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Chaparral: Household Name in Australia

Chaparral: Household Name in Australia

Celebrating their 51st year, Chaparral has developed a solid reputation worldwide for quality, innovation and performance; which is probably why they now hold market share in the tough U.S. sports boat market from 18 to 35 feet, and also holds the title as being the most awarded brand for innovation and customer satisfaction. They rank highly worldwide as well, with awards and market share in the U.K, Spain, Italy and even Russia.

In Australia, Chaparral has enjoyed a steady rise to become the brand of choice for thousands of boaties and this is because they unashamedly built boats for saltwater use—something that we Aussies deem to be particularly important. When you look into it, the difference between a standard ‘fresh water’ build and the Chaparral ‘salt water’ build is surprising. Everything from the hull shape through to the type of wiring, drainage, grade of stainless steel, gel coats, trim materials, carpet thickness, hardware quality—literally everything is of a higher grade and therefore, more suited to tough saltwater conditions, which means your investment is still a good thing years down the track.

The designs work better as well, with simple things such as higher windscreens to help keep you dry in rougher water, safe high freeboard, big swim platforms, proper diamond tread grip moulded into all of the horizontal surfaces, bigger fuel capacities and the patented extended V-plane hulls that keep the bow down for faster holeshots and lower fuel consumption. This ethos and passion starts at the top with the original founder of Chaparral, Buck Pegg (What a great American name!) still working the production line floor and heavily influencing the substantial multimillion-dollar annual R&D programs.

Buck and his team have been busy over the last few years releasing several new models including the best selling H2o entry level sport and ski/fish bowrider range, which had reached the 200th sold milestone, as recently announced by the Aussie importer. “The H2o has been a phenomenal success story for Chaparral worldwide,” says Scott O’Hare from Chaparral Australia. “In particular, Australians have embraced the concept of an entry level priced bowrider with premium DNA, especially considering the Chaparral ‘saltwater tough’ ethos suits the Aussie boating environment so well. A ten-minute test drive will show you why.”

Other popular models are the Vortex jet boats, which are available with Chaparrals award winning aerial surf platform or ASP, a unique device that takes the jet thrust and turns it into a surf wave—a world first! The Vortex range has become a major focus for the innovative boat builders who believe that offering jet power in a comfortable hull package suitable for salt will open up new markets such as the Gold Coast. “Once again salt water thinking means fresh water cooled, self draining decks, deep-V entry for a soft ride, and way more comfort than a traditional jet boat design. We reckon these will be a winner on the Gold Coast needing only 300mm of water to operate in,” says O’Hare.

“I know my run in the 223 VRX with twin 250 HP motors was bordering on crazy as we shot past the 60 mph mark on roughish water, not a ride for the faint hearted. And then, once we found the magic spot, out came the surfboard. Suddenly, the boat was transformed into serious wake machine! Very impressive, that’s for sure!” shares O’Hare.

Not to be outdone Chaparral has also released the new Suncoast range of outboard bowriders, Chaparrals first outboards in 25 years. With both sport and ski/fish options available from 21 to 25 feet, these spacious comfortable deck boats, each with toilet, wet bar and huge storage capacity, are the perfect day boat. Easy to trailer, keep on the dock outside your house, or dry stack and with the mighty Yamaha outboard, you will run all day at very low fuel cost and completely hassle free.

In fact, since 2011, Chaparral has released over 35 new models, including cruisers, Xtreme salt water wake boats, and even the world’s biggest (and fastest) bowrider, the 337SSx. If flying along with twenty of your friends at 100kmh tickles your fancy, then the 337SSx is definitely worth a look. It even has an overnight cabin for two. Yes, that’s right—a 33-foot bowrider with a cabin. Now that has to be the perfect Gold Coast boat!

If you are in the market to upgrade your current boat or thinking about getting started, check out what Chaparral has to offer. You will be impressed. The friendly folk at Stefan Boating World in Coomera look after Chaparral on the coast, and the strong Aussie network of dealerships ensure top notch after sales service no matter where you go boating. Most models are available immediately. Go to for more info.