Starcraft’s EXS-5 gave us 43-plus mph performance with its Yamaha 250 outboard spinning a 15-inch-pitch stainless-steel Yamaha propeller at 6,000 rpm. It’s a quiet package; at our best recorded cruise speed, our decibel meter read just 76 dB(A), perfect for normal conversation levels. At 2,500 rpm and 14.5 mph, the big Yamaha sipped just 4.2 gph for 3.5 mpg. Using 90 percent of the 60-gallon fuel capacity, that’s a range of just over 186 miles of slow-speed cruising.
And cruise you can, especially with a group; the deck layout features two distinct conversation pits, one in the bow and a near-mirror image one abaft. Upfront, twin facing loungers can carry four or five in comfort, and another four in the stern. Add twin captain’s chairs amidships—one each for the pilot and co-pilot—and you have the makings of a great party aboard. The captain’s console features a custom-molded dash panel with windscreen and a full complement of electronic analog gauges. The deep-recessed footwell underneath provides a comfortable driving position, even for the tallest captain. Even with that recess, there’s ample storage underneath the console, accessed through a plastic side door.
Starcraft uses high-quality vinyl atop roto-molded plastic seat bases, with plenty of storage underneath. Out back, there’s a substantial extended deck geared especially for swimming and watersports, with a wide-handled, stainless-steel telescoping boarding ladder standard and an optional ski tow. A standard pop-up changing room hides discreetly inside a housing at the rear of the forward portside forward lounge.
Decking underneath is 3/4-inch treated marine plywood, bolted to a hat-channel superstructure with triple 25-inch-diameter pontoons underneath. With the standard HMX PR25 Performance Package, there’s a wind-cheating Performance Shield affixed to the underside, along with underfloor storage. Starcraft offers a lifetime limited warranty on the deck, structure, transom and tubes.
- HMX PR25 Performance Package provides a third pontoon, Performance Shield underdeck skin, hydraulic steering and more.
- Black anodized rails and trim look great.
- Teak weave flooring looks good and makes for easier cleanup.
How We Tested
- Engine: Yamaha F250 four-stroke 250 hp
- Drive/Prop: Outboard/Yamaha Saltwater Series II 15 3/4″ x 15″ 3-blade stainless steel
- Gear Ratio: 1.75:1 Fuel Load: 53 gal. Crew Weight: 250 lb.
Pricing and Specs
|Dry Weight:||3,150 lb.|
|Seat/Weight Capacity:||13/1,835 lb.|
|Fuel Capacity:||60 gal.|
Starcraft Marine – New Paris, Indiana; 574-831-2103; starcraftmarine.com