New Features for the Everglades 243cc

This center console bay boat has evolved as boatbuilding and angling have evolved.
Everglades 243cc out fishing
The optional Fishing Package includes a T-and-H Atlas jackplate, an 8’ Power Pole shallow water anchor, and a 36-volt Minn Kota iPilot bow mount trolling motor. For sight-fishing, a full upper steering station is available with controls and electronics. Courtesy Everglades Boats

Editor’s Note: This story is a preview of a longer form article by Capt. John Page Williams that discusses a number of boat models that have remained current in their respective builder’s lines for decades. What makes a boat stand up to the test of time? Captain Williams will provide some answers. Look for his story coming in Spring 2023.

Everglades 243cc offshore
A 2022 Everglades 243. Courtesy Everglades Boats

In 2004, BOATING tested hull #4 of the brand-new Everglades 243cc, the first “hybrid bay boat” that could run shallow inshore but still handle big seas offshore.  Built with Bob Dougherty’s patented, rock-solid RAMCAP process, it was impressive then and still is, eighteen years and 1,400 hulls later, judging by a new one we ran recently in sporty big-water seas.  Curious about why the basic 243cc hull remains in the Everglades line, we talked with David Brown, Vice President of Product Development & Engineering at Everglades Boats.  “It’s the ride and the variable-deadrise hull shape,” he explained.  We still build 70-80 243cc’s each year because demand remains strong.  It’s sort of a cult boat.”  Even so, Everglades adds features as they become available.

The 243cc was designed for Yamaha’s original 225-hp four-stroke outboard. Today’s engine is the company’s F300, which offers more power on less fuel, plus Helm Master EX electronic steering and controls, with autopilot and joystick. 

Everglades 243cc inshore
A pair of transom lifting platforms, built separately and foam-filled, bolt on for added buoyancy, lift, and a base for the PowerPole. The 243cc’s trim tabs fit into pockets molded underneath. Courtesy Everglades Boats
Everglades 243cc hardtop
The original canvas T-top has morphed into a composite hardtop with VHF and storage box, stereo speakers, life jacket storage, rod holders, and a ski pylon. Courtesy Everglades Boats

Other upgrades include switches, lighted stereo speakers, SeaDek pads, a Yeti cooler mounted on a slide under the helm seat, and Garmin electronics. Everglades engineers monitor updates to the systems standards promulgated by the American Boat & Yacht Council (ABYC) and the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA). For example, the three 12-volt trolling motor batteries fit into a bow compartment on mounts that must pass an ABYC pull test. After eighteen years, the Everglades 243cc remains a safe, seaworthy rig, an investment whose working lifespan measures in generations rather than years. It endures.