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Escondido

Could it be that much better?

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Escondido

On Satuday we dropped by the local MC dealer to see if they had an X-15 to drive. The dealership has a ski-lake attached. We looked at the X-15 at the boat show but had pretty much excluded it from the search. The dealer had just finished prepping their boat that day for some tests/reviews that were to be done this week. The boat we drove was pretty much loaded wth everything except PP, the engine was 350 hp. The boat show price they were quoting was $63K. Our assumption going into this was that the premium wasn't worth it but we wanted to know for sure. When seeing one on the lake, we didn't want to have any regrets.

Prior to this we have driven the VLX and the Tige 22ve.

As you probably already know, this boat is replacing the x-10 in their line. It is the same length as the VLX and a few inches wider. The layout was pretty nice and the seating very comfortable. It had tons of storage. The boat was very quick out of the box. The slalom wake looked pretty good for a recreational skier. We didn't load the ballast to see the wakeboard wake. I believe the ballast was 900 lbs and they claimed it filled in about 2.5 minutes. The dash was easy to read and I liked it. The pod look is controversial though. The switches are definitely different from everybody elses with their industrial toggle look. One thing that stood out was the driver seat. It sits up very high but is still comfortable. Without the bolster the view was very good. With the bolster it was close to standing. I liked it but some might prefer the lower position of the Malibu.

While the boat drove well, it seemed to vibrate. It did not handle the turns as well as the others I have driven. The boat doesn't have the fins. It seemed to have to work a little harder through the turns, had more cavitation on sharp cuts. Those are just subtle marks against it. All in it did well in comparison.

Two things that stood out were the swivel racks with clamps, no straps, and they ease of bring then into the boat. We didn't run with any boards so I can't comment on how the racks held. The other thing I liked were the tower lights integrated into the speakers. Rather than docking lights there were a pair of lights on the backside of the tower speakers. Very clean look on the tower. I would be interested in finding out if these are MC only or available in the aftermarket. We use our lights a lot, I realize a lot feel they are a waste of money.

In summary, it's a nice boat. We didn't find anything about it that would warrant spending the extra money, not even sure I would pick it for the same money. Fortunately the premium is large enough I don't have to do a more in-depth analysis on it. But now I know personally that I am not missing something when I see it on the lake. I'm sure you have read this and are thinking, we already knew that. Well now I know to.

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sheeprides

Thanks for the review. MC makes some sharp looking boats - I hate to admit it, but I recently inquired into the pricing of the X2. I haven't test drove one but judging by your experience, I'm not sure I'd like it after all.

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chathamsolutions

Interesting.

I spent some time in this boat at the show. It's a great looking boat. I think MC has done some great stretching with this and a few other boats on their line. I really liked the look of this boat.

Interesting that they don't have any fins on this boat. There's a number of boats in their line that don't use the fins - and as mentioned - I think lack in handling from it. The X-30 comes to mind.

Anyway, the fit and finish and styling of this boat would have gotten me in the water with the X-15. The price would have kept me away though, it appears the Malibu is still the value leader (of the top 3 manufacturers) for '06. We'll see if that trend continues in the future.

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SacRiverRat

I don't care for MC's snap in carpet, that walk thorugh sunpad, the dash, or the boxy/square feeling of the seating (I sat in a X30)

I did like some of the colors and gel options they had, vs not real excited about the current Malibu gel lines.

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Guest J-Ro

I thought the boat was extremely plain and boring. Expecially the interior. When I saw it, I thought, "This is the big replacement that everyone is talking about?"

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Pistol Pete

I experienced, first hand, what no tracking fins means. I was driving a 2004 X-30 the other day and while the owner of the boat was boarding, I could barely keep the boat in a straight line. Not just when he was cutting out but, all the time. At that time, I didn't know the boat didn't have tracking fins. I wouldn't consider any boat without tracking fins a tournament boat. Wake was very similar to my boat.

As for the dash lay-out. I didn't like the two stage dash board or the use of a lot of different type of switches. I like everything to look the same for consistency sake. And, as for the interior, sorry, but my 5 year old bu's interior is nicer and in better shape than this 2 year old boat.

I might get to drive a late model air Nautique this week. We'll see.

Edited by Pistol Pete

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stewart

Is it just me, or does the interior ie. vinyl just feel and look cheap?

I thought the X-45 looked bitchin until Kenny show me a video they made last week of them sinking the bow on a X-45 during a double up. :lol:

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stusumm
I might get to drive a late model air Nautique this week. We'll see.

The Nautique 210's are difficult to keep in a straight line with a good boarder. I alway feel that I constantly have to make steering adjustment to stay straight. Not in my Bu.....it's amazing how well the gorilla fins work.

edit: can't type for [email protected] this morning.

Edited by stusumm

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Guest J-Ro

The 210's have such a small footprint that it's easy for a rider to pul it around unless it's heavily weighted.

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Slider

From what I have seen, I like the Nautique better then the MC. I will say that each of the big 3 have things that I think they do better then the others. I have yet to find a total package that I like better then the Malibu......besides with Tracie adminning this site.............. ;)

Joe

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obski

Thanks for the review. I didn't know about the lack of tracking fins on the MC. Interesting.

I do agree with the rack system. I thought that was really nice. I was on an X-Star with the swing away board racks. They held the boards well and were convenient to get to. Much nicer than what I have on my boat.

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millertw

This past winter in SoCal we test drove a X-45 and the new 247. While the mastercraft shines in the sun from all the chrome, there was truly no comparison on the water. The plate that mastercraft has on the back of their boat was an afterthought, since the boat wasn't producing the desired wake. Take a lot at one if you get a chance very strange. The new 247 was unreal, turned the sharpest corners when going back to get our skier at 35 mph. Tracking, unreal, handling the rough stuff no competition.

I wish they would set up demo days where people can test drive the top 3 or 4 manufactures boats at the same location. I think it would make the Malibu community even larger. We can't wait to get our new 247 in April.

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SacRiverRat
The new 247 was unreal, turned the sharpest corners when going back to get our skier at 35 mph.

You're not admitting to be a power-turner are you? Cry.gif

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stusumm

The new 247 was unreal, turned the sharpest corners when going back to get our skier at 35 mph.

You're not admitting to be a power-turner are you? Cry.gif

I could see that one coming a mile away! :lol:

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Slider

Hey, if you are going to power turn, do it right with the biggest boat you can find that will still turn. Go big or go home. ROFL.gif

Joe

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stewart

I'm with you! And jsut make sure you don't swamp your boat doing it ROFL.gif

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Headhunter 2317

IMO the MC have started to look a little too Buck Rogers.

Never leaving my BU

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kevin frank

The x-2 would compare better with the vlx. The interior size is similar and the wakes are close.

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andyb

An X-15 turned up at our lake over the holidays and from a distance it didn't look too bad. I had to help the guy retrieve because the boat is mounted so high on the trailer and we couldn't get the boat far enough up to push the holding pin through at the snubbing block.

I offered to back the rig into the Lake behind the Chevvy so that we could float it up and snap in the pin - however the trailer brakes prevented me from backing up without a special wiring job.

Only one thing left. Throw out the picks and let it come up under its own weight. That worked.

To me, the graphics looked cheap & nasty up close. Probably trying for product differentiation from a distance like Nautique have done with 06 models.

The Bu is still the better looker to me in graphics & finish quality.

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Madmanacrossthewater

Correct me if I'm wrong, but the Maristar Series has never had fins as far as I know.

I have seen a few X-45's and X-30's loaded down and pulling boarders. From what I was seeing, porpoising was a definite issue. But like Slider, I'm partial.

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NorCaliBu
I'm with you! And jsut make sure you don't swamp your boat doing it ROFL.gif

Don't start that again. Fingerwag.gif - - - - - :lol:

Not to mention...he was doing power turns, not bat turns. Crazy.gif And with the amount of freeboard on those Queen Mary's that you boarders use...I don't think that even I could swamp one. :lol: Well, maybe. Biggrin.gif

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Escondido

Anybody know if the speaker with the integrated light is available from anywhere besides MC?

Not sure how it impacts the sound having the backside of the can as a light fixture but I liked the look of having them integrated. Nice alternative to the docking lights.

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Pistol Pete

O.k.

Drove and rode behind a 2004 Nautique 210 Super Air.

Very nice boat. Owner had ~300# in the bow along with stock ballast tanks. This made it difficult to keep the nose from submerging during turnarounds and low speed manuvering around its own wake.

Wake was pretty large and quite rampy despite what I've heard about Nuatique wakes. I rode at 75' @ 23 and I'm 250#, no problems making it wake to wake. (And, I'm not even that good of a rider)

Boat tracked hella better than the X-30 I drove last week. I checked and the Nautique has the tracking fins the MCs sorely need.

Interior was waaaaay nicer than the X-30. A little cramped and narrow but, fit and finish was much better. Much nicer dash lay-out and I'm diggin' the keyless ignition. Windsheild did have quite a bit of rake so it didn't wrap around as much as I'd like on the side but, it did make talking to the rider easier. nice long sunpad over the engine. Narrow teak deck. Very beefy tower mounts to the gunwales. Solid board racks.

My only real gripe was the interior grab handles that would stick in your back if you were to lean against them. I guess this is a remnant of the old inbord ski-boat-only days.

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denjoe

I agree with everything Pete said. But if the Nautique costs the same as the VLX, it is a no brainer to stick with the VLX. I am expressing my personal un-biased opinion of course.

Joe

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millertw

The new 247 was unreal, turned the sharpest corners when going back to get our skier at 35 mph.

You're not admitting to be a power-turner are you? Cry.gif

If I'm not hearing the cable snap, I must not be turning hard enough. Go Big or Go Home. (it was a demo boat, just had to see what it was capable of, and boy it was nice.) It's like an F-16, it's capable of pulling well over 12G's, only problem is we pass out and do the funky chicken when coming to. But knowing it can do it is nice.

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