Water Sports - 16 min read

15 Best Pontoon Boat Brands Available (Includes Amazing Features!)

Town and Tourist

Town and Tourist, Updated October 9, 2022

Pontoon boats offer a perfect balance of leisure, adventure, and entertainment. With that said, they are expensive and can be a big commitment which makes it hard to pick one. It can be difficult to decide with so many options on the market, so what are the best pontoon boats on the market?

The best pontoon boat brands include Sylvan, Bennington, Sunchaser, Godfrey, and Sun Tracker. Brands such as Tahoe, Avalon, Barletta, and Manitou make some of the best pontoon boats on the market. You can also find affordable and high-performing pontoon boats from Berkshire, Harris, Princecraft, and Starcraft which all make classic cruisers and luxury models alike.

The mark of a great pontoon boat brand is one with great customer service and quick delivery. Each of these brands made this list because of their impressive construction and customer support beyond the initial purchase. Follow along as we highlight the best pontoon boat brands and see what makes them special.

Best Pontoon Boat Brands

There are countless pontoon boat brands to choose from, but only a handful of them are the best. The majority of the brands on this list strictly specialize in crafting premium pontoon boats. Let’s take a look at the best pontoon boat brands.

1. Sylvan

Credit: The Best Boat Brands / Flickr

Sylvan’s history dates back to 1903 and they have made the best pontoon boats on the market for years Continually changing with the times, Sylvan has always stayed ahead of the curve. They offer various pontoon boats ranging from basic fishing pontoons to luxury cruisers.

Sylvan currently offers 6 different series that are each made up of several different models. The M Series pontoon boats err on the luxury side whereas the Mirage Fish series is more about practicality. Sylvan’s Mirage X is possibly their most popular model with its impressive 300-horsepower engine and 13-person capacity.

What Are Customers Saying?

Few pontoon boat brands have as good of a customer approval rating as Sylvan. This is because of the impressive customer service and the lifetime warranty that they offer. As recently as 2019 they won multiple awards for the Sylvan Mirage 8524 DLZ Bar LE which is a customer favorite.

2. Bennington

Credit: Pontoon Boats by Bennington / Flickr

Much like Sylvan, Bennington pontoon boats are as comfortable as they are technically and mechanically impressive. All 4 of Bennington’s series are unique and vary in cost and style. For example, the L Series and R Series boats are their premium, high-end models that are the most expensive.

The S Series, on the other hand, offers more value options that appeal to a wide range of customers. You also have the option to customize a Bennington pontoon boat which opens the door to endless possibilities. Bennington has made pontoon boats since 1997, and they seemingly get better every year.

What Are Customers Saying?

Bennington pontoon boats are popular amongst customers because of their warranty and customer service. You can get a 10-year warranty with a Bennington pontoon which is quite generous in the boating industry. It’s also quite easy to reach their customer service department online through their website if you have a problem, and that’s invaluable to a customer.

3. Sunchaser

Credit: The Best Boat Brands / Flickr

Sunchaser is owned by the same parent company as Sylvan, so it’s no surprise they’re one of the best pontoon boat brands. Their current lineup consists of 5 series that each offer a different style and purpose. For example, the Geneva Sport series is about precision and luxury whereas the Geneva Cruise series is mostly ideal for fishing.

You can find a variety of layouts and sizes within each series to accommodate your needs and budget. Sunchaser has been around since 1903 so it should come as no shock that they’ve mastered their craft over the years. They currently offer 25 floorplans for their pontoons, so you can easily find one that will suit you and your family or friends.

What Are Customers Saying?

The most popular Sunchaser pontoon boats among customers are the Geneva Cruise and Eclipse. Sunchaser has also won many awards over the years from the National Marine Manufacturers Association which is coveted in the industry. The best accolade that Sunchaser can claim is that countless customers online vouch for their great customer service.

4. Godfrey

Credit: wortenoggle / Flickr

Each series in Godfrey’s lineup is impressive, and even their most budget-friendly models offer premium craftsmanship. The Sweetwater Xperience line is their most affordable collection with 3 impressive models to choose from. However, their most impressive line of pontoon boats is the Sanpan series with boats that reach 28 feet long.

It’s no wonder that Godfrey’s pontoon boats are so well-made because they’ve been in business for 60 years. Godfrey makes it easy when you want to upgrade as they can help you sell or trade-in your current pontoon boat as well. This all adds up to one of the best pontoon boat brands on the market.

What Are Customers Saying?

Godfrey won the 2021 Marine Industry Customer Satisfaction Index Award because of their great reputation. This is arguably the most important industry award because it is strictly about how customers feel about the brand. Customers applaud Godfrey for their high-quality boats and easy-to-reach customer service.

5. Sun Tracker

Credit: TrackerBoats / Flickr

Sun Tracker has made high-end pontoon boats for over 35 years. They offer unique fishing and recreational pontoon boats that come in several sizes and floorplans. For example, their Party Barge line can accommodate up to 1,600 pounds and 11 people.

One of the key features of many of Sun Tracker’s pontoon boats is the Mercury FourStroke motor. This is how their pontoons can move through the water so smoothly even with many people on board. Even their budget fishing pontoons such as the Bass Buggy 16 XL feature premium construction and ingenuity.

What Are Customers Saying?

Sun Tracker customers consistently applaud the brand for its reasonable prices. Their lower-end pontoon boats are still impressive and cost thousands of dollars less than similar brands. You can also get a 10-year warranty with your Sun Tracker pontoon, and it’s always easy to reach their customer service department.

6. Harris

Craig’s Marine Canvas / Flickr

Harris keeps things simple with a limited selection of pontoon boats that are all impressive. There’s nothing simple about their designs, however, and Harris pontoon boats all fall into the luxury category. Even their most simple model, the Sunliner 210, is a display of ingenuity with a 200-horsepower engine.

All of their pontoon boats work equally well for cruising, fishing, or simply partying on the water. The right one for you depends on your budget and how large of a boat you need. Harris also lets you customize a pontoon, so there’s no reason you can’t have the boat of your dreams.

What Are Customers Saying?

You’ll be hard-pressed to find negative customer reviews for Harris pontoon boats online or at a tradeshow. Part of their impressive customer approval is likely because of how widely available Harris dealers are. They’re also acclaimed in customer service through their website and dealers.

7. Avalon

Credit: Jennifer / Flickr

Avalon boasts one of the most diverse catalogs of pontoon boats to choose from. You can find Avalon pontoon boats meant for lounging, fishing, luxury, and leisure. They even manufacture double-decker pontoons that feature a water slide.

That’s not unheard of in the world of pontoon boats, but few brands do it as well as Avalon. You can find budget-friendly pontoon boats from Avalon that are just as impressive but with fewer bells and whistles. Their high-end pontoon boats reach 27 feet long and feature an impressive lighting system and built-in GPS.

What Are Customers Saying?

Just about every single review that you’ll find for an Avalon pontoon references the impressive performance. Positive reviews also frequently reference how quickly they received their boat even after making extensive customization requests. They also do a great job of linking customers with local Avalon dealers which is invaluable when it comes to expensive, custom pontoon boats.

8. Manitou

Credit: Bo Gordy-Stith / Flickr

Ever since 1985, Manitou has made some of the best luxury pontoon boats on the market. Their catalog consists of pontoon boats that appeal to every budget and customer. They offer value, recreation, luxury, and sport pontoon boats that vary in cost and function.

Their Luxury pontoon boat is the most expensive at $135,000, and its construction is incomparable. Even their cheapest model, the Cruise, is impressive and takes design cues from cars. Manitou makes it easy to customize your ideal pontoon boat either through a dealer or on their website.

What Are Customers Saying?

Customers are seemingly in agreement that Manitou is a great brand in terms of quality and customer service. This makes it easy to trust them with your money when you spend a lot to customize a special pontoon boat. It also doesn’t hurt that Manitou has one of the best and easiest-to-navigate websites of any pontoon boat manufacturer.

9. Princecraft

Chumlee10 / Flickr

Princeraft doesn’t just make pontoon boats, but their pontoons are their standout products. They also manufacture standard fishing boats and deck boats. Each series of pontoon boats that they produce is impressive from Quorum to Sportfisher LX.

Princecraft offers more options than most pontoon boat companies with 8 current series. This is great news if you don’t want to spend the extra money to customize a pontoon boat because there are so many to choose from.

What Are Customers Saying?

Customers frequently cite the fuel efficiency of Princecraft pontoons such as the Sportfisher LX which takes 10 gallons of gas. The only downside to Princecraft pontoon boats is that they can take a long time to arrive in some cases. However, that could be due to recent supply chain issues and they have a great reputation for customer service

10. Barletta

Barletta Pontoon Boats / Facebook

Barletta is a fairly new brand in the world of pontoon boats, but you wouldn’t be able to tell when you test them out. Founded in 2017, Barletta doesn’t make as many models as other brands, but each of their pontoon boats is expertly crafted. They currently offer 3 series: the Lusso, Corsa, and Cabrio which are all unique.

These pet-friendly pontoon boats come with several different floor plans such as the smaller lounge model and bigger ultra-entertainer. You can always customize your pontoon as well, but their stock models are accommodating as is. Luckily, you won’t have trouble finding a Barletta pontoon boat because they have 125 dealer locations in North America.

What Are Customers Saying?

Barletta has had nearly universally positive reviews since its inception in 2017. Customers have nothing but positive things to say about Barletta’s quick delivery and dealer partners. Plus, Barletta was recently bought by Winnebago Industries and will be operated by them which is a great thing. Winnebago is yet another brand with amazing customer service, so the positive customer reviews will likely continue.

11. Tahoe

TahoePontoons.com

Tahoe belongs to the same parent company as Avalon, and that explains the high-quality standards. This brand has been around since 1972 and has continued to evolve every year. Their current lineup includes 3 collections and each one has multiple models to choose from.

The Signature Collection and Boutique Collection are the cheapest pontoon boats that Tahoe offers. However, they are still suitably pricey which is worth it given the impressive quality of the materials and construction. Tahoe’s cheapest pontoon boat is the STX which is ideal for fishing and cruising.

High-end models like the Grand Tahoe and Cascade Platinum measure up to 27 feet. Not only are Tahoe boats visually stunning, but they are impressive, smooth, and durable. You don’t have to settle for less than you deserve as Tahoe lets you customize many things down to the color of the leather.

What Are Customers Saying?

Tahoe offers a 10-year warranty which any customer can appreciate. Their website is extremely helpful and easy to navigate whether you are shopping for a boat or trying to contact customer service. Customer reviews reference timely delivery and fast repairs even under strict time guidelines which is hard to come by.

12. Berkshire

Berkshire Pontoon / Facebook

Berkshire has been a well-respected name in the world of pontoon boats since 1996. They do their best to accommodate every customer with interesting variations between each series. All 4 of Berkshire’s current collections boast a unique appearance and several options.

For example, you can find either a cruising or fishing version of most Berkshire pontoon boats. They are similar, but fishing boats are meant to be more practical for a long day of reeling in fish. The Berkshire STS series even has an entertainment floor plan that is ideal for a relaxing sunset cruise.

You can expect variety with each floor plan and collection that Berkshire has to offer. Berkshire also offers a 5-year warranty on certain materials such as bimini fabric, vinyl, and flooring which comes in handy.

What Are Customers Saying?

You won’t have to look very far to find a glowing review for Berkshire pontoon boats. Berkshire pontoon boats have a great reputation for withstanding the test of time which is extremely important. Customers also report that they receive their boat quickly and that their turnaround is impressive.

13. Ranger

Reata By Ranger / YouTube

Ranger doesn’t exclusively manufacture pontoon boats, but they’re a major name in the world of boating products. Everything from the deck and seats to the steering wheel and engine are made of durable materials. Much like their standard boats, Ranger’s pontoons are known to move through the water swiftly and comfortably.

The powder-coated logs that each Ranger pontoon boat has explains why they move so well. Everything is comfortable whether you’re driving the boat or sitting down as a passenger. The console is made of fiberglass so you won’t have to worry about physical or elemental damage.

Like most pontoon boat brands, you can choose between several collections meant for cruising, fishing, and luxury. The Reata Series and LS Series are among the most impressive that Ranger has to offer.

What Are Customers Saying?

Ranger’s pontoon boats are quite popular among customers, especially in the fishing community. Their fishing-specific boats in particular get consistently glowing reviews online. Customers also report that their Ranger pontoon boats are low-maintenance and easy to transport which is invaluable.

14. SunCatcher

Hannay’s Marine / YouTube

SunCatcher is a subsidiary of G3 Boats which is owned by Yamaha. They offer fewer collections than many other major Pontoon boat brands, but SunCatcher’s selection is impressive and varied. With that said, each series comes with several models and changes in floor plans which makes a huge difference.

Because they’re owned by Yamaha, you can always rely on a SunCatcher pontoon’s engine being reliable and powerful. You have many options when it comes to size and floor plans with SunCatcher, so you should be able to accommodate your budget. The SunCatcher website lets you compare floor plans and figure out the cost before you make an order online or through a dealer.

Many of their pontoon boats feature up to 8 speakers, so you can create a floating party. Consider a SunCatcher pontoon boat if you want to get a great price without suffering quality or special features.

What Are Customers Saying?

Online reviews for SunCatcher pontoons always reference the impressive quality compared to the low price. This is hard to find in the world of pontoon boats which are often either amazing and overpriced or inexpensive and inferior in many cases. Many customers also reference the impressive underskinning that SunCatcher pontoons have which is why the deck stays in great condition.

15. Starcraft Marine

Starcraft Boats / Youtube

While Starcraft Marine doesn’t exclusively make pontoon boats, the ones that they do produce are extraordinary. Few pontoon boat brands on this list have anywhere near as many models currently available as Starcraft Marine. They sell everything from cruising and fishing pontoons to luxury boats meant for lavish entertainment on the water.

Starcraft Marine currently offers 9 pontoon boat collections and another 13 standard fishing boat series in its catalog. You get the flexibility to even select the panel colors for your pontoon boat if you want to customize it. Even simple collections like SX and MX series feature great amenities such as plush furniture, swivel seating, and raised consoles.

What Are Customers Saying?

Customers specifically credit Starcraft Marine for the amazing upholstery, seating, and consoles. They also reference the touch-screen interface that many of their boats feature which is the cherry on top. Luckily, their website is easy to use if you want to compare models or contact their customer service department online.

Who is the Largest Pontoon Boat Manufacturer?

Bennington is the largest pontoon boat manufacturer with well over 100 models. Based in Indiana, this brand has made a name for itself since 1997 and sold millions of boats. They are still going strong to this day with new features, floor plans, and models every year.

Berkshire is another one of the largest pontoon boat manufacturers, and they run a massive operation. They have nearly 100 facilities and over 15,000 employees to accommodate their huge customer base at this time. That explains why you can find Berkshire pontoons from countless dealers throughout the United States.

Yamaha even makes the list of the largest pontoon boat manufacturers because they own G3 Boats. However, G3 Boats doesn’t strictly specialize in pontoons, although the ones that they produce are quite impressive. SunCatcher is a subsidiary of G3 boats and they have grown in popularity significantly since 2014.

So, What Are the Best Pontoon Boat Brands?

Bennington, Berkshire, Tahoe, Avalon, Harris, and Ranger are among the best pontoon boat brands. They all rank high in customer satisfaction and have released dozens of models of pontoons over the years. Other brands like Barletta, Princeraft, and Manitou use excellent materials and create luxury pontoon boats.

Consider Sunchaser, Sun Tracker, and Godfrey pontoons as well. These brands offer expensive pontoon boats, but they are relatively fair considering the impressive materials and construction. You can’t go wrong with any of these brands, especially because most of them offer 5 to 10-year limited warranties which are useful with pontoon boats.

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