Press material for the Williams 38 refers to this newest model from John Williams Boat Co. as a “wolf in sheep’s clothing.” If you saw her tied up in a slip, you’d dismiss the reference as hyperbole. After all, she’s only a lobster boat disguised as a yacht, and everyone knows that those semidisplacement hulls are seakindly but not particularly fast.
Designed by Front Street Shipyard and engineered by Bruce Johnson, the former president and chief designer at Sparkman & Stephens, the Brevilla 48 is a fast, handsome, practical power catamaran. The subtle break in her sheer line paraphrases the dramatic sheer that gives monohull sportfishing boats their distinctive profile. This treatment announces the 48’s mission: a no-nonsense fishing boat.
If you’ve ever been around the class of racing boats known as speed skiffs, developed along the New Jersey shore, you know that you can hear them coming long before you see them. There’s a lot of exhaust noise, of course, but the distinguishing sound comes from their traditional lapstrake hulls slapping the water, bass-drumming down the waterway.
Boating is, without question, one of the finest family activities around. Although we can all extol its many joys and benefits, we must acknowledge that there are a few negatives.
The horsepower race continues, with Mercury and Seven Marine introducing their most powerful 4-stroke outboards this year.
Mercury adds two high-horsepower 4-strokes: the Verado 350 and the Mercury Racing Verado 400R. “We take a bit of pride at Mercury in being about high performance, and with these engines we have the fastest, lightest, most fuel-efficient, quietest and highest-performing products on the market,” says Mercury Marine president John Pfeifer.
For both outboards, Mercury re-engineered the 2.6-liter engine it uses for the 225-, 250- and 300-hp Verados. The 400R falls under the Mercury Racing segment of the engine maker’s business, but it also can power high-performance recreational boats, such as single-engine flats boats, catamaran sportboats and offshore center consoles.
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