Some boatbuilders are using words such as "crossover," "hybrid" and "multifunction" to describe their new models. Take Pursuit, for instance.
"It's built to be a great crossover boat for whatever offshore or inshore activity you want to do," Pursuit Boats marketing manager David Glenn says of the new ST 310. "There is a bit of a transition away from the real hard-core fishing [center console]."
You can do pretty much anything you want to do with this boat — fish, dive, swim, tow water-toy riders, take a dinner cruise.
Click here to watch the ST 310 under way as Glenn describes its workings.
The most noticeable differences between the ST 310 and a standard center console are the ample cushioned seating and the console’s extension to the starboard gunwale, allowing for a two-person companion settee.
I examined the boat and took it for a short ride during a recent Yamaha press event in Florida. The dark-colored helm reduces glare, and there's lots of real estate for flush-mounted electronics. You could fit two 12- or 14-inch displays here. The standard hardtop offers more coverage than a typical center console, extending outboard to the gunwales.
I saw many examples of the Fort Pierce, Fla., builder's top-notch workmanship and fit and finish. Most impressive was the nicely finished console door, which is held open by a mammoth stainless-steel gas lift. The area housed a head and an optional scuba tank holder.
In addition to the fiberglass hardtop, noteworthy standard equipment includes a windlass, fresh- and saltwater systems, a slide-out refrigerator, trim tabs with indicator, and a forward fiberglass table with a Corian insert that receives a sunpad filler cushion. A 20-gallon live well in the helm seat console, four flush-mounted stainless-steel gunwale rod holders in the cockpit, folding rod racks under the bow seats, and an in-deck fishbox round out the standard fishing equipment.
The builder hand-lays the solid fiberglass bottom and uses balsa as a core for the hull sides above the waterline, Glenn says. The stringer system, transom, hardtop, and various hatches and deck parts are resin-infused, he says.
The demo boat was powered with twin V-6 Yamaha F300s. Cruising at 29.6 mph, she has a range of 400 miles, using 90 percent of the 260-gallon fuel capacity. Ocean5 Naval Architects carried out the naval architecture and engineering for the ST 310.
Climbing out of the hole, I could see the horizon while seated at the helm, an indication of minimal bow rise. It tracked straight, and I felt in control during high-speed turns.
With the twin F300s the Pursuit ST 310's base price is $230,000. Contact: Pursuit, (772) 465-6006, www.pursuitboats.com