Ranger builds solid boats with efficient hulls whether the price tag is $75,000 or $25,000. And it gets the most performance from every pony bolted to the patented “pultruded” transom of each boat.
So we weren’t surprised to see the 190LS zip up to impressive top speeds with a 150 hp outboard planted firmly in the middle of the high-power range. And acceleration was powerful too. Then, on that platform, Ranger built a serious fishing machine that will also bring smiles to the family when boards replace sticks and ski ropes replace fishing lines.
The setup for water sports is easy. Flip up the three aft bucket-seat backs and slip in the solid aluminum tow pylon. Now the cockpit seats five, and the mate mans the observation post by swiveling the forward seat astern. Sun pads on our test boat provided a great lounging area for added fun.
A full-width, tempered-glass windshield completes the sporty day-cruising look and will keep a chilly evening cruise to waterfront dining far more pleasant. An Infinity marine stereo adds to the ambience on board. The one on our tester had bluetooth connectivity.
For fishing, flip those three aft seats down and you have an enormous casting deck to match the one at the bow. There’s a fully functioning livewell aft and a combination ski-and-rod locker up front. Keep water skis in the center locker — there is space alongside for rods. The helm offers space for an optional, factory-installed Lowrance GPS/chart-plotter combo and compartments for tackle or phones.
Our test boat was equipped with an onboard charger to keep the trolling-motor batteries — and the fishermen — happy. An easy-to-access circuit breaker makes the boat effortless to store in the garage and get ready on Friday for a weekend of fun. Getting it to the water is easy too, thanks to a custom-fit-and-colored trailer, designed to make its ride on the road as soft as yours is on the water.
You can buy a cheaper fish-and-ski boat, but it won’t be around as long.
*Pultruded panel is laminated with glass fibers under tension, creating a light, rigid, rot-proof transom.
*Lowrance HDS electronics are great for finding the best fishing holes or the most protected ski waters.
*Boarding ladder, which is mounted beneath a hatch, proved easy to deploy from in or out of the water.
How We Tested
Engine: Mercury 150
Drive/Prop: Outboard/Tempest 19″ 3-blade stainless steel
Gear Ratio: 1.92:1
Fuel Load: 25 gal.
Crew Weight: 240 lb.
Ranger Boats Flippin, Arkansas; 800-373-2628; rangerboats.com