I got my chance in mid-July in Kennesaw, Ga. From first dockside glance at the sleek 19-footer — bright white with subtle gray accents — I was impressed with the 190 FSH Sport that I would be testing. (The boat also comes in standard and Deluxe models.)
That impression continued once I was aboard, where practically every hatch I lifted showed forward thinking and revealed clever engineering that had me grinning. One example was the flush-mounted locker on the transom designed to accommodate the five-gallon bucket that any angler worth his or her salt is going to have aboard.
Overhead, I found hand cutouts in the Sur Last fabric to accommodate a grip on the T-top frame. The top itself has a custom polyester cover that’s easily removed for storage or for some warm sunlight at the helm. The top of the helm console is left flat and wide open to allow the owner to place whatever electronics or accessories are desired.
The front of the hinged helm console opens to offer a huge compartment with a privacy curtain that can serve as a changing room, accommodate a Porta-Potti or be used to store a lot of stuff. Up at the nose is a hatch covering a top-loading anchor locker with an integrated rack capable of securing a working-size Danforth and plenty of rode.
Aft of the helm console, which sports three vertical rod holders to a side, is a leaning post with a reversible backrest that allows comfortable seating facing fore or aft. Flanking the leaning post are two folding jump seats that hide large storage lockers — the starboard one housing a raw water washdown hose fed by the jet intake.
Behind that locker is an 18-gallon recirculating livewell with a lighted, blue-hued interior atop a two-tier swim platform that’s broad and wide, with four flush-mounted rod holders. Thanks to the low-profile engine and drive train down in the hull, the aft area offers unobstructed access for swimming, sunning or landing fish. The transom has a tow eye for watersports and a retractable ladder — as well as a clean-out port that allows for the removal of debris from the jet pump without having to get in the water or swim beneath the boat.
Under way, the 190 FSH is not your usual jet-powered boat; some innovative features make it ride and handle much like a traditional drive. Pushed by a 1.8L High Output marine engine, the hole shot is impressive, the ride smooth and I noted very little side slippage on turns, the latter due to Yamaha’s Articulating Keel, an extension of the boat’s keel that moves and tracks along with the jet-pump nozzle.
There’s still a curve to learning low-speed maneuvering aboard the new jet boat, and the 190 FSH isn’t designed for trolling using its primary power, but the bow is conveniently shaped for easily accommodating an electric trolling motor complete with out-of-sight routing for the wiring harness already in place.
The 190 FSH is a remarkable new center console that’s adaptable to watersports and is sure to prove popular among anglers who appreciate the shallow-running advantages of a jet-powered boat.
Author: Dan Armitage is a regular contributor to HeartLand Boating
Yamaha 190 FSH Sport
Length overall: 19’2”
Dry weight: 2,150 lbs.
Fuel capacity: 30 gals.
Base price: $31,999