Just an unbiased opinion; Yea Right!
Seriously though, we looked at both the 280ZT and Heat, very close before making our decision. Our dealer, St. George Marine, sells both Nordic and Checkmate so we had a very good, side-by-side comparison.
We sat in both and the decision was instant. Youíll understand if you do the same. The Heat is about $10k more than the 280ZT but we felt it was worth it. The 270 Checkmate may even be a larger savings for you if that was what you decided. Both boats (the Heat and the 280ZT) were equipped with HP500EFIs and the performance was pretty close. The Checkmate may handle ocean stuff a little better but the Heat is a touch faster. We boat on large lakes (Powell and Mead) and our Heat handles anything within reason.
One of the biggest selling points, which will not matter to you wanting an open bow, was the cabin. It is substantially larger than most 30ís and is finished off beautifully. Then again, the mid cabin on the open bow Heat is huge also.
Itís all about what you want or need. Go sit in them, drive them and look at your budget. Youíll know.
If you go with Nordic, make very sure you have your order in writing and do not accept the boat if it is not right! Probably the same with Checkmate; donít know.
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