Malibu Wakesetter 23XTi
Where did the engine box go? That's a natural first reaction when you see the Wakesetter 23 XTi. It can't be in the back like a V-drive because there's a huge wraparound lounge abutting the transom (loaded with built-in cooler, stereo speakers and optional refreshment table). The middle of the boat has a richly upholstered sun pad stretching across two-thirds of the 100-inch beam. And there's no way the engine is in the front, tucked under the bow filler cushion. Back up: The standard 340-horsepower Monsoon is under that sun pad, seamlessly integrated into the luxury interior.
That fresh layout is just one of the 23 XTi's selling points, as is Malibu's reputation for high-quality, vibration-free construction. This boat comes with superb wakeboarding features: Titan tower, Wedge hydrofoil, three ballast tanks for up to 750 extra pounds, and a new in-dash Ballast Monitoring System. It's also dripping with style: chromed dash insert, chromed emblems, imported steering wheel and throttle knob, stainless-steel rails. Those features are easy to see right away.
The 23 XTi may have the look and the features of a wakeboarding-only boat, but we could make it into a boat for recreational skiers. Just empty the ballast and rev it up past 30 mph. The V25 hull is able to iron out the wakes enough for casual free-skiing sets. The direct-drive configuration maintains dependable tracking.
This boat proves that you don't have to own a V-drive to get respectable intermediate to advanced wakes. The 23 XTi benefits from filling up the two rear tanks. Throw in more ballast when you're ready to increase the size of the wakes; this 23-footer can take the weight. The table might be a little wide for beginners with its 100-inch beam, so we recommend pulling in the line to 60-65 feet.
• Innovative layout combines the best of a
V-drive's interior with the handling of a direct-drive.
• Full-on wakeboarding amenities can be upgraded even further with a strong, swooping carbon-fiber tower.
• A storage compartment above the engine is a clever touch. It warms up your cold wet stuff.
• With ballast tanks in the bow and rear corners, the center in-floor storage locker is free for other gear.
Top Speed 44.0 mph 5,150 rpm
Accel. to 30 mph 5.2 sec. 127.1 ft.
Accel. to 36 mph 7.0 sec. 212.1 ft.
Noise Levels (db) Neutral 62 D 61 R, 36 mph 83 D 91 R
Length 23 ft. Beam 100 in.
Seating Capacity 14
Fuel Capacity 47 gal.
Test Prop Acme 13 x 11.5 3-blade
Test Engine Indmar Monsoon 5.7L, 340 HP