The new 2700 from Triton Boats is the largest model in the company's salt water lineup, and has quickly become a force to be reckoned with on the grueling Southern Kingfish Association (SKA) tournament trail. Boats that aren't built well don't last long on that circuit, but the 2700 has met the challenge. That's partly because the boat is built using Triton's rugged, wood-free composite construction techniques.
Triton uses Tri-Core, a high-tech composite material made from polyurethane and fiberglass, to core its boats in lieu of wood. Tritons are hand-laid, and come with what the company calls "unibody" construction. This system integrates a precision-cut, one-piece fiberglass and composite stringer system made of two full-length stringers running fore and aft, with numerous fiberglass crossmembers connecting the hullsides to the stringers. Then the stringers and virtually every inch of open space in the boat are injected with foam for superior flotation. Triton calls this the Zero-Flex stringer system, and has so much confidence in it that the company offers a limited lifetime warranty on its boats.
We tested the 2700 courtesy of Triton's North Miami Beach dealer, Sunny Isles Marina. Our test day was relatively calm, but we found enough chop to convince us that the Triton is one solid ride. We ran the boat hard into the seas at every angle, but simply couldn't make it rattle, groan or pound. It tracked extremely well, was very responsive to throttle and trim, and the moderate transom deadrise made it quite stable at rest. It's a very well-balanced boat. With a pair of 225-hp Yamaha EFI two-strokes, the 2700 cruised at 43 mph at 4500 rpm. Wide-open it hit 53 mph at 5400 rpm.
Triton's president, Earl Bentz, is a fisherman, which is evident in the way the boat is laid out. In the cockpit, a 30-gallon live well supplied by an 1100 gph pump sits to starboard in the transom bulkhead, with a bait-rigging tray and cutting board on the centerline, and a sink to port. A transom gate to port leads to the engine platform, which is conveniently covered in the same aggressive non-skid pattern as the rest of the deck for sure footing.
The under-gunwale rod racks hold three rods per side, and a stainless-steel toe rail beneath the racks helps when fighting fish in rough seas. A hatch in the forward edge of the transom bulkhead opens to reveal the inner hull area, and it's one of the best designs we've seen. Everything down there is easy to reach, and the rigging looks like something you'd find on a much larger boat. It's all heavy duty, including two 1700 gph Lovett bilge pumps as standard equipment.
The rocket launcher/leaning post contains a 50-gallon live well supplied by two 1100 gph pumps. Are you beginning to get the idea that these guys are serious about live bait? Two locking rod lockers in the hullsides next to the rocket launcher hold an additional six rods, and cockpit coaming pads run around the cockpit and forward to a point even with the front edge of the console.
A large electronics surface above the helm will enable you to mount just about any electronic gizmo you could possibly want on a boat of this size. There's a storage box and a molded-in footrest, and the helm station is designed ergonomically to make driving a comfortable affair. Plus, the front console seat contains a 96-quart cooler.
The sub-console head compartment features a standard sink, and can be optionally outfitted with either a porta-potty or a real marine head. The head area is all finished fiberglass, with no rough edges. The boat's batteries are located down here, as well. They're concealed from view behind a canvas flap, but can be easily reached.
In the bow, the raised casting deck contains three sub-deck boxes: a 500-quart, macerated fishbox on the centerline flanked by two large dry-storage boxes. A large, in-deck storage box aft of the casting platform holds lots more gear. Two low-profile, stainless-steel handrails provide a handy grip, yet won't interfere with casting. And every cleat on the boat is an upscale pop-up model, so there's very little on which to snag a line.
The standard-equipment list on the 2700 rivals those found on some 40-footers, and includes items like chromed-bronze through-hull fittings that are bonded to a Dyna Plate grounding system. How often do you see that on an outboard center console? Then there's the dual-ram hydraulic steering, a custom aluminum steering wheel, hydraulic recessed trim tabs, raw-water washdown, a 20-gallon pressurized fresh water system, a transom shower and more.
In the 2700, Triton has built a rugged, no-compromise center console for anglers who run and fish in harsh offshore conditions. This boat is built to last, with heavy-duty components that provide lots of trouble-free fishing. It's the kind of boat that truly is built by fishermen who understand what it's like out there.
Triton Boats, Ashland City, TN; (888) 8TRITON; www.tritonboats.com.