Imagine a boat that you can use to sail, cruise, fish, and, if you have kids, maybe even tow a knee board. That’s a pretty versatile boat, right? Now imagine pulling the boat out of the water, folding it in half, and pulling it home on its own integrated trailer wheels? What? That’s right -- the EzyBoat comes to U.S. shores from England with a versatile approach to spending time on the water.
At just over 14 feet in length, the EzyBoat provides a good-sized, stable platform for a variety of boating activities including powered cruising, sailing, and fishing. The midships hinge that allows it to fold also forms a thwart seat for rowing. And the eye-opener is that this boat includes a built-in, patented, road-legal trailer, so it goes from land to water in a snap.
When you want to go boating, extend the integrated trailer arm that acts as a longitudinal reinforcing bar to its full length, open the boat, and secure it to the bar. Then launch the boat, slip a lever into a center slot, and retract the wheels up into the hull to reduce drag. When you’re ready to go home, just reverse the process. One adult should be able to launch and retrieve the EzyBoat alone in about five minutes – just stow and tow. There’s no separate trailer necessary, and you don’t need a large SUV to tow it -- just about any car will do.
When fitted with a 20-hp outboard (25 hp if it’s a smaller, older, 2 stroke model) the EzyBoat will plane at 12-14 mph with two people on board. It’s rated for up to four passengers, and its maximum speed is around 20 mph. The outboard doesn’t have to be removed for towing, and with a small trolling motor the EzyBoat makes a pretty good fishing craft, since it draws only four inches.
A sailing kit is an option that includes a mast, boom, jib, and mainsail. All stow inside the folded boat. A rudder is fitted on a board aft of the outboard so you can keep your auxiliary on for when the wind dies, and there’s even a keel that’s inserted into the hull to minimize leeway. The kit adds less than 20 pounds to the weight of the boat and consists of four pieces that are slotted together for a strong mast and two sections for the boom. It retails for $1,500.
The EzyBoat is built using solid hand-laid up fiberglass, so it’s tough and able to withstand a few dings. The telescoping parts of the integrated trailer backbone are stainless steel to hold up in the marine environment, and there are a number of nice details included, like well-placed cleats and durable cushions. The galvanized wheels include sealed bearings and steel-belted radials, so the trailer components should last, especially if thoroughly rinsed off with fresh water after use. For added buoyancy and safety, the EzyBoat has integrated flotation chambers in the hull sides.
So, we know what it will do on the water, but here’s what the EzyBoat does well off the water. First of all, it comes up the ramp on its own wheels, so there’s no need to park a trailer somewhere while you’re out fishing. The towing rating on the integrated trailer structure is up to 100 km/h or about 62 mph, so tearing down the highway is probably off limits, but at least you won’t get a ticket.
Because the EzyBoat folds in half, it will take up very little space in your garage or driveway, so you won’t need to pay
to store it. And because it clams together, it will carry around 400 pounds of extra gear, including lawn chairs, coolers, fishing rods, tents, and water toys that you won’t have to stuff in your car or RV en route to your boating destination. With its multipurpose positioning, the EzyBoat offers a lot of pros like those above, but also a few cons. Like most products that do a lot of different things, it won’t do any one thing really well. First, the boat tops out at a load capacity of four adults, so make your fishing buddies take a number. Second, with its integrated trailer and fiberglass layup, the EzyBoat is fairly heavy, so it won’t tow an adult waterskier or win any races. Also, with its relatively wide beam and shallow draft, it won’t be a particularly responsive sailing boat, or point well to weather under sail.
But consider the nature of the design overall: The Ezyboat is meant to be an easy, fun platform for people who want to do a little of everything, and it provides a family a one-size-fits-all way of enjoying boating in sheltered waters. And at a base price of $10,900 (boat only) it does that very well.
For more information, visit EzyBoat.
-- Zuzana Prochazka