Hinck­ley Sport Boat 40C

The builder’s first cen­ter con­sole with out­board propul­sion helps re­de­fine what it means to be a Hinck­ley.

Power & Motor Yacht - - NEW BOATS - Jeanne Craig

The cen­ter con­sole seg­ment has been pick­ing up a lot of horse­power in re­cent years as more builders launch boats over 40 feet with sev­eral out­boards gently rum­bling on the tran­som. And while there are new mod­els from com­pa­nies you’d ex­pect to see in this seg­ment— those with deep roots in off­shore fish­ing, for in­stance—there are sur­prises, too. The Sport Boat 40c by Hinck­ley is one of them.

This Maine-based builder is per­haps best known for its jet-pow­ered, lob­ster-style Pic­nic Boat se­ries, and the com­pany made waves last year with the fully elec­tric Dasher. The 40c, though, is a dif­fer­ent an­i­mal—a fast, open boat with high-per­for­mance mo­tors that’s de­signed to make it pos­si­ble for an ac­tive fam­ily to have a big ad­ven­ture within the span of an af­ter­noon. If any­thing, the Sport Boat demon­strates that Hinck­ley has range.

I sea-tri­aled the boat in Rhode Is­land on a run from Porstmouth to Block Is­land with three 400-hp Mer­cury Rac­ing out­boards. With a top speed of 47 knots and a cruise speed near 30 knots, the Hinck­ley ate up the blue­wa­ter miles be­tween ports in well un­der an hour, and the ride in a 2-foot chop was in­cred­i­bly com­fort­able. That’s in large part due to the off­shore hull with 23 de­grees of tran­som dead­rise, which Hinck­ley says is one of the deep­est in this seg­ment. “A lot of other builders are putting out­boards on ex­ist­ing hulls. We’ve been work­ing closely with Ray Hunt De­sign to cre­ate a boat from the ground up that is op­ti­mized for out­board propul­sion,” says Scott Bryant, Hinck­ley’s vice pres­i­dent of prod­uct de­vel­op­ment and en­gi­neer­ing.

With an LOA of 42 feet, 7 inches and a 12 foot, 5 inch beam, there’s plenty of room for own­ers to get busy with the hob­bies they en­joy most. If that’s fish­ing, there’s deck space to work lines from the cock­pit and side decks, and the equip­ment list of­fers every­thing from a livewell and rod stor­age to car­bon fiber out­rig­gers. But that doesn’t mean you’ll see a lot of these boats trolling the tour­na­ment

cir­cuit. “The 40c isn’t a com­pe­ti­tion fish­ing rig that you try to take your fam­ily on. It is first and fore­most op­ti­mized for creat­ing the best pos­si­ble ex­pe­ri­ence for fam­ily and friends, although it can be fished ag­gres­sively if de­sired,” says Bryant.

To de­liver that best ex­pe­ri­ence, Hinck­ley built the 40c with the re­fine­ment this brand is known for. There are high-tech sys­tems, in­clud­ing the Mer­cury Smart-craft pack­age with joy­stick, dig­i­tal throt­tle and shift and Sky­hook that make han­dling as close to ef­fort­less as pos­si­ble.

There are lux­ury com­forts as well, in­clud­ing deep and com­fort­able lounges in the bow and one of the largest cab­ins you’ll find in a cen­ter con­sole boat of this size. And there’s style. The 40c has mod­ern lines that are just right for the young, ac­tive own­ers it was de­signed to ap­peal to, but there’s some Down East DNA here, too. And as I dis­cov­ered, more than enough to turn heads on a busy dock in Block Is­land.

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