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Captain's Report

Editor’s Report by Capt. Peter d’Anjou

boat

The Tigé R23 has an LOA of 23' (7 m), a beam of 8'6" (2.59 m), and a draft of 2'5" (.73 m).

tow sport

The Tigé R23 tailors its wake for a wide variety of tow sport activities and automates wave selection through a touchscreen program called GO.

Brief Summary

Finding a wake and ski boat can be like comparing apples and oranges, they are two different beasts – good or great at one or two things, but not everything. Now there is a boat, the 2020 Tigé R23 that is versatile enough to slalom, board, surf behind, or act like a normal runabout. This 23' (7.01 m) boat has full trim capability with its third generation Tigé Adjustable Performance System (TAPS 3T). The R3 also manages ballast, speed, and trim level through a proprietary touchscreen system called GO that coordinates all of the functions at the touch of a button – and it won’t break the bank doing so.

Key Features

  • Patented convex v-hull
  • Taps 3T  trim system
  • Indmar 6.2L 308-hp closed-cooled gas inboard engine
  • 16-person capacity

Mission

The R23 is positioned as a powerful, versatile, and easy to operate wakeboat. And with advanced wake boat features and inclusive trailer package it creates value in the less expensive range of the burgeoning wakeboat market.

Distinguishing Features

  • CLEAR touchscreen control at helm
  • GO system powered by TAPS 3T

Major Features

  • Alpha M2 wake tower
  • R-ICE premium audio
  • Cruise control
  • GatorStep non-skid flooring
  • 3,000 lb. (1,361 kg) of ballast

Design

bow flair

The Tigé R23 has a less extreme bow flair than most boats in class, yet still accommodates up to 16 passengers.

water

Water adheres to a curved surface. In fluid dynamics, this is known as the Coanda effect and is the principle behind Tige’s patented convex hull design.

The patented convex V-hull is curved up toward the transom with a continuous rocker, similar to the surfboard and wakeboard design. This keeps flow attached so it can be directed as the boat is trimmed and ballasted.

Rather than having a flow based on hull shape and ballast alone, TAPS provides additional control of the running attitude and wake shape. There are three tabs, built to military specs, that work in conjunction with the hull design and ballast system that are linked to a computerized touchscreen system called GO that controls precise wave patterns. GO is ‘smart’ enough to be able to adjust for skill level and control speed to the other elements of wavemaking.

taps

TAPS consists of three tabs with exclusive plate design controlled by military grade actuators that withstand over three tons of pressure.

TAPS was first introduced in 1995 and has been refined with the third generation released in 2015 – TAPS 3T. When controlled by GO, it allows the operator to select the perfect wake for the particular activity. And it allows the Tigé R3 to go from wakeboarding wake to a slalom wake in less than five seconds at the touch of a button.

Ease of use is the primary goal of the GO system. Whether wakesurfing, wakeboarding, skiing, or heading home, a push of a button controls speed, ballast, running attitude, and wake automatically.

taps

The unique TAPS tabs with hydraulic actuators are controlled by the GO system.

The TAPS 3T center plate controls running attitude, planing, and maneuverability as well as wake shape for boarding and skiing. The outer plates create list, yaw, and draw to generate powerful surf waves. 

Construction

factory

Tigé boats are built in Abilene, Texas. Factory tours are encouraged and can be arranged by calling 325-676-7777.

Charlie Pigeon founded Tigé in 1991, still owns it and works as CEO for the company. The R Series consists of three models, the R23 being the largest in the entry-level line.

The Surf + Wake XL 3,000 lb. (1,361 kg) ballast system consists of 1,600 lbs. (726 kg) of underfloor ballast inside the boat’s liner and 1,400 lbs. (635 kg) of plug and play ballast bags located aft. 

Boat Inspection

Bow

boat

Helm

helm chair

The Aergo helm chair includes a flip-up bolster. The portside seat hinges up to create a recliner seatback.

helm

The helm has a phone cradle with built-in charger. Note the filler pad between the consoles which covers a standard cooler.

The helm is simplified by the single 11” CLEAR touchscreen from which pretty much all functions can be accessed.

Zero Off GPS cruise control is standard equipment. It is easy to use for recreational helmsman and gives precise and immediate response for world-class competitors.

The Bluetooth-enabled stereo system, also controlled from the CLEAR screen, consists of six Wetsounds cockpit speakers, a subwoofer and 10” tower speakers. An automatic volume control can be turned on so when the engine revs, the sound level increases and when the throttle is pulled back, the sound automatically lowers.

touchscreen

The 11" (27.94 cm) CLEAR touchscreen replaces most of the buttons and gauges on the dash as it controls trim, ballast, music, lighting, Go Pro integration, the rearview camera, engine data, and the automated GO System.

touchscreen

Select activity and skill level, and GO controls speed, ballast and TAPS trim automatically. It also has repeatable memory settings.

smart wheel

The Isotta smart wheel with handy controls is an option.

Cockpit

The R23’s cockpit has U-shaped edge-to-edge seating for passengers to socialize in almost any direction or view the action behind the boat.

color scheme

The R23 color schemes and upholstery choices are extensive.

tower

The Alpha M2 tower folds forward and can include special color match, LED lighting, and speaker add-ons.

tower folds

The Alpha M2 tower folds for transport by pulling on this release handle.

bimini

The Bimini top with board straps is an $1,852 option.

Swim Platform

A walkthrough leads from the cockpit over the engine box to the transom.

Cushions on either side of the walkthrough provide for a spot to lounge in the sun when the boat is not underway. An intermediate step leads to the swim platform.

seat

The small seat pads on the step-down have storage space below them. Note the tow hook centered just above them.

accessory

Here’s a handy optional accessory - a spring-loaded swim ladder. After stepping off, it retracts automatically back under the swim platform.

Specifications

slow speed

Even when propped for slow speed tow sports, the R23 can achieve running speeds of 36 mph with the base engine, according to Tigé dealers.

BoatTEST has not tested the Tigé R23 at the time of this report.

The Tigé R23 has a LOA of 23’ (7 m), a beam of 8’6” (2.59 m), and a draft of 2’5” (.73 m). The boat has a dry weight of 4,500 lbs. (2,041 kg) and a fuel capacity of 48 gallons (182 L).

Equipment Discussion

indmar engine

The Ford 6.2 L block used in pickup trucks is marinized by Indmar with a closed cooling system. Closed cooling helps maintain consistent engine temperatures and contributes to better fuel economy while eliminating corrosion, leading to longer engine life.

The standard 360R Indmar engine generates 308-hp and can be upgraded to the Indmar Raptor 400 engine at a cost of $2,081.

Color options are considered infinite and include metal flake.

cover

An optional cove cover extends shade from the tower over the aft section of the boat.

Price

trailer

The Boatmate T/A dual-axle trailer is standard equipment.

MSRP $84,223 includes 360R Indmar engine, tower, and trailer.

Optional Equipment to Consider

  • Elite driver mirror 18” ($541)
  • Rearview camera ($467)
  • Dual fuel fills ($274)
  • Electronic isolator and dual battery ($889)
  • Portside transform seat ($541)
  • 8-vent heater ($1,467)
  • Shower (lake temperature) ($504)
  • Surflink with remote ($1,467)
  • 2 underwater transom lights ($860)
  • Battery charger 110V ($348)
  • Silentsurf exhaust ($926)
  • Tigé keyless ignition ($311)
  • Swim platform ladder ($541)
  • Tigé Shiv’r 54 removable cooler ($281)
  • Mooring cover ($1,119)

surf link

Surflink lets the rider change wave sides remotely.

Observations

awards

Actually, the count is now 14 CSI awards, which says a lot. The transferable lifetime hull warranty and 5-year equipment warranty show a commitment to customer satisfaction.

wave height

Selecting wave height on the GO system is simple. The complicated combination of ride attitude, ballast control, and tab control have been calculated so that all the operator has to do is touch the desired result.

The GO system is the major change in the R23 for 2020. When combined with the third generation TAPS 3T tab control, cruise control, and the ballast system it simplifies setup. The development of these systems along with the CLEAR touchscreen and hull patents shows the continued push by Tigé to innovate and provide value for the customer.

BoatTEST looks forward to performance testing the R23.


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