To say Bryant’s new Calandra is deceptive would be an understatement. Viewed from a distance, it dwarfs similarly sized boats. In fact, onlookers described the 22-foot boat as being anywhere from 25 to 27 feet long. Even close up, the boat feels far bigger and roomier than its actual length would indicate. How did the Tennessee boatbuilder with a reputation for high-quality runabouts work this magic? Primarily by using attractive and functional flare (angling the hull sides outward) and carrying the freeboard far higher than is typical for boats of this size and type. The result is a big, deep and roomy feel that you rarely find on a boat this size, with the measurements to match. Check out the massive portside head compartment, tucked neatly into the port console. It’s more than 4 feet long and nearly 3 feet wide, and it offers an almost unheard-of 4 feet of headroom. Or lift the in-floor hatch and gaze within the oversize 6-foot-long ski locker; it’s nearly 2 feet deep.
Passenger space is also plentiful. The helm seat, at 2 feet 9 inches wide, is really a seat and a half and features a similarly sized, mirror-image seat behind. Add a 4-foot-long bench along the port side and another 5-foot-long bench aft, and you’ve got ample seating for a big crew without anyone feeling cramped. The 4-footer features a dual-position backrest that can pivot forward or back. The 5-footer backs up to a similarly sized bench on the swim platform. Lower the backrests to form a 5-foot-square sun pad; raise the forward seats to serve as backrests on an oversize rear-facing recliner. And then there’s the equally generous bow cockpit. Longer than 4 feet and taking full advantage of the Calandra’s width, it’s realistic for multiple adults, not just the kids.
For all its substantial girth, the Calandra handles much like a performance runabout. It leaps onto plane with minimal bow rise in a mere 3.2 seconds and banks aggressively into turns with absolute precision, never threatening to blow out the prop. With a 320 hp Volvo Penta V8-320 and Duoprop drive, it reached 30 mph in 6.9 seconds and topped out at 49.5 mph.
*Three styles of windshield are available, each of which gives the boat a different personality.
*Extended swim platform and low transom walk-through allow for easy boarding.
*Seats are not only hinged to access storage, but most also are supported on gas struts.
LOA: 23’4″ (with platform)
Dry Weight: 3,200 lb.
Seating/Weight Capacity: 12/4,750 lb.
Fuel Capacity: 49 gal.
How We Tested
Engine: Volvo Penta V8-320
Drive/Prop: Duoprop F4 propset
Gear Ratio: 1.95:1
Fuel Load: 20 gal.
Crew Weight: 150 gal.
$59,900 (with test power)
Sweetwater, Tennessee; 423-337-3639; bryantboats.com