Reviews and test drives


Larson Senza 206 and Glastron 205 have a lot in common. What to choose?

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Larson Senza 206

The Larson Senza 206 is perhaps a model example of an entry-level family sports boat. Those who just thought about buying their first boat should definitely keep it at the top of the list. It is a very friendly boat without any complications, easy to use and maintain.

Senza 206 has everything you need for a young family, and with the optional tow tower it will serve active water sports enthusiasts well. The gentle design allows for a lot of space on board for family and friends. Surprisingly, with a length of only 20 feet, the boat takes up to ten people on board! The optional transom bathing platform at Larson is larger than most competing models and has a built-in ladder. The central cushion of the wide sunbathing platform folds out, making it easier to get into the cockpit. Hidden under the semicircular rear sofa are lockers for items and equipment, along with a niche under the enclosed fridge. In general, there is enough space below deck, under the seats and even in the engine compartment for everything you might need all day on the water.

As with the classic bowrider, the horseshoe sofa in the nose can be complemented by a central cushion, turning it into a sunbathing area. The soft upholstery of the benches and backrests allows guests to sit comfortably in any direction.

Music in the boat is ordered by the occupant of the chair next to the captain's, as the tape recorder and the iPod connector are hidden in a «glove box» in front of him. The captain's chair, on the other hand, provides a beautiful view over the bow of the boat and the battery of instruments behind the steering wheel. It is worth noting that the armrest under the right hand, which controls the throttle lever, clearly would not hurt.

With this lever, the Senza 206 can whip up 260 horsepower of the five-litre Mercruiser MPI engine. With the Delta-VEC molded vacuum infusion housing, this motor forms a fantastic pair.

The boat is perfectly balanced, behaves excellently on a wave and is capable to develop to 82 km/h at 5000 rpm.

Excellent traction at low revs gives good towing capability, so water sports enthusiasts are unlikely to save money on an optional tow tower with wakeboard and ski bindings. Adding to this one of the best value «for money»on the market today makes it clear why the Senza 206 is so high on our list of recommendations.

The data:

  • Length: 20' 6"
  • Width: 8' 3"
  • Engines:
  1. MERCRUISER 4.3 L, 190 hp or 220 hp.
  2. MERCRUISER 5.0 L, 220 hp or 260HP hp.
  3. Or MAG 300 hp.
  • Capacity, man: 10
  • Dry weight: 1383 kg
  • Max. speed: 82 km/h

Glastron 205

In such a tightly packed sector of the market, it's hard to be surprised that boats from different firms will be similar, but there's no such similarity anywhere else as between Glastron 205 and Larson Senza 206, described here. The reason for this is that, until recently, both brands were part of the powerful Genmar group and even produced in the same factory until Glastron moved to the Four Winns shipyard in Michigan.

The Glastron 205 is made using traditional manual sticker technology, so it weighs even less than the Larson 206 vacuum infusion.

The saved 120 kg of weight gives an increase of 3-4 km/h to the maximum speed, although the additional weight of Larson has the advantage in rough water.

The nose of the Glastron is slightly lower, which gives a better view from the captain's seat, although there are those who would prefer increased safety to the deeper nose section of the Larson. In fact, that's where the big difference between the two boats ends.

Since the layout and design of the two boats are almost identical, the differences between them are purely cosmetic. Firstly, it is worth mentioning the upholstery of the Glastron interior: additional coloured inserts and strips on board give the boat a more «twisted» and dynamic look. Inside the cockpit there are additional «pockets» in the sides for storing things, although we liked the nets under the chairs in Larson more than the hard plastic niches in Glastron.

A retractable refrigerated drawer under the aft sofa combined with a folding cushion for easy access to the cockpit is another point in favor of Glastron. As for the control station, Larson's appliances are easier to read, but Glastron has a wooden finish on the dashboard, steering wheel and «glove box»lid. You can see for yourself - the differences between the two boats are quite minor.

Manageability is something that doesn't make any difference at all. The boats have identical bypasses and the same engines, so there is no difference between them on the move. The Glastron is very comfortable on the move. The nose when accelerating from a place is scrambled within reasonable limits, and in general the boat gives the owner a feeling of speed and what is called «wind in his hair», but it does not scare the young or inexperienced driver. The deep cockpit provides passenger safety and the stern is minimized during steep turns. For all its speed characteristics it is not a racing boat, where you have to cling to the steering wheel, as for your own life. The Glastron 205 can be waxed in three seconds, reaching a cruising speed of 50 km/h in about five seconds. The maximum speed with the 260 hp Mercruiser engine is about 84 km/h.


  • Length: 20' 8"
  • Width: 7' 8"
  • Engine variants:
  1. MERCRUISER 4.3 L, 190 hp or 220 hp.
  2. MERCRUISER 5.0 L, 260 hp.
  • Capacity, man..: 9
  • Dry weight: 1247 kg
  • Max. speed: 84 km/h

Text - Craig Barnett

Published in YACHTS magazine #37.

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