Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show 2018 Preview

The finest in new boats, tackle, tech and gear on display for the upcoming season

fort lauderdale boat show aerial view
The Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show is one of the largest of its kind anywhere in the world.Courtesy Fort Lauderdale Boat Show

The Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show is always a great event to preview the new boats, tech, tackle and gear for the upcoming season. Whatever you need — and quite a few things you might also just want — will be on display during this five-day marine extravaganza. Here are just a few things that the Marlin editors will be checking out this year.

Viking Yacht Company

viking yacht company 58 convertible sport fishing boat
The latest from Viking is a new 58-foot convertible.Courtesy Viking Yacht Company

The good news for the offshore sport-fishing crowd is the worldwide premiere of the new Gen II Viking 58 Convertible. The original 58 was one of those milestone vessels that put Viking Yacht Company on the map; the updated version will have those same winning genes as not only a tournament thoroughbred but also a great boat for families who enjoy traveling and fishing.

The 58 has an attractive three-stateroom/two-head arrangement, plus spacious salon and galley, thanks to her 17-foot, 9-inch beam. The teak cockpit is huge, while the bridge offers the captain the ultimate in visibility and control.

Several engine packages from MAN and MTU are offered; Hull No. 1 is powered with a pair of new MTU V10 2000 M96L engines rated at 1,600 hp each. The 58 achieves a top speed of 41.8 knots, with a comfortable 35-knot cruise. Standard fuel capacity is 1,551 gallons.

Our editors had a sneak peek of the 58 during the annual Viking dealer meeting earlier this fall in New Jersey, but we look forward to seeing more of this boat at FLIBS.

Spencer Yachts

spencer yachts 74 on the water
Hull No. 100 from Spencer Yachts will be on display.©Scott Kerrigan / www.aquapaparazzi.com

Another vessel making her public debut at FLIBS 2018 will be Centurion, Hull No. 100 from Spencer Yachts. These custom-built sport-fishers are renowned for their seaworthiness and comfortable ride as well as their outstanding performance, due in part to the use of composite construction techniques that add strength and save on excess weight throughout the boat. Spencer boats are beautiful too, with fine woods and finishes highlighting a remarkable level of fit and finish. The interior of Centurion is a standout in satin-finished American walnut, while her twin MTU M96L engines, each producing 2,600 hp, provide amazing performance (see a sneak peek of Centurion here).

As we put her through sea trials earlier this year amid a confused 4-foot swell and wind chop off the Texas coast, she hit a top speed of 44 knots; easing back the throttles produces a cruising speed of 35 to 38 knots, burning approximately 140 gallons per hour. Centurion is expected to be on display for the public during this year's show.

Hatteras Yachts

hatteras yacht drawing
Hatteras will debut their GT59.Courtesy Hatteras / Marlin Magazine

Hatteras Yachts will debut their latest sport-fisher, the GT59, which will join her sisterships — the GT45X, GT54, GT63 and GT70 — in current production. The new 59-footer has a large 153-square-foot cockpit, with full mezzanine. A pair of Caterpillar C32A diesels power the new Hatteras to cruising speeds in the mid-30-knot range, with a top speed of 40 knots.

Belowdecks, a three-stateroom/two-head layout is standard. Optional layouts include a tackle-storage station with workbench, or a third head. “We are building on the success of the GT Series and taking it to the next level with the GT59,” says Hatteras president and CEO Kelly Grindle.

MAN Engines

man engines v12 2000
MAN's new diesel engines offer high horsepower and lower weight.Courtesy MAN

MAN Engines will have two new powerhouses on display at this year’s FLIBS: the V12-2000 and the V8-1300 series diesel engines. The MAN V12-2000 is the only 2,000 hp twelve-cylinder V-engine, which generates enormous power from its 24 liters of displacement. Likewise, the strongest V8 engine for yachts and sport-fishing boats on the market is the new MAN V8-1300. Both offer high power density, with minimal space requirements and lower weight than other competitive engines.

Tigress Outriggers

tigress outriggers
Tigress outrigger mounts greatly simplify the rigging process.Courtesy Tigress

Outrigger management from a center console, walkaround or express boat just got a whole lot easier, thanks to Tigress Outriggers and its all-new XD top mount and XD center rigger mount. The Tigress XD top mount features a unique design that allows for use on tops over two inches thick as well as soft tops.

The new mount has 24 adjustable locking positions with 19 upper-arm angle-locking positions. The new center rigger mount has an ambidextrous mounting option with an upper arm capable of 19 angle-locking settings, which makes maintaining and adjusting the shotgun line easier than ever. Both mounts are made from 316 stainless steel and brushed anodized aluminum, with a 3-lobe UV ergonomic knob for changing and locking the outriggers' elevation.

Dometic

Dometic CapTouch Wifi Cabin Control Monitor
The CapTouch Wi-Fi cabin control is new from Dometic.Courtesy Dometic

Dometic has introduced the new CapTouch Wi-Fi Cabin Control, an app that revolutionizes set up and operation of onboard heating units. Using marina Wi-Fi or a hot spot, the cabin control’s embedded Wi-Fi offers remote access to the system panel via the user’s phone or tablet. The water-resistant screen is more intuitive, with easy-to-understand icons for trouble-free setup. It supports optional humidity control, auxiliary heat or maintenance functions as well.

The company will also display their new variable capacity chillers with titanium condensers and a new 60,000 BTU model, the VARCX60. The VARCX is different than other chillers because of its ability to provide cooling or heating at maximum efficiency by modulating its speed to match demand, while other chillers use a basic all-on or all-off mode of operation.

Seatronx

seatronx nvr 8001 and camera
The new NVR-8001 and MB-8001 CCTV systems from Seatronx.Courtesy Seatronx

Seatronx, a manufacturer of marine displays, computers and peripherals, will showcase their new HD video recording systems at this year’s show. The Seatronx Survision Series is built specifically for tournament and recreational fishing applications. The NVR-8001 and MB-8001 CCTV systems allow you to capture and manage incredible high definition footage using simple commands.

The NVR-8001 is a compact, 2 terabyte model, that allows users to record, view and manage all those memorable moments instantly. The NVR-8001 lets you record multiple cameras and can also mark events for easy retrieval. The built-in network allows you to start and stop recording of multiple cameras and quickly forward video to your friends and family via your iPhone, iPad and Android smart device.

KVH Industries

TracPhone V3-HTS
The TracPhone V3-HTS is smaller than any other Ku-band marine satellite communications antennas.Courtesy KVH Industries

KVH Industries has unveiled the TracPhone V3-HTS, proclaimed as the world’s fastest, lightest, ultra-compact Ku-band marine VSAT antenna. Measuring 14.5 inches in diameter and weighing 25 pounds, the TracPhone V3-HTS is smaller in physical size than any other Ku-band marine satellite communications antenna on the market and is designed to provide faster data speeds (5 Mbps download/2 Mbps upload) than larger marine satellite antennas.

The TracPhone V3-HTS’s fast data speeds, combined with its diminutive size, make Internet connectivity and HD-quality streaming available aboard smaller boats that do not have room for a larger satellite communications antenna.

KVH designed and engineered the TracPhone V3-HTS specifically for KVH’s mini-VSAT BroadbandSM HTS network. This advanced maritime network offers unmatched speed and coverage using new next-generation high-throughput satellites from Intelsat’s global network with additional satellite capacity from SKY Perfect JSAT, all of which is fully integrated under the IntelsatOne Flex for Maritime platform.