A good way to think of today’s dual-console boats, such as the Pursuit DC265, is as SUVs of the sea. When you need good old-fashioned rugged fishing performance and the ability to get dirty, a dual-console boat has the legs, layout, and utility finish to get it done. And, when you need seating for eight and a pleasant ride, there’s comfy, convertible, fold-down seating that can easily be used up forward by non-angling family and friends while frenetic fishing action goes on at the stern.
It’s this ability to play both sides of the fishing and relaxation coin that has helped dual-console boats capture an ever-increasing share of the boating market in the last five years. The Pursuit DC 265 is an example of a well-known boat builder pulling off the design with great results. If you know Pursuit, you know that it has always been a fishing-dedicated brand. The introduction of two dual-console models to its stable should tell you something about the popularity of these boats.
A glance at the DC 265 reveals classic Pursuit DNA: rugged sharp lines, an aggressive forward stance, but with a graceful bow and enough flare to keep things dry. Pursuits tend to be angular (check out the way the sheer line dramatically falls away at the stern) yet elegant at the same time, and the DC 265 is no exception. A hard top ($9600) is an expensive but worthwhile (and good-looking) addition if you want not just sun and weather protection, but also a place to stow fishing tackle or watersports gear.
The DC265 is built in Fort Pierce, FL. Every DC 265’s hull and deck are hand-laid using vinylester resin and engineered fabrics, such as biaxial knits with matt backings. Integral foam-filled stringers form a rigid, one-piece hull form, and closed-cell foam is used throughout the deck and transom for lightness and rigidity. Pursuit does not use any wood in the DC 265’s construction, which is the way it should be on a 26-foot boat of this class that pushes just north of the $100,000 mark. Pursuit is especially proud of the DC 265’s windshield enclosure, which instead of being crafted of welded, powder-coated aluminum like you’ll find on most dual-console boats, is made of composite materials instead. That windshield also has a lot of height, which is good news when the weather gets snotty and it’s time to run home.
Onboard, the Pursuit DC 265 is essentially divided into three general areas: the bow, the helm area, and the aft cockpit. Up forward you’ll find two vinyl benches that can either be used as forward-facing chaise lounges, or inward-facing bench seats. They’re extremely comfortable, and each hinges up for easy access to stowage underneath. There are vinyl bolsters around the entire seating area, which adds to the comfort factor.
Back behind the tall and expansive curved windshield is a high bench seat to port, which is situated in front of a large, hinging door that gives access to the simple head and sink area. To starboard is the helm with a captain's chair behind it. There’s room on the helm console for a small multi-function display, VHF radio, and another small electronics item such as an autopilot head unit or stand-alone depthsounder, and Pursuit has thoughtfully colored the entire helm console gray to reduce glare.
Where many dual-console boats fall down is in the way the aft cockpit is designed—there’s either not enough seating, or the seating that’s there is inadequate. This is where Pursuit hits a home run. Stored flush against the transom and the port gunwale are two sturdy fold-down seats that add seating for at least four people. They’re there when you need them (think partying and lounging), and out of the way when you don’t (think being hooked up with a big fish).
|Performance data courtesy of Yamaha.|
|Power||Single Yamaha F300 outboard swinging a 15 1/2 x 17 SWS II stainless steel propeller|
And while many fold-down seats installed on boats look and feel like a compromise in sturdiness, the hardware Pursuit uses in the DC 265’s seats is impressive. Each comfy, vinyl-upholstered bench is mounted on a thick slab of powder-coated aluminum, which is attached to the deck using beefy, polished stainless hinging hardware. A nice detail is that the backrest for the aft bench raises and lowers with the opening and closing of the seat, serving as a backrest when open, and a cockpit bolster when it’s closed. It’s all clever and very well conceived. OK, as you can probably tell by the amount of time I just spent telling you about the DC 265’s cockpit seating, I like it a lot. I think you will, too.
In the power department, you can slap twin 200-horsepower outboards on the back of the DC 265 if you want to, but unless you’re looking for dual-engine reliability offshore, I’d advise against it. Why? The transom is another area on this boat where Pursuit has thought about what they’re doing. Instead of making the outboard well dominate the swim platform, Pursuit has set it back far enough that folks can actually walk the entire length of the platform without doing gymnastics over the engine. This also means there’s room for a full-width transom door. With the twin-outboard option, that space closes in much tighter. If wakeboarding or waterskiing are on your activities list (or any activity which requires lots of water access), the single-engine option is the way to go.
|Fuel capacity||139 gal.|
|Water capacity||18.5 gal.|
Here’s the other rub: The twin Yamaha F200s only get you an additional two mph of top-end with virtually the same fuel efficiency (2.57 mpg) as the F350 (2.56) at cruise speed (around 27 mph). Standard power is Yamaha’s tried-and-true F300 six-cylinder outboard, which pushes the DC 265 to 44.3 mph at wide-open throttle. You’ll find a lean cruising speed at around 29 mph, where the F300 gets 2.35 mpg. With 139 gallons of fuel on board and a 15-percent reserve, that gives you a solid range of around 278 miles. Twin Yamaha F150s round out factory power plant options on the DC265.
It’s obvious that I wouldn’t require much selling when it comes to the Pursuit DC 265—it’s one of the most clever dual-console designs I’ve come across. Chances are you’ll be sold, too, when you take one for a spin.
Other choices you might want to consider in this segment of boats include the Edgewater 280CX, and the Grady-White Freedom 285. If you're looking for a smaller, yet capable, dual-console, check out the Boston Whaler 230 Vantage.
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