It almost shouldn't be called a deckboat. Even with its standard-for-the-breed beam of 8'6", the Maxum 2400 Sport Deck looks too trim when compared to traditional boxy decks. In fact, it's more of a hybrid-a bowrider with the extra space and features that make deckboats popular.
Take a seat behind the helm and this contradiction quickly gets sorted out. This boat handles like a bowrider, with tight turns and zippy acceleration. With 20 degrees of deadrise at the transom, the hull has a deeper V than most decks and, where most competitors extend the beam forward for a spacious bow cockpit, the 2400 Sport Deck tapers in like a runabout. The result? You lose some at-rest stability and space but gain in looks and handling.
Billed as a high-end boat, the 2400 Sport Deck has top-notch features such as molded nonslip, snap-in carpet, and adjustable captain's chairs with flip-up seat bolsters. The helm has a keyless ignition pad, VDO gauges, and a faux-wood dash with beige gel coat to reduce glare. The dash also has two drains to prevent water from collecting in low spots.
Beneath it all is a conventional fiberglass-cored stringer system. We were impressed with the hull-to-deck joint, which is through-bolted, sealed with a bedding compound, and fiberglassed over on the inside. Common for an offshore go-fast, but rare on a deckboat.
The 2400 Sport Deck misses the mark, though, in a few areas. Most deckboat builders run a stainless-steel grabrail around the main and bow cockpits. This boat is set up more like a runabout, with plastic handles placed at strategic points. And the anchor locker-the hatch of which serves double duty as a tiny 2'-by-2' bow platform-is packed tight with a swim ladder folded over the anchor. There's also a freshwater washdown hose in this locker. A great touch, but it should be mounted somewhere less cramped.
HIGH POINTS: Cool standard keyless ignition. Adjustable captain's chairs with flip-up bolster keeps the skipper comfortable. Ski locker hatch supported by strut; the locker sole has padded matting rather than carpet. The standard extended aft swim platform provides more room for water sports.
LOW POINTS: Base of port cockpit bench is a piece of cut plastic screwed to the deck. Plastic grabhandles not as nice as competitors' stainless-steel grabrails. Small anchor locker crammed with anchor, swim ladder, and freshwater washdown hose.
TOUGHEST COMPETITOR: Monterey 240 Explorer Sport. It's more of a true deckboat, with its beam carried farther forward, a more spacious bow cockpit, and increased stowage. It achieves similar speeds to the Maxum with a smaller engine. With a 250-hp MerCruiser, it sells for $40,772; with the same 320-hp Mer-Cruiser as our test boat it runs $45,889.
Displacement (lbs., approx.)......5,100
Minimum cockpit depth...2'7"
Fuel capacity (gal.)...75
Water capacity (gal.)...15
Price (w/standard power)........$40,337
Price (w/test power)........$48,894
STANDARD POWER: Single 220-hp MerCruiser 5.0L Alpha V-8 gasoline stern drive.
OPTIONAL POWER: Single Mer-Cruiser gasoline stern drive to 320 hp.
TEST BOAT POWER: Single 320-hp MerCruiser MX 6.2 MPI Bravo Three V-8 gasoline stern drive with 377 cid, 4.00" bore x 3.75" stroke, swinging a 24"-pitch propset through a 2.2:1 reduction.
STANDARD EQUIPMENT (major items): Extended swim platform; adjustable helm seat w/flip-up bolster; digital log/hourmeter/depthfinder; keyless ignition; snap-in carpet; portable MSD; JVC AM/FM/CD stereo w/2 speakers; windshield; Bimini top; 12v outlet; battery shutoff switch.