Boating Business

U.S. Boat Sales Expected to hit 13-Year High

According to Brunswick Corporation, since new powerboat sales peaked in 2006, retail sales in the U.S. have recovered 70% in volume to approximately 200,000 annual units.

The National Marine Manufacturer’s Association (NMMA) continues to report that 2020 has been a record year for new powerboat sales. The latest data shows that August was another strong month for sales in the United States, which were up 8% year to date compared to a year ago.

Full Recovery

“All powerboat segments have recovered from any pandemic-related losses,” Vicky Yu, NMMA’s director of business intelligence, said in a statement. “There was a slight pullback in new powerboat retail sales in August compared to July, but overall sales are still very strong.”

More people have taken possession of the keys to a new boat in the summer of 2020 than in recent memory.

She said that all new powerboat sales have experienced “double-digit growth in six segments,” and added, “We expect that we’ll end the year with annual boat sales reaching a 13-year high.”

The United States is the world’s leading boating market with 10 million registered boats and an estimated 140 million annual participants. New powerboat retail sales in August were down 13% compared to July, but year-to-date sales are still strong across all major categories.

Personal watercraft sales were up 2%, pontoon boats experienced a 9% increase and freshwater fishing boats were up 10% year to date.

Personal watercraft like Yamaha WaveRunners remain one of the most popular ways for a family to get on the water.

Sales of saltwater fishing boats, tow boats, cruisers and yachts showed growth ranging from 11% to 15% compared to last year.

New outboard engine sales in August were up 15% compared to the same time last year.


Outboard engines continue to be the most popular propulsion choice.