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Tahoe T16 (2019-)

1 x 75-hp Mercury 4-stroke

Key Features

  • Powerglide fiberglass hull with Hydrostep lifting strakes
  • Aft sun pad with flip-up cushions and storage below
  • 3-across bench seat with molded-in storage & flip-down seatback
  • Aft swim platforms with 4-step, telescoping ladder
  • Custom-fit, single-axle trailer

Test Results

600 3.8 3.3 0.4 9.4 8.2 110 95.4 53
1000 4.9 4.3 0.7 7.5 6.6 88 76.7 61
1500 6.1 5.3 1.1 5.5 4.8 65 56.4 62
2000 7.2 6.3 1.5 5 4.3 58 50.5 70
2500 13.7 11.9 2 6.9 6 80 69.7 74
3000 20.6 17.9 2.4 8.6 7.5 100 87.3 77
3500 26.2 22.8 3.1 8.5 7.3 99 86 78
4000 30.2 26.2 4.1 7.4 6.4 86 74.8 78
4500 33.7 29.3 5.3 6.4 5.6 75 65.3 80
5000 36.8 32 6.3 5.8 5.1 68 59.4 81
5300 39.8 34.6 6.8 5.8 5.1 68 59.5 81


Length Overall 16' 5'' / 5 m
Beam 7' 6''
2.29 m
Dry Weight 1,250 lbs.
567 kg
Tested Weight 2,089 lbs.
948 kg
Draft 26.5''
0.67 m
Deadrise/Transom 15-deg.
Max Headroom open
Bridge Clearance 4' 2''
1.27 m
Weight Capacity 950 lbs.
431 kg
Person Capacity 6
Fuel Capacity 13 gal.
49 L
Water Capacity N/A
Total Weight 2,089 lbs.
948 kg

Acceleration Times & Conditions

Time to Plane 2.9 sec.
0 to 30 5.7 sec. (0to20)
Ratio N/A
Props 17p Spitfire
Load 2 persons, 3/4 fuel, no water, 50 lbs. of gear
Climate 65 deg., 35 humid.; wind: 10-15 mph; seas: light chop

Engine Options

Tested Engine 1 x 75-hp Mercury 4-stroke
Std. Power Not Available
Opt. Power 1 x 60-hp Mercury ELPT 4-stroke
1 x 75-hp Mercury ELPT 4-stroke

Captain's Report

Contents of Report

Tahoe T16

The Tahoe T16 is a sportboat designed to engage the family in boating at an entry-level price that delivers value.

Tahoe T16: Mission

Tahoe T16

The Tahoe T16 can seat six, tow a skier, or provide kids a simple, straightforward boat to learn on.

The Tahoe T16 is an entry-level day boat aimed at family fun. It is easily towed without a massive truck and should fit in the average garage, and is priced to fit a budget without compromising features. This boat goes toe-to toe with several other 16-footers on the market, but in our opinion has a bottom shape that will provide a more comfortable ride.

Tahoe T16: Distinguishing Features

How can the Tahoe T16 be so low-priced without affecting the quality, ride, or safety of the boat? The answer is that Tahoe eliminates many man-hours in tooling, and the boat’s fabrication. Here’s how:

Tahoe T16

An industrial 3D Printer makes sections of the hull, which will be combined into a male plug from which to make the female tooling.

First, the T16’s tooling is built with state-of-the art 3D printing technology - the world’s first production boat ever created from such tooling. We’re told recent advancements mean that tooling plugs can be made in one piece in the future in just two days.

Tahoe T16

Here, the pieces from the 3D printer are combined to create a male plug from which to make the necessary molds.

Second, Tahoe takes advantage of White River Marine’s economy of scale as the world’s largest boat builder and the retail footprint of Bass Pro Shops. That means that the infrastructure, engineering, and back office costs that all boat builders have, can be spread across many boats, not just a few as most boat builders have to do.

Third, Tahoe has a price that all dealers adhere to, and they work on thin margins. All of this means that more of the dollars spent go into the materials and equipment of the boat and less into overhead and sales commissions.

Tahoe T16: Overview

Tahoe T16

Seating for six, or 950 lbs. (431 kg) of passengers, whichever is greater, and features for cruising, lounging, sunning, swimming, or skiing are designed into the T16.

Tahoe T16

The T16’s bottom has two strakes per side and reversed chines that help her hold her course and track cleanly through maneuvers.

The T16’s hull has a 15-degree deadrise at the transom. This is important when it comes to ride quality, and this design sets it apart from some other boats in class.

Tahoe T16: Construction

Tahoe T16

Tahoes all have structural liners which are foam filled to comply with USCG regulations and to improve sound and vibration qualities.

Once the unbelievable tooling process is complete, more traditional fiberglass boat-building techniques follow. Gelcoat is sprayed in the female tooling, then fiberglass is hand laid, a structural grid is attached, and the deck mold both chemically and mechanically is bonded.

Aluminum backing plates are used in high-load areas, such as seat attachments.

The T16 has a hand-laid hull and stringer system for strength and durability. Her hull and deck are chemically bonded and mechanically fastened.

Tahoe T16: Comparison

Other entry level brands don’t ride as well as the Tahoe T16, especially when planing on anything but glass-smooth water. With the T16, Captain Steve reported riding comfortably in the mid 35 mph (56.3 kph) range.

Tahoe T16: Boat Inspection

Tahoe T16

Test conditions for the T16 included a very light chop and winds in the 10 to 15 knot range, leaving Captain Steve to use his wake-hopping method for getting a feel of how the boat reacts in choppier conditions.

The Tahoe T16 measures 16’5” (5 m) long with a 7’6” (2.29 m) beam and the boat draws 12.5” (0.32 m) with the engine up or 26.5” (0.67 m) with the engine down. Empty weight is listed at 1,250 lbs. (567 kg). With two people, 9.75 gallons (37 L) of fuel and test equipment on board, we had an estimated test weight of 2,089 lbs. (948 kg).

Tahoe T16: Performance

Tahoe T16

At 39.8 mph WOT on the Tahoe T16, Captain Steve enjoyed this test.

Our Tahoe T16 test boat had the optional 75-hp Mercury 4-stroke outboard with a 17” (43.18 cm) pitch Mercury Spitfire prop.

Top Speed. At 5300 rpm, it hit a top speed of 39.8 mph (64.0 kph).

Best cruise came at 3000 rpm, where we saw 20.6 mph (33.2 kph) and a fuel burn of 2.4 gph (9.08 lph), giving us 8.6 mpg (3.65 kpl) and a range of 100 statute miles (162 km) while holding 10 percent of the boat’s 13-gallon (49 L) fuel capacity in reserve. That is remarkable fuel economy, particularly so because she has a 15-degree deadrise at the transom rather than a skiff-like bottom.

Tahoe T16

Settling in for a hole-shot to test the T16’s acceleration, Captain Steve brings the boat to a full stop.

Tahoe T16: Acceleration

In acceleration tests, the T16 planed in just 2.9 seconds and ran through 20 mph in 5.7 seconds.

Tahoe T16: Handling

Tahoe T16

Our T16 test boat had an optional 75-hp engine. The boat comes standard with a 60-hp Mercury.

We’re starting with the T16’s handling because this boat was so much fun to drive. Trim the outboard motor all the way down and crank the wheel and the T16 will carve tight turns.

There is noticeable torque from the outboard when turning. For that reason, we would recommend the optional hydraulic steering.

Tahoe T16

Tahoe T16

Tahoe put in the time to make the boat appropriately sensitive to trim. Notice how the bow wave moves from breaking well forward of the windscreen when the engine is trimmed in the top picture, to about 4’ aft (1.21 m) where the captain sits when the motor is trimmed out for cruising in the bottom picture.


Tahoe T16

The transom incorporates a 4” (10.16 cm) setback to position the engine in the correct location for the boat to have a proper center of gravity for optimal planing speeds and handling.

Tahoe T16: Helm

Tahoe T16

The straightforward helm console has a single multi-gauge, storage trays, switches, a footrest, steering, and throttle controls.

Tahoe T16

Captain Steve tugged and pulled on both the helm console and wheel to see how solidly built it was and reported it passed his stress tests.

On many inexpensive boats we’ve tested, the helm flexes and feels flimsy. The T16’s helm console is rotocast in three pieces and through-bolted in place at eight different locations for a solid feel.

Tahoe T16

The top spoiler to the windshield is designed to deflect air over the helmsman, yet maintain a low profile.

Atop the console, the acrylic windscreen has a spoiler integrated into the top designed to deflect onrushing breeze over the captain’s head. It’s installed with a stainless-steel support.

Tahoe T16

The integrated gauges are right in-line with the wheel and give the helmsman all the basic information needed with just a quick look below the line-of-sight.

The single centrally positioned gauge cluster gives speed, fuel level and trim position. On each side of the console are padded trays, and the accessory switches to starboard include the navigation lights, bilge pump and horn, plus the ignition.

Tahoe T16

The tray on the starboard side of the multifunction instrument is bigger and has power and connectivity plugs. We’d like to see it drain.

Outboard to starboard, the 4” (10.16 cm) wide caprail creates a comfortable place to rest the helmsman’s arm.

Tahoe T16

Down low, the footrest is at a comfortable angle.

Tahoe T16

Cockpit seating is fixed but versatile. The center seat backrest flips down for easy boarding from the transom and access to the sun pad. The side seats have storage below and the backrest of the spotter’s seat reverses for lounging forward.

On the T16, there’s three-across seating at the helm. The center seat folds down and has a pad on the underside so no one ever steps on the upholstery when boarding. The step pad on the center set is removable for washing.

The upholstery colors match the boat’s exterior graphics and feature multiple textures and welting, not something we’ve found on many other boats in this price range.

Here’s a look at some of the other graphics and colors available for the T16.

Tahoe T16

White (standard).

Tahoe T16

Victory Red ($500).

Tahoe T16

Black ($500).

Tahoe T16

Impact Orange with Black Graphics ($740).

Tahoe T16

White with Victory Red Graphics ($240).

Tahoe T16

The outboard cockpit seats hinge up on King Starboard bases to reveal storage below.

There’s storage beneath the outboard seats with the standard fire extinguisher to port. Notice the straps to hold down the bottom cushion. Inside, the compartments are angled forward and the bases are notched at the front to improve drainage.

Tahoe T16

Beneath the center cushion, there’s a shallow insulated storage tray that can be used for ice and beverages, but we’d like to see it equipped with a drain. An optional 6-gallon (23 L) livewell can be installed here.

Tahoe T16

The spotter’s seat has a backrest that reverses, providing a lounger in the bow. The bottom cushion for the aft facing seat flips up, ostensibly to provide a spot to disembark without stepping on the upholstery.

There’s 22” (55.88 cm) of legroom between the portside seats, fore and aft, and Tahoe provides grab handles for forward or aft-facing travel. Facing aft, the seat is made for spotting.

Tahoe T16

The spotter’s seat backrest simply lifts up, turns, and is re-inserted to become the backrest for the forward port lounger.

Tahoe T16: Stern

Tahoe T16

Flipping down the seatback in the center and the center cushion of the sun pad to the side makes for easier boarding and saves the cushions from being stepped on. The cloth that covers the seatback, can be unsnapped and tossed in the wash.

Here we demonstrate how boarding from the stern can be done without stepping on the upholstery. In addition to the center cockpit seat folding down, the middle cushion for the aft sunlounge folds away to reveal a nonskid walkway underneath. It’s 22” (55.88 cm) fore and aft and 18” (45.72 cm) wide.

Tahoe T16

With the center cushion in place, the sunlounge spans the T16’s width.

Tahoe T16

Beneath each of the outboard sun pad cushions are removable 4-gallon (15 L) tubs, ideal for wet bathing suits, shoes or other gear.

Abaft the sun pad, a hatch in the engine well provides access to the bilge pump and mechanical accessories.

Tahoe T16

Swim platforms flank the engine well, where a hatch opens to access the bilge.

Swim platforms extend on each side of the motor and there is a walkway in front of the engine that links them. The four-step boarding ladder complies with ABYC standards.

Tahoe T16

Tahoes are NMMA Certified using ABYC standards.

Tahoe T16: Bow

Tahoe T16

The footwell between the port and starboard bow seats is 24” (60.96 cm) wide.

Tahoe T16

We’d like to see the grab handle moved farther aft a bit, as it is a reach for Captain Steve.

Between the helm and spotter seat, there’s 24” (60.96 cm) of space to facilitate moving forward. It narrows to 21” (53.34 cm) between the seats and 14” (35.56 cm) at the bow. The seats are 11” (27.94 cm) off the deck and it’s an 11” (27.94 cm) step up to the foredeck.

Tahoe T16

Self-draining lockers are below the forward seats, which is something we often don’t see in this size boat no matter what the price. We’d like to see a couple more drains in the starboard locker in order to drain the foam faster.

Both bottom cushions in the bow fold up on hinges, which means they won’t fly out. The seat bases are King Starboard and the cushions are made with dri-fast foam. The lockers are fully finished and have drains, which means they can be used for iced beverages.

Tahoe T16

In-deck storage on the centerline is bigger than the hatch opening, extending below the deck.

There’s additional storage in an under-deck locker that has dedicated racks for the anchor light and paddle. The opening is 22” (55.88 cm) long by 14” (35.56 cm) wide and the locker is 42” (106.88 cm) long.

Tahoe T16: Trailer

Tahoe T16

The Tahoe T16 comes on a single axle trailer, and if an owner has limited garage space, they can upgrade to a trailer with a swing-away tongue which reduces the storage length to 19’ (2.74 m) overall.

Tahoe T16: Price

  • $15,995 with Mercury 60 ELPT FourStroke and trailer.
  • $17,595 with Mercury 75 ELPT FourStroke and trailer.
  • (Price does not include freight or dealer prep.)

Tahoe T16: Warranty

Tahoe warrants the hull, interior stringers, and transom from material and workmanship defects for five years and covers components for one year. The Galvashield impact steel tubing of the trailer is warranted against structural failure due to corrosion for three years.

Tahoe T16: Optional Equipment to Consider

Tahoe T16

The ski bar, shown bottom right, is optional.
  • TurboSwing ski bar ($930)
  • Swing away trailer tongue and brake ($560)
  • Bimini ($1,050)
  • Aerated 6-gallon (23 L) livewell ($360)
  • Hydraulic steering ($570)Automatic bilge pump ($30)
  • Kicker KMC1 stereo with 2 speaker ($420)
  • Depth sounder ($170)
  • Soft-touch interior and swim platform flooring ($600)
  • Cockpit cover ($360)
  • Trailerable mooring cover ($630)

Tahoe T16: Observations

Tahoe T16

The Tahoe T16 performs above her pay grade.

Calling the Tahoe T16 an entry-level boat is a misnomer. She is an ideal boat to buy for children or grandchildren in which to learn basic boating skills and self-confidence. And older kids and adults will like her, too, because she can be used as a ski boat and an entertaining platform. We think the T16 is a smart investment for a young family that wants outdoor recreation for all without breaking the bank.

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