Cobalt Boats’ 220 enjoyed tremendous popularity when it debuted as part of Cobalt’s 10 Series of bowriders. Kansas-based Cobalt likens it to the estimable BMW 3 Series, high-quality boats at a more approachable price. On the 220, you still get the sweet performance that Cobalt is known for, and you get many big-boat amenities, such as the leather-wrapped steering wheel at the helm with the Cobalt insignia designed to always spin upright. The dash has the same hand-stitched brow and digital gauges you’d find throughout the Cobalt fleet.
New for 2014 is the 220S, which is the same 220 hull with an alternative cockpit layout. The original 220 featured what Cobalt calls “stadium” seating, which has a rear-facing chaise lounge to port with a backrest built into the port console. The new 220S sports more of a traditional design, allowing a passenger to face forward in front of the port console. However, the backrest is adjustable so that it can be converted to a rear-facing lounge — utilitarian for a ski-spotter seat — or fully reclined to help create a sun pad. There’s a larger sun pad over the engine box and a transom walk-through to port that accesses the fantastic extended swim platform with stainless-steel piping and Cobalt’s signature flip-down swim step. It’s great for skiers or tubers. The in-sole ski locker has a rubberized mat to keep your gear from sliding around, and Cobalt offers an air compressor as an option for the tubing-obsessed family.
Also new for 2014 is the stainless-steel-topped windshield frame that provides flex-free support to the raked windshield, which tapers aft along the gunwales for more cockpit protection. Our test boat featured the optional aluminum arch with a canvas Bimini shade. The arch can be completely lowered by hand for passing under low bridges, trailering or storing the boat in a garage.
About that ride, the 220S approached 50 mph on our GPS readings, plenty fast for a 22-foot boat. We could carve graceful hard-over turns at 30 mph, a tribute to the 220’s stability and well-designed hull mated with a Duoprop sterndrive.
*The stainless-steel-topped windshield frame provides flex-free support.
*Seats are covered with durable Nautilex vinyl.
*The flip-down swim step makes for easy reboarding after a plunge.
Dry Weight: 3,700 lb.
Seating/Weight Capacity: 12/1,695 lb.
Fuel Capacity: 59 gal.
How We Tested
Engine: 270 hp Volvo Penta 5.0
Drive/Prop: GXiC/F6 Duoprop stainless steel
Gear Ratio: 1.95:1
Fuel Load: 50 gal.
Crew Weight: 400 lb.
$63,412 (with test power)
Neodesha, Kansas; 800-468-5764; cobaltboats.com