In an age when center consoles keep getting bigger and bigger, EdgeWater offers an exceptional marriage of performance, style and comfort in a middleweight contender poised to match larger competitors blow for blow.
- Length: 26’5″
- Beam: 9’3″
- Draft: 21″ (hull only)
- Deadrise: Variable
- Fuel: 163 gal.
- Water: 19 gal.
- Weight: 5,000 lb.
- Max HP: 500
- Price: Upon Request
- Edgewater Boats website
- Weather: Partly Sunny
- Location: New Smyrna, Florida
- Wind: Northwest 11 knots
- Sea State: Light chop
- Test Load: Two adults, 82 gallons of fuel
A lot of thought went into the design of the new 262 CC, starting with the single-piece infusion construction, a process that turns the hull and stringer grid into one solid piece, utilizing only the necessary resin for superb strength and rigidity with minimal weight. The deep-V hull and variable deadrise conquer choppy seas and provide a stable ride. The result is a craft equally suited for nearshore and offshore angling, with a 21-inch draft that also makes it capable of exploring bays and anchoring at a sand bar or protected cove for some relaxation or family fun.
While some of the features are obvious at a glance — like the hardtop with aerodynamic two-post frame and full-height, frameless Clear View windshield that stops wind and spray while virtually eliminating blind spots at the helm — there are numerous smaller but auspicious details that amount to great versatility and convenience.
The anchor locker with overboard drain, incorporates a horizontal windlass and space for plenty of rode, enabling easy anchor deployment and retrieval without getting the deck or your hands dirty. Remote latches make it a cinch to open the generous twin storage compartments (one of which is insulated) at the bow that double as forward seating and, with the removable table in place, convert the area into a full sun pad, a raised casting deck or the perfect picnic spot.
A forward console seat integrated in the large door affords entry to the walk-in console housing an electric head with holding tank, overboard discharge and pump-out, a freshwater sink with pullout shower and 19-gallon tank, and access to wiring and electronics.
The dash is wide enough to accommodate two 16-inch displays, with room to spare for a stereo, VHF radio, Command Link digital gauges and EdgeWater’s standard lighted, waterproof switches. A Ritchie compass, Lenco trim tabs, raw-water washdown outlet, SeaStar hydraulic steering and stainless-steel tilt wheel with power knob also come standard.
Helm lighting shines down from the hardtop, which also includes LED spreader lights, an instrument box and overhead life-jacket storage. Nestled in a fiberglass leaning post, a pair of adjustable bolster seats with arm and backrests allow the skipper and a companion to sit or stand at the helm. The slim design reduces the footprint, creating space for a sizable cooler on a pullout slide while taking up minimal room in the cockpit. On the aft side of the leaning post, a bait prep station includes a sink with freshwater faucet, cutting board and storage, with an electric grill available as an option.
Twin in-floor fish boxes (120 quarts to port and starboard) with pump-out hold a great day’s catch and then some. A large center hatch just forward of the transom hides a removable storage tray, with access to the bilge underneath. Aft seating accommodates three with a fold-down bench on the transom bulkhead.
Live-baiters are sure to appreciate the pressurized livewell on the transom — 40-gallon capacity with a clear lid, lighting and calming blue finish — and the copious rod storage: four flush-mount holders on the gunwales, four more on the transom, a triple rack under the port gunwale, two rocket launchers holding a combined total of nine rods, and a rack that accommodates yet another pair of rods inside the port bow compartment.
Crew members and large fish always have permission to come aboard the 262 CC, so EdgeWater installed a pair of doors — one to starboard and another on the transom — to make it easier, with a telescoping ladder on the swim platform to further aid anyone who goes for a dip.
OK, so the boat comes loaded, but what about the ride? I ran the 26-footer both in the Intracoastal Waterway and outside Ponce de Leon Inlet in 2- to 3-foot rollers to find out. The first thing I noticed was how quickly our test boat, powered by twin F200s, jumped on plane. In fact, despite it being 100 hp below its max power rating, it went from 0 to 30 mph in just 6.5 seconds.
Next, I punched the throttle to check the top-end speed and clocked 51.1 mph at 6,100 rpm, almost identical to what Yamaha reported on its performance bulletin. Efficiency proved highest at 3,600 rpm, which pushed the boat to a cruising speed of 27 mph while burning only 11.1 gph, numbers that translate into an approximate range of 407 miles with a full tank.
I found the handling just as impressive. The phrase “turns like it’s on rails” may be cliche, but it certainly applies to the 262 CC, which negotiates tight turns with no sliding or excessive leaning, so you better brace yourself if you attempt one at high speed.
The EdgeWater is spacious, comfortable and swift. Visibility at the helm remains excellent from takeoff to top-end. The 262 provides the feeling of safety that comes from a solid hull under you. The locations of controls, storage, seating and fixtures, like rod holders and cleats, seem intuitive, and with so many standard amenities, you’ll be hard-pressed to find additional options you couldn’t live without.