Southern XP676 - Southern Boats


Southern XP676 - Southern Boats
Boat review: Southern Alloy Boats XP676HTO
BOAd 375, 39
stanhall 3
Words by John Eichelsheim
Photos by Will Calver
Southern’s latest creation is a chip off the old block but
it also breaks the mould. As an evolution of the smaller
XP646, it has a strong pedigree and a fresh new look.
he new 676XP from Southern Alloy Boats has as much appeal for fishers and divers as for
family boaters, with the bonus of genuine bluewater ability.
We’re used to good lookers from the South Island manufacturer, usually good in
metallic grey or blue, but the new colour scheme of pale grey with contrasting black bow
rails and rocket launcher is a refreshing change. The paintwork is complemented by dark
grey, high-density neoprene panels on the side decks, foredeck, coamings, transom and
swimstep areas and a well finished interior.
The sensibly laid out 676XP is a development of Southern Alloy Boat’s popular XP646. It’s
300mm longer, 100mm wider at the chines for improved stability at rest and has welded strakes
to give the hull a little more lift. Southern has modified the chine line on subsequent XP646s to
sweep upward a little more towards the bows, to lift them slightly when the boat’s planing.
As a result of the extra length and more beam at the chines, the XP676 has a larger cockpit and
more cabin volume than the 646. The HTO label indicates that this is a Hard Top Open version,
but enclosed hardtops are also available.
Boating New Zealand May 2014
Yamaha in the City
...100mm wider at the chines for
improved stability at rest and has welded
strakes to give the hull a little more lift.
4-stroke –
the lightest 4-Stroke 200hp
Outboard in the world
• A parts team ensuring quick
response & parts dispatch.
• Full workshop with eleven
mobile vans.
• Genuine Yamaha parts.
The hardtop roof, seat bases and instrument console are resin-infused GRP with a
thinly moulded ceiling lining to save weight; the roof is a much thicker laminate for
strength. The hardtop cabin and cockpit are lined and carpeted for comfort, with the
carpets being easily removed for washing.
Nice lines
Ph 09 377 4285
Fax 09 377 9665
Email [email protected]
142 Beaumont Street, Westhaven
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The Southern XP646 has a good-sized cockpit that’s all business. It feels safe with
Southern’s typically high freeboard and wide, neoprene-topped coamings. The flush
transom, excellent all-round toe room and the security of the high sides are great fishing
features and there’s plenty of rod stowage in through-gunwale aluminium rodholders, the
rocket launcher, bait board and cockpit shelves. Useful features include tie-down racks in
the cockpit and Frontrunner-lined cockpit shelves. Side pockets further forward under the
hardtop offer dry storage options and there’s generous shelving, plus under-berth stowage
in the forward cabin. A sliding aluminium cabin door offers lock-up security for high
value equipment when the boat’s tied up or on the trailer.
Stability at rest has improved over earlier models while extra-large Southern Boats
trim tabs with Lenco actuators do an excellent job of maintaining the boat’s attitude
when underway.
Thanks partly to the new paint colour, the interior feels open and spacious. Inside the
LEFT: The cockpit is roomy and is ideal for fishing. By closing the cuddy
doors, it can be sealed off from the interior. ABOVE: The white paint job is a
refreshing change from Southern’s usual colour scheme and works well with
the hard lines to make the XP676 look striking.
hardtop are comfortable king and queen seats that swivel and
adjust fore and aft. No footrests were fitted to the review boat, but
these are usually tailored to fit the owner. Additional handholds
will also be fitted on the passenger side.
Padded vinyl panels along the gunwales provide a bit of luxury
and comfort and there’s a nicely sculpted instrument console,
sliding side windows and LED lighting. There’s plenty of console
real estate for flush-mounted displays, in this case a 12-inch
Raymarine multi-function unit, plus extra for Yamaha digital
instruments under the console eyebrow. Black vinyl along the
dashboard eliminates glare on the three-pane windscreen, and
opening the access hatch behind the instrument panel reveals
extremely tidy wiring and labelling.
Without a galley or onboard freshwater, this boat isn’t set up for
Beaut transom
he transom layout of the Southern XP676 works well. A pair
of transom lockers provides good dry stowage, and while
the batteries are at floor level, they’re fully enclosed by an
aluminium hatch which protects them from salt spray and anything
short of a cockpit full of water. Battery switches are outside the
locker for ease of access.
There’s a small drop-in transom door for the step-through on
the starboard side. The livebait tank and washdown pump are
mounted up out of the way under the step-through and there’s
room on the port side to slide a 70-litre bin under the livebait tank.
Be in
at the
Show hwilco B
, 15Stand 18 May
Boating New Zealand May 2014
PO Box 125163, St. Heliers, Auckland 1740
phone: +64 9 575 0922
mobile: 021 704 854
e-mail: [email protected]
Marineline New Zealand
Southern Boats pride themselves on presenting you with
one of the finest handcrafted Alloy boats available today.
The team of skilled boat builders, upholsterers and painters
based at Southern’s Dunedin manufacturing facility have
spent thousands of hours perfecting their craft to bring you
a boat with proven performance, handsome good looks
and heavy duty durability. Contact us or drop into your local
dealer and start making your dream a reality today.
TOP and MIDDLE RIGHT: The interior is comfortable and provides a few
creature comforts. MIDDLE LEFT and ABOVE RIGHT: The transom contains
practical storage lockers and a live-bait tank.
overnighting, though it has full length berths with an infill to make
a double, plus a plumbed toilet. A gas BBQ or canister cooker, plus
a container of two of water, would certainly take care of your basic
needs on a weekend away. With 200 litres of fuel carried under the
floor, the boat has the range to explore.
Smoothly does it
The XP676HTO travels smoothly and handles well. The entry is
typically fine and its variable deadrise hull with 5mm bottom
plates, modest reverse chines and a 20-degree deadrise at the
transom is a soft rider.
This boat seems well suited to Yamaha’s new F200F four-cylinder
four-stroke – see sidebar. It’s at the top of the 676’s recommended
horsepower range but it’s actually lighter than Yamaha’s 150hp
four-stroke. Family Boats has tested both engines on the same boat
and reports that the 200hp is quieter and more fuel efficient than
the 150hp, as well as providing better performance overall.
Electronic fly-by-wire throttle controls and Yamaha’s new shift
dampening system all but eliminate clunking in and out of gear.
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The boat rides fairly level, so vision ahead is
excellent, and there’s no perceptible nose-up,
nose-down transition onto the plane. As with
any hardtop, trim tabs were welcome.
Cruising at 26 knots at 4000rpm, the boat
used 27 litres of fuel per hour, and we reached
a top speed of 39.5 knots at 5800rpm, burning
75 litres per hour.
New Yamaha F200F
amaha claims its new four-cylinder
F200F is the lightest 200hp fourstroke on the market at 227kg – 50kg
lighter than the old model F200C. With
its slim-line cowl, the lightweight F200F is
ideal for twin engine applications and is an
attractive option for boaters wanting more
horsepower without more weight or the
same horsepower for less weight.
A smooth, quiet, in-line, four-cylinder
with Variable Camshaft Timing (VCT) and
weight-saving technology throughout, the new
engine produces 200hp. Light weight equates
to improved fuel-efficiency, as well as better
performance so the F200F suits a wider range
of boats than heavier V6 engines do.
The new F200F features an improved
Reliance Shift Dampener System (SDS) to
minimise clunking when engaging forward or
reverse gear, as well as new counterbalance
Southern Alloy Boats
➤ loa 6.750m
➤ beam 2.45m (2.2m at the
➤ draft approx 0.4m
➤ construction aluminium
➤ weight approx 1900kg on
➤ engine Yamaha F200F fourstroke outboard
➤ deadrise 20° at transom
➤ fuel 200 litres
➤ cruising speed 25-30 knots
➤ max speed 40 knots
➤ price as reviewed $129,995
➤ packages from $110,995
➤ manufactured by Southern
Alloy Boats Ltd, Mosgiel,
➤ boat supplied by
Family Boats Ltd,
[email protected]
phone 09274 0511
Boating New Zealand May 2014
Better than ever
shafts for vibration-free, quiet boating.
There’s a 50amp alternator for a 13
percent increase in charge over the outgoing
F200C at idle, and the popular Variable
Trolling RPM Switch (VTS) system allows
fishermen to fine-tune their trolling speeds.
The F200F offers the Y-COP (Yamaha
Customer Outboard Protection) anti-theft
system and an optional tilt-limiter.
Southern Alloy Boats offers looks, specification
and performance with excellent build quality.
New models have benefited from ongoing
development. Incremental improvements to
the internal layout, hardtop design, paint and
cosmetics, as well little improvements to a hull
form that was a good performer anyway, mean
the new models like the XP670HTO are the
best Southerns yet. B
Aluminium trailer
he review boat was
supplied on a dualaxle Southern Alloy
Boats aluminium trailer with
override brakes on one axle,
alloy wheels and zinc-coated
leaf spring suspension. The
boat is supported on rollers
along the keel, pairs of fixed
rollers on either side of the
trailer and two sets of larger
rollers per side at the rear,
which help the boat to selfcentre on the trailer.

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