Great Entry-Level Boats Under $35,000 | Boating Magazine

Great Boats Under $35,000

Boating on a budget is easy with this collection of great boats available for under $35,000.

Price is a major consideration when shopping for a boat. Whether you're a first-time buyer or an experienced boater looking to fill out their lineup, these models offer loads of fun at an attractive price. Compare specs, test data and options for a variety of boats available for under $35,000.

These models were tested and promoted in 2017. As we continue to test boats throughout the year we will add models under $35,000 to this guide.

From fishing and cruising to tow sports, these budget-friendly models cover a wide range of boating interests. Boating on a budget has never been easier.

Cypress Cay Seabreeze 211

Cypress Cay Seabreeze 211

Bill Doster

Cypress Cay Seabreeze 211

Price: $15,999

The Seabreeze 211 is an entry-level model with the added pull of low, nationally advertised pricing. That could suggest a stripped-down boat with no frills, but Cypress Cay isn’t one to scrimp on the details.

Cypress Cay Seabreeze 211 Certified Test Results

Cypress Cay Seabreeze 211 Certified Test Results

Boating Magazine

How We Tested
Engine: Mercury 40 EFI FourStroke
Prop: Mercury SpitFire 13.8" x 10" 4-blade aluminum
Gear Ratio: 2:1
Fuel Load: 3 gal.
Crew Weight: 355 lb.

More Information
Cypress Cay Fort Wayne, Indiana; 260-432-4555; cypresscaypontoons.com

Full Test
Cypress Cay Seabreeze 211

Glastron GT-180

Glastron GT-180

Glastron

Glastron GT-180

Price: $27,253

The Glastron GT-180 entry-level bowrider can be described in one word: fun. It might be entry-level due to its size and attractive price, but in a world filled with bowriders, this is one that stands out for finish, quality construction and, yes, because it’s just plain fun.

Glastron GT-180 Certified Test Results

Glastron GT-180 Certified Test Results

Boating Magazine

How We Tested
Engine: Mercury 115EL FourStroke
Drive/Prop: Outboard/13¾" x 15" 3-blade aluminum
Gear Ratio: 2.07:1
Fuel Load: 20 gal.
Crew Weight: 400 lb.

More Information
Glastron Boats Cadillac, Michigan; 231-775-1351; glastron.com

Full Test
Glastron GT-180

Ranger 198P

Ranger 198P

Ranger

Ranger 198P

Price: $28,795

Ranger took its game up a notch over the competition by adding a pad on the keel near the transom of the 198P to make this aluminum boat perform like a fiberglass bass boat.

Ranger 198P Certified Test Results

Ranger 198P Certified Test Results

Boating Magazine

How We Tested
Engine: Mercury OptiMax 150
Drive/Prop: Tempest 23" 3-blade stainless steel
Gear Ratio: 1.75:1
Fuel Load: 25 gal.
Crew Weight: 240 lb.

More Information
Ranger Boats Flippin, Arkansas; 870-453-2222; rangeraluminum.com

Full Test
Ranger 198P

Starcraft MDX 191 OB

Starcraft MDX 191 OB

Bill Doster

Starcraft MDX 191 OB

Price: $29,499

The MDX 191 outboard from Starcraft is a family craft that’s also light on the checkbook. It’s a well-mannered boat that’s easy to trailer, launch, start and pilot — great for newbies as well as seasoned salts.

Starcraft MDX 191 OB

Starcraft MDX 191 OB Certified Test Results

Boating Magazine

How We Tested
Engine: Yamaha 115 hp four-stroke
Drive/Prop: Outboard/Yamaha 13¼” x 17" 3-blade aluminum
Gear Ratio: 2.15:1
Fuel Load: 17 gal.
Crew Weight: 400 lb.

More Information
Starcraft Marine New Paris, Indiana; 866-772-4538; starcraftmarine.com

Full Test
Starcraft MDX 191 OB

Bayliner Element E21

Bayliner Element E21

Bayliner Boats

Bayliner Element E21

Price: $29,711

The new Element E21 is a fresh expression of the Bayliner mission: create boats that are affordable to buy and easy to own. Priced as low as $25,500, the 20-foot-8-inch E21 is a wide-open, dual-console deck boat that in its base configuration has no windshield — a glass windshield is a $1,271 option. The base-price boat is rigged with the Mercury 115 Command Thrust outboard.

Bayliner Element E21

Bayliner Element E21 Certified Test Results

Boating Magazine

How We Tested
Engine: Single 150 hp Mercury 150 FourStroke gasoline
Drive/Prop: Outboard/Mercury Black Max 14.5" x 19" 3-blade aluminum
Gear Ratio: 1.92:1
Fuel Load: 25 gal.
Crew Weight: 400 lb.

More Information
Bayliner Boats Knoxville, Tennessee; 360-435-8957; bayliner.com

Full Test
Bayliner Element E21

Princecraft Vectra 25 LT

Princecraft Vectra 25 LT

Princecraft Boats

Princecraft Vectra 25 LT

Price: $31,992

If your idea of a great day is taking it slow while enjoying a meal with family and friends on the water, Princecraft’s Vectra 25 LT might be the perfect boat for you. With a layout built around a lunch table in the aft deck that will seat five people, this affordable pontoon is all about relaxing and socializing afloat.

Princecraft Vectra 25 LT Certified Test Results

Princecraft Vectra 25 LT Certified Test Results

Boating Magazine

How We Tested
Engine: Mercury 115 hp FourStroke 115
Drive/Prop: Outboard/15¼" x 15" Mercury Black Max 3-blade aluminum
Gear Ratio: 2.07:1
Fuel Load: 22 gal. in optional built-in tank
Crew Weight: 410 lb.

More Information
Princecraft Boats Princeville, Quebec, Canada; 800-395-8858; princecraft.com

Full Test
Princecraft’s Vectra 25 LT

Stingray 186 CC

Stingray 186 CC

Stingray

Stingray 186 CC

Price: $32,697

The 186 CC is constructed at a level unexpected at its price point. Our test boat had a stainless-steel rub rail, a Bimini top and a stout stainless-steel grab rail around the tempered-glass windshield.

Stingray 186 CC

Stingray 186 CC Certified Test Results

Boating Magazine

How We Tested
Engine: Yamaha F115
Drive/Prop: Yamaha 19" 3-blade aluminum
Gear Ratio: 1.86:1
Fuel Load: 10 gal.
Crew Weight: 400 lb.

More Information
Stingray Boats Hartsville, South Carolina; 843-383-4507; stingrayboats.com

Full Test
Stingray 186 CC

Ranger Z185

Ranger Z185

Ranger

Ranger Z185

Price: $32,995

Ranger’s Z185 might be a bargain in terms of cash, but it represents no shortcuts in terms of ownership satisfaction. The pad hull steps up on top when skimming over the water, hitting mid-50s on the speedo.

Ranger Z185

Ranger Z185 Certified Test Results

Boating Magazine

How We Tested
Engine: Mercury 150 Pro XS
Drive/Prop: Tempest 22" 3-blade stainless steel
Gear Ratio: 1.87:1
Fuel Load: 33 gal.
Crew Weight: 400 lb.

More Information
Ranger Boats Flippin, Arkansas; 870-453-2222; rangerboats.com

Full Test
Ranger Z185

Cypress Cay Seabreeze 233

Cypress Cay Seabreeze 233

Bill Doster

Cypress Cay Seabreeze 233

Price: $33,177

Cypress Cay's Seabreeze 233 offers a versatile setup that tailors it to a variety of pursuits: underway, on the hook or just sitting at the dock.

Cypress Cay Seabreeze 233 Certified Test Results

Cypress Cay Seabreeze 233 Certified Test Results

Boating Magazine

How We Tested
Engine: Mercury 150 FourStroke
Prop: Mercury Enertia 15" x15" 3-blade stainless steel
Gear Ratio: 1.92:1
Fuel Load: 30 gal.
Crew Weight: 355 lb.

More Information
Cypress Cay Fort Wayne, Indiana; 260-432-4555; cypresscaypontoons.com

Full Test
Cypress Cay Seabreeze 233

Yamaha SX 195

Yamaha SX 195

Yamaha

Yamaha SX 195

Price: $33,299

With all of the SX 195's handling advantages, it’s easy to overlook the hanging-out amenities, like Yamaha’s classic stern swim-platform area. Inside the cockpit, wraparound seating pampers the crew; forward, there is a wraparound seating area that comes with a removable center cushion.

Yamaha SX 195 Certified Test Results

Yamaha SX 195 Certified Test Results

Boating Magazine

How We Tested
Engine: Yamaha Marine 1.8-liter Super Vortex High Output Engine
Drive/Prop: Water-jet/3-blade stainless-steel impeller
Gear Ratio: 1:1
Fuel Load: 16 gal.
Crew Weight: 250 lb.

More Information
Yamaha Motor Corporation Kennesaw, Georgia; 800-962-5265; yamahaboats.com

Full Test
Yamaha SX 195

G3 Angler V17 SF

G3 Angler V17 SF

Zach Stovall

G3 Angler V17 SF

Price: $33,395

The Angler’s wide beam gives this deep-V model solid fish-fighting stability at rest and a comfortable stance when trawling for walleye.

G3 Angler V17 SF Certified Test Results

G3 Angler V17 SF Certified Test Results

Boating Magazine

How We Tested
Engine: Yamaha F150
Drive/Prop: Outboard/Reliance SDS 14½" x 18" 3-blade stainless steel
Gear Ratio: 1.86:1
Fuel Load: 25 gal.
Crew Weight: 400 lb.

More Information
G3 Boats Lebanon, Missouri; 800-588-9787; g3boats.com

Full Test
G3 Angler V17 SF

Walker Bay Generation 525

Walker Bay Generation 525

Walker Bay

Walker Bay Generation 525

Price: $33,925

For those who haven’t yet considered a RIB for use as a runabout, the Generation 525 would be a good boat to begin with.

Walker Bay Generation 525

Walker Bay Generation 525 Certified Test Results

Boating Magazine

How We Tested
Engine: Honda 115
Drive/Prop: Outboard/14 1/2" x 19"
Gear Ratio: 2.14:1
Fuel Load: 21 gal.
Crew Weight: 600 lb.

More Information
Walker Bay Fairfield, California; 888-315-1410; walkerbay.com

Full Test
Walker Bay Generation 525

Scarab 195 Open

Scarab 195 Open

Scarab Jet Boats

Scarab 195 Open

Price: $34,167

The Scarab 195 Open clearly fulfills the promise of weekend adventures in a size, and at a price, that will appeal to many a boater.

Scarab 195 Open

Scarab 195 Open Certified Test Results

Scarab Jet Boats

How We Tested
Engine: 250 hp Rotax 4-Tec gas water jet
Drive/Prop: Jet pump
Gear Ratio: 1:1
Fuel Load: 31 gal.
Crew Weight: 450 lb.

More Information
Scarab Jet Boats Cadillac, Michigan; 231-775-1351; scarabjetboats.com

Full Test
Scarab 195 Open

Starcraft EX 23 C SG

Starcraft EX 23 C SG

Bill Doster

Starcraft EX 23 C SG

Price: $34,399

With a pair of standard 25-inch pontoons carrying the load, the EX cruised in comfort while displaying the moderate outside lean typical of twin pontoons in more aggressive turns at speed.

Starcraft EX 23 C SG Certified Test Results

Starcraft EX 23 C SG Certified Test Results

Boating Magazine

How We Tested
Engine: Yamaha F150
Prop: Reliance 14½" x 15" 3-blade stainless steel
Gear Ratio: 2.00:1
Fuel Load: 15 gal.
Crew Weight: 310 lb.

More Information
Starcraft Marine New Paris, Indiana; 866-772-4538; starcraftmarine.com

Full Test
Starcraft EX 23 C SG

Wellcraft 182 Fisherman

Wellcraft 182 Fisherman

Wellcraft Boats

Wellcraft 182 Fisherman

Price: $34,476

Too many wannabe saltwater anglers forgo their sport, thinking it takes $100,000 to procure a seaworthy boat. That may be so for offshore anglers, but the 18-foot outboard is still the sweet spot for family adventure at the inlet, along the beach and in big bays. That’s where we recently tested the Wellcraft 182 Fisherman and found it ready to pursue redfish, stripers, flounder and more, and do it for under $35,000.

Wellcraft 182 Fisherman

Wellcraft 182 Fisherman Certified Test Results

Boating Magazine

How We Tested
Engine: Yamaha 150
Drive/Prop: Reliance 14 1/4" x 17" 3-blade stainless steel
Gear Ratio: 2.00:1
Fuel Load: 40 gal.
Crew Weight: 700 lb.

More Information
Wellcraft Boats - Cadillac, Michigan; 231-775-1351; wellcraft.com

Full Test
Wellcraft 182 Fisherman

Starcraft MDX 211 E OB

Starcraft MDX 211 E OB

Bill Doster

Starcraft MDX 211 E OB

Price: $34,999

Combine the MDX 211 E OB's user-friendly layout with a nice running hull and the exciting power of an outboard engine, like the 150 hp Evinrude E-Tec G2 that powered our test boat, and you’ve got a combination that’s tough to beat.

Starcraft MDX 211 E OB

Starcraft MDX 211 E OB Certified Test Results

Boating Magazine

How We Tested
Engine: 150 hp Evinrude E-Tec G2
Drive/Prop: Outboard/13¾" x 17" 3-blade stainless steel
Gear Ratio: 2.17:1
Fuel Load: 22 gal.
Crew Weight: 420 lb.

More Information
Starcraft Marine New Paris, Indiana; 866-772-4538; starcraftmarine.com

Full Test
Starcraft MDX 211 E OB

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