What we think: One look at the darkly tinted, low-profile windshield of Yamaha’s new 212SS and there’s no doubt that this flashy runabout was built for speed. And with twin Yamaha High Output engines churning out a collective 320 hp, this little red ride really lives up to its looks. But there’s more going on behind the hot red paint job than just speed thrills. We found the comforts of a luxury stern-drive to go along with the velocity fix, at a very reasonable price.
Enticed by the boat’s sleek and edgy design, we had high hopes for fun as we punched the dual throttle controls. And we weren’t disappointed. Acceleration was potent from the dual jet drives, with time to plane averaging less than three seconds. Once the SS was up to its top test speed of 50 mph, tracking was positive and stable, even when we tried to break it loose. And with a draft of only 16 inches, we had no fear of shallow water.
When we weren’t flying across the top of the water, the 212SS offered plenty of standard amenities to make us comfortable while casually taking notes, including snap-in Berber carpet, convertible portside lounger and iPod-compatible Sony stereo system. The bi-level swim platform — which offers one level for easy access to the water and a second for lounging with a padded backrest and removable dinette table — is an innovative feature. In the cockpit, full instrumentation and a padded steering wheel add to the luxury sports-car feel. And it all comes home at a price just over $35 grand.
Who should buy it: Boaters with speed and agility on the brain, but with a budget in mind, who also want creature comforts to enjoy when they’re not racing around. The jet-drive system eliminates any fear of an exposed prop.
Notable Features * Racy looks: With a low profile windshield and dark tinting, the SS even looks fast. * Potent acceleration: Gunning the throttle on the twin 160 hp jet drives will really get your attention. * Innovative swim platform: With padded backrests and a removable dinette table, swimmers will want to linger. * Carlike cockpit: A padded steering wheel, dual throttle controls and full instrumentation will please most any driver. * No-wake mode: This feature slow the engines to preset rpm levels optimized for no-wake speeds.
Vital Stats * Length Overall (w/ platform): 21′ * Beam: 8’6″ * Dry Weight: 3,029 lb. * Seating/Weight Capacity: 9/1,675 lb. * Fuel Capacity: 50 gal. * Max HP: 320 * MSRP: $35,999 * NMMA Certified: Yes Test Drive * Test Engine: Twin Yamaha High Output Marine Engines * Test Prop: N/A * Test Load: People (525 lb.); Fuel (25 gal.) * Top Speed: 51.3 MPH @ 10,000 RPM * Time to Plane: 2.1 sec. * Time to 30 MPH: 4.97 sec.