Boat Test Monday: Tahoe Vista VT 2285 Elite "C" Class

Published online: Apr 08, 2013 Boat Test Monday Brady L. Kay
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Our First Impression

This Tahoe is a very inviting pontoon boat in more ways that just one. For starters you've got to love the three chaise lounges and the comfortable seating throughout. We also like the double-wide three-quarter sundeck, comfy helm chair, plus the clean look of the layout really helps draw you in.

Consumer Test

Good news: the tall pillow backs on the seats and the leg bolsters are as plush as they look. Rated for up to 12 people there are plenty of great places to get comfortable on this boat. And below those seats, the aluminum-framed seat bases provide plenty of great storage room because of the oversized design. Speaking of storage, the in-floor locker is huge, which is a perfect spot for skis, boards, tubes and extra gear. It's always nice to have this storage feature to help keep your floor space clear of items not being used.  

At the helm is a simple, yet fully functional console that includes a full set of gauges. There is room for future options like a GPS, but in this case, less is more, and we like the clean look, including the attractive steering wheel that ties in well with the console. For the captain is a fully adjustable helm chair that slides, swivels and reclines and there is even a small storage box for the driver for loose items and paperwork.

Below the well-padded sundeck is an easy-to-use pop-up changing room that stands nearly five-and-a-half feet tall when fully opened. It really is simple to use and also doubles as additional storage if needed.

With the rear-entry design there is just enough room to board the boat before coming inside the gate. The handholds are extra wide at the top and we love the non-skid flooring in this area as well as in the bow. In fact, having the optional snap-in carpet is a real bonus because you still get the high-end look inside, but easy cleanup at the end of the day. Also in the stern is a large ski/tow bar, which will get plenty of good use with the 225 E-TEC, but we'll get to that in a minute.

Inspection Test

Three 25-inch diameter pontoons are the base of this 22-footer, and the weld quality on the chambered tubes with lifting strakes on both sides of all three is excellent. The C-channel cross-members are screwed to the plywood deck and are on 16-inch centers overall and on seven-inch centers near the transom. There is a full aluminum splash skin as well, and the wiring below is nicely protected. We found no dangerous or sharp edges as the undercarriage earned high marks for craftsmanship.  

Performance Test

Despite the Evinrude 225 HO E-TEC, we still felt like this Tahoe could be considered a sleeper when it comes to performance. With the clean and elegant look, for some reason we just weren't expecting such a fun boat to drive. We experienced no propeller cavitation in the tight and flat turns, and at full throttle we reached speeds near the 50-mile-per-hour mark. Even the zero to 20 mph time of five seconds flat pleasantly surprised us as we found out quickly that this boat can really move. The E-TEC proved to be a perfect match for this Tahoe.

Who Should Buy It

This `toon could be a solid option for the family upgrading from an entry-level model who is ready to have a higher-end feel with great performance and doesn't need a lot of options. We love the simplistic look and feel of this Tahoe and we were impressed by the fit and finish work as well as craftsmanship. 

Number of Occupants             12

Price As Tested With Power   $46.4K

Maximum Speed:                    48.7 mph

Wild Ponies:                            225hp

No. of Gates                           3

0-20 MPH                               5.0 seconds               

Ladder Measurement:             3' 6" deep      

 Why we love this boat.Believe it or not, the performance surprised us. We just weren't expecting this kind of fun on an elegant and conservative-looking pontoon.

Just being picky.Two cosmetic items were all we could find to be picky about. The Plexiglas door under the helm looks a little out of place and the white door on the in-floor ski locker really stands out against the mostly tan interior.  

NOTABLE STANDARDS

CD stereo, tilt steering, fiberglass stand, two speakers, mooring cover, 24-gallon fuel system and built-in dock lights.

OPTIONS ON TEST BOAT

Waveglide high performance package, Sea Star hydraulic steering, 42-gallon fuel system, vinyl floor, snap-in carpet, ski/tow bar, aluminum wave shield and mood lights.

VITAL STATS

LOA                            22'

Beam                           8' 5"

Hull Design                 Three Pontoons

Dry Weight                 2,800 lbs.

Fuel Capacity              42 Gallons

TEST DRIVE

Engine                         Evinrude E-TEC 225 H.O.

Cylinder Type             V6

Cubic-inch Displacement/Horsepower           200.1ci/225hp

Lower Unit Gear Ratio           1.71:1

Propeller                      14 3/4 X 18


RPM      vs.     SPEED     vs. D-A    

500                  1.5 mph           75       

1000                3.9 mph           78       

1500                5.7 mph           80

2000                8.4 mph           87                               

2500                13.1 mph         90       

3000                17.8 mph         90       

3500                22.3 mph         96                               

4000                28.3 mph         98.5    

4500                33.7 mph         99.5    

5000                40.0 mph         103.5

5500                44.5 mph         104

6000                48.7 mph         109

AlmaMich.

Phone: 800-334-2913

Website: www.tahoepontoons.com

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