MIAMI 2017: Scout Boats will expand factory for 53-footer

MIAMI — Scout Boats plans to add a 100,000-square-foot plant to its three-factory campus in South Carolina.
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Scout Boats founder Steve Potts said the company will expand so it can build the new 53-foot center console planned for next year and another model between the 420 LXF and the 53-footer for 2018.

Scout Boats founder Steve Potts said the company will expand so it can build the new 53-foot center console planned for next year and another model between the 420 LXF and the 53-footer for 2018.

MIAMI — Scout Boats plans to add a 100,000-square-foot plant to its three-factory campus in South Carolina to build the upcoming 53-foot center console for which the company unveiled plans at the Miami International Boat Show.

The company also will add a 20,000-square-foot building for product development and engineering, Scout Boats founder and CEO Steve Potts told Trade Only Today on Friday on the docks at the Miami show. The five-day show concluded Monday.

“We started the process to go through regulatory hurdles about six months ago,” Potts said. “Plant D will build the new 53 and something in between the 42 and the 53.”

He later indicated that it could be a 46-footer, adding that Scout has not finalized plans for the coming 2018 model.

The company builds boats from 17 to 25 feet in Plant A on its Mount Pleasant, S.C., campus. Plant B is for building boats from 27 to 35 feet; Plant C, completed two years ago, is used to build the 38-footer and the 42-footer.

Scout has been using a 10,000-square-foot space in one of its plants for research and development, Potts said, adding, “We do all our design in-house.”

Scout, which rolled out its 380 LXF at the show, has been having big success with its larger models, but also with smaller models, Potts said.

“Yesterday was a really good day,” Potts said. “Thursday is usually a day people come to look, and then come back later. Two 380s sold, and a couple of small boats, too. This show is not typically a small-boat show. People usually travel to spend a lot of dollars.”

A couple who got a sea trial Friday on hull No. 2 of the 380 LXF (hull No. 1 was at the in-water display), powered with quad Mercury Verado 300s, were impressed with the way the boat handled. Andy Renné of Seven Seas Yacht Sales Inc. showed off the boat’s many features.

A couple looked at upgrading from a smaller center console to the Scout 380 LXF on Friday at the Miami International Boat Show.

A couple looked at upgrading from a smaller center console to the Scout 380 LXF on Friday at the Miami International Boat Show.

“Andy just sold a 53 today,” said Seven Seas president Len Renné, adding that the backlog for the Scout 420 LXF was about a year. The 380 LXF was out until July or August, he said.

The shows have been a source of success for Scout, Potts said. “New York this year was up 80 percent over last year, and last year was good,” he said.

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