Boat Test: 2018 Smoker Craft 20 Phantom X2

Boat Tested2018 Smoker Craft 20 Phantom X2
Price As TestedNot Available
Category Multi Species Fish
Manufacturer Smoker Craft
Length20ft 7in / 6.27 m
Beam8ft 5in / 2.57 m
Max HP200
Drive TypeOutboard
Engine MakeMercury
Fuel Capacity58
By Steven Bull
The Phantom X2 is a new boat in Smoker Craft’s North American Angler Family. It’s a west-coast style boat, rugged with a high windscreen pushed forward to open up the cockpit for gear transport and room to fish.

It’s heavy duty in build, not just appearance. With a .160 gauge aluminum bottom, .125 gauge sides and a 58-gallon (220 litre) fuel tank, it has the guts and the gas to go farther and do more.

The dual track system, or IGTS (Integrated Gunnel Tracking System), lets you customize accessories or add the Bert’s Custom Tackle Package that includes downrigger mounts.

As tested, we had a few other options that will likely prove quite popular, including the wash-down hose on starboard side at the transom, a 25-gallon (95 litre) stern livewell with integrated bait bucket holder, and bench seating with fold-down backrests and flip up access to storage below.

The hull is not a deep-V style, but rather a padded-V, meaning this Phantom is designed to ride on top of the water. Though it is intended to take a beating in big water, it’s not simply utilitarian. It’s got looks too. There is checker plating throughout, the exterior is coated in twice-baked urethane paint and the interior is speckle paint.

It’s light for the size of boat, thanks to the all-welded design. It shoots onto plane in under four seconds and reaches a top speed, as tested, of 46 miles per hour. I found cruising around 30-35 miles per hour perfect for the hull and power combination, though that could change if you had more power or more chop to deal with.

I was quick to judge the Phantom X2 as another utilitarian boat, until I tried it out. After spending a day on the water in Indiana, I felt I owed it an apology. It’s a fun boat to run and it’s packed with more features than meets the eye!

Mercury 150-horsepower, FourStroke, 8-valve single overhead cam (SOHC), Inline 4, with performance-tuned scroll intake manifold and computer controlled multi-port electronic fuel injection (EFI)
DETAILSLength: 20 ft 7 in / 6.27 mBeam: 8 ft 5 in / 2.56 mFuel Capacity: 58 gals / 219.2L
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