RINKER 230 ATLANTIC
Draft (max.) 3'0"
Displacement (lbs., approx.; w/o engine) 4,950
Transom deadrise 20°
Max. cabin headroom 4'5"
Fuel capacity (gal.) 50
Price (w/250-hp stern drive) $41,838
Made for serious overnight duty, with such space-eating amenities as the stowable head and single-burner stove. One of the few offering a fishing package ($1,750) with built-in tackleboxes, rodholders, fishfinder/GPS, and removable cockpit carpet. This also makes it the most all-sport capable of the bunch. Cruisability gets a boost from a standard 10-gallon freshwater system and Bimini top -- a hardtop isn't an option.
The only stern drive boat in our mix, it posts numbers that are respectably middle-of-the-pack. Best efficiency is just a hair less than 3 mpg, which is partly due to this boat being significantly heavier than the competition. Its weight, however, helps squash waves, smoothing out the ride. Its top speed of 43.2 mph is surpassed only by the Scout, and it pops onto plane remarkably fast with no lingering bowrise.
Simulated-granite countertops and lids are a step above the molded glass pieces seen on other boats at this price. Steering is power-assisted, bowrails are welded stainless steel, and the trim gauge uses LED lights. Marine-ply stringers are encapsulated in glass and laminated to the solid fiberglass hull. It's a beefy structure that weighs more than foam-cored stringers. And although that weight may reduce efficiency, the ride is noticeably better for it.
HIGHS & LOWS
HIGHS Minimal bowrise, good speed, and seakeeping abilities make running this boat a pleasure. No rattles or vibrations when hitting waves. The V-berth converts into a comfortable settee. Vinyl headliner and bulkheads are easy to maintain.
LOWS Heavy weight means it's not the most efficient. There's no access to the anchor locker from the cabin -- a problem with the optional windlass. No nonslip on the starboard sidedecks.