We Say: Rivets or welds? Our take is that the craftsmanship applied to a given build method is as important as the method itself. With a double plating of 0.100 gauge marine-grade aluminum along both chines and the forward hull, and double riveting along the sides and transom, Princecraft ensures integrity. But would it impress us on the water?
The Xpedition 170 SC hit 30 mph in under nine seconds. Its long, raked bow meets waves easily. This 1,055-pound boat hardly slowed as I attacked the waves. Agile cornering and stability at wide-open throttle inspire confidence. If you like to run hard, you can in this boat — the caveat being that the built-in 20-gallon fuel tank provides but four hours of running at speeds over 30 mph. The engine splashwell proved effective during my back-down test.
Amenities include PrinceTrak, a sturdy extrusion along the gunwales that allows for movable accessory mounting along the rails. Additionally, two concealed jump seats flip open from the rear casting deck, adding to the seating supplied by the two standard pedestal chairs and four deck sockets. Two livewells and lockable rod stowage round it out.
Who’d Want One: Anglers seeking a top-line side-console (SC) or a walk-through-windshield (WT) fishing boat.
Another Choice: Tracker’s 16-foot-11-inch by 8-foot welded Pro Guide V-175 SC ($20,320 powered like my tester) carries 25 gallons of fuel and is rated for four persons compared with the Princecraft’s five-person rating.
Bottom Line: $23,844 with test power; princecraft.com