The family wants a sport cruiser that can sleep four and handle weekend cruises, but the bank account doesn't quite agree. Monterey's new 260 SCR might be the answer. To avoid slip fees and associated in-water storage and maintenance costs, the designers stuck to a trailerable 8-foot-6-inch beam, then used every trick in the book to create the maximum usable space within this envelope.
Their efforts paid off in what is certainly one of the most stylish yet functional pocket cruisers to hit the market in some time. Down below, the family will enjoy standing headroom and spreadable elbowroom. Fore and aft bunks provide realistic sleeping for four, and a cook could actually turn out a real meal from the galley. The other noteworthy feature is the head compartment, which is one of the largest we've seen on a boat of this style and length.
Up top, there's room for at least eight, plus a generous swim platform and a bow sun lounge. The elongated forward section of the forward-sweeping arch provides a degree of shade even without the Bimini, while the full-enclosure package turns the top deck into another sheltered living area. Those wishing to max out the boat's live-aboard potential can order a genset, a marine holding tank and heating/air conditioning — which can be piped into the cockpit.
Designed to operate with a single engine, the 260 tops out at just over 40 mph and delivers an all-day cruise speed of 30 mph with a range of up to 150 miles.
Key Note: Extensive computer modeling aided designers in maximizing usable interior space, which is among the best in its class.
• Though it has the look and feel of a sport cruiser, the 260 remains easy to maneuver and dock.
• Tanks and mechanical systems are kept on centerline or balanced to maintain optimum trim.
• Cockpit lounge features a large removable storage box below or an optional Sun Island lounge configuration.
* Length Overall: 27'6"
* Beam: 8'6"
* Dry Weight: 6,280 lb.
* Seating/Weight Capacity: 10/1,650 lb.
* Fuel Capacity: 80 gal.
* Maximum HP: 320
* MSRP (test boat w/ MerCruiser 6.2L): $108,011
* NMMA Certified: Yes
* Test Engine: MerCruiser 6.2L
* Test Load: People (350 lb.); Fuel (40 gal.)
* Optimum Cruise Speed: 30 mph @ 3,900 rpm
* Top Speed: 42.8 mph @ 5,130 rpm
* Time to Plane: 5.6 sec.
* Time to 30 MPH: 10.9 sec.
* Minimum Planing Speed: 15 mph @ 2,100 rpm