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Sea-Doo RXT-X 300 // Jeanneau 64 // Epic 23 // 16 Reports


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BoatTEST Newsletter January 27, 2016


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Boattest.com: Tests You Can Trust

Volvo Penta V8-350:

New High Output,

Direct-Injection Sterndrive


Volvo Penta V8-350

In-cylinder fuel-injection and variable valve timing improves torque throughout the rpm range and greatly reduces emissions in the Volvo Penta V8-350.

The new 5.3 liter Volvo Penta V8-350 weighs just 996 lbs. (452 kg) thanks to an all-aluminum block and heads. The FEAD (Front Engine Accessory Drive) system bolts to the front of the engine and supplies all of the plumbing and mounting locations for the engine’s accessories. Hoses, hose clamps and other equipment prone to degradation over time are reduced. The sophisticated in-cylinder fuel-injection uses a common rail delivery system fed by a high-pressure mechanical fuel pump, which precisely aims 2,250 PSI atomized fuel into the combustion chamber where it's compressed by 11.0:1 ratio pistons. It has a 5-year factory warranty.
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Test Video

Monte Carlo Yachts 65:

Efficient Propulsion w/ 1200-HP Engines


Monte Carlo Yachts 65

The Monte Carlo Yachts 65's twin MAN 1200-hp diesels have the power to propel her at nearly 30 knots WOT, but at 20-knots she is remarkably fuel efficient for a large yacht.

So much has been made of the Monte Carlo Yachts 65's stunning good looks that it is easy to miss the fact that she has one of the most efficient propulsion systems in class. In this size yacht the cost of the fuel burn can add up, particularly over the course of a full season. Because the Monte Carlo Yachts 65 is relatively lightweight with moderate horsepower engines, she is not only less expensive to buy, but also less costly to operate. Be sure to see our videos on this boat.

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New Features Video

Sea Ray 270 Sundeck:

New Upmarket Deckboat w/ Chill Box


Sea Ray 270 Sundeck

The forward seating area of the Sea Ray 270 Sundeck has exceptional width at the bow.

The new Sea Ray 270 Sundeck, with a roomy deckboat-type bow, offers seating for up to 15 guests. The console seats have reversible backs, adding to cockpit seating. The articulating aft lounger can be adjusted to become a chaise. An interesting option is the reboarding step, which flips down from the center of the swim platform to create a staging area for watersports. Upscale upholstery includes diamond-stitching and bead welting for added eye appeal, and an integrated electric chill box keeps drinks cold.

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Captain's Report

Jeanneau 64:

Layouts Range from 2 to 6 Staterooms


Jeanneau 64

With a beam of 17'8" (5.38 m) and abundant windows and hatches, the Jeanneau 64 interior is spacious, bright, modern and welcoming.

The striking Jeanneau 64 offers a semi-custom build in a production yacht without compromise. She incorporates a hard chine for increased speed, stability, and interior volume. Much of her deck space has been given over to the cockpit, where she can seat over a dozen people just around her two cockpit tables. More can sit aft around the double helm. She has both a professional-grade, fully-equipped galley with top-brand appliances below and a mini galley on deck with a grill, refrigerator and sink. Layouts from two to six staterooms are available.

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New Test Video

Ranger Boats Z520C:

71.7 MPH WOT w/ Evinrude E-TEC G2 250 H.O.


Ranger Z520C

Ranger Boats' Rite Track keel keeps more hull in the water, reducing steering issues at high speeds and minimizing the effect of crosswinds.

The Ranger Boats Z520C produced impressive speeds in our test runs with an Evinrude E-TEC G2 250 H.O., topping out at 71.7 mph. The Evinrude E-TEC G2 is known for low-end torque, and that translated into strong acceleration from our test boat. She planed in 3.8 seconds, ran out to 20 mph in 5.3 seconds and to 30 mph in 7.1 seconds. A unique Ranger Boats feature is the Power Ventilation Rod Storage system, a blower/vent system to help keep rods and gear dry and prevent mildew below decks.

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Captain's Report

Sunseeker 75 Yacht:

4 Elegant En Suite Staterooms

Plus Foredeck Sunlounge


Sunseeker 75 Yacht

Large side windows and overhead LED lights illuminate the Sunseeker 75 Yacht’s striking salon.

The elegant Sunseeker 75 Yacht includes four en suite staterooms plus crew quarters in the standard layout -- other layouts are available as well. She has one of the largest salons in class plus a formal dining room with a table for eight. The bow area offers two couches as well as a massive sun pad, and high gunwales here make this a viable spot to enjoy while underway in calm seas. The hydraulic swim platform is standard.

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New Captain's Report

Epic 23V:

Innovative New Watersports Platform

w/ Diesel Power


Epic 23V

The wrap leaves no question about the unique diesel power on this version of the Epic 23V, and the power option is just one of many innovations in this creatively-engineered watersports special.

The Epic 23V is a notably original tow-sports boat on a number of levels. One is the offering of Mercury diesel power, an expensive option, but one that ski schools and other high-use buyers might well want to consider due to the fuel economy and durability. The ballast tanks, a common feature on dedicated wake boats, are actually built right into the stringers of this boat, giving capacity for a total of 4,000 lbs. (1,814 kg) of water to build maximum wakes. And the filling system is elegantly simple and original -- valves on the transom open at a touch and the driver backs up until the tanks are filled in less than 3 minutes!

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New Captain's Report

Sea-Doo RXT-X 300:

Made for Rugged Workouts


Sea-Doo RXT-X 300

Captain Steve tests the new Sea-Doo RXT-X 300 in rough conditions and was impressed.

When other personal watercraft are heading to the dock because the wind is starting to pick up, the RXT-X 300 is just getting warmed up to head out. This ride will plow through the snot with its performance hull and 300-hp engine. With Ergolock there’s a connectivity between the man and machine that allows for the controllability that such a ride demands. While it can take passengers easily enough, it’s the type of machine that will typically be operated solo with the driver pushing it to the limit.

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Captain's Report

Boston Whaler 330 Outrage:

New Fishing Machine w/ Family Features


Boston Whaler 330 Outrage

The Boston Whaler 330 Outrage features a sharp forward entry tapering aft to a transom deadrise of 23-degrees, making her an exceptional performer at speed in rough seas.

The Boston Whaler 330 Outrage is a full-featured bluewater fisherman that is also a family charmer, complete with an array of features and options designed to facilitate entertaining and simply enjoying a day on the water. Powered by twin 350-hp Mercury outboards, she delivered impressive performance in our tests, jumping on plane in just 3.6 seconds despite a weight as tested of over 11,000 lbs. (4,989 kg). Top speed was also strong at 52.2 mph, while most economical cruise was at 4000 rpms and 29.5 mph, at which speed she got 1.5 mpg.

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Test Video

NITRO Z21:

Fully-Loaded Bassing Machine


NITRO Z21

The sleek NITRO Z21 features broad, flat casting decks bow and stern, with lots of locking storage below decks for everything from rods to PFDs.

The NITRO Z21 is designed to deliver bass anglers fast to remote hotspots, even on bumpy days, thanks to an improved hull design and shock-absorbing seats. Fishing features abound, including a magnetic lure rack on the underside of one hatch and a locking rod box that holds 10 rods in an organizer that prevents tangles. A Minn Kota Maxxum 24-volt trolling motor is also standard.

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Test Video

Beneteau Gran Turismo 49:

Upmarket Sport Cruiser w/ Contemporary Style


Beneteau Gran Turismo 49

The Beneteau Gran Turismo 49 is an express cruiser that provides an open and airy layout and luxury appointments in the living areas while maintaining a sleek, elegant exterior profile.

The Beneteau Gran Turismo 49 is distinguished by her high topsides which keep her dry and provide good headroom below. Powered by twin Volvo Penta D6 IPS600 435-hp diesels, she provides joystick functionality for close-quarters handling, and also makes possible a second “docking station” located aft in the cockpit. According to our test captain, despite choppy seas of 2’ to 3' for our test runs, she delivered a dry ride and allowed very little spray to come aboard.

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Test Video

Mercury Remanufacturing 383 MAG Stroker:

Repowering Gives New Life to Older Boats


Mercury Reman 383 MAG Stroker Inboard

In addition to being lighter and more powerful than older engines, Mercury Remanufacturing's 383 MAG Stroker Inboard has service points positioned high on the engine for easy maintenance.

Mercury Remanufacturing designed the 383 MAG Stroker Inboard to be a lighter, higher-output replacement for a variety of gasoline inboards ranging from 350 to 454 cubic inches. The remanufactured engines readily fit the footprint of most original engines, and are several hundred pounds lighter than a big-block like the 454. They also bring the advantages of fuel-injection -- quicker starts, less chance of flooding and better throttle response -- to older boats. Mercury's 555 Electronic Control Module makes the new engine SmartCraft compatible.

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Test Video

Maritimo M58:

Enclosed Flybridge Yacht w/ Fishing Heritage


Maritimo M58

The enclosed flying bridge of the Maritimo M58 makes her easily identifiable, as do her classic sportfisherman lines.

Maritimo's core values of simplicity, fuel-efficiency, and comfortable cruisability are exemplified in the new M58, a three-stateroom, two-head yacht with a fully-enclosed flying bridge. Powered by twin 800-hp Volvo Penta D13s, she reached a top speed of 31 knots. Best planing economy came in at 1750 rpm and 18 knots. That speed reduced the fuel burn to 37 gph and opened up the range to 578 nautical miles, allowing a 10% reserve. Slow her to 9 knots and the range leaps to an impressive 1300 nmiles. Standard bow and stern thrusters make her easy to handle around the docks.

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Captain's Report

World Cat 295DC:

Offshore Stability, Inshore Comfort


World Cat 295DC

The World Cat 295DC offers an exceptionally stable platform for offshore fishing, and a walkthrough to the swim platform makes it easy to get larger fish aboard when necessary.

The World Cat 295DC is well set up for offshore fishing, with a 30-gallon (114 L) aerated livewell, locking rod storage, six vertical rod holders, tackle storage and two large fishboxes with overboard drains. A washdown hose is handy at the transom for cleanups. The smooth catamaran ride and a 9'6" (2.40 m) beam make her a comfortable offshore platform, and the 15" (0.38 m) draft means she's a capable bayboat as well.

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Test Video

Carolina Skiff DLV 198:

2.8 Seconds to Plane w/ Evinrude E-TEC 90 H.O.


Carolina Skiff DLV 198

The Carolina Skiff DLV 198 draws just 9'' (23 cm) of water, making her an effective flats boat as well as allowing relatively worry-free gunkholing.

The Carolina Skiff DLV 198 took just 2.8 seconds to get on plane in our test runs, thanks in large part to lots of low-end torque from the Evinrude E-TEC 90 H.O. The engine, because of her big displacement, pumps out lots of power in the 1000 to 3000 rpm band, making it exceptionally useful for chores like pulling board riders up on top as well as hopping off a shallow flat. She reached a top speed of 42.1 mph, while best cruise was at 3000 rpms and 17.9 mph, at which she used 3.5 gph.

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Captain's Report

Bavaria Sport 360 HT:

Practical Three-Season Coupe


Bavaria Sport 360 HT

Sporty lines and lots of high and wide windows are the hallmark of the Bavaria Sport 360 HT.

The Bavaria Sport 360 HT is a coupe that combines European design and engineering to create a practical, comfortable weekend cruiser. Her helm deck opens to the outdoors via sliding doors, sunroof and sliding windows in comfortable weather, but she can just as quickly be buttoned up on chilly mornings or during a rainstorm. AC is standard on the American edition. The aft cockpit table and settee quickly convert into an exceptionally large sun lounge. Generous freeboard not only makes her more seaworthy but also adds lots of headroom in the forward master stateroom below decks.

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Product Promotion

Shurhold Dual Action Polisher Pro:

Compact but Powerful Polisher


Shurhold Dual Action Polisher Pro

Shurhold's Dual Action Polisher Pro is a compact but powerful pro-grade polisher that includes a vibration free counter-balance system to reduce user fatigue.

The Shurhold Dual Action Polisher Pro makes boat polishing fast and easy. A variable speed thumb dial allows quick, intuitive adjustment of pad speed, and an articulated D grip makes it less challenging to reach difficult spots under the hull. A 20' power cord reduces the need for extension cords. The system is set up for Shurhold's 7'' diameter foam polishing pads, which come in three grades to handle anything from getting rid of serious surface crud to finishing off a final, gleaming polish job.

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