Stratos 176 VLO

This boat is a fully equipped fiberglass alternative for budget-minded anglers who think they can afford to run only aluminum rigs.

Stratos 176 VLO
Stratos 176 VLO
Stratos 176 VLO
Stratos 176 VLO
Stratos 176 VLO
Stratos 176 VLO
Stratos 176 VLO
Stratos 176 VLO
Stratos 176 VLO
Stratos 176 VLO

The Stratos 176 VLO is the ideal bass boat for the recreational angler with a competitive streak. Better yet, it has all the advantages of a fiberglass boat, with an aluminum-boat price.

The 176 VLO is a redesign of the best-selling Stratos 176XT, a fiberglass model created to challenge the aluminum-boat market. The 176 VLO delivers a smooth ride and tight-turning ability superior to other aluminum bass boats we have previously tested. Wind and waves easily push aluminum boats around, but the 176 VLO remained stable in choppy waters.

The redesign includes a deeper cockpit and an offset panel for mounting electronics at the bow. The panel position helps prevent the the trolling motor cables from blocking the screen. More front-deck features include a recessed trolling-motor foot pan, lockable stowage on both sides, and a rod locker capable of holding 12 rods up to 7 feet long.

I found plenty of legroom at the helm, which features full instrumentation and space for flush mounting electronics. Cockpit side pockets hold baits and other necessities. Other standards include a Humminbird Piranha Max 160 graph, a Minn Kota Edge trolling motor and an onboard Minn Kota battery charger.