for overnighting. More...

Request a test drive.

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New Test

Manitou 25 Encore:
With VP Performance Package

Manitou 25 Encore
The Manitou 25 Encore has a LOA of 24’4” (7.42 m) and a beam of 8’6” (2.59 m). We tested her with an Evinrude E-TEC 150 HO turning a 13” prop.

The Manitou 25 Encore was created to provide a more cost-effective solution to those wanting to acquire a premium build, but not get all the bells and whistles that drive the price up. While quality is still in the build, a lot of the non-necessary amenities are left to the options list for the individual buyer to dial-in. In this manner, the Encore has risen in the popularity ranks for Manitou. More...

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Test Video

Intrepid 245 Center Console:
One Giant Step for Intrepid

Intrepid 245 CC
The step in the Intrepid 245 Center Console's hull draws air across the running surface to reduce friction and make the boat easier to push. The result is notably better performance.

There was a time when we were a bit skeptical about many of the claimed benefits of stepped hulls. After all, it is a concept that goes back until at least the 1920s, so why did it take so long to catch on? But our abundant testing of stepped hulls by a number of different builders over the last 10 years has convinced us that properly-designed steps not only give boats a higher top speed, but they can also be more fuel-efficient at lower speeds. For example, look at the Intrepid 245 Center Console...

Ask a materials question.   Request a brochure.
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New Captain's Report

Mako 284 CC:
Offshore Proven by the Test of Time

Mako 284 CC
The Mako 284 CC’s 21-degree deadrise at the transom has proven over the years to be a good compromise between comfort, efficiency and stability.

The Mako 284 CC has a 9'10" (2.99 m) beam and displaces about 6,000 lbs. (2,727 kgs.) plus the weight of the outboards, fluids and gear. She is the largest vessel in the 4-boat Mako Offshore Series and the company offers a good-looking tri-axle trailer for her. She comes standard with twin 200-hp Mercury OptiMax engines. More...

Request a brochure.   Ask a handling question.
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Snapshot Review

Grand Banks 47 Heritage CL:
A Rugged, Man-Sized Vessel

Grand Banks 47 Heritage
The latest generation of the Grand Banks 47 Heritage CL has a bottom designed by Sparkman & Stephens with propeller tunnels and a modified-V bottom shape. She cruises over 20 knots.

Grand Banks buyers want a boat that they can spend a lot of time on which means everything should be "man-size" and of robust construction. The parquet decks, teak interiors and real-size furniture inside produces a cozy, traditional yacht-like feel that is simply impossible to replicate without using lots of real solid teak. Note the height of the bulwarks on the flying bridge. More...

Request a sea trial.   Request a brochure.
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Snapshot Review

Scout 177 Winyah:
For Aggressive Inshore Anglers

Scout 177 Winyah
The 177 Winyah has a beam of 7’3” (2.21 m), a low center of gravity, and pockets on the chines to help create more stability. The poling platform is so easy to mount even ladies like to use it.

Scout tells us the standard 177 Winyah package, with a Yamaha F70 outboard and a matching trailer, retails for $25,867. Considering the features and the quality of boats Scout is known for producing, that seems to us like a competitive price. More...

Request an options list. Request a brochure.
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New Test Video

Princess 52:
WOT of 30 knots with 2 x 800-hp

Princess 52
We wound up the twin MAN 800-hp diesels and discovered she has the same range -– 220 nmiles – going either 23.5 knots or 30.7 knots.

During our test of the Princess 52 the nautical miles per gallon that we recorded from 2000 rpm to WOT at 2350 was virtually the same. We would probably run the boat in a chop at about 2000 rpm where she goes 23.5 knots (.39 nmpg) and has a range of 220 nautical miles, with a 10% reserve. But in smooth water we'd push the throttles to the pins knowing we were getting the same nmpg. More...

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Updated Captain's Report

Monte Carlo MC5:
Vessel on a Cruising Mission

Monte Carlo MC5
The new Monte Carlo MC5 is aimed squarely at the sedan and flybridge market with a design which is sure to garner attention -- and respect -- wherever it goes.

One can be forgiven for being confused by the names of the 50’ Monte Carlo MC5 and Monte Carlo Yachts, which go from 65’ to 86’ (19.8 m to 26.2 m). Both brands are owned by Groupe Beneteau. Monte Carlo Yachts are all large motoryachts built near Trieste, Italy, and the Monte Carlos are built in Beneteau’s facility in France. Beneteau is taking the materials, fabrics and some of the details of the much more expensive larger boats and using them in the MC5 which is produced in its efficient, smaller boat production factory on the Atlantic coast. The result is a vessel incorporating the best of both worlds at a competitive price. More...

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Boat Show Review

Mercury 60-hp EFI BigFoot:
A Little Engine with Big Torque

Mercury 60hp EFI BigFoot
Because one size does not fit all applications Mercury Marine has developed the 60-hp BigFoot for particularly heavy loads.

The Mercury 60-hp BigFoot provides more beef and greater torque than the standard 60-hp outboard and is designed for heavy load applications. Its gear case is the same one used on the 115-hp Mercury outboard, it has a 2.33:1 gear ratio which improves thrust and torque, it turns a larger diameter prop and puts it deeper in the water. That, combined with its larger anti-ventilation plate helps keep air from being sucked down into the prop. More...

Ask a repower question.   Find a distributor.
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Captain's Report

Tracker Targa V-18 WT:
Family-Oriented Multi-Specie Boat

Tracker Targa V-18 WT
The Targa V-18 WT’s walkthrough windshield is quite high, providing much needed protection while underway. There's also no distortion to the curved glass on the sides.

The Tracker Targa V-18 WT was designed to be a tournament-class fishing machine that could perform double duty as a family day boat for watersports. She has versatile seating that can be used for fishing from two casting decks or for watersports and spotting a person being towed. Her 44% beam to length ratio, and reverse chines makes her stable and it is possible for an adult to stand on the boat's wide gunwales without much horizontal deflection. More...

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Where in the World?

Picture of the Week

Picture of the Week
Find out where this picture was taken and when.

See the larger picture, when and who took it -- and where!

Send us your favorite boating images.

When sending a photo, let us know when, where and what boat you were on.

Expert Boating’s
4-DVD Box Set
Video Boating Course

Smart Boating
Sometimes it's not what you know, but what you've forgotten. We have the perfect solution for you:'s 4-DVD video course.

Based on the feedback we’ve been getting about's Video Boating Course it’s clearly not only for beginners, but also for veteran boaters as well. Perhaps that is why the NMMA started promoting the course after just one look. It's the most complete boating course available… period. Order your 4-disc box set...

Watch the trailer...
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Lesson of the Week

Basic Rules of the Road: Part 2
Give-Way and Stand-on Vessels

Lesson of the Week Smart Boating
Stand-on versus give-way vessel. You must get this one right every time.

This week Capt. Steve covers some basic rules of the road and guidelines. You’ll learn about the right-of-way for stand-on vessels and corrective measures give-way vessels must make in order to avoid collisions. These are basic procedures which all recreational boaters should be aware of. The videos presented this week are part of’s Boating Course which is USCG-approved. Watch these video boating lessons every week on

To view this week’s lessons --

To order all lessons --, LLC
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