Sea Ray SLX-W 230

The new age of wakesurfing.

by Alan Wendt
Surf’s up for Sea Ray with an out-of-the-box design in the growing wakesport category.


  • LOA: 20'8"
  • Beam: 8'6"
  • Draft: 34"
  • Weight: 5,525 lbs.
  • Fuel Capacity: 53 gals.
  • Water Capacity: 5 gals.
  • Power: Mercruiser 370 hp 6.2L ECT TowSport V-Drive inboard
  • Price: Contact dealer

Catering to the teenage phenomenon of surfing behind a boat, the new SLX-W 230 equally appeals to parents toting the note, as a simple flip of the switch transforms this play toy into an elegant runabout for coving and cruising.

Power is provided by Mercury Marine’s V-Drive propulsion system, combining Sea Ray’s proprietary WakeTech wake-shaping plates with a deep-V hull design to create a 20-foot-long wave tuned to the rider’s liking, allowing for port or starboard wakes almost on the fly. During our testing, an accomplished rider managed to stay up during the switch from left to right — now that’s impressive!

The “aha!” moment in design will likely cause boatbuilders to rethink the placement of ballast. For years, designers mounted phat sacks aft to create a wave for wakeboarders. The SLX-W 230 has 2,000 pounds of ballast centered forward near the helm and molded into a sophisticated hull instead of taking up valuable space underneath the seat. In addition, the water passes through a heat exchanger from the engine and is connected to a warm, freshwater shower on the transom that should feel mighty good after a chilly ride.

As swim platforms go, this one is deep and has an option for submersion, making re-entry effortless and appealing for a variety of watersports configurations.

Joystick piloting capability is another innovation that allows drivers pinpoint precision and effortless docking, made possible with thrusters working in concert with the engine.

“Customers were very clear about how difficult it was to maneuver traditional tow boats in close quarters, such as around docks or when picking up surfers,” says Sea Ray’s president and general manager of sport boats, Brad Anderson. “The SLX-W 230 makes it easy to dock in any condition and spin on a dime to pick up a fallen surfer more quickly.”

This model includes a standard watersports tower, which lowers for towing or storage in a garage. The tower easily supports board racks and can speakers that add resonance and depth to beautiful days out on the water.  



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