Tige Switch i
Recommendation: Hard-core Ski
An entry-level price, open bow design and advanced performance means the Tige Switch i will make many a slalom skier happy. Good tracking and responsiveness together with one of the deepest freeboards out there (Tige says it's the deepest of any 20-footer) allows you to put this boat through its paces while keeping the kiddies and next-in-line skiers safe and dry.
At just 20 feet, space is at a premium, but the Switch i makes good use of its limited resource. Premium-grade 34-ounce marine upholstery and ergonomic seating and interior design allow eight passengers comfortably. The rear storage compartment is deep and spacious, easily accommodating a 69-inch slalom ski. A self-draining cooler, oversized cup holders and the removable composite swim step make this a family-friendly boat that delivers the slalom punch.
Team Tige member Jamie Beauchesne trains behind the Switch i, and that's a pretty hefty endorsement considering he just tied the world slalom record in July 2003. The Switch i doesn't look like your typical tournament ski boat with its deep design and beamy width, but its performance surprised our testers. We found fairly soft ski wakes at 15 off through shortline slalom, with the best performance at 35 off. It also met our standards in regard to its overall tracking ability and handling. With the TAPS adjusted to between 1/2 and 1, the spray was almost nonexistent. The Switch i's value price point will get you into the course at a bargain rate.
* Tige's premier ski machine, boat of choice for world-class pro skiers.
* New for 2004, the TAPS2 system comes with both the ski and wakeboard packages.
* The safety ignition alarm will definitely make you aware that the boat is turned on with its radiating sound.
* Seats could use a bit more recline instead of the straight-up posture.
* Options include three-tank ballast, Bimini top and trailer.
* Heavy-duty all-brass underwater gear.