Detroit Boat Show rides wave of recovery

Published online: Feb 27, 2012 News Bob Boughner
Viewed 173 time(s)

After a six-year downturn, the boating industry is on the rise in Michigan.

The recent Detroit Boat Show rode on a wave of tentative recovery, featuring more boats, brands and exhibit space than in recent years.

Sales of luxury yachts are up and yacht club membership is recovering. A renewed interest is evident at the Detroit Yacht Club, where membership is on an upswing, according to membership director Jack Lyon.

Other indicators, such as fewer boat repossessions, are also producing optimism. But the number of boats registered in Michigan is down.

This year's boat show at Cobo Hall featured hundreds of boats, including paddleboats, pontoon boats, kayaks and inflatables.

Among the unique features of the show was the unveiling of the first all-electric wakeboard boat valued at $200,000.

The show is not just for browsing. Consumers purchase more than 1,500 boats, worth $50 million, during the show and in the weeks following the event.

We were impressed with the large number of pontoon boats on display and the number of special options being featured including - for the first time - cocktail bars.

Pontoons come in a variety of sizes, shapes, colours and horsepower - at least one sports a 350-horsepower outboard engine.

Several dealers we talked with were pleased with the turnout and the interest being shown in new boat purchases.

"It's a signal that the economy is improving,'' said a Crestliner dealer. "It has a long way to go but it's on the right track.''

You May Also Be Interested In...

March 19, 2015

Carefree Boat Club adds location in Georgia

Carefree Boat Club has just opened a brand new location, adding to its ever-growing lineup.
March 17, 2015

World's fastest pontoon boat gets even faster

When you think of fast boats, a pontoon is probably pretty low on your list, just ahead of houseboats and tugboats. Brad Rowland begs to differ.
March 05, 2015

West Marine begins "Do It Yourselfie!" promotion

Show off your selfie fixing up your boat and West Marine could lend you a hand.
March 04, 2015

Pontoon Brands United

Premier Marine announced today the company will transfer the production of its Weeres and Palm Beach brands to its headquarters in Wyoming, Minn.
March 02, 2015

West Marine's New Product Review Day set for March 20

West Marine has announced the date for this year's iteration of their New Product Review Day.
February 19, 2015

Honda Marine and Coach Pontoons Are Now Partners

The PDB team has exciting news! While we were at the 2015 Miami International Boat Show, Honda Marine announced their new exclusive OEM agreement with Coach Pontoons!
Follow us on Facebook!  Follow us on Instagram!  Follow us on Twitter!  Follow us on YouTube!