In the heyday of sterndrive-engine-powered V-bottom go-fast boats, South Florida based Active Thunder Boats was a significant builder of models from 22 to 37 feet long. The 37-footer became the company’s most prized creation, and while the 22-footer remained in the line Active Thunder owner and founder Patrick Haughey was focusing on “the bigger stuff.”
And why not? That’s what was selling.
With a Mercury Racing 300R outboard providing the power, the revamped 22 Banshee from Active Thunder Boats reached 80 mph last month at Lake X. Photo courtesy/copyright of the Florida Powerboat Club.
Times change, as do propulsion preferences, and now the 22 Banshee is back with a retooled hull and deck and fresh V-8 outboard engine power. Haughey has built three new 22-footers to date and has ordered materials for two more.
“I built the first one for myself as boat to use in the Keys, that’s how it started” he explained. “I just put it out there—I didn’t advertise it or anything—and people really liked it.
“I had always liked the hull, but the mold was old so I built a new one,” he continued. “But I never liked the deck, so I built a fresh one.”
With encouragement from folks who saw his first revamped 22 Banshee, Haughey displayed both 22-footers at the Palm Beach International Boat Show in March. During the event, Steve Eisenberg of Nautical Ventures, a seven-location powerboat dealership that offers the Active Thunder line in the Sunshine State, repeatedly stopped by to check out the 22-foot V-bottoms, each of which is powered by a Mercury Racing 300R outboard engine.
The 22 Banshee boasts a neatly finished, spacious interior.
By the time the show wrapped up, Haughey had committed to sending his first 22 Banshee to Nautical Ventures facility in North Palm Beach. In the near future, hull No. 2 will be on display a month from now at the dealership’s Stuart location.
“Steve kept coming over and looking at them,” said Haughey. “Finally he said, ‘I want those in my showrooms.’”
In late April, Haughey hauled one of the 22 Banshees to Lake X in St. Cloud, Fla. The boat topped out at 80 mph.
“That’s pretty fast for a 22-foot V-bottom,” he said. “I think that’s fast enough. But I still have a little dialing in left to get done.”
The base models will carry a $134,500 sticker price.
Ask what inspired him to revamp the 22 Banshee as his personal boat, now an updated model available, Haughey laughed.
“I am just over the work of hauling around a 40-footer,” he said, then laughed again. “I guess that’s just what happens when you turn 60. This is so much easier.”
The 22 Banshee is back.