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Boston Whaler 270 Dauntless (2019-)
2 x 200-hp Mercury Verado FourStroke L4 DTS
The all-new 270 Dauntless builds upon the multi-functional Dauntless family allowing for everything from inshore fishing runs to entertaining, to watersports and doing it all while looking stylish and elegant. Her increased size allows for the addition of more amenities that will truly make her the most desirable of the Dauntless lineup.
- Creative seating throughout
- Multi-operational bow features
- Wide bow
- Foam cored hull and level flotation
|Length Overall||27' 4'' / 8.33 m|
2.82 m w/ hardtop
Acceleration Times & Conditions
|Time to Plane||3.3 sec.|
|0 to 30||8.7 sec.|
|Props||19'' Enertia 3-blade|
|Load||2 persons, Fuel: 1/2 full, Water: none, Gear: 50 lbs.|
|Climate||Temp: 74 deg., Humid: 81%, Wind: 10-15, Seas: light chop|
2 x 200-hp Mercury Verado FourStroke L4 DTS
1 x 300-hp Mercury Verado FourStroke L6 DTS
1 x 150-hp Mercury Verado FourStroke L4 DTS
1 x 200-hp Mercury Verado FourStroke L4 DTS
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The mission of the 270 Dauntless is to offer a boat with the traditional qualities of a Boston Whaler fishing machine while providing options to expand its use as a comfortable platform for enjoying watersports or as a family day cruiser. The primary use of this boat is intended to be for inshore and coastal work, but because she is 27' (8.22 m) she is also capable of offshore adventures as well. Like all Boston Whalers, one of her missions is to give peace-of-mind because of her level flotation capability if swamped. Indeed, she has a prodigious swamped carrying capacity of 8,000 lbs. (3,629 kgs.).
Where a typical center console fishing machine will have a basic bench seat that folds out from the transom, the Boston Whaler 270 Dauntless bench seat is concealed under a nearly full beam casting platform. Forward seating has a back rest and there is a large lounge seat forward of the console.
Multi-operational Bow Features.
The bow has cushions for lounging. The aft end of the V-seats lift up to form forward facing loungers, and an optional bow table transforms the bow into an al fresco dining area. Remove the cushions to create a forward casting deck.
Boston Whaler's trademark design features a wide bow that carries the beam much farther forward than is typical. Because of this, whatever activities chosen for the bow, are so much easier thanks to the roominess.
Foam Cored Hull.
While other builders simply inject foam into some of the void areas, Boston Whaler does things considerably differently. When the deck and hull sections come together, expandable foam is mechanically injected into the entire length of the hull to not only add flotation, but also to bond the deck to the hull over its entire surface instead of just at the deck's perimeter.
In the worst conditions all open boats are vulnerable to being swamped by breaking waves. Boats over 20' (6.09 m) are not required by the USCG to float. All Boston Whalers not only float, but float level if they are swamped, according to the builder which puts this claim in writing. This is an important safety consideration.
Styling plays an important part in the Dauntless lineup. The 270 Dauntless has a subtle curve to her sheer line, actually sloping downwards as it moves towards the bow. When on plane the sheer is horizontal and sloped down as it moves aft. Her black rubrail swoops down at the transom making the 270 look low, lean, and mean.
This all-new Boston Whaler 270 Dauntless has a length overall of 27'10" (8.48 m) with platforms, a beam of 9’ (2.74 m) and a draft of 17” (43.2 cm). With an empty weight of 4,800 lbs. (2,177 kg), half fuel, two people and test power we had a test weight of 7,040 lbs. (3,193 kg).
Standard power is a single 300 XXL L6 Mercury 4-stroke Verado.
Power options are: dual Mercury 150s, 200s or 225s. Our test 270 Dauntless was powered by a pair of 200-hp Mercury Verados turning 19” (48.3 cm) Enertia three-blade propellers. These engines are spaced 7” (17.78 cm) apart and being 15” (38.1 cm) from the transom they can tilt enough to bring the props out of the water.
The 200-hp Mercury Verados reached their top speed at 6130 rpm which brought our 270 to 50.7 mph. At that speed the engines were burning a combined 39.2 gph giving us a range of 175 miles. Best cruise came in at 3500 rpm and 23.2 mph. That reduced the fuel burn to 8.5 gph and there she could keep that speed up for nearly 16 hours and 368 statute miles.
However…I found her to be most comfortable operating at 4000 rpm and 28.9 mph and that speed only added another 2.2 gph to the fuel burn and decreased the range by only 4 miles. We reached planing speed in 3.3 seconds, accelerated to 20 mph in 5.8 seconds and continued through 30 mph in 8.7 seconds
When accelerating, the 270 Dauntless has a 14-degree bow rise which produces no loss of visibility to the horizon. Once on plane I brought the trim up to about five or six on the trim gauge to get her into her best running attitude. If I brought the trim up any further the bow would start porpoising. While cruising the acrylic windshield did an adequate job of deflecting the wind around the helm and while the optional hardtop was as equally effective at providing shade as the standard canvas T-top, it does include added features such as rod holders and spreader lights. It also looks a lot better.
She also has sporty performance in that she responds smartly to the helm and a bit of a slide to the turn allows her to come around quickly.
While we had a relatively calm test day, running back and forth through the wakes of our chase boat turned out to be revealing. Her double lifting strakes and reverse chines served to keep the spray down low and well off to the sides. She tends to go over the waves as much as going through them, and she has a cushioned re-entry thanks to the buoyancy in her stern.
Regardless of whether the 270 Dauntless will be used for fishing, tubing, or even cruising the one common denominator is at the helm. Boston Whaler did a fine job in creating a functional console that manages information efficiently. A choice of either 9” (23 cm) or 12” (30.5 cm) displays will fit neatly into the open real estate of the upper panel with the right hand side being taken up with the optional VHF and standard stereo.
A black strip along the bottom of the panel reduces glare and serves as a mounting point for the waterproof rocker switches, three SmartCraft gauges and the ignitions to the far left. Having these ignitions mounted up high like this marks a good mindset on behalf of the design team at Boston Whaler as it is now impossible to bump up against the keys and bend them and they are also well out of the "knee-strike" zone.
The cast stainless steel three-spoke wheel is mounted to a tilt base right next to the Mercury DTS or Digital Throttle and Shift system. This offers a wide range of optional features including single lever, engine sync and troll mode.
I found the helm to be a good fit from an ergonomic standpoint as even with my short(er) stature I had good visibility forward and everything fell right into place. Boston Whaler's double-wide helm seat was well-positioned and offers dual flip-up bolsters. I’d like to see the addition of armrests. I liked the footrest molded into the lower section of the console as it adds to a comfortable feeling as well as security. Handholds are found on the supports to the optional hardtop.
Certainly one of the premier features of this crossover platform is its ability to handle the chores of a dedicated fishing machine. Beginning with the optional hardtop the 270 Dauntless can present four aft-mounted rocket launchers along with an array of fore and aft LED spreader lights, as well as serving as a mounting point for an assortment of antennas. The beefy powder-coated supports also serve as well placed handholds while doing little to interfere with visibility from the helm. Underneath the hardtop is a dome-light that switches between red and white and a storage bag for life jackets. Molded mounting points in the hardtop offer a base for optional outriggers.
Aft Casting Deck
Boston Whaler makes a major departure from the typical design of a center console cockpit by deviating from the usual flush-mounted bench seat that folds down from the transom. Rather, the 270's transom seat's backrest folds down to create a nearly full-beam casting platform.
Forward Casting Deck
Any boat that is used for fishing wouldn't be worth its salt unless it had casting areas both fore and aft. With the 270 Dauntless, simply removing the cushions from the forward seats reveals nonskid hatch covers that are more than wide enough to walk around on while fishing. In addition, the foredeck is also coated with nonskid and serves as an elevated casting deck. Insulated storage underneath the seats is self-draining allowing them to be used as fish lockers. Both casting decks will accommodate pedestal fishing seats.
Beneath the foredeck hatch cover is an anchoring system that runs through the stem of the 270. All mounting hardware is stainless steel and sturdy. Having the anchor running through the stem makes the foredeck much more usable as a casting platform as the tripping hazards of a bow roller are eliminated. The 270 has bow cleats that are mounted in slightly recessed cut-outs designed to keep them from snagging a line. Nevertheless, I would feel more comfortable if they were converted to pull-up cleats.
The 270 Dauntless that I was on also had an optional anchor windlass with a handheld remote control on a coiled wire stored underneath the hatch. The hatch was unsupported by any gas assist struts allowing it to lay flat against the foredeck.
The standard leaning post consists of a set of dual helm seats with removable backrests, a fiberglass storage compartment and a 94 quart (89 L) cooler. Two deluxe leaning posts are offered, giving a choice of livewell, seating options, sink with pullout sprayer and storage drawers.
Two areas of the 270 Dauntless’ comfort zones will be vying for the top ranking. These are the forward lounge seating and forward V-seating. Forward of the center console is a double-wide lounge seat. This seat is surprisingly comfortable and in my opinion, destined to be the most popular spot on the 270 while underway.
Grab handles are located below, and to the sides, and are a little hard to reach. But flip-down arm rests come standard. The seat itself measures 3.6'' (1.1 m) wide by 4’ (1.22 m) fore and aft. A latch at the forward end of the seat releases a back gelled and fully gasketed hatch over deep storage that can accommodate dive tanks, 5-gallon buckets, and practically anything else needing to be stored.
Of course others may argue that the most comfortable spot on the 270 will be the forward V-seats. While being used as regular seats the height of the bulwarks serves as a sufficient backrest, but I'd like to see the addition of padded bolsters surrounding the bow to add to the comfort. Flip up the aft seat into a chaise lounge position and a whole new level of comfort manifests itself. The addition of an optional side-mount pedestal table will make this a contender for the number-one comfort zone.
The aft bench seat serves as a three-across seating in its close proximity to the leaning post. It is close enough to the leaning post to provide a comfortable spot to put your feet up, also adding security during transits across choppy seaways. Drink holders are located to both sides and plenty of storage is positioned underneath the bench.
A head is located inside the console and accessed via a doorway to the starboard side. It offers 5’3.5” (1.6 m) of overhead clearance and includes a portable toilet with pump out. Hanging hooks are located on the forward bulkhead. Circuit breakers, battery switches and an access port to the backside of the helm electronics are all located on the aft bulkhead. A stainless steel opening portlight provides an element of natural light and ventilation. The compartment is lockable which means it can be used for storage when the boat isn't being used.
While this particular 270 Dauntless was rigged more for fishing, there are several other fishing options that are available, and still others that serve to reveal another side to the cross-platform ability. A concealed beach reboarding ladder can be selected in lieu of the anchor windlass. A bow filler cushion turns the entire bow seating area into a large sun pad. The optional cockpit refrigerator will be a welcome addition to any day on the water.
Console-mounted rod holders increase the number of lines that can be presented to the fish. If used as a dive platform, there are optional foldable dive tank holders for under the forward lounge seat as well as a fold-out gunwale swim patio or a hull side dive door with ladder. An optional raw water washdown will make short order of cleanups and a ski pylon will convert the 270 into a towboat.
It is easy to buy too much boat just as it is easy (and more likely) to buy a boat that is not quite enough for the work intended. The Dauntless line falls roughly halfway between the protected-water playground of Boston Whaler's Montauk series, and the blue water offshore stomping grounds of the Outrage and Conquest lines. This is, in fact, where most people do their boating. So why pay the extra money for a large Outrage or a Conquest when the 270 Dauntless is offshore capable?
I think the 270 Dauntless is a marked improvement over the 230 Dauntless that was previously residing at the top of the lineup. While some of the features are the same, such as the chaise seat backs forward, and the fold-down bench seat back in the stern that makes a casting platform, the fact is that much more functionality and comfort can be built into the larger boat.
With six different model lines, Boston Whaler offers consumers 29 different boats that are each designed for a specific type of water condition and boating activity. These models range from 11' (3.35 m) to 37' (11.27 m) and are appropriate for use on everything from a small pond or lake to going offshore in the Gulf Stream. The key to finding the right Boston Whaler is to figure out where it will be used and what its mission will be. The builder has a boat model and options to fit nearly any requirement.