Serious anglers can find a wide range of boats that cater specifically to fishing. That's been the case since men first tossed nets from hollowed-out trees. But in 2008 there's a growing trend toward taking those fishing-first boats and turning them into multipurpose boats. The new Century 2350 is exhibit A.
The boat's 140-gallon fuel capacity is huge for a fish boat of this size, but it's a great advantage for boaters who want to go longer distances and not worry about finding a marina to refuel. Plus, we'd much rather go long in a dual-console boat with bucket seats and a full windshield for the comfort and protection. It helps to have a reliable motor doing the work, like the Yamaha F250 on our test boat. We recorded an economical 8.3 gph at a cruising speed of 4,000 rpm. Top speed with the V-tech hull was a hair under 50 mph. For nearshore or freshwater boating, we could see dropping down to a 200 hp motor.
The helm on the 2350 is all business. Our dash held an optional eight-inch chart plotter/GPS/fish finder, and the Yamaha digital tach and fuel management system - another big plus when heading offshore. Anglers will like the standard 15-gallon baitwell behind the helm seat. Also standard is a Jensen stereo gasket-sealed to withstand spray and incorporating an iPod jack.
The passenger seat swivels to face aft and mates with a flip-up footrest to form a lounge chair. We felt we'd seen every boat-seat variation in existence, but this was a new one to us. The rear seat also folds down to provide fishing room, another example of how Century turned the 2350 into a genuine hybrid.
* Head in the port console helps during longer trips away from shore.
* Storage includes two 185-quart bow compartments and a 24-quart in-sole locker.
* A 15-gallon baitwell behind helm seat and a drawer under the passenger seat will come in handy for anglers.
* The passenger seat swivels to form chaise longue; rear seat is removable.
* Jensen stereo system with iPod/MP3 jack is a nice entertainment package.
At a Glance
A 140-gallon fuel tank and a fuel-sipping Yamaha four-stroke give this boat a range at cruise of more than 400 miles.
Length Overall: 23'
Dry Weight (w/o engine): 4,200 lb.
Weight Capacity: 1,500 lb.
Fuel Capacity: 140 gal.
Maximum HP: 250
MSRP (test boat w/ Yamaha F250): $64,194
NMMA certified: Yes
Test Engine: Yamaha F250
Test Prop: Yamaha 14.5 x 19T
Test Load: People (420 lb.); Fuel (40 gal.)
Top Speed: 48.8 MPH @ 6,000 RPM
Time to Plane: 4.4 sec.
Time to 30 MPH: 8.3 sec.