The quiet achiever in the New Zealand market, Seaboss is a small brand, with a limited range and by all accounts is underrated. Freddy Foote set off for Rotorua to check out the revised 620 HT model.
I’d confidently describe Seaboss as a boutique brand. While they don’t pump huge numbers into the market, they have a very strong following. It’s a brand you don’t hear any negative stories about. I have reviewed a number of Seaboss boats over the years and had always rated them as one of the better boutique builders.
What I like about Seaboss is that you aren’t overwhelmed with the offerings. There are only five models in the range, consisting of two cabin models – the 550 and 620 as well as three hardtops in the 620HT, 670HT and 700HT. You can choose a boat that suits your size bracket, add the options you want, and away you go.
Being a boutique brand, the sole dealer is Thompson Marine, run and owned by Ron and Julie Baskett who have owned and operated the business since 1996. They started to build and provide Seaboss Boats to the market in 1997 and for a brand to survive 20-years in the New Zealand market certainly says something about the quality and performance. Certainly much bigger brands have been and gone in that time.
The boats are built locally in Rotorua, and there is a steady stream of hulls coming through the factory where they await the finishing touches for their new owners.
Room to Move
The Seaboss 620 HT sits in the middle of the range and is also available in a cabin version. The 620 HT has a roomy and functional layout, with all the amenities you would expect to find on a boat in this size bracket.
Forward in the cabin, there is storage space available underneath the two side squabs, and side shelves. Not the size boat that you will overnight on, however, the cabin has more than enough room to stow away all your gear.
A hatch is located on the foredeck, giving access to the anchor well, although an auto rope/chain capstan can be fitted, allowing all anchoring duties to be performed at the helm.
The helm area is finished in aluminium, with the two Mercury engine gauges above, a Garmin MFD below and switch panel alongside. Though this particular model wasn’t fitted with them, sliding windows are available for the helm and passenger sides.
Seating was made up of squab upholstered seats mounted on bases with storage available underneath. This configuration is just one of many options available. I would be inclined to go for a king/queen style seat up where you would gain extra seating and storage without sacrificing too much cockpit space.
A removable bin seat aft also provided additional seating space should you need and can quickly be moved out of the way when not needed.
Storage in the 620 HT was quite plentiful, with a large underfloor compartment between the two seats, carpeted side shelves providing great storage options for rods and some small storage shelves built into the sides of the helm area.
Across the transom, you’ll find a very generous full width-boarding platform, with a substantial ‘T’ style-boarding ladder in the starboard corner providing access through to the walk-thru. Opposite is a sizeable live bait tank with viewing window, while in the middle is a really neat bait station with storage underneath, rod holders and cup holders built in.
In the centre of the transom are two large lockers that house all the onboard systems for the boat such as the batteries and switches. There are four-rod holders built into the coamings and a further six in the rocket launcher.
We took the 620 HT out for a spin on Lake Tarawera, arguably one of the most picturesque lakes in the Rotorua district. Our test boat was fitted with a Mercury 150hp four-stroke, the maximum engine rating for the hull.
The Mercury 150 4S was a good match, and we managed to squeeze 41.0 knots out of the boat with a comfortable cruise speed of 31 knots at 4000rpm. The 150hp 4S sits at the high end of the horsepower rating for the hull, with it able to be powered by as little as 115hp. I reckon the 150hp was a good option, especially if you want to load the boat up with gear and passengers. Feeding the 150hp 4S is a 130L underfloor fuel tank.
Sensitive to Trim
I found the 620 HT quite sensitive to trim when underway, noticing that when you trim the bow of the boat down, you experience a significant decrease in speed. Trim it up, and it gathers speed quite quickly.
The 620 hull has a 5mm bottom with 4mm sides, with a 3mm cabin. The hull is a relatively shallow deadrise of 17 deg. Our test day conditions were virtually calm, so was quite difficult to find any rough water. However, I have tested similarly sized hulls from the Seaboss range in the past, and I’ve always found them to be a solid performer. Stability at rest was good, with the hull only showing a very slight heel as two of us moved around the cockpit.
The 620HT comes on a tandem axle trailer and weights around 1420kg. Launching and retrieving wasn’t a problem, with two of us managing easily enough.
Overall, the 620 HT is a great boat. Well finished, well appointed and for a touch over $89,000, it’s a lot of boat for your money. As I outlined earlier, Seaboss is a boutique brand with a compact range that caters to most sectors of the alloy boat market. The quality and finish of the boats has always been up with the very best and being a smaller brand, Ron Baskett and his team apply even more attention to detail in presenting a fabulously well-finished product.
With a steady number of hulls continuously coming through the factory, you won’t have the wait time of some of the much bigger brands with dealer networks, so getting that new boat for this summer probably won’t take as long as you might think.
- Model & Model: Seaboss 620 HT
- Price as tested: $89,750
- Type: Hardtop
- Construction: Alumnium
- LOA: 6.2m
- Beam: 2.42m
- Deadrise: 17 Degree
- Height on trailer: 2.95m
- Trailerable weight: 1420kg
- Test Power: 150hp
- Power options: Outboard
- HP Range: 115hp-150hp
- Fuel Capacity: 130L
- Trailer: Tandem
Notable Standard Items
Side coaming pockets, fully lined cabin with squb, rear boarding platform, 4 x rod holders, boarding ladder, live bait tank.
Notable Options on Test Boat
150hp Mercury four-stroke, paint, Maxwell anchor winch.