“They’re the right boat for the time,” he said. “Before the recession, people bought more than one boat. Now people want a boat that’s very versatile.”
Hurricane will display three new deck boats at the show from 20 to 26 feet long priced from $33,000 to about $75,000.
Even manufacturers of fishing boats have broadened their customer base.
Everglades Boats, made in Edgewater, Fla., since 2001, is touting what Bryan Harris, vice president of sales and marketing, calls a “truly multipurpose saltwater boat” at the Miami show.
The Everglades 243 center-console is equipped with a 300-horsepower Yamaha outboard and loaded with electronics and fishing accessories such as live wells and rod holders. It also sports a new, patent-pending elevated helm station accessible through a sliding sun roof in the hard top — and a wide sun pad in the bow for lounging. Price tag: about $130,000.
“Our most popular boat, by far,” Harris said. “We sell lots of them to people who fish some but aren’t hardcore fishermen.”
New to the Miami Boat Show is the Silennis S020 — a 16-footer priced at $30,000. That may sound pretty steep, but Whitney Gibbs, president and CEO of Miami-based Ecoboats US, points out it’s electric-powered, totally silent and does not produce a wake.
“Very light, very maneuverable, and user-friendly,” Gibbs said. “You don’t have the working parts involved with a gasoline combustion engine.”
The Silennis has a top speed of 10 miles per hour with a battery life of nine hours — not exactly speedy, but with longer cruising power than some other electric models. Batteries can be recharged with either a 110- or 220-volt power supply; they are tested to last up to five years.
“A boat the average boater can use without feeling guilty about it,” Gibbs said.