Most hot-to-trot center consoles are rigged with outboards. Why? Outboards don't weigh much and they have a high horsepower-to-weight ratio. In other words, they are fast and relatively efficient. Plus they're the only propulsion units manufactured exclusively for marine use. Also, these motors take up less space - in fact, no space at all - inside the boat. This allows the builder to incorporate a bigger console, head and cabin enclosures, and more stowage than a design with inboard power. But inboards hold a couple of aces, too: Their weight and location provide a boat with a low center of gravity, and they deliver megatons of torque. Outboards don't have enough cubic inches to generate the torque your boat needs to turn big blades that can push lots of water. You'll never mistake the ride of an inboard for that of an outboard-powered center console. With their small props and minimum torque, outboards work best when you're running them at a good clip. That's fine until you start launching off waves. Flying off waves at 30 mph can beat the tar out of the hardiest anglers during a 100-mile jaunt - even in moderate seas.
THE HIGHS: A true fishboat that doesn't make the mistake of trying to please too many masters. Offshore performance is spectacular. Built tough, with a layout that lets you get to work.
THE LOWS: The anchor locker and rodholders drain into the bilge. Several of the options on this model come as standard equipment on its competitors.
And even if you and your boat can handle the punishment, your gear may not. I've seen tower leg welds fail. Rodlockers can look as if some angry giant was playing pickup sticks. If you want to set up the throttles and skip waves like an SKA pro, line up some factory sponsors - you'll need the money. So, what do you do instead? Throttle back the outboards as you ride down the face of a wave. Then as you try to climb the back of the next wave, the rpm drops so you must push the throttles forward. First you're going, then you're slowing. Running with outboards is like using a socket wrench to fasten a dock cleat with an 8" lag bolt. You're forever pushing the handle forward then pulling it back; pushing it forward, pulling it back.