Scarab’s flagship, the 255 Open ID is a versatile center console with twin jet propulsion. This boat comes with an impressive list of options for customizing and upgrading her appearance and onboard amenities; and buyers can select packages to outfit her for fishing, cruising, and wake surfing. With all these options, the 255 Open ID is also built to maximize onboard space, with stowage and seating for up to 13 passengers.
- Scarab says it’s using industrial design to optimize the function, appearance, and utility of its boats
- Jet propulsion is both thrilling to handle and safer for swimmers in the water
- Custom factory trailer included
- Optional touchscreen display command center allows the operator to control everything on the boat
- Innovative tailgate opens up the usable space in the stern and transitions into a swim platform
- Buyers can pick and choose from a long list of options to customize the boat their way
|Length Overall||25' / 7.62 m|
2.49 m (max)
Currently no test numbers
2 x 142-hp Rotax 4-TEC 150
2 x 204-hp Rotax 4-TEC 200
2 x 240-hp Rotax 4-TEC 250
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Contents of Report
As Scarab’s largest vessel, the 255 Open ID is built for comfort and adaptability while the jet propulsion system makes for thrilling acceleration and handling on the water and is placed low and aft in the hull, opening up deck space for passengers while providing additional, versatile seating on the engine box. Scarab offers potential buyers a wide range of customization options for the 255 Open ID. Throughout this report we’ll mention some of the available options, and we’ve placed a longer list at the end.
• Digital Speed Control Package with three modes: Ski, Eco and Docking
• Intelligent Neutral and Reverse (iNR) gives the operator more control during low-speed maneuvers
• An optional Porta-Potti located in the console can extend the day on the water
• Rated for a capacity of 13 people
The 255 Open ID has various packages that outfit the boat for fishing and upgrade the seating, sound system, and digital speed controls, buyers can choose from a long list of options. Equip the boat with the Surf Stream Wake Enhancement System ($860), add a table to the bow ($427), and install a head (starting at $220 for a Porta-Potti) and more.
Jet boats have quick acceleration and agile turning at quick speeds, depending on the engine setup and horsepower rating. BoatTEST.com has tested the 255 Open ID, but the digital helm display on our test boat was not programmed to provide fuel-flow measurement, so we can’t provide information on fuel economy or range.
The jet pump on the 255 Open ID is powered by twin Rotax 4-TEC 150 ECT engines in the base model, producing a total of 300 horsepower. These may be upgraded to twin 200-, twin 250-, or twin 300-hp Rotax® jets. All four options offer closed engine cooling, which helps protect internal engine components from salt and corrosion. The 150 ECT is a normally aspirated engine while the other three options have superchargers. The 250-hp engines are also equipped with intercoolers. Our test boat had the 300-hp engines.
Because jet boats do not have an exposed propeller, there is no risk of swimmers, tow-sports enthusiasts or divers being struck by a spinning prop. In addition, the shallow draft may help give boaters more confidence in navigating shallower waters while avoiding underwater obstacles.
Jet boats sometimes have a few drawbacks, including the tendency to creep forward or aft when in neutral. On the 255 Open ID, Scarab has accommodated for that with the Intelligent Neutral and Reverse (iNR) shift and control system, which allows the operator to adjust the neutral setting electronically, fine-tuning the gate position from the command center to correct for the movement.
Lateral thrust control directs jet thrust to either side of the transom, giving the operator pinpoint control for docking, station-keeping and other low speed maneuvers.
An additional safety feature with the iNR is that if the boat is suddenly shifted into reverse, the boat will gradually slow and then apply thrust, because the system automatically monitors the boat speed.
The optional touchscreen command center ($4,133) is above the wheel, and displays engine-operating information including shift indicator, mph and rpm, engine hours, and fuel capacity. The touchscreen lets the operator control the surf modes as well as the cruise, eco, navigation, and audio systems.
Atop the helm console to either side of the compass are recesses with non-skid, perfect for storing small objects. On the helm’s main panel to starboard is the optional Simrad GPS ($1,613). To port of the touchscreen is a cellphone holder, a 12-volt receptacle, and auxiliary USB port. Below are two cup holders and audio controls for the stereo.
The windshield is made of curved, tempered glass and on either side of the station are rugged, easy-to-grip handrails that passengers will appreciate.
The sound system, which includes a Kicker AM/FM stereo, is offered with the choice of two or four speakers and passengers are able to connect via MP3 port or Bluetooth. There’s a control head located on the helm and another at the transom.
The triple-wide helm seat is contoured and padded. The center seat can fold down to allow the operator to stand while maneuvering.
The console has a hatch forward that’s hinged across the top so it opens up. The integrated seat and cushion on the front of the console flip up out of the way to reveal a space that can be used as a changing room or for stowage. On our test boat this space also housed the optional Porta-Potti ($220).
The hatch to the head/changing room opens up on a pair of gas-assist struts. It is 26 ¾” (67.94 cm) wide by 42 ¾” (108.6 cm) high. There’s a 12” (30.48 cm) step down and a 5’5” (1.65 m) overhead with 4’ (1.22 m) headroom over the Porta-Potti. This arrangement is quite a bit better than side entry doors we often see.
Deck and Hull
Seating is plentiful on board the 255 Open ID, and the cushions are made with premium upholstery and throughout the vessel are courtesy lights and cup holders. Fixtures – including grab handles, drains, boarding ladders, and more – are made of stainless steel. Scarab offers an assortment of color choices for the hull, deck, and graphics.
Her bow has a sharp forefoot for a better ride, then a wide step out to carry the beam far forward to create more room inside. A side benefit is a robust spray rail that will help keep the boat dry.
The bow area benefits from the beam of the boat carrying well forward, and can accommodate up to six passengers and serves as both a social space and angling zone. We liked the optional Bow Seating Package ($1,700), which furnishes the wraparound seating with backrest receivers, a bow fill-in cushion, seating and bow cushions, step pads, and coaming pads that serve as backrests when the bench seats are inward-facing.
The bench seats can be transformed into port and starboard lounges thanks to removable backrests that transition forward. Grab handles positioned at an angle improve safety for the forward seats in accordance with ABYC recommendations, and convenient cup holders are placed throughout. Beneath the bench seats, dedicated stowage locations for coolers hold a pair of 36-quart ice chests on chocks beneath fold up seat sections. There’s also a compartment in the deck suited for watersports equipment.
The cushions stow to transform the bow into a wide casting platform. The optional Fishing Package ($2,060) outfits the vessel with twin pedestal fishing chairs, a baitwell, rod holders on the T-Top, and more.
Beneath a hatch, there is a stainless steel telescoping beach boarding ladder and anchor locker.
The tailgate transom provides wide access to the water by simply flipping open twin bolt-style latches at either end. One side has a nylon strap attached to allow those without a huge wingspan to operate the two latches simultaneously. The strap also simplifies the operation when it’s time to fold up the transom. The tailgate can be padded with Marine Mat on the swim platform and on the sides ($347).
A note on the tailgate: if there are passengers sitting on the rear bench facing aft, the tailgate must be up while under power.
An optional stainless steel, telescoping boarding ladder ($563) can be affixed to the tailgate’s grab handle to ease entry onto the swim platform.
Stern Seating Area
The top of the engine box measures 6’2” by 40 ½” (1.88 m by 1.03 m), and has receptacles for four backrests that can be positioned separately to serve the forward half of the bench and face forward, turned to face aft, where they serve the aft half of the bench, or they all can be removed to create a sun pad. For ease of transit to the swim platform, the optional sun pad cushions ($320) are held in place by snaps, and can be flipped inboard to keep footprints off the upholstery, and of course, the engine box top has non-skid beneath the cushions.
The Scarab 255 Open ID has a LOA of 25’ (7.62 m) and a beam of 8’4” (2.54 m). With an empty weight of 3,800 lbs. (1,724 kg), 50 gallons (189 L) of fuel and three people on board, we had an estimated test weight of 4,705 lbs. (2,134 kg).
Our test boat was not equipped with a fuel-flow meter, so we are unable to provide fuel-burn measurements or calculated range from our test. With the twin 300-hp Rotax PT/ST 1.7L engines with jet drives powering our test boat, we reached a top speed of 53.5 mph (86.1 kph) at 7500 rpm.
According to fuel-burn test numbers provided by the manufacturer, best economic cruise speed for the Scarab 255 Open ID with the twin 300-hp Rotax engines is at 5000 rpm, where on their test the boat ran at 28.8 mph (46.35 kph) and burned 11.9 gph (45.05 lph) for a range of 122 statute miles (196.3 km). On our test, we saw a two-way average speed of 34 mph (54.72 kph) at that rpm level.
But this is not a cruising boat, and the acceleration we saw bears that out. She hopped on plane in 3.7 seconds, accelerated to 20 mph (32.19 kph) in 4.7 seconds and on to 30 mph (48.28 kph) in 5.8 seconds.
We were curious how the boat’s 20-degree deadrise and lightweight construction would work together. This boat is like a sports car in a parking lot. We could spin her around, get to speed quickly, and cut sharp turns. But like a sports car designed to give a feel for the road, this boat takes notice when there’s some chop. She’s got a dry ride, but her light hull is built to accelerate, and she does that best in fair sea conditions.
We took her through the wake of our camera boat to see how she would handle lumpy seas and she recovered quickly from the larger waves.
The 255 Open ID comes with a painted custom trailer equipped with a tandem axle, brakes, chrome wheels, and swing away tongue.
Options to Consider
Scarab offers four option packages for the 255 Open ID:
• Bow Seating Package ($1,700) includes backrest receivers, bow fill-in cushion, seating and bow cushions, step pads and coaming pads forward.
• Digital Speed Control Package ($907) includes the docking, eco and ski modes.
• Fishing Package ($2,060) includes baitwell, fishing seats, steering wheel upgrade, rod holders, and deck mounts.
• Premium Sound Package ($2,167) includes amplifiers, Kicker cockpit and transom speakers, a Kicker subwoofer, and stereo remote at the transom.
Buyers are also able to select individual options to personalize the boat to their liking. A few highlights from this list include:
• Surf Stream Wake Enhancement System ($860)
• Surf/wakeboard racks ($687)
• Touch screen command center ($4,133)
• Compass ($107)
• Depth sounder (N/A with GPS) ($253)
• Simrad Go9 multifunction display with 9” (22.86 cm) screen, GPS plotter, depth sounder, and fishfinder ($1,613)
• Porta-Pottie with pump-out ($327)
• Tailgate ladder ($767)
• Impact graphics ($533)
• Sail shade ($1,960)
• Underwater lights ($447)
• Rod holders for the T-top (2) and deck (4) ($513)
• Bow table ($427)
• Fiberglass hardtop T-top and tow point with mat ($1,447)
Starting at $63,171
Price as tested $100,020
Lifetime limited warranty on the structural components of the hull and deck
3-year warranty on components
5-year warranty on osmosis
Lifetime warranty on hull structure
The 255 Open ID has an upscale feel with its distinctive bow, wide-ranging color schemes, stainless steel fixtures and fashionable, comfortable soft Marine Mat. Scarab clearly made versatility a priority, as evidenced by the convertible seating and stowage options throughout the boat.
The dropdown tailgate, which was first offered on this model in 2018, is a good place for setting up dive gear, jumping off to swim and prepping for tow sports. The bow is a socializing space and doubles as a fishing platform. In summary, this boat looks good and feels like it can do almost anything.