5 Most-Common Problems With Cobia Boats (Explained)

Cobia Boats has a strong reputation for building quality and reliable boats.

Cobia Boats stand out on boating forums because of their huge fan base; there don’t seem to be many complaints or problems about them.

However, if you are planning to buy a Cobia boat, then there are a few things that you need to take into consideration.

A Brief History Of Cobia

Cobia Boats have been around since 1959, when the company was started by a private businessman in Orlando, Florida.

In 1993 Cobia Boats was bought by Yamaha, and the boats were built under the name C&C Manufacturing before being bought by the Maverick Boat Group in 2005. Since then, the Maverick Boat Group has developed the Cobia brand to become a market leader in their respected niche of center and dual console saltwater fishing boats.

After the Maverick Boat Group (MBG) bought Cobia Boats in 2005, they immediately improved the build quality.

Instead of the generic, predominantly fiberglass and wood construction (still typical of many lower-tier boat builders today), MBG went about replacing this build method by utilizing precisely engineered wood-free, hand-laid fiberglass, which has been designed to improve each model’s performance.

The new boats instantly felt stronger, more durable, and have proven to be more fuel-efficient than before.

Cobia Boats currently has 12 different center console models and dual console boats to choose from, with a huge assortment of custom options. Today Cobia Boats is represented by a vast network of dealers both in the USA and worldwide.

However, due to the changes in ownership and the different building methods used, the build quality of used Cobia Boats has not been standard across the years.

The following are some of the problems to look out for, especially on the older or pre-2005 boats:

1. Soft Spots On Deck

One of the most common complaints seems to be some soft spots on the decks and floors.

However, this is related to models built in the late 1990s, when wood was still being used in the construction process. In older models, wood was used as the stringers (or structural support) for the boat. If they were not sealed properly by the factory, then water could get in and cause them to rot over the years.

But this is not a common complaint amongst Cobia boat owners, and it’s not clear that this a specific problem to Cobia Boats. This problem could be just down to the age and maintenance of each boat.

If you plan to purchase an older, second-hand Cobia model, then make sure you inspect the boat thoroughly, even in those hard to get to lockers and corners. Alternatively, if you are new to boating or not that confident about what you are looking for, pay someone to have the boat professionally surveyed.

A qualified boat surveyor will tell you whether there are any issues with the boat’s structure, including the deck and floors.

2. Lack Of Fuel Capacity

If you are planning longer fishing trips, be aware that other boats of a similar size have larger fuel tanks to take you that bit further.

For example, the Robalo 302 and Cobia 301 are both powered with twin 300hp Yamahas. However, the Robalo can carry 33 more gallons of fuel (300 vs. 267 for the Cobia).

Some of these new engines can do 2 miles per gallon (mpg) at the rights revs, equating to between 60 – 70 miles extra with the Robalo fuel capacity, compared to the Cobia!

This extra mileage could make the difference as to whether you can go out that little bit further to reach a better or less busy fishing spot.

3. Only One Engine On Older Models

While the newer bigger Cobia boats now come with twin Yamaha motors as standard, the older models came with 1 larger single-engine.

This was primarily to save costs on the complete boat package.

There is a  long-standing belief that having twin-outboard engines is a far safer option because you have a backup motor in case one breaks down. That way of thinking developed when outboards were less reliable and prone to more frequent problems.

However, that school of thought has lost much of its relevance thanks to the increased reliability of today’s outboard engines. If you still follow this train of thought, having 2 new outboards will give you peace of mind as the much safer option.

But many boaters and fishermen go offshore with only 1 engine and have no problems. Plus, one of the most common problems with any engine is contaminated fuel.

So, if you are using only one fuel tank for both engines, then if the gasoline is bad, both engines will be affected.

4. A Cobia Boat Is Considered Pricey When Compared To Other Brands

While Cobia Boats regularly makes it onto the Top 10 lists of Best Centre Console or Best Dual Console Boats, they are never included in the Most Affordable lists of boats.

Other brands such as Boston Whaler, Robalo, or Scout all offer a complete package at a more affordable price than similar Cobia Boat models.

But Cobia Boats has been evolving and building fantastic fishing and family recreation boats for over 50 years. Many other boat builders have come and gone during this time. Cobia has endured, building thousands of saltwater boats for the serious fishing guys or simple, family fun.

In addition, Cobia’s reputation for great customer-focused service hasn’t changed, which contributes to the company’s ongoing success. By comparison, their construction process has evolved and improved with time.

The factory uses some of the most sophisticated, state-of-the-art techniques and the best quality components that can be found in the boat manufacturing industry today.

From bow to stern, every inch of a Cobia is designed to provide superior quality, and that is why their price point is higher than other boats.

5. It Can Be Difficult To Get Parts For Older Models

In March of 2005, the Maverick Boat Company purchased the Cobia Brand from the Yamaha-owned C & C manufacturing.

The sale consisted primarily of the manufacturing capabilities and Yamahas goodwill. As a consequence, there are very few records of the older boats. So there is limited information available about the boats that were built before the sale.

Unfortunately, for this reason, the Maverick Boat Company does not have the old owner’s manuals, wiring diagrams, or parts to support the boats that were built before the purchase.

However, the Maverick Boat Company is more than willing to assist with any information about spare parts.

In addition, some of the dealers that have been representing Cobia Boats for a long time may have that particular spare part you are looking for.

General Pros & Cons Of Cobia Boats

As with any brand or style of boat, there will be pros and cons.

The following is what we consider the pros and cons of owning a Cobia Boat:

The Pros of Cobia Boats:

Cobia Boats are manufactured by the Maverick Boat Company, which has a long history of building quality boats.

They are specifically designed for some serious fishing but are stylish enough for cruising with friends and family. Cobia boats also offer an extensive list of custom options so you can design your own boat.

Cobia Boats have a reputation of being exceptionally strong and seaworthy.

The Cons:

  • Older boats may develop soft spots on deck.
  • Some models lack the fuel capacity compared to other brands.
  • Some older models only have 1 engine.
  • They are considered pricey when compared to similar models.
  • Spare parts can be difficult to source for models built before 2005.

What Do The Reviews Say?

When looking for Cobia Boat reviews, there are plenty of magazine articles on the internet from journalists who have tested various Cobia models.

“From the trailerable size, stylish lines, and ample seating to the angling amenities, smooth ride, and brisk performance, this boat offers everything you need for fishing and other on-water activities.”

[Source: sportfishingmag.com]

This sentence pretty much sums it up. A Cobia may not be the cheapest boat on the market, but most reviewers agree that you are getting a quality boat in both the build and the design package.

What’s The Resale Value on Cobia Boats?

While we can all agree that new Cobia Boats are at the high end of the center and dual console boats, they have been around for so many years, so there are plenty of models available on the 2nd hand boat market.

To look at how well they hold their value, let’s take a look at one of their most popular models, the  Cobia 240 CC:

Make & Model Year Price
Cobia 240 CC 2022 $93,620
Cobia 240 CC 2019 $97,500

A new (2022 model) Cobia 240 CC starts from $93,620 with twin Yamaha F150 XB engines. This is for the basic package, and you can add on customized extras to suit your needs and wallet.

A quick search on Boattrader.com came up with a 2019 model of the same boat that is priced at $97,500. While this boat has been equipped with a single Yamaha F300UCA engine, it does come with a navigation package and other customized extras.

There are plenty of older boats available, but overall, and if well looked after, a Cobia Boat seems to hold their resale value well.

Of course, the purchase of any boat is subjective and full of compromises.

You have to decide on what type of boat suits your needs and, more importantly, your pocket.

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