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Boat Test: Pursuit DC 266…


The DC 266 is capable of casual fishing, cruising and family time.

The DC 266 is capable of casual fishing, cruising and family time. (Courtesy Pursuit/)

The new DC 266 was designed with versatility in mind, instantly becoming a top option for ­anyone in search of the ideal boat for casual fishing, cruising and family time. At first glance, the boat appears larger than its specs indicate, and once aboard, you quickly notice the slew of appointments that make a day on the water fun for the entire family.

For starters, the Pursuit’s open-bow design includes recessed grab rails for safety and a dedicated anchor locker, which incorporates a stainless-steel, through-stem anchor roller complete with mooring cleat, chain binder, 14-pound galvanized plow-style anchor and 150 feet of rode. Wraparound seating up front includes substantial storage inside, while flip-down armrests and forward-facing backrests to port and starboard turn the seats into twin lounges. Options include a removable table that encourages picnics with an ocean view, and a bow filler and sun pad to take this social zone up a notch.

The helm seat swivels for easier interaction with the crew.

The helm seat swivels for easier interaction with the crew. (Courtesy Pursuit/)

The windshield with center walk-through door is tempered glass and sports a molded frame engineered with vacuum-infused fiberglass, making it structurally sound and an integral part of the mechanically fastened hull and deck. Its height is just right to shelter —in combination with the fiberglass hardtop—the skipper and crew from the elements without hindering visibility at the helm.

The adjustable helm seat affords a comfortable reach to the tilt steering wheel with control knob, and controls, instruments and electronics on the dash, which includes a ­nifty instrumentation visor that reduces glare, offers enough mounting surface for a full complement of switches, a digital engine monitoring display, and 12-inch multifunction display.

The companion seating module includes a tackle storage center.

The companion seating module includes a tackle storage center. (Courtesy Pursuit/)

Directly across the center aisle, a sizable two-piece fiberglass door on the portside console allows entry to a step-down head compartment with electric marine toilet and sink with freshwater faucet, while a dual companion seat facing fore and aft incorporates a cooler underneath. The ­molded entertainment center is the ideal spot to prepare snacks. It comes with a hinged fiberglass lid and door, and ­includes a sink with fresh water, cutting board, and dedicated storage for a 3.5-gallon bucket.

Foldaway aft seating, which includes a single portside jump seat that tucks neatly under the gunwale, and a transom bench for two with patented, adjustable backrest and drink holder, instantly turns the aft social zone into a spacious, fishing-ready cockpit complete with a tackle center and storage, plus a 31-gallon insulated fish box on the transom, a 20-gallon recirculating livewell with clear Plexiglas lid and calming blue finish inside, and a transom walk-through door. There’s also a rack for two rods on the starboard gunwale, as well as four ­flush-mounted holders on the covering boards, raw- and freshwater washdowns.

Four rocket-launcher-style rod holders mounted on the hardtop’s powder-­coated aluminum frame are among the options, which include power steering, a JL audio sound system and remote windlass; forward Mediterranean sunshade, cockpit cover, three-piece drop curtain with Strataglass, aft curtain, Stamoid bow tonneau cover; underwater lights, and accent lighting.

The transom houses a 20-gallon livewell with clear lid, and a 31-gallon insulated fish box next to it.

The transom houses a 20-gallon livewell with clear lid, and a 31-gallon insulated fish box next to it. (Courtesy Pursuit/)

After our detailed survey, we began the sea trial just outside Fort Pierce Inlet, Florida, where a stiff onshore breeze kicked up 4- to 5-foot waves. The Pursuit proved up to the task in the considerable chop, but we found the Intracoastal Waterway more conducive to a thorough ­performance test.

The DC 266’s pep and ­maneuverability were immediately evident. Rigged with twin Yamaha F200s, our test boat’s hole shot was quick, even into the wind, and we jumped from zero to 30 mph in an average time of 8.4 seconds.

Mashing the controls, we reached a top speed of 51.1 mph at wide-open throttle without porpoising or feeling too loose.

With twin Yamaha 200s and a full fuel tank, the DC 266 has a range of about 307 miles.

With twin Yamaha 200s and a full fuel tank, the DC 266 has a range of about 307 miles. (Courtesy Yamaha/)

Aided by the ­optional power steering, ­driving the Pursuit single-­handed was a cinch. It responded instantly to the slightest turn of the wheel, with no sign of feedback, even during abrupt turns at speed. The boat displayed the predictable handling and tight turning radius that make for enjoyable rides and—when a ­partly submerged log materializes a few feet off your bow—safer evasive maneuvers.

If you’re shopping for a well-built, jack-of-all-trades kind of boat with elegant touches, solid performance and plenty of dock appeal, give the Pursuit DC 266 a close look.

Specs

Length: 27’4″
Beam: 8’9″
Draft: 21″
Deadrise: 21 degrees
Fuel: 139 gal.
Water: 20 gal.
Weight: 6,800 lb.
Max HP: 400
Price: $159,040 w/ twin Yamaha F150s
Pursuit Boats: pursuitboats.com

Test Conditions

Weather: Partly sunny
Location: Fort Pierce, Florida
Wind: Southeast 16 knots
Sea State: 4- to 5-foot chop
Test Load: Three adults, 55 gallons of fuel


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