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Key West 203DFS (2019-)

w/ 1 x 150-hp Evinrude E-TEC G2 PRO



Brief Summary

As the moniker implies, the Key West 203DFS, Dual Console Family Sportsman is designed with the whole family’s boating needs in mind. Key West designed this model with more seating and comfort features. However, the Key West 203DFS still offers important fishing features such as rod holders, a live bait well and rod storage molded into the side wall. The live bait well can double as storage, cooler space, or simply a trash compartment when not used for their intended purpose.  Storage is important to anglers and fun-seekers alike. The Key West 203DFS has storage under the forward seating and aft bench seating. The traditional back-to-back lounge seating converts to a full-length sun pad. Key West 203DFS is powered by a new three-cylinder Evinrude ETEC G2 150-outboard engine. The new Evinrude outboard delivered a coveted mix of efficiency and torque. The Key West 203DFS with the

Evinrude E-TEC G2 150 outboard is sure to deliver fun for the whole family on this all-around water sports platform no matter what the day brings. 

Key Features

  • Quality build, 100-percent composite construction, Foam Injected Fiberglass Stringer System
  • Dual console with potty compartment inside port console and storage inside the helm console
  • Sea Star hydraulic steering with tilt stainless steel wheel
  • Bucket style helm seat with bolster that can slide fore and aft and swivels
  • Stereo with MP3 port and 4 speakers
  • Curved walk through windshield
  • 9-gallon freshwater shower station
  • 50-gallon fuel tank
  • Molded in swim platform with telescoping 3 step reboarding ladder
  • Ten-year “transferable” hull warranty. See your local Key West dealer for detail

Test Results

RPM MPH Knots GPH MPG NMPG STAT. MILE NM dBa
650 3.6 3.1 0.2 18 15.7 810 704.3 67
1000 5 4.3 0.4 12.5 10.9 563 489.1 69
1500 6.8 5.9 1 7.2 6.2 322 280.1 71
2000 8 7 2.4 3.3 2.9 150 130.4 83
2500 11.8 10.2 3.5 3.4 2.9 151 131.4 86
3000 19.8 17.2 4.3 4.6 4 207 179.7 87
3500 27.3 23.7 5.5 5 4.3 225 195.7 89
4000 32.2 28 6.6 4.9 4.2 220 190.9 87
4500 38 33 8.5 4.5 3.9 202 176 89
5000 42.8 37.2 10.2 4.2 3.7 190 164.8 89
5350 49.9 43.4 14 3.6 3.1 161 140 94

Specifications

Length Overall 20' 3''
6.17 m
Beam 8'
2.44 m
Dry Weight 1,950 lbs.
885 kg
Tested Weight 3,103 lbs.
1,407 kg
Draft 12''
0.30 m
Deadrise/Transom 19-deg.
Max Headroom open
Bridge Clearance N/A
Weight Capacity 1,285 lbs.
583 kg
Person Capacity 8
Fuel Capacity 50 gal.
189 L
Water Capacity 9 gal.
34 L
Total Weight 3,103 lbs.
1,407 kg

Acceleration Times & Conditions

Time to Plane 3.6 sec.
0 to 30 4.8 sec. (0to20)
Ratio 2.08:1
Props RX3 14.5 x 21
Load 2 persons, full fuel load, no water, 50 lbs. of gear
Climate 74 deg., 37 humid; wind: 6-14 mph; seas: 1

Engine Options

Tested Engine 1 x 150-hp Evinrude E-TEC G2 PRO

Captain's Report

Captain's Report by Capt. Mark Kellum

Key west 203

The Key West 203DFS is a family friendly dual console with fishing features, powered with a single 150-horsepower Evinrude E-TEC G2 outboard.


The propulsion comes from a single Evinrude 150 E-TEC G2 outboard.

Mission

The Key West 203DFS is one of Key West Boat’s Dual-console Family Sportsman Series. As the series moniker implies, the 203DFS is designed to be a flexible platform that can be ready for any waterborne activity a family may choose. Be it fishing, cruising, visiting a dockside restaurant, or hanging out with friends on a sandbar island. Comfort features include seating for a crowd, freshwater shower station, and storage for lots of water-toys. Fishing features include a live baitwell, rod-holders and under the gunwale rod storage. Coupling the mission designed hull and interior with the Evinrude E-TEC G2 150 outboard makes getting to and from the waterborne activities fast and efficient.

Overview

The layout of the Key West 203DFS is typical of a runabout with a walkthrough windshield and dual consoles, back-to-back lounge seating and wrap around transom and aft bench seating.

Major Features

  • High Speed Pick-Up Live Baitwell. The baitwell, that can double as a cooler, is built into the center section of the transom bench seating.
  • Adjustable Helm Seat. The bucket-style helm seat adjusts forward and back, swivels and has a fold up bolster.
  • Molded in Swim Platform. The swim platform has an integrated, telescoping reboarding ladder.
  • Storage. Under the forward seating, the aft bench seating and starboard side aft seating.
  • Anchor Locker. There is a dedicated anchor locker under the foredeck.
  • Tilt Steering Wheel. The stainless-steel steering wheel has Sea Star hydraulic steering and tilts for comfort.
  • Back-to-Back Lounge Seating. The back-to-back port side aft cockpit seating convert to a 6’2”(1.88 m) lounge.
  • Walkthrough Windshield. The curved windshield opens in the middle to allow easy access to the forward seating.
  • Freshwater Shower. The freshwater shower station has a 9-gallon (34.1 L) tank.

Performance

Turning

The Key West 203DFS has a V-hull with a 19-degree deadrise at the transom. The Carolina bow flare and hard chines keep the spray down and the ride dry.

Performance is not solely a function of a boats design. The potential of a boat’s propensity is also a product of propulsion. The Key West 203DFS test boat was powered with a single Evinrude 150 E-TEC G2 2-stroke outboard.

Since 2-stroke engines produce twice as many power strokes as a 4-stroke engine does, there is twice the power output per revolution. Meaning the Evinrude 150 E-TEC G2 is able to accelerate faster and give quick, low-end torque from a 400 lb. (180 kg) package. The direct-injected 2-stroke engine gives a greater power-to-weight ratio than a 4-stroke engine and there are fewer parts to maintain since there are no valves, cams, or timing chains that are required on typical 4-stroke outboards. 

Bow flare

The Carolina bow flare leading to a sharp bow entry tapering to a 19-degree deadrise at the transom, running strakes and hard chines combine to give the Key West 203DFS a smooth dry ride.

The Key West 203DFS has an overall length of 20’3” (6.17 m), and a beam of 8’ (3.44 m). With an empty weight, listed at 1,950 pounds (884.51 kg). With two people, 50 gallons (189.27 liters) of fuel and test equipment on board, we had an estimated test weight 2,765 pounds (1,254.18 kg).

Top Speed. With the single 150-horsepower Evinrude E-TEC G2 outboard the test boat reached a top speed of 49.9 MPH (80.31 KPH) at 5350 RPM.

Best Cruise. The best cruise came in at 4000 RPM running at 32.2 MPH (51.82 KPM). At that speed the 6.6 GPH (24.98 LPH) fuel burn translated into 4.9 MPG (7.88 KPH) and a range of 220 statute miles (354.06 KM).

RPM    MPH  Kts    GPH  MPG NMPG Range (SM) Range (NM) LPH   

5350  49.9  43.4  14.0   3.6    3.1     161                140.0         52.8       

4000  32.2 27.98   6.6     4.9    4.3   220               354.06       24.98 

This was calculated while holding back a 10-percent reserve of the Key West 203DFS’s 50-gallon (189.27 L) total fuel capacity.

 

Acceleration Times and Test Conditions

Time-to-Plane: TBD

0 to 20: 2.7 seconds

0 to 30: 4.6 seconds

Load: 2-persons, 100% fuel capacity, and 50 lbs. of test gear   

Conditions: TBD

Combustion

The Evinrude E-TEC G2 technology places the fuel injector (yellow arrow) strategically near the spark plug (red arrow).

Evinrude E-TEC G2 Advanced Technology. The Key West 204DFS is available with the remarkable fuel economy of the Evinrude E-TEC G2. There are several reasons why they are so economical while providing exceptional thrust across the power band. The reasons mostly have to do with the E-TEC G2 technology. Among these attributes are the efficient combustion chamber design, a state-of-the-art direct injection system, placement of the injectors near the spark plugs, low friction design, and many other elements, all of which make the Evinrude G2 engines some of the most fuel-efficient outboard engines whether compared to other 2-stroke or 4-stroke outboards on the market.

Compretion

This diagram depicts the dynamics of a 2-stroke engine with a power stroke on every turn of the crank.

4 Stroke

A 4-stroke engine has a power stroke on every other turn of the crank.

2-Stroke Technology. The E-TEC G2 2-stroke technology allows for a power stroke on every turn of the crank shaft, while 4-stroke engines have only one power stroke out of four strokes and two turns of the crankshaft. Since every other stroke is a power stroke, roughly twice as much power is applied to the prop shaft than with 4-stroke engines with the same horsepower in the low and mid RPM ranges.

Handling

Over wake

The performance test on the Key West 203DFS was conducted in moderately calm conditions. To demonstrate the boats ability to handle higher sea conditions it was driven through the photo boats wake.

The Key West 203DFS has a noticeable Carolina flair at the bow which transitions to a sharp bow entry and a V-bottom with a 19-degree deadrise at the transom. Combined with running strakes and a hard chine the 203DFS acquitted herself well in our maneuverability tests.

Features Inspection

Starting with the Evinrude 150 E-TEC G2, we will work forward with the features inspection.

Oil cover

The Evinrude 150 E-TEC G2 outboard has an internal oil tank which is easily accessed by removing the top access panel of the cowling.

After servicing, the top of the cowling is easy to put back in place.

Cowling panel

The cowling panels on the Evinrude 150 E-TEC G2 can be switched out. Owners are able to customize their outboard.

A unique quality of the Evinrude E-TEC outboards are interchangeable cowling panels allowing manufacturers and owners to match the boat models color scheme.

Steering lock pin

Shown is the steering lock pin engaged.

Steering Lock Pin. Evinrude provides a steering locking pin to keep the engine from rolling onto its side when trailering. For obvious safety reasons, it must be disengaged before the engine will start.

Disengaged

Shown is the steering lock pin disengaged and inserted into the safety position.

Evinrude E-TEC

The Evinrude E-TEC G2 design provides remarkably clean rigging. Simply a single rigging hose and two bolts.

Uncluttered Transom. In addition, the E-TEC G2 technology allows for exceptionally clean rigging with the steering integrated into the mid-section just below the powerhead. There are no hydraulic cylinders, rams or hydraulic hoses to clutter up the transom.

Transom

Key West provided a molded-in transom with a recess for the reboarding ladder and a splash-well.

Swim platform

Shown is the uncluttered transom, reboarding ladder and molded-in swim platform.

Hatch storage

On the starboard side under a hatch there is molded-in deep storage compartment.

Aft Cockpit

The aft cockpit is laid out with seating to accommodate a crowd while still including a live baitwell built into the aft bench seating. The back to back lounge seat converts to 6’2” (1.88 m) long sun lounge.

Aft benchs

The forward-facing aft bench seat wraps around to the starboard side and forward to the helm seat. On the port side is a back to back lounge convertible seating.

Aft Cockpit Freeboard and Depth. There is 25.5” (64.77 cm) of freeboard aft. The aft cockpit depth is also 25.5” (64.77 cm). The coaming pad on the port side measures 7” (17.78 cm) high. On the port side the is a 16” (40.64 cm) wide transom pass-through.

Under cushion storage

Under the center cushion of the aft bench seat is a live baitwell with bait calming blue liner and rounded corners.

battery pocket

Under the port side aft bench seat is the battery compartment. Note the molded-in cup-holders.

Scuppers

The two scuppers recessed into the aft deck are 2.25” (5.72 cm) in diameter.

Starboard bench storage

Under the starboard side bench seating is storage. The bench seat lifts inward on piano style hinges without a locking mechanism or gas assist strut making hands-free access difficult.

Passenger seat

Shown is the port side back to back seating in the upright seating position.

Sun lounge

When deployed as a sun lounge it creates a 6’2” (1.88 m) pad. Note the molded in compartment for incidental items in the gunwale.

Rod storage

Shown is the under the gunwale rod storage. Note the 7” (17.78 cm) coaming pad, rod-holder and speaker.

The Key West 203DFS comes standard with four stainless-steel rod holders with integrated drains.

Marine Speakers. The Key West 203DFS comes standard with four marine speakers. Two in the aft cockpit and two forward.

Port Console

Inside the very basic port console is what Key West calls a “potty room.” To enter there is a lift up lid and a swing out door.

Port console

The port console on the Key West 203DFS has a 10” (25.4 cm) deep hatch and a 17” (43.18 cm) wide door that opens to the outboard side with a stop on the port bulwark.

Head

Inside the port console there is 39” (99.1 cm) of headroom and a freshwater shower station that has a 9-gallon (34.1 L) tank.

Helm Console

The unsophisticated helm is basic with both analog and digital gauges. The stainless-steel steering wheel is mounted on a Sea Star adjustable tilt base and the rocker switches are mounted on the inboard side of the helm console with the horn switch clearly discernable in orange.

Helm console

Between the port console and the helm console is a windshield walkthrough that measures 16” (40.64 cm) at the hip and 20” (50.8 cm) at the top of the 28” (71.1 cm) high windshield.

Bucket seat

The bucket-style helm seat is 17” (43.18 cm) deep with a 15” (38.1 cm) high backrest. Note the engine shift and throttle binnacle is within easy reach mounted on the starboard bulwark.

Helm seat

The forward portion of the helm seat folds up to become a bolster for seeing above the wind shield.

Adjustable Helm Seat. The helm seat is adjustable forward and back with a locking mechanism. The helm seat also has a release to allow the helmsman to rotate the seat to join the group in the cockpit when not operating the boat.

Steering wheel

Shown is the Sea Star tilt steering wheel base. Above and to the inboard side is an analog RPM gauge, below that is a digital engine monitor and below that is an analog fuel tank gauge.

Rocker switches

The rocker switches on the panel are also on the inboard side of the helm console dash. Note the horn switch is clearly visible in orange.

Throttle

The start stop key switch is on the outboard side with the Evinrude ICON II binnacle mounted on the starboard bulwark. Note the bin just behind the binnacle for the operator’s incidentals.

Radio

On the outboard side of the helm console dash is a 12-volt outlet, a USB port and stereo remote.

Touch display

Directly above the steering wheel is the Evinrude ICON Touch 4.3 CT multifunction display.

Evinrude ICON Touch

Home Page. General cruising and performance information including RPM, trim level, engine water temperature, fuel economy MPG, fuel consumption GPH, and boat speed.

Fuel and Fluids Page. Precise readouts of fuel levels and engine oil levels.

Engine Page. In-depth monitoring of one or 2 Evinrude E-TEC G2 outboards.

Vessel Page. Accurate readouts of battery voltage, boat speed, and fuel economy.

Trip Logs. Offers detailed information regarding trip distance, fuel economy, average speed, and more.

Ecoview Page. Fuel management information allows the user to optimize engine throttle and trim adjustment for instant changes and the most efficient operation.

Helm console storage

On the inboard side of the helm console is a door that leads to storage and access to the electronics.

Forward Seating

The forward seating offers a traditional dual console layout with port and starboard forward-facing loung seating that can be utilized as inboard-facing bench seating with an aft-facing bench seat between.

Bow seating

Shown is the side by side lounge seating and aft-facing jump seat. Note the stainless-steel grab rails.

Bow cushion

There is a stereo speaker on each side and a stainless-steel cup holder mouted next to the 5.75” (14.61 cm) stainless-steel pull-up cleat.

Bow storage

Under the seating is storage. Note, without a locking device or gas-assit struts the cushions had to be removed for the lids to stay open.

Forward freeboard. The freeboard in the forward cockpit measures 32” (81.3 cm) from the waterline to the gunwale.

Foredeck

The foredeck on the Key West 203DFS is clean and uncluttered with no tripping hazards. There is a recessed hatch that leads to the ground-tackle locker.

Foredeck

With the forward most cushion removed. The seat becomes a step up to the foredeck.

Anchor well

Under the foredeck hatch is the ground-tackle locker. Note the anchor keeper latch (red arrow) and the fixed cleat (yellow arrow) for securing the anchor rode.

Warranty

Key West offers a ten-year “transferable” hull warranty on all their boat models. Check with your local Key West dealer for details.

Options to Consider

  • Stainless steel Bimini top and boot
  • Spray shield, side curtains, aft curtains, for Bimini top
  • Portable toilet
  • Extra cockpit table with leg 
  • Walk through curtain 
  • Lounge seat cover
  • Cockpit and Bow covers, snap in place 
  • Dual battery switch and wiring 
  • Trim tabs 

Observations

We found that when powered by the innovative new Evinrude E-TEC G2 150, the Key West 203DFS is a versatile dual-console that can be used for fishing, cruising, or towing watersports. It is readily apparent that Key West is in tune with what their customers want in a family-friendly dual console sporting boat. Powering this boat with a 150-horsepower Evinrude E-TEC G2 outboard gives the Key West 203DFS better performance and efficiency than other outboard dual console boats in her class.