Mako 17 Pro Skiff CC: 2018 Boat Buyers Guide

The Pro Skiff 17 CC is one of Mako's most popular boats ever.

Mako 17 Pro Skiff CC
LOA: 17'4" | Beam: 6'8" | Fuel Capacity: 6.6 gal. | Dry Weight: 950 lb. plus power | Max Horsepower: 60 | Certifications: NMMACourtesy of Mako

Fiberglass innovator Robert Schwebke built a center console boat from that then-novel material so that he and a friend could fish in comfort and safety. Others eyed it and asked for one, and by 1967, a hobby had become a boat business and the made-for-fishing Mako brand was born.

The Mako heritage became more accessible to anglers through Johnny Morris’ White River Marine Group, with its proven ­marketing, sales and service network, and product-development expertise and no-haggle fully rigged price structure.

Mako boasts that it builds boats today, as did Schwebke, “stronger than they have to be,” from thrifty skiffs to full-feature offshore boats. Hulls and decks are open-molded for durability and precision fit, and consoles and compartment lids closed-molded and gelcoated inside and out for great looks and easy cleaning.

Offshore boats ride on Mako deep-V hulls, with strategically placed strakes lifting the hull for improved speed, fuel efficiency and handling, fast and slow. Some inshore boats feature a Rapid Planing System transom for swift hole shots. Pro Skiff models’ Advanced Inverted V hulls boast bigger load capacity, better performance and dry, chop-taming rides.

The third-most-evaluated brand in our survey, Mako’s reputation, safety and customer service were bedrock attributes particularly cherished by our respondents.

Mako 17 Pro Skiff CC

Mako calls the Pro Skiff 17 CC one of its most popular boats ever, and no wonder. It’s a quick, reliable, affordable and seaworthy way to get a family or handful of fishing buddies on the water.

Thanks for all that goes in large part to its Advanced Inverted V hull, producing smooth performance, a quick hole shot, a dry ride and deft handling — plus better load carrying and more modest horsepower requirements.

Deck and closed-cell foam-injected hull are bonded mechanically and chemically, ­creating a single quiet structure with plenty of flotation. Bonded to the hull is a one-piece fiberglass deck-liner system with a gleaming gelcoat finish.

Construction is 100 percent composite — the kind of hard-working materials our ­respondents praised. And speaking of hard work, this skiff is ready for it, rated for nearly half a ton of people and equipment.

This center console inshore fishing specialist has bow and aft molded raised nonskid casting decks, with storage within. The helm seat is a removable 65-quart cooler; there’s a 32-quart cooler within the forward console seat and a 10-gallon aerated baitwell in the aft deck. The console itself has five vertical rod holders, a contoured acrylic windscreen, a stainless-steel grab rail and plenty of real estate for mounting fishing and navigation electronics.