Boat Test: 2024 Formula 457 CCS

The 457 CCS delivers a combination of performance, luxury, versatility and great opportunities for owner personalization.


When I pressed the throttles on the 457 CCS, it didn’t rear up like a ­Lippizan, but rather surged forward like a Kentucky Derby thoroughbred out of the starting gate. Formula’s proprietary double-stepped hull kept the bow down as it stretched forward in a long, loping gate, the two-speed transmissions of the Merc V-12 Verados proving their worth. In turns, sharp and hard-over, the 457 CCS held its ground, carved them smoothly, and without the chine tripping or spinning out. The outboards themselves held their ground, sensing with electronic magic the added load that turns cause. They fed in more power to keep the speed steady through the arc. In port, joystick steering and a bow thruster made docking the 47-footer (LOA with ­engines) a breeze. Even an amateur can do it with confidence.

We weren’t surprised by its performance—every Formula that our test team has ever touched over the years has offered a high-performance ­experience thanks largely to the FAS3Tech design and engineering.

Formula 457 CCS on the ocean
The 457 CCS serves up a smooth ride. Courtesy Formula Boats

In fact, FAS3Tech is the technology below deck on the 457. Instead of stringers and bulkheads laid into the hull and storage buckets glued in place, Formula builds a one-piece stringer grid that melds to the hull in a single piece, and includes all fish boxes, dry-storage compartments and machinery access to the bilge, plus ample wire chases for a nearly unlimited array of accessories. The boat is filled with gadgets such as inductive cellphone-charging brackets, electric adjustable seats, bow cocktail table and a full assembly of navigation equipment—just for starters. Once the grid is bonded to the hull, the two pieces become one. The deck is then bonded in, and three become one. Formula perfected this technique decades ago, when competitors were still using wood stringers and ­transoms.

Formula 457 CCS helm
The helm is equipped with multiple screens and comfortable seating. Courtesy Formula Boats

Another exceedingly well-built center-­console is Pursuit’s Sport 428. Pursuit was an early starter in the sport-model realm, bringing the 280 Sport to market in 2008 and the 310 ST in 2011. Pursuit met the needs of fishermen with broader interests than just wetting a line. The style became so popular, Pursuit expanded it with several models, including the 428. Soon the company rebadged the entire line as “Sport,” but all bristle with a fishing backbone while catering to diving and cruising fans. The S428 ($1,339,935 with quad Yamaha XTO 425s) ­offers a platform more on par with Formula’s far-fishier 457 CCF, sistership to this 457 CCS. The Pursuit has dual-row helm seating with a deck galley to double as a rigging station and mezzanine seating that faces the cockpit. For at-anchor R&R, there is a starboard-side fold-down terrace in the gunwale, and for diving and easy dockside entry, a portside boarding door. ­Formula ­offers port and starboard transom doors to a spacious platform too. ­Pursuit’s 428 is just 43 feet, 9 inches with a 13-foot beam compared with the nearly 46 feet length overall and 13-foot-9-inch beam of the Formula. Size, plus the fact that the Formula is powered by Mercury’s new V-12 600 hp outboards versus the four Yamaha 425s on the Pursuit, accounts for much of the $600,000 ­difference in base price between the two.

Both competitors drench passengers in ­luxury seating with a dual lounge ahead of the console and wraparound seating at the bow.

Formula 457 CCS forward seating
There’s a dual lounge ahead of the console. Courtesy Formula Boats

Interior and Accessories

Formula’s length and beam make for a roomy cabin below deck that includes a double berth that converts from a C-shaped lounge, and it’s nestled into a cheerily lit (with recessed LED lighting and overhead and forward portlights) arrangement with a large head compartment with shower, and an abbreviated galley with microwave, coffee maker and fridge. The topside galley also has plentiful drawer storage, a fridge, and there’s a grill on the transom hiding beneath its own hatch, expanding galley features.

There are rod holders, and in place of a livewell in the CCS, there is a cooler. But when fishing is on the agenda, the equipment is there to help ­ensure angling convenience and success.

Formula 457 CCS console station
There’s plentiful storage found throughout. Courtesy Formula Boats

In addition to enormous deck compartments, there are compartments in all of the coamings for boat hooks, rods and gaffs if you do fish. They tilt outward from beneath the gunwales and tuck back in flush with them, to keep the passageway clear. Lines, fenders and life jackets are accommodated as well. A transom lazarette, or “boot,” can stow more mooring gear, but aboard our tester, this housed a Seabob water scooter—a Formula option painted to match.

It’s important to note that this boat is not only part of a series, and sibling to the even-more-fishing-oriented 457 CCF, but also either version of the boat is eligible for a program called FormulaFlex. FormulaFlex is an exclusive plan offering boat buyers individual personalization in key areas such as graphics, upholstery and electronics. Many of these preferential changes can be had at no additional charge. If a charge is required for a buyer’s request, you participate in FormulaFlex MyWay, allowing you to choose paid-for changes or options. The point is not so much the charge of a fee for the change as it is Formula’s willingness to make changes to ­accommodate buyers’ ­desires in the first place.

Read Next: Formula 387 CCF

Formula 457 CCS cabin
Formula’s length and beam make for a roomy cabin below deck. Courtesy Formula Boats

While we can wax on about the deck plan, it’s better to report what our test truly revealed. The Formula 457 CCS is indeed akin to a thoroughbred, delivering a combination of performance, luxury, versatility and great opportunities for owner personalization.

How We Tested

  • Engines: Triple 600 hp Mercury V-12 Verados
  • Drive/Props: Outboard/29-inch-pitch stainless-steel contra-rotating propsets
  • Gear Ratio: 1.75:2.5 Fuel Load: 650 gal. Water on Board: 50 gal. Crew Weight: 800 lb.

High Points

  • Tempered-glass windshield raises on electric actuators; can be fully open while running.
  • Standard Seakeeper 6 gyrostabilizer, bow thruster, and 18,000 Btu air conditioning in the cockpit.
  • FormulaFlex and FormulaFlex MyWay programs offer great personalization. 

Low Points

  • Cabin berth has ample room to stretch out, but vertical space allows feet-first entry only.
  • The diesel generator is safer than gasoline power, but it requires a second fuel tank. 

Pricing and Specs

Price:$2,448,960 (as tested with test power)
Draft (max):4’6″
Displacement (approx.):33,250 lb.
Transom Deadrise:22 degrees
Max Cabin Headroom:6’6″
Bridge Clearance:10’2″ (masthead light down)
Fuel Capacity:700 gal.
Max Horsepower:1,800
Available Power:Triple Mercury Verado V-12 outboards

Speed, Efficiency, Operation

Formula 457 CCS performance data
Formula 457 CCS Certified Test Results Boating Magazine

Formula Boats – Decatur, Indiana;