Review: Mako 234 CC


We water test and rate the Mako 234 CC, the winner of the fibreglass fishing boats category at the 2016 Australia’s Greatest Boats awards.

Mako 234 Centre Console
Club Marine logo

The Mako 234 CC is big, bold and brassy, and it’s an exceptional fibreglass fishing boat. Its toothy namesake is a highly refined example of aquatic evolution with perfect dynamics and a reputation for explosive behaviour — just like its fibreglass emulator the Mako 234CC.

The first thing you notice about the Mako 234 CC after immediately falling in love with its gorgeous outward appeal is the volume it supplies when you hop aboard. This hull is capable of taking the whole tribe out rampaging the oceans on long sojourns. It has the horsepower to carry huge loads efficiently, with a pair of the latest 150hp Mercury four-stroke outboard motors rocketing her along at blinding speed and with enormous thrust, combined with miserly fuel consumption.

The layout provides not only an exceptional base for all forms of angling exploits, but it has plenty of comfort and provision for family cruising including one of the largest enclosed toilet compartments we have seen in such a craft. There are loads of attractive trim with soft rounded edges, thick upholstery, bow cushions and padded coamings throughout all included in the low package price.

Mako 234 CC photo gallery

Mako boats provide a very high level of innovation and ergonomics with a great combination of existing essentials accentuated by some progressive ideas formulated by obvious experience. A pressurised livebait tank in the seating console, a mirror in the overhead cabinet for easy vision, a well-defined combination T-top, convertible and removable rear lounge, and a ton of storage options set this big centre console apart from similar offerings. Simply, they got it right.

Our judges returned comments like "absolute weapon", "stunning offshore masterpiece", "one of the finest I have driven to date – simple as that", "massive package and performer at an appealing price", "takes swells on at 40kts-plus with ease", "stylish American centre console with plenty of bling", "epic offshore fish slayer", "nothing could stop it, and we tried when the weather turned", "a true bluewater sportsfishing machine", "visually stunning", "surprising value", "feels even bigger than it is", "stunning performance–no spray", "soft landings", "sensational and thrilling", "fast and safe, amazing ride" and "hard to imagine how the layout could be improved". These statements reflect the awe the Mako 234 CC left in all it touched at Australia’s Greatest Boats for 2016.

Deck on Mako 234 Centre Console

Mako 234 Centre Console specs

Mako 234 Centre Console price: $149,000

Price as tested

 

OPTIONS FITTED

Fiberglass hard top, electric toilet with holding tank, winch, outriggers, gull-wing clears, FUSION stereo, Lowrance electronics + more

 

GENERAL

MATERIAL Foam injected fibreglass hull

TYPE Monohull

LENGTH 7.1m

BEAM 2.59m

WEIGHT 3200kg (BMT)

FUEL 515lt

ENGINE 2 x 150hp Mercury FourStroke outboard motor

 

MORE INFORMATION

Fishing and Leisure Boats

Phone 0429 680 504

Email tim@flboats.com.au

Web flboats.com.au

 

More on Australia's greatest Boats 2016

Fibreglass fishing boat

Fibreglass fishing boats

 

Aluminium fishing boat

Aluminium fishing boats

   

 

Mako 234 CC rating

Mako 234 CC rating

 

What the judges said

Fishing suitability

The Mako 234 CC is an absolute weapon for fishing! As a day-fisher/offshore platform it’s very impressive. Takes swells on at 40kts-plus with ease and is feature-packed for fishing AND family fun on the water. Epic offshore fibreglass fishing boat. Room for all the toys and the boys. An outstanding vessel that certainly fulfils the promise it makes. A true bluewater sportsfishing machine! An absolutely stunning offshore masterpiece. Great for a fast run to the shelf and very fishy.

 

Innovation

You gain a 21° deadrise planing plank, electric toilet, removable rear lounge, pressurised livewell, even a mirror on the overhead hatch to view its contents! There are a great many small innovations and clever ideas here.

Pressurised live well is a great feature I've not seen one before — no more blunted noses on the livebait! Liked the pressurised 50lt livewell. Also, the overhead storage locker with mirror in the hardtop that allows you to see the contents is clever. Nothing out of the ordinary, it’s just a damned good centre console fishing boat!

 

Design and layout

Yes, you will look twice at the Mako 234 CC — a very well set out centre console for offshore fishing and family. It's a typically-stylish American centre console with plenty of bling and lots of fishing features, but with comfort too. Highest sides I've seen in its class. Two-tone paint looks modern and sets it apart from the local crowds.

Visually stunning and well laid-out with great access. I'd like to see a larger bow casting area, or the ability to enlarge it somehow. Beautiful lines and a great colour, too. Good transom design, easy access to leader box, Feels even bigger than it is!

 

Quality of finish

Moulded inside storage pockets a sign of attention to detail. Rotary moulded liners in wet lockers are a nice touch to help keep fish fresher and make cleaning a breeze. Coamings all round, all composite construction and foam filled. Quality glass and upholstery.

Very high quality glass work, great upholstery and fittings. Alloy framework for the bimini is very solid and second only to the Scout in terms of quality finish. Hard to fault in terms of finish. Smooth gelcoat everywhere, padded coamings and quality upholstery. Typically American with style and sophistication incorporated into a fishing boat.

 

Handling and ride

One of the finest I have driven to date — simple as that. Whatever you throw at the Mako 234 CC, it handles it. A centre console that I would take out to the shelf no problem!

The hull is ideally suited to the twin 150hp Mercruy outboard motors. Steering is effortless and the ride was very soft and comfortable in both swells and chop. Nothing could stop it, and we tried when the weather turned. Even with the props out of the water landings were stern first, soft and dry.

Superb ride. You CAN make it slam, but you need to work hard to do so. Trim tabs are important to the ride, but would soon become second nature. More than capable of going hard. Stunning performance — no spray in 15kt cross winds. Soft landings with no pounding either. The ride and handling define this boat as a class leader

 

Stability at rest

Even in a short 1.5m swell, it was very fishable… Very solid. With two big blokes onboard it handled us moving about with ease and she barely moved. Decent on-water weight of around 2600kg plus twin Mercury outboards helps. Very stable. No complaints in that department.

 

Ergonomics

Big, full of cool gadgets and protects you well. Hard to imagine how the layout could be improved. Push-button everything on the dash and at the wheel, all controls fall easily to hand. Good sized dash, pockets and lockers everywhere. Maxwell winch worked well. Huge toilet and space to spare on a 24footer… exceptionally thought-out.

All very good. I found it to be a little tricky to adjust the tabs at full noise in a lumpy sea, but that’s to be expected. Easy access all round, great helm with adjustable steering.

 

Standard equipment

Well setup with all the features you want for offshore fishing. This boat comes with every option you will ever need to get onto the fish.

Excellent standard of regulation fittings. The base equipment level is excellent. Hardly any options as the Mako 234 CC comes battle-ready. Optional coaming padding should be an automatic tick by any buyer – it is that good. The Mako 234 CC is designed as a very basic standard package so it can be customised from the factory. However, there's a very comprehensive options list. Great use of space with extra tackle trays and well thought-out accessories to suit serious fishos.

 

Value for money

Massive package and performer at an appealing price. In terms of value for money, buyers get a lot of boat for their dollars. The Mako 234 CC is a high quality fishing and fun package with typical American bling for the price. At around a $150,000 price, it benefits from exchange rates but that’s not the point, dollar for dollar right now, it would be hard to beat.

Surprising value at $150K. A lot of boat for those dollars and resale value should remain good. At $150K it out-values many iconic names in its class.

 

X-factor

This boat goes all the way up to 11. Sensational and thrilling, with fast and safe, amazing ride. Just disappointed I don’t have a spare $150,000...

This boat just exudes WOW factor all over. Coloured hull, great lines, big performance — it's all there! The first no-rattle boat I have been on. All I could hear was roaring Mercury engines, water and rods in holders, nothing else moved or made a sound — that’s Wow factor.

This style of American semi-luxury centre console fishing boat is going to become increasingly popular here, especially in warmer climes. The Wow is in the overall high quality finish and clever touches everywhere you look.

The Mako 234 CC — that is the Wow factor, right there!

 

How the boats are rated

Judges at Australia's Greatest Boats Boat judges  
Meet the judging panel

The rating criteria
explained
 

 


Want the latest stories delivered straight to your inbox? Sign up for the free TradeBoats e-newsletter.