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Scout 345SFX

Designed around cruising and fishing

Scout's new 34-foot center console is the South Carolina builder's second-largest boat. "There seems to be two center console worlds - the hardcore fishing world and the cruising world," says Scout Boats president Steve Potts. "We've married the two worlds with this design."

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With 22 degrees of deadrise at the transom and a relatively narrow hull form (10-foot, 9-inch beam) for this type of boat, the 345SFX will run through the sloppy stuff without excessive pounding, says Potts. "We didn't want to go any beamier and sacrifice ride quality," he says, adding that the boat's stepped hull also softens the ride and reduces drag.

Twin 350-hp Yamaha 4-strokes will power the first few models, and Yamaha's new 300-hp V6 engines will take over when they become available, says Potts. Scout has designed the boat for no more than two engines, he says.

"There are enough builders of center consoles that go north of 70 mph," he says. "We don't want that. That's not our customer."

With twin 350s the boat should top out in the low 60-mph range; with the 300s she'll reach the upper 50s, says Potts. The 345SFX will appease the day-cruising crowd with side-by-side forward-facing foredeck lounge seats and port and starboard bow seating. If you want to relax in the shade, the powered hardtop extends aft. In the console are a galley with sink, refrigerator, microwave, head, shower and a two-person berth.

"There are a lot of wow factors on this boat," says Potts. For instance, the helm seats are covered with a hybrid vinyl and Sunbrella fabric that's more comfortable than conventional upholstery, says Potts.

A bow thruster, generator and air conditioning are options. Pricing was unavailable at press time. Scout expects to introduce the boat at the Feb. 11-15 Miami International Boat Show.

Contact Scout Boats at (843) 821-0068,

This article originally appeared in the March 2010 issue.

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