Boating NZ : FREE TO READ February 2014
Boat review Souther n XP856 Southern Boats' XP856 is a big, offshore-capable, aluminium powerboat that continues a tradition of soft-riding hulls but benefits from new tooling and design improvements. S tunning in black, the new Southern Boats XP856 making a statement on Pauanui Waterways is the first of a newly vamped line-up, following Southern Boats' change of ownership last year. Matched with Yamaha V8 outboard power, the XP856 goes as well as it looks. Peter Carlson has owned Family Boats in Auckland since 1992. Family Boats is New Zealand’s largest dealer of the Southern Boats range, so when Carlson and a partner purchased Southern Boats’ Dunedin-based factory last year, he was already familiar with the brand. He and his partner also knew how to make a good range of aluminium boats into an even better one. The all-black XP856 featured here is an example of the new breed. It reflects several tweaks to the hull and a 2.8m beam. TURN UP THE VOLUME The Southern XP856 is a huge boat inside, especially configured with an open-backed hardtop. The massive chequerplate-decked cockpit, high gunwales, heaps of freeboard and a remarkable stability at rest make the boat well suited to offshore fishing; the capable, soft riding hull is designed for bluewater use. “Southerns have always been good performers,” Carlson says, “but since taking over the company we’ve made many small changes to some models. These include widening the 16 Boating New Zealand February 2014 Tested_Southern XP_Feb14.indd 16 20/01/2014 2:31:45 p.m.
FREE TO READ March 2014