20 Best Center Console Boats 26 Feet and Under

Popular center console fishing boats for buyers on a budget

20 Top Center Consoles 26 Feet and Under Intro Graphic
Twenty-six and under: the most-popular center console length category.Chris McGlinchy

The overwhelming majority (95 percent) of boats on the water today in the United States measure less than 26 feet in length, according to the National Marine Manufacturers Association. These boats are trailerable, generally affordable and easy for one person to manage.

Center console fishing boats at the lower-end of this size class usually feature a single outboard, while boats pushing 26 feet usually offer an option for twins. Here are 20 of the best center console boats that measure 26 feet or less (that are not bay boats) currently on the market. Although we tried to keep budget in mind, this is not a collection of the best fishing boats for the money. Do note the boats are listed alphabetically by brand.

If you're shopping for something bigger, visit our gallery of 25 Great Fishing Center Console Boats Over 30 Feet. Or check out 25 of the Decade's Top Boats or our list of captains' dream boats.

Barker 26 Open

Barker Boatworks 26 Open
SPECIFICATIONS LOA 25 ft. 6 in.; BEAM 9 ft. 3 in.; DRAFT 14 to 16 in.; DEADRISE 18 deg.; MAX POWER 400 hpCourtesy of Barker Boatworks

The Barker 26 Open was designed for the angler who wants to fish for tarpon, snook and redfish in the bays, but who also wants to feel comfortable fishing for bluewater species such as dolphin and sails. The 26 Open is based on a ­patented ­25½-foot Michael Peters-designed twin-stepped hull that introduces a cushion of air under the boat to increase lift, speed and fuel efficiency. Inside, the Barker carries a deep deck throughout most of the interior, with ­abbreviated casting decks in the bow and stern.

Boston Whaler 240 Dauntless

Boston Whaler 240 Dauntless Running
SPECIFICATIONS LOA 23 ft. 11 in.; BEAM 8 ft. 6 in.; DRAFT 14 in.; DEADRISE 16 deg.; MAX POWER 300 hpCourtesy of Boston Whaler

Boston Whaler says that families are most interested in five key areas when buying a boat: simplicity, versatility, comfort, fishability and safety. For comfort, the 240 Dauntless center console boat offers ergonomically designed seating that meets accepted guidelines for height, angle and support. Aft, the full-width bench features a backrest that's cushioned on one side with fiberglass nonskid on the other, so it converts to a broad casting deck. To fish forward, the captain simply folds down the plush bow seating and stows the cushions to create another open platform. A handy livewell, ample rod holders, and fish boxes complete the versatility.

Century 2200CC

century 2200cc running shot with homes in background
SPECIFICATIONS LOA 22 ft.; BEAM 8 ft. 6 in.; DRAFT 17 in.; DEADRISE 20 deg.; MAX POWER 250 hpCourtesy of Century Boats

Another one of the best center console boats you can buy is the Century 2200CC. Anglers will find the Century 2200CC loaded with inshore angler amenities, including oversized insulated fish boxes on both port and starboard sides and a 30-gallon livewell under the rear cushioned seating. The 2200CC also features a readily accessible raw-water wash down for easy cleanup. Anglers will appreciate the vast storage available including the port side rod locker that can hold up to three 8-foot rods, as well as storage locker under the bow seats. This inshore center-console will handle outboards to 250 hp.

Cobia 237CC

Cobia 237CC Running
SPECIFICATIONS LOA 23 ft. 7 in.; BEAM 8 ft. 10 in.; DRAFT 17 in.; DEADRISE 21½ deg.; MAX POWER 300 hpCourtesy of Cobia Boats

The Cobia 237CC has a wide beam for its size, so it's very roomy and a stable fishing platform at rest, Cobia says. Yet it's still a great-running boat with a far‑forward, sharp entry, lots of bow flare, and a variable-deadrise hull that's 21½ degrees at the transom. The 237 also features a level floor stem to stern, which makes fighting a fish around the boat simple and unhindered, and allows an angler to move forward so the captain can chase a fish.

Contender 24 Sport

Contender 24 Sport Running
SPECIFICATIONS LOA 24 ft. 6 in.; BEAM 8 ft. 6 in.; DRAFT 18 in.; DEADRISE 22½ deg.; MAX POWER 300 hpCourtesy of Contender Boats

For the 24 Sport, Contender employs a 22½-degree transom deadrise angle that transitions to a deeper V forward. A variable-deadrise design gives the hull the smooth-riding characteristics of a deep-V offshore boat with the efficiency and stability of a modified-V hull, Contender engineer says. The addition of lifting strakes and reverse-angle chines helps give the 24 a dry, comfortable, stable ride that also happens to be quite fast.

EdgeWater 245cc

EdgeWater 245cc Running
SPECIFICATIONS LOA 24 ft. 6 in.; BEAM 8 ft. 6 in.; DRAFT 21 in.; DEADRISE N/A; MAX POWER 400 hpCourtesy of EdgeWater Boats

EdgeWater designed the 245cc to run with single or twin outboards and gave it 89 square feet of useable cockpit room and 140 gallons of fishbox and storage space. EdgeWater includes a 28-gallon transom livewell, but choose the optional leaning post to add 45 gallons of additional live-bait space.

Everglades 230cc

Everglades 230cc Running
SPECIFICATIONS LOA 25 ft.; BEAM 8 ft. 6 in.; DRAFT 15 in.; DEADRISE 19 deg.; MAX POWER 300 hpCourtesy of Everglades Boats

Everglades' 230cc features secure seating and handholds throughout the deck, a vast sun pad, and a split bow rail with removable ladder for families that spend time cruising and picnicking. For anglers, the 230cc offers a dozen rod holders, 60 gallons of self-bailing fish boxes, a 27-gallon livewell and a 65-quart Yeti cooler standard.

Grady-White Fisherman 236

Grady-White Fisherman 236
SPECIFICATIONS LOA 23 ft. 7 in.; BEAM 8 ft. 6 in.; DRAFT 18½ in.; DEADRISE 20 deg.; MAX POWER 300 hpCourtesy of Grady-White Boats

Grady-White's new Fisherman 236, announced this summer, brings together all the fishing features of a classic hardcore 23-footer while seamlessly integrating family comforts. The company started with a roomy cockpit, rod and tackle storage, a standard 15½-gallon livewell, and twin 22-gallon insulated fish boxes, and then added bow seating with foldaway backrests, a stand-up head inside the console, and swim-platform extensions port and starboard.

Mako 234 CC

Mako 234 CC Running
SPECIFICATIONS LOA 23 ft. 4 in.; BEAM 8 ft. 6 in.; DRAFT 18 in.; DEADRISE 21 deg.; MAX POWER 300 hpCourtesy of Mako Marine

The Mako 234 CC's standard leaning post sports a backrest incorporating four rod holders. Integrated into the seat is a 31-gallon livewell with a clear-acrylic lid. Cool tackle-storage cabinets are built into each side of the seat. In the starboard aft corner, a bait-prep area features a pullout freshwater hose for cleanup, in addition to a nearby raw-water washdown fitting. Below the station Mako included a cabinet with a pliers/knife holder outside the door, and a clever rack inside for a spool of fishing line.

Pioneer Sportfish 222

Pioneer Sportfish 222 Running
SPECIFICATIONS LOA 22 ft. 1 in.; BEAM 8 ft. 7 in.; DRAFT 14 in.; DEADRISE 20 deg.; MAX POWER 300 hpCourtesy of Pioneer Boats

An easy tow with a half-ton truck, the Sportfish 222 is ideal for saltwater anglers who want the flexibility to fish the blue water or the bays, and occasionally enjoy watersports with friends and family. Anglers will love the transom design because it maximizes cockpit space astern for fishing, yet also retains a full bulkhead to help keep following seas out of the boat. To help ease the task of cast-netting for bait or fighting a fish around the bow without snagging a line, Pioneer recessed the stainless-steel bow rail into the gunwale; the two pull-up bow cleats remain flush when not in use. An elevated bow deck offers extra height for throwing a net.

Pursuit C238se

Pursuit C238se Running
SPECIFICATIONS LOA 24 ft. 4 in.; BEAM 8 ft. 6 in.; DRAFT 17 in.; DEADRISE 21 deg.; MAX POWER 250 hpCourtesy of Pursuit Boats

A special version of Pursuit's newly redesigned C238 center-console, the C238se brings all the performance, comfort and dependability this brand stands for to a 24-foot offshore fishing platform. Fishing features include a lighted Oceana-blue 23-gallon recirculating livewell, four stainless-steel ­gunwale rod holders, undergunwale rod ­storage, a transom door, and additional rod holders with a standard ­fiberglass T-top.

Regulator 25

Regulator 25 Running
SPECIFICATIONS LOA 25 ft. 2 in.; BEAM 8 ft. 10 in.; DRAFT 24 in.; DEADRISE 24 deg.; MAX POWER 400 hpCourtesy of Regulator

Regulator enhanced the 25's deck plan by adding some family comforts without removing a single feature demanded by serious anglers. The cockpit opens for fishing when the cozy transom seat is tucked effortlessly away. Forward seating cushions can be snapped on or off the raised fish boxes in the bow. Full bow-to-stern coaming pads complete the lazy lounging feel of the seating.

Robalo R242

Robalo R242 Fishing
SPECIFICATIONS LOA 24 ft.; BEAM 8 ft. 9 in.; DRAFT 20 in.; DEADRISE 22 deg.; MAX POWER 400 hpCourtesy of Robalo Boats

Robalo designed the R242 with a large, bow casting platform, a forward-entry privacy head, and little extras like LED cockpit lighting, a bow filler cushion and a freshwater cockpit shower. Anglers will appreciate the 20-gallon bow livewell, 18-gallon leaning-post livewell, and three insulated fish boxes.

Sailfish 240CC

Sailfish 240 CC Running
SPECIFICATIONS LOA 25 ft. 6 in.; BEAM 9 ft.; DRAFT 18 in.; DEADRISE 22 to 24 deg.; MAX POWER 300 hpCourtesy of Sailfish Boats

Built for hardcore offshore anglers, Sailfish's 240CC employs a variable-deadrise stepped hull a dry, high-performance ride plus fuel efficiency. The 240CC comes with a standard 30-gallon transom livewell, a walkthrough transom door and twin, insulated 65-gallon fish boxes.

Scout 255 LXF

Scout 255 LXF Running
SPECIFICATIONS LOA 25 ft. 6 in.; BEAM 8 ft. 11 in.; DRAFT 17 in.; DEADRISE 21½ deg.; MAX POWER 400 hpCourtesy of Scout Boats

Scout's 255 LXF is the smallest member of the company's luxury sportfish line, which blends high-performance fishing with high-end cruising. Standard features include Scout's patented hardtop with tempered-glass enclosure, a portside livewell, a transom door, three fish boxes and a forward console cooler seat.

Sea Born SX 239

seabornsx239-r.jpg
SPECIFICATIONS LOA 23 ft. 2 in.; BEAM 8 ft. 7 in.; DRAFT 17 in.; DEADRISE 21 deg.; MAX POWER 300 hpCourtesy of Sea Born Boats

Sea Born increased fuel efficiency for the SX 239 by using a double-stepped-hull design. At the front step, the hull's deadrise angle is 25 degrees; it drops to 23 degrees amidships and then to 21 degrees at the transom. That design gives the vessel the speed-to-length and weight ratios Sea Born wanted without sacrificing stability or deck space.

Sea Chaser 24 HFC

Sea Chaser 24HFC Running
SPECIFICATIONS LOA 23 ft. 9 in.; BEAM 8 ft. 5 in.; DRAFT 12 to 14 in.; DEADRISE 18 deg.; MAX POWER 250 hpCourtesy of Sea Chaser

Sea Chaser's Georgia builder, Carolina Skiff, designed the 24HFC as a crossover bay and offshore boat that fits a fisherman's needs while addressing the desires of most other on-water enthusiasts. HFC stands for "hybrid fish and cruise." The 24-footer's stepped-hull design helps enhance fuel efficiency and acceleration, and the center-console's deck layout ­provides storage, easy bilge access, a large foredeck with U-shaped seating, a swim platform, and a side-entry door to port.

Sea Fox 266 Commander

Sea Fox 266 Commander Fishing
SPECIFICATIONS LOA 26 ft.; BEAM 9 ft. 3 in.; DRAFT 16 in.; DEADRISE 20 deg.; MAX POWER 400 hpCourtesy of Sea Fox

Like many fishing vessels today, Sea Fox's 266 Commander attracts the family boater as well as the serious angler. The double-wide lounger and storage box forward offer comfortable seating and space for tackle and gear. Twin fish boxes with overboard discharge make smart use of the cockpit sole; at the transom, twin flip-down jump seats and a folding bench disappear when it's time to set lines. The 266 Commander sports a newly designed 50-gallon livewell with a thick, acrylic double-latch lid and tension hinges. Standard gunwale rod holders and storage keep rods ready, and a built-in tackle center organizes the lures or rigs you'll need.

World Cat 230CC

World Cat 230CC Running
SPECIFICATIONS LOA 22 ft. 7 in.; BEAM 8 ft. 6 in.; DRAFT 9 in.; DEADRISE (catamaran); MAX POWER 230 hpCourtesy of World Cat

With its ample beam and catamaran design, the World Cat 230CC offers anglers a roomy cockpit that seats 10 and the seakeeping ability you might expect from a much bigger boat, World Cat says. Amenities include a 30-gallon livewell, 75 gallons of fish-box space forward, and loads of rod holders and storage. The 230CC also floats in 9 inches of water, for fishing coastal beaches and bays.

Yellowfin 26

Yellowfin 26 Running
SPECIFICATIONS LOA 26 ft.; BEAM 8 ft. 8 in.; DRAFT 18 in.; DEADRISE 20 deg.; MAX POWER 400 hpCourtesy of Yellowfin Yachts

The Yellowfin 26 reflects a distinctive blend of offshore- and bay-boat features. The upright livewell behind the helm seating and available twin outboards definitely speak to offshore anglers, while the elevated aft casting deck caters to inshore fishing enthusiasts. A level foredeck is standard, but you can order an optional elevated foredeck from Yellowfin, which adds even more appeal for inshore anglers. The elevated aft casting platform serves double duty: Seat backs lift up in each corner so crew members can kick back while running to and from the fishing grounds. A hatch in the middle of the aft deck provides access to the immaculate bilge rigging.