Malibu 21 vRide 2009

OVERVIEW

Malibu Boat's entry-level wake machine, the** Malibu 21 vRide**, is not what you'd expect from a value-class wakeboard boat. First, there's its pedigree. The original Malibu VLX, this is the same boat that launched the careers of pro riders like Dallas Friday, Phillip Soven and Brian Grubb. Then there's the list of rider necessities that come standard. The riders-choice V-25 wake hull, Illusion X tower, Precision Pro cruise and 400 pounds of below-the-floor ballast ensure this 21-footer is ready to ride without a single option. Finally, it's a Malibu, which means the Malibu 21 vRide is made with the same quality materials and rigorous process as its pricier siblings.

FAVORITE FEATURE:

Illusion X Tower

Malibu Boat's engineers designed the distinctive forward swoop of this proven tow point to eliminate driver blind spots for flawless pulls and perfect double-ups. A cable-assisted system eases the collapsible tower behind the windshield, making this 21-footer even simpler to store.

SPECS:

People: 11

Dry weight: 3,500 lbs.

Fuel capacity: 46 gal.

Tower: Malibu Illusion X, Titan III*

Racks: Titan (fixed and swivel)*

Wake shaper: Manual Malibu Wedge*, Malibu Power Wedge*

TEST MEASUREMENTS:

Length: 21 ft. 6 in.

Width: 8 ft. 4 in.

Bow length: 64 in.

Bow width: 61 in.

Floor to tower: 72 in.

Gunwale: 28 in.

Main lounge: 64 sq. ft.

Sun pad: 25 sq. ft.

Platform: 11 sq. ft.

Ballast: 900 lb. (one 500-lb. center tank*; two 200-lb. rear tanks)

ENGINE:

Standard: Malibu 320 LCR TKL 320 hp

Cruise: Precision Pro Speed Control

* = Optional

THE WAKES:

The Malibu 21 vRide creates wakes with long ramps and landing zones that approach pro level when weighted correctly. With the 900 pounds of factory ballast and the wedge deployed halfway, we found wake-to-wake moves easy at 65 to 70 feet at 21 to 22 mph. If you add more weight, consider a faster speed and a longer line length.