Boat Review by: Rick Layzell
It’s often said that ‘timing is everything,’ and the introduction of the MAX models to Princecraft’s best selling fishing machines is exceptional timing. The MAX concept adds standard features that deliver maximum value for a smaller price on proven hull designs.
In today’s boating market there are dozens of 16‘ fishing models Many, like the Holiday 162, are geared towards first time buyers. The process can be confusing and frustrating. MAX aims to change that by simplifying the process.
The Holiday 162 is a winner from the moment you lay eyes on her. Dressed in Princecraft’s beautiful urethane paint with a black high gloss finish and attractive decal package, the 162 checks the right boxes immediately. If you’re picky about colour then Princecraft has other models for you, the Holiday 162 MAX package is available in black only. Henry Ford used a similar strategy with the Model T when he said: “Any customer can have a car painted any colour, so long as it’s black.” That strategy worked well enough they filled Ford’s production lines for 12 model years. Bottom line– the black hull on the Holiday 162 is a home run.
The hull engineering features a reverse chine hull– your benefit is knowing that while you are running on plane the hull is designed to keep the water knocked down underneath and pushed away from the boat. That means a smoother, drier ride– big check mark for that one.
Rigging tubes, those that carry your wiring harnesses, are tucked neatly under the flooring from your helm to the bow and stern. That means you’re not dealing with wiring getting in your way, pinched, or caught, and that’s another check mark.
Fishing features are abundant on the Holiday 162 MAX. Starting with the carpeted raised casting deck on the bow there’s a 34”, 61L / 16 US gal Sportflo electric filled aerated livewell, a pre wired 12V trolling motor plug with 50 AMP protection and trolling motor pad, and a seat base that allows you to readily move either of the 2 standard seats (both of which are designed with no pinch hinges). Any avid angler will appreciate the PrinceTrak System– it runs bow to stern on both sides of the boat and allows you to quickly position accessories (rod holders, tool holders etc.) in the right spot for your fishing tastes.
The cockpit is dressed in anti-skid vinyl flooring and offers a total of 3 seat bases. The helm station is smartly laid out with a tach, speedo and trim gauge, tilt steering wheel with a No FeedBack steering system, deluxe dash panel with lighted toggle switches, storage under both consoles, and a generously sized tall walk thru windshield trimmed out in black anodized aluminum. For me the helm is comfortable, the seat is equally comfortable, and that windshield rocks!
The MAX package adds an emergency ladder, 22.7L/6 US gallon portable fuel tank with gauge, a 160 watt Jensen sound system with a pair of speakers, a black trailering cover, and a bimini top.
Your Holiday 162 even includes a galvanized bunk trailer. That’s a long list of standard features for a first-time buyer. For me there are two items left to consider– which trolling motor do I want and what’s my preference for dash mounted electronics– both of which can be ordered as options from the factory or you can add your own down the road.
Our test boat was paired with Mercury’s 60 HP four stroke proven engine. Regular fuel runs through these lines and into the inline 4-cylinder design. She purred at the dock and proved to be so much fun on the water.
The cool fall temps held around 7 degrees Celsius as we eased away from the dock and onto Lac William near Princecraft’s headquarters in Quebec. With my photographer and his gear, appropriate safety equipment on board, and ½ tank of fuel we readily found our way on plane and into our testing trials. The Holiday 162 hull proved herself over and over as my hard turns to port or starboard maintained a smooth and dry ride and delivered a top speed of 32 MPH @ 6,000 RPM with about ¼ trim. Cruising speeds were awesome with 21 & 24 MPH @ 4,100 @ 4,700 RPM respectively as our preferred range.
It is always essential to note that all boats behave differently subject to load of both passengers and gear, as well as varying water and weather conditions. If you’re a novice or returning angler take time on the water to get to know your boat– run her safely through a series of hole shots, cruising speed ranges, and turns. In the end you’ll be a better captain as you will know your boat more intimately.
The 2021 Princecraft Holiday 162 DLX WS MAX is quite simply a ton of fun that delivers exceptional value. I had an absolute blast driving this boat– my camera man had to tell me to quit giggling on several occasions. The MAX package checks all the right boxes and overall this is exceptional value for any boater looking to get started in boating, come back to the sport, or add to their existing fleet of great boats.
|Dry weight:||910 lbs||413 kg|
|Fuel Capacity:||19 US gals||72 L|
|Base Engine / Drive:||Mercury|