Godfrey Releases Its Luxurious XP Series

Comfort and performance thrilled us during our test in Havasu

Published in the July 2024 Issue April 2024 Feature Brady L. Kay

Already known for its impressive lineup of quality pontoon boats, Godfrey is creating excitement in the industry once again with the release of its XP Series for the upcoming model year. I got my first sneak peek at the 2024 Godfrey XP at the Minneapolis Boat Show earlier this year when it was on display. During the January show it stopped people in the aisles and created a positive buzz throughout the convention center with its modern look and luxurious vibe.

The XP made a solid first impression as attendees were drawn to the Godfrey booth for a closer look and in some cases show goers probably heard the boat before they actually saw it, thanks to one of the best production sound systems you'll find on a pontoon.

As impressed as I was with the Godfrey XP on the boat show floor, being surrounded by Minnesota's frozen lakes that time of year, I knew I wouldn't have a chance to run this model that January weekend. However, the wait wasn't very long. In April the manufacturer offered select members of the media an opportunity to run the boat on Lake Havasu, a desert oasis that is split between Arizona and California.

Havasu Retreat   
Even on this popular western lake where all the high-end and colorful boats come to play, the vibrant Verde lime green XP stood out in the sea of sameness. We first saw this model docked at a slip in the shadow of the famous London Bridge, a historic landmark that was relocated to Lake Havasu City, Ariz., in 1968 in an attempt to create a tourist attraction in the desert. Like the bridge that lures people in, the new XP drew members of the media off the beaten path for a chance to run the boat on the water of this secluded city located a couple hours south of Las Vegas.

What makes the release of the XP so special is that it's packed with the most advanced technology available, offering modern boaters a whole new level of high-end comfort on the water. As the latest addition to the award-winning Godfrey line, the XP boasts a suite of high-tech features, combining a sleek, modern look with industry-leading performance. Worth noting, the modern-looking helm console is hand-wrapped for an extremely high-end look and feel.

The fully digital helm includes an intuitive custom user interface and accent back lighting. The display controls everything from the XP’s best-in-class JL Audio sound system to the RGB LED accent lighting.

Loud & Clear
If you're not familiar with Lake Havasu, after the London Bridge the area is probably best known for attracting spring break crowds of college students and is as a great place for boating parties year round. Music is of course part of the fun and the sound system is just one of the XP's many highlights. The impressiveness of the standard top-of-the-line JL Audio sound system on this pontoon cannot be overstated.

“We worked directly with JL Audio to create a sound system just for this boat,” explained Godfrey Product Manager Andrea Malleck. “The sound on this boat is next level.” 

The JL Audio Sound System (2100 Watts RMS standard or 2350 Watts RMS with the optional tower speakers) delivered crystal clear sound from the well-positioned speakers throughout the boat and again, it's all controlled through the display at the helm.

Light It Up
The co-captain’s seat also is equipped with a 7-inch display. The accent lighting built into the XP is the industry’s first application of Digitally Addressable Lighting and it is capable of unmatched customization with the RGB lights.

The individually controlled LED lights are integrated and work seamlessly with the JL Audio sound system for the ultimate in on-the-water entertainment.

Powered by twin 400 horsepower outboards, the new Mercury Marine 5.7L V10 Verados met the maximum horsepower rating of 800hp, yet exceeded all expectations—even on a pontoon with this kind of power.

Consistent with the award-winning Verado brand, the new V10 engines are extremely quiet as well as smooth and I was pleasantly surprised by the torque and the quick hole shot on the new Mercury engines compared to its 2.6 L inline 6 cylinder 400hp Verado version that this new outboard is replacing. With a 29-inch diameter center pontoon with 27-inch diameter pontoons on each side, the XP dove into tight turns and handled remarkably well during our test and is capable of speeds in the 60mph range at full throttle.

Added Touches
For added comfort, the XP is appointed with a folding, action-powered Bimini that allows for 11 feet of shade coverage, a custom windshield, cool-touch seating and lockable storage compartments.

“When it comes to our customers’ experience, we are always unwilling to compromise, and the XP is perhaps the most emblematic of our desire to push the envelope,” added Malleck. “One of our primary goals for this series was to put forward the best-in-class technology, with everything that can be loaded onto a pontoon to enhance the experience for our customers. We are confident that from the second you step aboard you’ll agree it provides a true paradise out on the water.”

Designed to fit the individual needs of each customer, the XP’s exterior and interior are completely customizable, including a variety of color selections for the exterior, vinyl, vinyl accents and flooring. At first glance we loved the black vinyl seats but wondered if they would attract the sun's rays and become too hot to actually sit on, especially in a place such as Arizona where triple-digit heat is common during the summer. To our surprise, the cool-touch onyx black seats – even during our 90 plus degree day in Havasu – in fact held up well and didn't radiate heat like you would expect a darker color vinyl to do. It remained comfortable throughout the day, even when the sun was at its brightest. 

Final Thoughts
The 2024 Godfrey XP is available in three lengths ranging from 25 to 28 feet, in either a single engine or twin configuration. The starting price for the Godfrey XP is $223,300 with  a single F250XB engine. After a morning of testing, we opted for some “endurance runs” by exploring Lake Havasu and its unique coves on the XP to experience this latest model from Godfrey the way it was intended, surrounded by people looking for a fun time on the water.

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