Thinking Man's Machine
Isolation transformers aren't sexy, but they can save your boat. Basically, electricity from shorepower is transmitted into the boat via a magnetic connection instead of through wires. This prevents stray current from bad marina wiring or poorly wired boats plugged in at the same dock from causing corrosion aboard your vessel. Also, if your boat has a leaky circuit, the current returns to the transformer, instead of grounding itself through the propshafts, drives, or other conductive underwater metals. That keeps swimmers safe from shock. Also, by smoothing out spikes and maintaining voltage during brownouts, transformers protect such onboard equipment as pumps and compressors. Isolation transformers are expensive, and many boats use cheaper, less effective galvanic isolators. Formula's 37 Cruiser ($475,440 powered like my tester) also includes isolation transformers.
There's more technical prowess under the 37's skin. Open the electric hatch. Broad and deep, the engine room step feels more like a platform underfoot. Next notice the bright, white gel coat all around. Like that aboard Sea Ray's 350 Sundancer ($387,846 with twin 375-hp MerCruiser 496 MAG MPI Seacore Axius Bravo Three stern drives) the glossy gel coat looks good and improves visibility. Batteries, filters, dipsticks, belts, plumbing, wiring...all are easily seen, traceable, and serviced. Through-hull fittings also have good access, although the intake for the air conditioner was poorly placed. I couldn't close this valve because its handle hit the genset intake, which is located right beside it. Cobalt says this will be fixed in production models. Labeling, color-coding, drainage, and chafe protection are top notch. And before you head topside, check the hull-to-deck joint. It's bonded with high-tech glue, bolted with stainless-steel fasteners, and then encased in fiberglass.