A pontoon model that offers a perfect mix of performance and luxury, the Sylvan S5 LZ features a layout that reflects this class of boat’s primary purpose — to accommodate and entertain plenty of friends and family. Expansive 5-foot-8-inch parallel benches span the bow, covered in a new softer-touch vinyl for 2019. An individual passenger seat sits across from the captain’s chair, elevated three inches above the deck for a better forward view. Aft, similar 4-foot-8-inch-long benches with rear-facing seat backs focus attention toward the stern. Cushions hinge outward to reveal low-maintenance roto-molded storage below, with gutters and drains to keep water at bay. Side cushions are cut away forward of the seat backs to keep a pair of stainless-steel cup holders within reach. Color-coordinated vinyl wraps the storage bases below. Elegant open-style stainless-steel gates protect entries bow and stern. Need to escape the sun? Overhead, a 10-foot-long Bimini offers ample shade.
Our test boat was equipped with an intriguing option, Sylvan’s Lounge Arm Galley. Like the name implies, it hides away within the seat back of the aft port lounge. Pivot it into view via a sizable stainless-steel grab bar and the galley is ready for action, complete with faux-granite countertop, freshwater sink and a pair of cup holders. Tucked below the countertop, there’s even storage for a bottle of wine.
Yet another option was the upgraded helm windshield, a stylish accent to the S5 LZ but more important welcome wind protection for the driver at the raised fiberglass helm. That helm includes billet accent panels surrounding an optional Simrad display and a pair of dual-purpose analog gauges set above two rows of lit rocker switches straddling the tilt wheel.
The S5 LZ was equipped with Sylvan’s SPX Performance Package, a trio of 25-inch pontoons featuring lifting strakes on both sides of the center tube as well as on the inner sides of the outer tubes, and a below-deck aluminum wave shield. Powered by a Yamaha F300, the S5 jumped instantly onto plane and reached the 30 mph mark in an average of 7.1 seconds. Cornering was smooth and predictable.
- Pop-up changing room.
- Extended deck design fore and aft allows access to all four corners of the boat.
- Kicker KMC10 stereo with Bluetooth and Kicker speakers.
How We Tested
Engine: Yamaha F300
Prop: Yamaha Saltwater Series II 15 1/2″ x 16″ 3-blade stainless steel
Gear Ratio: 1.75:1
Fuel Load: 30 gal.
Crew Weight: 330 lb.
Sylvan Marine – New Paris, Indiana; 574-831-2950; sylvanmarine.com