It stands to reason that a pontoon builder on Lake of the Ozarks competing with Scarabs, Bajas, Formulas and Cigarettes would build a pontoon boat that is just as flashy, just as fast, and far more comfortable than go-fast boats.
That’s what the Powertoon X-Treme 3000 is, though: a go-fast boat. And Jim Dorris, founder of the brand, proves it every year when he takes his latest Powertoon X-Treme to the famous Lake Rescue Shootout at Lake of the Ozarks.
Dorris opened the category we now call “performance pontoons” by being the first to bring high horsepower and racing swooshes to the formerly stately and puttering image of pontoons.
First, on this one he clocked over 76 mph in the event and did it with a Mercury Racing 400 hp outboard on engine mounts on a pair of tubes flanking that oh-so-essential-to-speed center tube. They are fitted with Rac-R-Fins, PlayCraft’s version of lifting strakes welded to the tubes to widen their footprint and help them skim across the water like a planing hull.
Unlike a performance boat, however, the ride is buttery-smooth, allowing passengers to be loungers, stretched across deeply cushioned, supply upholstered couches and lounges, sipping drinks from Yeti coolers and listening to the clear, clean notes from the custom Waves and Wheels stereo system.
The Powertoon X-Treme has to look race-ready to carry this fun off. And it does so with custom colors you choose yourself. Then PlayCraft finishes the rails, wakeboard tower and tubes your way. Next, PlayCraft complements them with sewn-in vinyl colors and great-looking stripes and swooshes. Clearly, PlayCraft has retained the best upholsterers, evidenced by the consistent seams and stitches we have seen from seat to seat, boat to boat, year after year of following this exciting pontoon brand.
We’d tip our hats to them, but it’s hard to keep them on at 70-plus mph anyway.
* PlayCraft’s Rac-R-Fins add performance and inspired the performance pontoon category in 1995.
* PlayCraft’s patented boarding steps are integrated into the tubes.
* Powertoon accessories like upholstery, graphics and Livorsi controls are designed to inspire race-ready boaters.
Price: $179,900 (as tested)
How We Tested
Engine: Twin Mercury Verado 400R
Drive/Prop: Outboard/Bravo 1 FS 22″ pitch 4-blade stainless steel
Gear Ratio: 1.75:1
Fuel Load: 50 gal.
Crew Weight: 400 lb.
PlayCraft Boats – Richland, Missouri; 573-765-3265; playcraftboats.com