When Boston Whaler’s team of naval architects, designers and engineers set out to improve upon the popular Outrage series, they did so with a firm ear to the ground. They wanted to learn more about how, precisely, boaters were using the Outrage models, from big-picture patterns down to the nitty-gritty details. It was as much a question of “Where do you plant your feet while driving?” as it was “Where do you like to fish and cruise?”
“We focused our attention primarily on three key aspects,” explains Jacob Wilson, lead designer on the new 230 Outrage. “We wanted to ensure that the boat is easy to operate, comfortable for all passengers, and highly capable for fishing.”
That high capability comes in large part from Whaler’s commitment to Core Confidence—the focus on hull designs that maximize performance, safety and ride quality. The 230 Outrage, just like its larger siblings in the Outrage family, impeccably balances ride stability and softness; handling is responsive and predictable; and the boat is quick to get up on plane. In other words, no matter the conditions, you can trust that the 230 will rise to the occasion.
If that occasion happens to be fishing, well, count on an array of purposeful amenities and options to equip you for the hunt of a lifetime. For starters, rod holders placed strategically throughout the cockpit and a convenient rear portside livewell keep you armed and ready. The boat is also available with a new integrated fiberglass hardtop, making you even more impervious to the elements.
But perhaps the most standout feature of the new 230 Outrage is its remarkable Converting Leaning Post. At first glance, it appears to be a standard bench helm seat, but if you flip down the back of the seat, you’ll find a hidden work station—a surface tailor-made for prepping lines, tackle or snacks. When you want maximum cockpit space, just flip it back up. Or, if you’d like additional seating, rotate the backrest down a full 90 degrees to form the backrest of an aft-facing seat. All this while preserving storage space for a 54-quart cooler. (Or, choose the optional Fishing Leaning Post to gain a 30-gallon livewell.)
One thing every boater can agree on: The more spacious a boat feels for its size, the better. “We really worked to make the 230 feel bigger than it is,” Jacob says. “Initial feedback has been incredibly positive; people are surprised that a 23-foot boat can be this spacious.”
To help achieve roomy-beyond-its-class status, the combing around the bow seat was pushed outboard as far as possible to maxamize floor space in the bow. This allowed for increased seating width, as well as additional legroom. “This configuration contributes to the feeling of stability and security for passengers in the bow,” Jacob adds, noting that cupholders are also strategically placed.
There’s also more room for the two-person forward-facing seat in front of the console, which lifts to reveal a large storage compartment. Another storage compartment under a hatch in the floor buys valuable storage space in the bow. An optional bow table lends itself beautifully to social gatherings, and stores neatly in the console when not in use. And for entertaining, your soundtrack now gets the treatment it deserves: Select the JL Audio stereo package and get four premium speakers—two on the console facing aft and two in the bow—giving you that “surround sound” effect.
Meanwhile, the standard head in the console helps make full days on the water more comfortable for all. And for the captain, new refinements make the driving experience even more of a pleasure. A darker console face reduces glare, cup holders are within easy reach, and an intuitive control panel with optional Raymarine E95 touchscreens makes for seamless command. Cutting-edge Mercury FourStroke Verado® power fuels the fun, while the helm seat’s padded flip-up bolster ensures ergonomic positioning for an array of captain sizes and posture preferences.
“With the 230 Outrage, and the entire new Outrage lineup, we worked to improve on the boating experience by listening to the features and aspects our customers value,” Jacob says. “From there, our task was to make those features even better.”
No small task, to be sure. But with Boston Whaler’s four-time Innovation Award–winning team of naval architects, designers and engineers, the opportunity to design a new 230 Outrage meant the chance to hit a whole new set of pitches out of the park.
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The reviews are in! Head over to BoatTest.com for the complete Captain’s Report, including the performance test results.