Hang a 250-horsepower outboard on any pontoon with a strong enough transom and the flotation to carry the added weight, and yeah, it will get up and go. But thanks to a redesign of Crestliner’s entire line of 2008 pontoons, the Grand Cayman makes the most of all that oomph. They started by reducing some of the plowing characteristics common with pontoon tubes. This is done with concave lifting strakes, which helped allow lots of air under the tubes during our tests with four adults on board. Our top speed of 50 mph was among the best we’ve tested among pontoons rigged with single outboards.
The performance tubes are also painted, allowing them to tie in nicely with the boat’s overall styling. The skirt attaches to the tubes in a single piece for a clean, contemporary look. All painted surfaces are baked at 400 degrees (most manufacturers stop at 200), which should make the finish more durable.
An instrument panel under a sculpted, low-profile windscreen highlights the fiberglass console. Our test boat came with two storage compartments on top of the console, but Crestliner offers an optional galley on the Grand Cayman series of boats.
Crestliner uses a double-hinge system on its seats that prevents a person who steps on a seat while boarding the boat from flipping the seat up. A hatch in the floor provides access to a huge eight-foot-long, 27-inch-deep storage compartment with its own bilge pump and air vents. Practicality like that, combined with a true performance hull, makes the Grand Cayman a primary boat (not a second boat) for buyers looking for a multipurpose model.
* Chaise longue chairs are covered with a soft-touch vinyl that feels like leather.
* Molded footpad at the helm provides just the right positioning for the driver’s feet.
* Storage compartment in the center tube contains its own bilge pump.
* Painted tubes improve slickness of running surface and lend a sleek look to the entire boat.
* Continuous skirting from rail to tube presents a clean, finished look.
* Optional recliners are available in place of front chaise longues.
At a Glance
The Grand Cayman is for performance-minded boaters who want the handling of a deck boat and the practical features of a 25-foot pontoon.
Length Overall: 24’7″
Dry Weight: 2,450 lb.
Seating/Weight Capacity: 17/3,700 lb.
Fuel Capacity: 56 gal.
Max HP: 250
MSRP (w/ Mercury Verado 250): $44,140
NMMA Certified: Yes
Test engine: Mercury Verado 250 hp
Test prop: 19″ stainless steel
Test load: People (550 lb.); Fuel (25 gal.)
Top speed: 50.4 mph @ 5,900 rpm
Time to 20 mph: 5.4 sec.
Time to 30 mph: 7.6 sec.