New 2014 Nauticstar Boats
There's a step in the chine that NauticStar Boats says helps catch air under the hull and improve lift. Although they're seen in many brands these days, we're not totally sold on the effectiveness of steps in a hull capable of mere deck boat speeds - but for whatever reason, the 206 NauticStar does ride unusually high. That means it produces very little drag, and thus can generate plenty of speed on moderate horsepower. The hull's relatively shallow 15 degrees of transom deadrise also helps squeeze performance from modest powerplants. And, in fact, NauticStars GPS-measured test runs bore this out: Powered by MerCruiser's basic 4.3L/Alpha package, a carbureted V-6 producing 190 horses, our boat reached 45.1 mph. And this is no small boat. This 20-foot NauticStar measures a full 8.2-feet wide, with much of that width carried all the way to the bow, and scales 3600 pounds (including the V-6 sterndrive).
Rated to carry up to 10 passengers, the NauticStar 206 is an "all hands on deck" boat. To be sure, you can expect a decline in performance as you load the boat with more and more guests, but when it's just you and the dog, you can get your hair straightened in a full-bore run. And if you really have the need for speed, order your NauticStar 206 with a MerCruiser 5.0L MPI, which puts out 260 horses and should deliver speeds approaching or into the 50s. Acceleration was also good. In just 4.4 seconds from "power up" we were on plane. Elapsed time from 0 to 30 mph was more middle-of-the-pack, and averaged 8.8 seconds. The 19-inch-pitch prop allowed us to wind the engine to 5000 rpm, 200 over the recommended operating range, but a 21-inch wheel would cut into its snappy on-plane times. Our test package fared well on fuel consumption, topping out at 4.5 mpg at 3000 rpm and 24.1 mph. With the 51-gallon tank, range is typical for the class, maxing at 207 miles.
At NauticStar Everything starts with "how the boat is built."
The catch words at NauticStar for long lasting quality today are "All Composite Construction". This means simply no wood to warp, bend, or decay over years of exposure. 99.9% of our competitors and certainly none within our price point can say that. They still use wood in strategic structural components such as stringers, the very back bone of the vessel, and the transom, where all the thrust, power and stress are transferred from the engine to the boat that propels it forward. Go and see a NauticStar Boats dealer near you.
(All composite construction refers to our Bay and Offshore Boats only.)
We all know deck boats are roomy and versatile, but let's face it: They're not always the fastest or best-looking rigs on the water. Some are downright dowdy - but not NauticStar Boats sleek new 206 Sport Deck. Looks good, runs well, carries two basketball teams, fishes and skis - what more can you ask?
We tested NauticStar Boats latest at Lewis Smith Lake, an emerald sprawl of remarkably clear water stretching through the rock-ribbed foothills of northern Alabama. While running alongside to shoot photos for this story, one of the first things that struck us about the 206 was how high she rides. The chines are almost entirely clear of the water's surface at full plane; only about the last 3 feet are wet.
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