Glastron GTDW 205 Boat Test

April 11, 2019, by , under Powerboat Reviews

The kids gotta surf. But you’d rather fish. You could do both from one boat if you check the right option boxes when ordering the new Glastron GTDW 205 Surf and Fish, a 22-foot deck boat that’s surfable because it’s powered by the Volvo Penta Forward Drive and fishable with a package that adds a baitwell, rod holders and a bow casting platform.

The key feature of the GTDW 205 is the Forward Drive, a sterndrive with forward-facing contra-­rotating props that pull the boat through the water. Because those props are located below the boat — 26.5 inches forward of the prop location on a Duoprop outdrive — it’s safe to wakesurf behind a Forward Drive-powered boat. The GTDW is also equipped with a set of Wake Worx Super Surf’R surf tabs that can be used to further enlarge and fine-tune the surf wake shape. A water-ballast system is not offered, and without that added weight, the surf wake is about knee-high to an adult.

The GTDW mission is about all-around fun, and so it has a sun pad with an adjustable backrest over the engine, seating that wraps around the cockpit to the port console where there’s a cubby for an optional 25-quart cooler ($80), and room for four in the bow. There are dark windscreens on top of each console, but in cooler climates consider the optional full glass windshield ($1,000). The Fishing Package ($2,067) adds bow and stern casting platforms below snap-off cushions, two casting seats, four rod holders in the ski locker, ­wiring for a 24-volt trolling motor, and a baitwell below the port console seat. A trolling motor ($1,220) and a Lowrance Hook-3x sonar ($300) complete a casual ­angling setup.

We really like the way the Forward Drive makes this boat handle. With the props always buried in the water, steering response is immediate, and there’s excellent thrust in reverse because the props are never fouled by exhaust gas. The 4.3-liter V-6 engine is eager and spunky, and adds to the fun factor that this boat delivers.

High Points

  • You are wakesurfing for about half the price of an inboard tow boat.
  • Gunwale is cut down to port amidships to ease dockside boarding.
  • Extended boarding platform has been engineered to withstand the water pressure of low-speed wakes.

Low Points

  • Watersports tower and board racks are a $3,600 upcharge.
  • No ballast system, and Zero Off speed control is an option.


Toughest Competitor
The 21-foot Regal 21 RX Surf ($61,225 with 240 hp Forward Drive and no trailer) has a traditional bowrider layout with less room forward than the Glastron, but it comes equipped with a sport tower and six-speaker audio system, plus surf tabs, 1,000-pound ballast system, and speed control that functions through the RegalVue touchscreen display.

Price: $60,533 (with test power and trailer)

Available Power: Forward Drive

How We Tested
Engine: 240 hp Volvo Penta V6-240-CE sterndrive
Drive/Prop: Volvo Penta Forward Drive/Volvo Penta K3 stainless-steel propset
Gear Ratio: 2.32:1
Fuel Load: 10 gal.
Crew Weight: 370 lb.

Glastron Boats – Cadillac, Michigan; 231-775-1351; glastron.com

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