Hanging out back when the key is off is the way most people like to chill at the sandbar, and jumpseats facilitate that. And just when we think we’ve seen every variation of stern jumpseats, Rinker surprises us with the new Q3 OB, which highlights an all-new approach that uses optional Stow-n-Step stern platform seats ($1,286). Under one of the stern hatches is a small pull strap. Yank it and the seat emerges from its hidey-hole and deploys; yank it again and the seat lowers and stows. A standard Stow-n-Step seat in the center cockpit bench creates a step-up to the stern when it’s not in use.
Rinker designers solved the riddle of wasted space in the outboard engine well with a sectional that fills in the gap and creates an expansive, easy-to-navigate swim platform. Helping to keep the look clean is an optional pull-up ski pylon ($843) that drops down when not in use.
Rinker made its reputation with sporty, affordable sterndrive-powered boats, but catalytic converters and other items made them more costly. Plus, consumer preference shifted to outboards, so Rinker pivoted to create an outboard line that embraces the trend. At a couple of inches more than 23 feet, the Rinker Q3 OB is the newest and smallest model in its Q-Series. Rinker’s goal with the Q3 is to give boaters a fully loaded boat with some luxurious touches that will appeal to coastal boaters who desire a bowrider with some attitude.
Our test boat was powered by a new-generation Mercury V-6 200 that has 3.4L of displacement to give it lots of torque, which is especially helpful for watersports. This package put the Rinker Q3 OB on plane in 3 seconds and to 30 mph in 5 seconds flat. Our test boat had the Active Trim option ($614), so it was able to reach a top speed of 46.4 mph without the driver touching the trim button.
Rinker managed to keep the Q3’s MSRP at $60,294 with the Merc 200, but for an additional $7,850 buyers can bump up the excitement and refinement with a Mercury V-8 Verado 250 (non-supercharged) that has Advanced Mid Section and digital controls. (Rinker will rig Suzuki and Yamaha.) The standard package includes extras such as a portside Swingback Lounge, an extra-deep bowrider section, a Simrad GO7 at the helm and snap-in Infinity Softstep padded flooring throughout.