Who makes the best pontoon boats?

Be ready to learn about the best pontoon boats available in the market!

What are the best pontoon boats available in the market

If you are new to the world of pontoon boats, buying a good boat for yourself can be quite confusing.

From entry-level models for a family cruise, pontoon boats that offer fishing amenities, and watersports boats, there is a wide variety to choose from.

With the popularity of pontoon boats skyrocketing, we have seen many models hit the market in recent years.  

In this post, we shall be discussing the brands that make the best pontoon boats and which are the best boats available for you.

1. Bennington

Bennington was founded in 1997 by a small group of industry veterans, including Patrick Call, Steve Vogel, and Richard Strefling. Based in Elkhart, Indiana, Bennington is the world’s premier luxury boat manufacturer.

What makes Bennington a good choice?

Bennington boats have a reputation for excellence. It designs all its boats with luxury performance features.

Some of the features include power-assist hydraulic steering, lifting brakes, underdeck wave shield, performance foils, and keels.

The company offers five series of pontoon boats, including Q Series, R Series, G Series, S Series, and SV Series, that range from luxurious to practical.

Bennington also offers a bow to stern warranty to their customers. This warranty is good for ten years including a transferable warranty for the second owner, a lifetime structural warranty, and a lifetime deck warranty.

Best Bennington boat for you

Bennington’s 24 R Bowrider boasts of a recessed bowrider design called the Step-Down U Lounge.

With this design, Bennington has created a space below the traditional deck height with its Integrated V-Hull Performance package, which is a central, V-hull-like center pod.

It allows for that dropped foredeck while adding lift, stability, and enhances the craft’s agility in the turns.

It feels safe and more luxurious. The pilot can easily see over the heads of the crew seated forward.

Forward of the bow lounges, there’s plenty of deck space to help with launching or docking.

The lounges in the bow feature Integrated Bench-Back Storage.

Bennington’s 24 R Bowrider
Source: Bennington

2. Avalon

Avalon has been manufacturing quality pontoon boats since 1972.

Their boats are reliable and have a reputation for durability. Avalon boasts superior craftsmanship and quality.

These boats are perfect for people looking for a well-rounded boat that provides luxury without breaking the bank.

What makes Avalon a good choice?

Avalon is committed to providing quality products. All Avalon pontoons come with a lifetime structural warranty along with a comprehensive 10-year warranty.

Their models have ample power for waterskiing and wakeboarding. 

They also have unique features like hydraulic steering, LED cup holders, and extra storage space.

Some other customizable options offered by Avalon include a water slide, wakeboard rack, and gas grill.

Best Avalon boat for you

The Catalina Platinum Quad Lounger 258QL is a good boat if you want to buy an Avalon.

It has a powerful 130 horsepower engine with a roomy quad lounge interior created with luxurious Master collection Ultrafine tough luxury furnishings. It is ideal for cruising, sun lounging, and watersports.

You can add extras like a ski tow bar, collapsible sport tower, and arch speakers.

Catalina Platinum Quad Lounger 258QL
Source: Avalon

3. Harris

Harris has been in the business of building pontoon boats for over 60 years.

The company prides itself on comfort, style, premium builds, and excellent warranties.

Harris has six pontoon series boats, including value-focused Cruiser and Cruiser LX series, working up to Sunliner Series, Solstice Series, Grand Mariner Series, and the top of the line Crowne Series.  

What makes Harris a good choice?

Harris has mastered premium boatbuilding techniques in its aluminum pontoon hulls.

Their innovative design bestows these boats with exceptional speed and handling on smooth and rough water.

All Harris boats go through a four-step water intrusion prevention process that prevents them from sinking.

If a mishap does occur, there are sealed chambers in pontoon tubes.

Harris also has a five-year bow-to-stern warranty. They also have a Limited Lifetime Warranty if you need more coverage.

Best Harris boat for you

Any boat in Harris’s Crowne Series is a good buy.

These pontoons won the 2013 NMMA Innovation award. With the introduction of this series in 2013, Harris blurred the lines between a pontoon’s aluminum fencing and a v-hull’s fiberglass curves.

The boat has fiberglass modules that form the boat’s exterior walls and also incorporate interior furniture bases.

The Crowne 270 SL TE can be outfitted with a pair of 400 HP Mercury Verado outboards that can push this craft to speeds over 60 mph.

Harris’s Crowne Series
Source: Harris Boats

4. Sylvan

Sylvan traces its history back to 1948 when it was founded as a pontoon and houseboat manufacturer near Sylvan Lake in Wolcottville, Indiana.

The company rose in popularity due to its use of colored side panels on pontoons.

With the introduction of new features such as the Revolutionary Planing Technology Tubes in 2006, Sylvan has been at the forefront of the pontoon industry.

What makes Sylvan a good choice?

Sylvan Marine offers industry-leading deck construction and innovative tube designs to give you years of strength and durability.

All Sylvan pontoons and boats come with a Limited Lifetime Warranty on hull and structure.

They also offer a six-year warranty on all components, carpet, upholstery, and electronics, and parts and labor are included.

The warranty is transferable to the second owner.

Best Sylvan boat for you

Whether you are a serious fisherman or love being in the water, the Sylvan Mirage Fish LE series is the best boat for you.

The Mirage 8520 Cruise-N-Fish LE pontoon will impress you with its fishing features, and there is plenty of seating available.

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5. Sun Tracker

Launched in 1983, Sun Tracker helped create the modern pontoon boat segment with its famous Bass Buggy, Fishing Barge, and Party Barge models.

Their versatile lineup includes 16 to 24-foot pontoon boats that you find at Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s Boating Center stores across the country. 

What makes Sun Tracker a good choice?

Sun Tracker has a long history of satisfied customers. These boats are more affordable than many other brands of pontoon boats.

The company also offers two warranties for their boats. Their Lifetime Limited Structural and Deck Warranty covers gates, perimeter fence rails, deck supports, pontoon logs, and more.

The second bow-to-stern warranty for ten years includes Bimini top, furniture, vinyl, plumbing, live wells, electrical components, and more.

Best Sun Tracker boat for you

If you believe in enjoying time in the water with more people, the Sun Tracker Party Barge 24XP3 is the right option for you. This pontoon boat is 27 feet long and can reach 250 PH and there is enough room for 12 passengers.

Some of the other features include woven vinyl flooring, QuickLift Bimini top deployment system, color-keyed Bimini top with LED lights, port and starboard navigation lights, and four new folding mooring cleats.

6. Premier

Bob Menne, a professional snowmobile racer and Forester Boat executive, launched Premier Pontoons in 1992 in Wyoming, Minnesota. Since then, the Menne family has managed this brand.

Now, Premier is manufacturing about 3,500 pontoons a year under the Premier, Palm Beach, Weeres, and Leisure brands

What makes Premier a good choice?

Premier Pontoons stands out from other pontoon brands due to their innovation and quality craftsmanship.

The combination of a hull shaped center tube, lifting strakes, planning surfaces, and performance sheeting make the boat faster, with sharper turns and more efficient engine horsepower use.

Their furniture is not built with wood, so it doesn’t rot.

They include the Ricochet Ladder System, a self-retracting ladder that won the Deck Equipment Innovation Award in the 2016 Miami International Boat Show.

The boats are made of .090 gauge aluminum that is less likely to corrode. 

Some of these pontoons’ other features include domed and stamped endcaps, cap-welded and extruded lifting strakes, multi-chambered pontoon tubes, automated pulse seams, and an aluminum keel.

All Premier boat owners can enjoy a Limited Lifetime Warranty, which protects against deck and frame damage.

The best Premier boat for you

If space is what you are looking for in your boat, the 33’5” long triple-engine Premier Encounter is the boat for you.  This boat comes with an enlarged console with a cabin inside.

The pontoon boat can carry over a dozen passengers. The Premier Encounter has no problem reaching up to 60 MPH.

It also has a ricochet ladder, which automatically returns to the stowed position when the boat starts moving through the water.

7. Manitou

Lanette VanWagenen, Steven VanWagenen, and Tom Schupbach started the Manitou Pontoon Boats in 1985.

Over the years, the company has rolled out more features for its pontoon boats.

What makes Manitou a good choice?

Manitou boats are well known for their quality of construction. Their two best-known features are their V-Toon tritoons and V-Hulls. 

Manitou is the only company with patented V-Toon technology. They offer a far superior hull design to provide greater acceleration, higher top-end speeds, and increased stability.

The other features of these boats include boat coolers and sinks, four-point fishing floorplans, chaise privacy stations, tritoons, and Sport Handling Package hulls.

The Sport Handling Package hulls are for pontoons that can reach 175 to 400 HP. You get faster speed, power-assist steering, Barracuda nosecones, and positive angle lifting strakes.

The best Manitou boat for you

The Manitou Encore is an excellent mid-sized luxury pontoon. It can easily fit four or more passengers on board.

The other features include a powerful 43-gallon V-Toon with a 24-gallon twin-tube gas tank. The floorplans also have a ski tow bar, dinette table, extended starboard chaise, and a soft-side cooler.

Manitou Encore: The best pontoon boat by Manitou available in market
Source: Manitou Boat

Final thoughts on the best pontoon boats

Pontoon boats are among the fastest-growing segments of the boating industry. They provide the space and stability for boaters looking to spend a relaxing day on the water.

Pontoons have improved tremendously over the years. Many of these boats have features that make them suitable for cruising, fishing, and even watersports.

We hope our list of the best pontoon boats brands have helped you make a better choice for your next boat.