High Season

Spring begins with a fleet of exciting new boats to look for in your homeport soon
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Boston Whaler 220 Dauntless 

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Boston Whaler’s R&D team has designed two new models for its popular Dauntless bay boat series. The new 220 (shown above) and 250 Dauntless can be fished in calm inshore waters but also have the ability to target some offshore species. They are versatile platforms for day trips and watersports, too. The boats are all-new designs, from the deep-V hulls up. Freeboard is higher than it was on older Dauntless models, which makes the 220 and 250 better suited for rougher water. A nice feature on both models is the two-person sunlounge with automotive-style armrests forward of the console; when it first debuted on the builder’s 270 Dauntless, it drew praise. Families like the comfortable sunbed, and anglers appreciate the dry-storage compartment located underneath it.

Everglades 273CC 

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Fans of the Everglades brand know the 243 CC is regarded as a reputable inshore/offshore fiberglass bay boat. Now, the builder has evolved that hybrid concept. The upgraded version is the 273CC, with an LOA of 29 feet and beam of 9 feet 3 inches. It’s designed with an upper driving station configuration for improved visibility, and it has everything from trim tab indicators and folding foot platform to integrated rod holders. On the main deck, features that serve to make fishing more efficient are low-profile bowrails, stow-flat cleats and a casting platform. There’s also a circulating livewell, fish box and foldaway seats at the stern, which flank insulated stowage. Maximum-rated horsepower for outboards is 600.

Blackfin 302CC 

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When Blackfin introduced its 332 CC two years ago, the boat made a splash and won an innovation award at the Miami International Boat Show. At that time, the builder outlined a plan to launch up to five new boats the following year. Blackfin did so, and since then has continued to fill out its line of family-friendly fishing boats, each featuring a good list of standard equipment and a reputation for a reliable offshore ride. The newest model is the 302 CC. Like other Blackfins, including the 332, it features a double-stepped hull by Michael Peters Yacht Design for good bluewater performance. Standard equipment includes a bait prep station and swim platform.

Century 24CC 

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With an LOA of 23 feet 9 inches and 8-foot 6-inch beam, the 24CC seats up to 10 people and was made for saltwater fishing and day boating with the family. Key features include an oversized cockpit where there are four in-floor fish boxes, a baitwell and a dive door. At the helm, the driver is protected by a windscreen that’s integrated into the standard hardtop. Forward, in the bow, a hydraulic table drops down to create a big sunpad. The boat is constructed with all composites, and hull and deck are covered by a 10-year warranty. Single and twin Yamaha outboards are offered, but the builder recommends a single 300-hp motor. If there’s room in the budget, splurge on the optional outriggers.

Albemarle 30 Express

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This is the third outboard model from Albemarle in three years. The first two boats were dual consoles. This 30 is for serious fishermen. Featuring the lines of a custom Carolina build, it’s offered with three 300-hp Yamahas, making it the fastest Albemarle ever built, according to the company. Triple outboards also provide the low-end torque needed for the deep-V hull to maintain slower speeds in sloppy conditions. The 30 comes out of the factory with stringer beds in place to accept a Seakeeper 2. Fishing features include in-deck macerated fish boxes, transom livewell, tackle center and a standard transom door. With a full galley, head and bunk, the boat can be used for overnighting.

Pursuit DC236 

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The latest dual-console model from Pursuit replaces the DC 235 and is now the entry-level boat in this award-winning series. The DC 236—a 25-footer with a trailerable 8-foot, 6-inch beam—is powered by a single 300-hp outboard. The day boat features significantly more space in the cockpit than its predecessor, according to the builder, and there’s also more flexibility in seating options, along with a new stern layout that has more storage than the old 235. Optional equipment includes a boarding ladder and freshwater washdown in the bow. The 236 also has the builder’s signature fiberglass-framed windshield.

Limestone L-290 CD 

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Many boaters in the Northeast are familiar with the Limestone brand. These boats by Mark Ellis—known for timeless design and big-water performance from a deep-V hull with forward flair—have been plying waters for about 35 years. But recently, Limestone re-launched with new ownership, which acquired the global licensing rights from Ellis, bought the molds and created the Limestone Boat Company. The new owners also engaged Ellis to evolve the existing designs and draw new models. The boats will be built in Tennessee, and the plan is to introduce the brand to a wider audience. The 2021 line has seven models ranging from 17 to 29 feet. The L-290 CD shown here is one of two new boats, and it’s indicative of what will come from Limestone in the future. The builder will focus solely on outboards, as more boaters recognize the benefits of that propulsion.

Ferretti 500 

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This is the newest entry-level model in the Italian builder’s line of luxury cruising boats. The exterior lines are by Filippo Salvetti and interiors were created by IdeaItalia. The designers were commissioned by the builder to create a boat that feels like home, according to the yard. The boat is offered with two en suite cabins and a utility space, or three cabins and two bathrooms. Two interior finishes are offered: light oak Santorini and the darker Portofino. The 500 is built around one propulsion package: a pair of 550-hp Cummins diesels. These engines produce a 30-knot top speed, or an estimated range of 200 nautical miles when running at a cruising speed of 25 knots.

Glastron GX 210 

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Here’s a good starter boat for the family. The 210 is one of four models in the GX line of day boats, and it’s the least expensive, with a retail price just shy of $40,000 with a single outboard. This dual-console model has a basic layout, with enough upholstered seating to accommodate up to 11 people. This trailerable 21-footer with a modified-V hull is best for lakes or running close to shore if in saltwater. Maximum rated horsepower is 250. Glastron offers a lifetime limited warranty on the structural components of the hull and deck, and in many cases, this warranty is transferrable, which means the boat should have good resale value.

MJM 3z 

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The 3z is the Boston-based builder’s first entry into the dayboat market. The 38-foot, 2-inch, outboard-powered model has a dual-console layout for busy owners who want to make the most of a day on the water. Conceived by naval architect Doug Zurn, the 3z is tipped with a pair of 300-hp Mercury Verado outboards that yield a top end near 43 knots. The deck is no-nonsense yet complete, with an L-shaped lounge that converts to a sunpad, electric grill and refrigeration, and MJM’s trademark hullside boarding door. The helm is beneath the hardtop in an area that’s well-protected thanks to two huge panels of tempered glass. Forward through a centerline walkway is a lounge that wraps nearly all the way around the bow area. The twin consoles house an enclosed head and stowage.

Hood 35 

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The head-turning Hood 57 that hit the water a few months ago is the first collaboration between Lyman-Morse and C.W. Hood Yachts. Now, there’s a new addition to the Hood line, the 35 LM Express Cruiser. Designed by Chris Hood, the boat’s low profile, fine entry and long sheerline will resonate with those who appreciate classic looks. The 35 also will have sporty performance (think 38 knots at top end) from twin 440-hp Yanmar diesels paired with Hamilton waterjets, which guarantee easy maneuvering and expand the possibilities for skinny-water exploring. Designed for day boating or weekend cruising, the 35 has a cold-molded, wood composite hull built with Douglas fir and Western red cedar.

Beneteau Grand Trawler 62 

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Since 2003, Beneteau has built 1,300 of its semi-displacement Swift Trawlers. Now, the company debuts its first full-displacement model and new flagship. To develop the concept for this 62, Beneteau talked with existing Swift Trawler owners, primarily people in their 60s who have extensive cruising experience. They expressed the desire for a long-distance yacht to accommodate multiple generations. That preference led Beneteau to design a hull powered by 730-hp MAN engines that cruises at 9 knots for a range of 900 nautical miles, or at 20 knots when speed is necessary. As for accommodations, the 62 comes with three or four cabins. It’s built in Italy at Monte Carlo Yachts, a yard known for its Italian workmanship.

Apollonian 52 

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Apollonian Yachts is a relatively new player in the industry with a mission to build affordable boats for the North American market. However, the cruisers will have applications around the U.S. and Canada. Naval architect Howard Apollonio, whose designs have been produced by yards such as Westport and Christensen, pens the lines for this brand. The first boat is the 52, which was developed when Apollonio observed a lack of reasonably priced pilothouse boats in this size range. It combines a true pilothouse (and dayhead) with three staterooms, three heads, a salon and galley in the “up” configuration. A pair of 425-hp Cummins power the boat to an 18-knot cruising speed and 21 knots at WOT.

Viking 54 Convertible

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The New Jersey builder is a major player in the sportfishing segment, particularly in the 50- to 60-foot range. It strengthens its position in that market with this 54. Standard power is a pair of MAN 1,400-hp engines. Notable features include a 154-square-foot cockpit with mezzanine seating. The flybridge can be outfitted with a tuna tower by Palm Beach Towers and equipped with navigation, communication and entertainment systems from Atlantic Marine Electronics; both companies are Viking subsidiaries and help deliver a boat that’s ready to fish out of the gate. The open salon with galley makes good use of the boat’s 17-foot, 8-inch beam. Below is a master suite and two staterooms.

Hinckley 35 

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The newest cruiser from the Maine builder looks like a Picnic Boat, but it’s optimized for outboards. The Picnic moniker, as you may know, is reserved for the builder’s jetboats. The 35 rides on a hull by Michael Peters, who drew every Picnic Boat since 2008. Hinckley says the 35 will have a top speed of 42 knots with two 350-hp Mercury outboards. (A pair of 300-hp motors are standard.) The 35, which is designed for cocktail cruising and picnic boating, will have many of Hinckley’s hallmark features, including meticulously varnished woodwork and carbon fiber epoxy-infused hulls. A standard model will retail for about $825,000.

Highfield Sport 800 T

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his 26-foot flagship of the builder’s Sport Collection is a high-performance RIB with an aluminum stepped hull created by offshore raceboat designer Petter Martens. Maximum-rated horsepower is 300. The SP800 has full bow and stern sundecks as standard equipment. Options include a galley with sink, refrigerator and cooking island, and a private head, so owners can entertain a good-size group for a full day. The SP800 can accommodate up to 15 passengers. The Sport Collection consists of 11 models. Each features Italian-inspired styling. Since the company was founded in 2011, more than 27,000 tenders have been delivered globally. Models are made in China.

Solace 41 CS 

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In late 2019, Solace Boats was a new company that made a big splash at a major boat show with the debut of its 345, an unconventional center console that moved the twin motors outboard on the stern and then added a 4-foot-long cockpit extension between them. The boat received an Innovation Award from the NMMA. Now, Solace adds a second boat to its line, the 41CS. This center console looks more conventional than its sibling, with triple (or quad) outboards mounted on a traditional stern, but it has unique features too. It runs on a new twin-step hull and offers the largest cabin in its class, according to the builder. The 41 is offered with an optional second driving station on the hardtop, which is accessed by ladders integrated into the superstructure.

AXOPAR 22 SPYDER 

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Axopar, the Finnish builder of rugged, high-performance open and cabin boats, splashed the smallest member of its lineup recently. The 22 Spyder is a unique center console design with sharp lines and sporty performance. Fully trailerable, the 22 displaces only 2,645 pounds. Standard power is a 115-hp Mercury 4-stroke outboard that produces a 40-plus-knot top end, according to the Axopar. The 22’s hull is built using a unique, three-part, split-mold process, which allows the builder to maximize beam for improved stability. This technique also ensures the 22 retains the appearance of its larger sister ships. The open deck features a bench seat in the bow, twin captain’s chairs behind a svelte console unit and a bench at the transom.

Regal 42 FXO 

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Regal’s new flagship is a flybridge cruiser powered by triple 425-hp Yamaha XTO Offshore motors that push the boat to 43 knots and offer a number of benefits. The outboards make it possible for the driver to stern-in just a few feet away from the beach or sandbar. In addition, they enhance the boat’s utility by freeing up space beneath the cockpit sole, where inboards would be, for an immense stowage area that runs full beam. For accommodations, the boat has two master staterooms, and an optional day head is available. There are a number of roomy gathering areas, including the flybridge and the bow, where there’s a convertible settee and cabana sunshade. The 42 comes with a standard Seakeeper.

Scout 425 LXF 

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When the Scout 530 LXF debuted at a boat show in 2019 with six outboards on the transom, the company’s founder Steve Potts quipped, “I don’t like to get passed on the water.” That boat helped give rise to the concession across the industry that outboard power was the future. Two years later, Scout continues to add new outboard models to its line, including the 425 LXF. It promises adrenaline-raising performance, thanks to four 400-hp Mercury outboards. Notable features are the hullside door that folds down to make it easier to board from the dock; two rows of seating (for five passengers) at the helm with pilothouse-like fiberglass enclosure; and a cabin with private head, galley and convertible lounge.

Steiger Craft 255 CC

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A four-acre complex in Bellport, New York, where a wholesale bakery once stood, is home to one of the last boatbuilding yards on Long Island. Most of Steiger Craft’s customers are fishermen who sometimes take their families to the beach, although the builder’s most famous customer was Billy Joel. As for its most popular model, that is the 255. And for 2021, it’s been updated. More comfort features have been added, including a stand-up head compartment in the console and a V-berth/lounge in the cabin. There’s also a new leaning post and T-top, and more tackle storage and rod holders. LOA is 25 feet, 6 inches; beam is 8 feet, 6 inches.

Jeanneau Leader 12.5 

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The Leader series by this French builder has been sold in the U.S. since 2016, and the line of family cruisers with sporty lines and performance continues to expand. One of the newer models to launch stateside is the 10.5 Series 2, a 35-footer that replaces the previous model launched five years ago. The boat runs on a brand-new hull that is vacuum-bagged and resin-infused so it’s a stronger part overall. The 10.5 has a number of features offered on the larger 12.5 Leader, including a trio of integrated chaise lounges in the bow. There’s also a standard opening terrace to port. The cabin sleeps up to four people. 

Galeon 325 GTO 

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This is the first in a new series of outboard-powered cruisers called the GTO Collection. The 325 combines the best features of a day boat and a weekender. Because the 32-footer carries its 10-foot, 11-inch beam far forward, the bow is a roomy entertaining space. The cockpit is another social zone that has the potential to expand in size, thanks to a fold-down platform. It was designed by Tony Castro, who is renowned for his work on superyachts. The cockpit also has transom seating that faces forward or aft. The cabin has two berths and a private head. Blue-hued LED lights illuminate the whole boat. As for propulsion, twin Mercury Verado outboards are offered.

Chaparral 30 Surf 

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According to Chaparral, this is the biggest surf boat on the market. The 30-footer is also the flagship for the Surf line. It’s offered with more comfort and luxury features than the smaller Surf boats, but it has the features that make this line popular, including Malibu Surf Gates. These are two vertically oriented tabs that lie flush with the swim platform. When in use, tabs pivot outward to disrupt the convergence point of water coming off the hull side to create a surf-friendly wake. Power is Volvo Penta’s Forward Drive. Cool tech features include the Medallion Viper II touchscreen interface that controls all surf-related functions, including ballast, so surfing comes easy to novice and expert riders.

Burger 63 Sport-fishing Motor Yacht 

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Here’s a long-distance boat built for active owners who want to island-hop, fish and enjoy water sports. A key element of the 63: Owners partner with the Burger Design Team to oversee the details of their boat, customizing interiors and exteriors, building on the design foundations conceived by Burger. A marine-grade aluminum hull is powered by three Volvo Penta D13-IPS1350 engines that generate a top speed of 35 knots, cruising speed of 30 knots and a range of 600 nautical miles. 

This article was originally published in the March 2021 issue.

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