Wakeboard Boat Review
Family cruising is redefined with the new Malibu Sunscape 247 LSV. It’s not just about being bigger or throwing in more stainless steel. No, the Malibu Boats engineers have obviously thought long and hard about every aspect of this oversized V-drive.
We knew this wakeboard boat was something special the minute we stepped into it. The main wraparound lounge was like nothing we had seen before — so long, so wide, with so many cup holders, speakers, LED lights and chromed accents. Because it’s a Malibu, this Sunscape has such a polish to it that even what you can’t see, like storagecompartment hinges and engine mounts, is designed for a smooth look and smooth ride that few can match, let alone top.
The Malibu Sunscape models aren’t technically wakeboarding boats, yet this is the same hull as on the Malibu Wakesetter 247 LSV. That means the potential is there if you want to do more than just cruising and some recreational riding on these wakes, which are fairly big and defined right out of the box. If you think you’ll be using this for serious riding — or want to have a boat with that potential in case the kids really take to wakeboarding — consider outfitting it with at least an Illusion X tower and Malibu Launch System ballast. The optional Malibu Power Wedge will complete the transformation into a true wakeboarding boat that will still be wrapped in a refined, subdued gelcoat style, so as not to scare the neighbors.
Malibu has made it easy to drive a boat as big as this Sunscape. It starts with a balanced, wide hull that stays stable as passengers shift about and the chop builds. The Precision Pro Speed Control and Electronic Throttle Control, both new standards on all 2006 Malibus, make holding speed a breeze. Rack-and-pinion steering and deep tracking fins further enhance the driver’s control. Our test team has had experience with these bigger V-drives, but even boat buyers upgrading from smaller boats will get in the groove behind the wheel in just a short test drive. And we can’t tell you how great it is to open up the throttle and feel the rush of the optional 450-horsepower engine.
All Malibu Sunscapes excel in the “comfort” category, the 247 LSV even more so because there’s more of it. We can’t praise the supersized wraparound lounge enough. This truly has the makings of a party on the water for all your friends or a floating family reunion. Plush vinyl, thick foam, soft carpet and a textured upholstery accent give the whole interior a luxury feel. The refreshment table comes in handy for entertaining but stows easily in one of the many, many storage compartments hidden throughout the boat. The day we rode in it, we didn’t hear a rattle or feel vibration from the water, thanks to the masterfully tight construction and assembly of every Malibu.
Base price: $57,600
Length: 24 ft. 7 in.
Beam: 102 in.
Seating capacity: 16
Fuel capacity: 87 gal.
Test Prop: Acme 13.5 x 16 4-blade
Test Engine: Indmar 8100 Vortec 8.1L, 450 hp
Top Speed: 48.8 mph 5,150 rpm
Accel. To 30 mph: 5.3 sec. 128.2 ft.
Accel. To 36 mph: 7.0 sec. 208.3 ft.
Noise Levels (db): Neutral 62 D 61 R, 36 mph 85 D 91 R