MasterCraft is set to introduce the next generation of their flagship vessel, the X-Star, and they're doing it at Surf Expo in Orlando, Florida. The new X-Star is completely redesigned and has some pretty amazing features. MasterCraft has kept all the details under wraps until the Friday introduction, but we managed to get a sneak peak the night before the big unveiling, and here's what we learned...
The boat is 24 feet long and 102 inches wide. The engine is a big ol' 7.1 Ilmor that not only provides lots of power, but is supposed to save fuel over a smaller engine because it runs at lower RPM's. The prop is the new OJ five-blade.
The 2012 X-Star has a unique shape along the side that gives it a bit of a muscle car feel. It's tough to describe, but the rub rail takes a dip in the middle and then comes back out toward the rear of the boat. Check the photos to see what I'm talking about.
The 1,600 pounds of ballast is stored between three tanks; one in the front and one on each side in the back. However, the rear tanks are mostly stored along the sidewalls of the body toward the outside of the boat, so that extra-wide rear end is functional as well.
The seats in the bow have been elongated and they've added backrests toward the front of the boat so that passengers can lay down with their back on a backrest in either direction. In order to accomodate the larger front seats, the pickle fork styling was extended outward with bigger "points."
The bow seats now lift forward with a clamshell-style for a whole lot of storage, especially on the passenger side where it flows from the front all the way to the back. In fact, there are all kinds of little storage compartments stashed throughout the boat.
The outside rear seat have a high back as well, which means there is a set of bumps behind them on the storage covers that give it a cigarette boat look.
There's a step above the swimstep for sitting that sticks out like a ledge and has LED lights that point downward onto the swim step. The swim step itself is rounded toward the rear so that riders can easily slide off the step with their board.
The dash consists of three screens and the one on the right side of the steering wheel is a touch screen. The main screen in the center hides away in the dash and pops up when the key is turned on. You can also manually move it up and down, which could come in handy if you're a shorter driver and have trouble seeing over the dash. The windshield has an interesting wavy shape "bubbles" outward in front of the driver and passenger and "bubbles" inward in the middle.
There are three convertible seats that are pretty handy. The rear bench pulls forward and converts into a rear-facing seat and there are two seats hidden away in the walk-through as well. One faces the rear of the boat and one faces the bow. Both lie flat when not being used as seats.
The tower features the latest iteration of MasterCraft's power tower, which is a massive piece of equipment that easily moves up and down with the touch of a button. The clamping board racks feature a new method of releasing the boards that resembles a brake lever on a motorcycle.
I'm sure we'll find out more about the boat today, but that's what I can remember from our sneak preview. Since the entire boat was hidden in a wood box, we won't have a full photo of the boat from the side until later today, so stay tuned.