Monterey 400 Sport Yacht

Monterey's 400 Sport Yacht weds what you need with what you want in fine style.

Monterey 400 Sport Yacht

Monterey 400 Sport Yacht Specs

The Scanvik faucets aboard Monterey's 400 Sport Yacht look great, but they go a step beyond-they can be preset to dispense water at the same temperature every time you lift the handle. That saves water by stopping you from wasting a gallon or more while hunting for the right mix. It's an example of the many minute details that Monterey designers stressed over to bring the 400 Sport Yacht to life.

The cabinet doors were cut from the same panel of wood as the frames and then were hung so that the grain matches. A router was used on the solid sapele (a tropical hardwood) stateroom doors, carving a ribbon pattern that carries this boat's "edge" exterior styling belowdecks. A wall hanging of upholstered squares in the aft stateroom has the same effect. These also hide a hatch that houses all the electronics modules-the autopilot control, NMEA 2000 control box, stereo amp, horn compressor, and so forth-in one location. Aboard most boats these controls are scattered hither and yon.

The battery switches are electric, so you push a button instead of climbing down into the bilge and turning a dial-plus voltage-sensitive relays are wired in. These automatically charge the battery that needs it most without the need to throw switches on alternate days. Monterey's designers made a pair of leather-topped wood otto­mans-and created a space beneath the entertainment center for them to stow.

Sure, the boat's not perfect-as I opened the breaker panel door it hit the TV screen (a standoff is to be installed, Monterey says)-but mechanically, electrically, ergonomically, and cosmetically, the 400 Sport Yacht weds what you need with what you want in fine style.

Get Up and Go

That statement extends to power and propulsion as well. Twin 352-bhp Volvo Penta IPS 500 tractor drives bestow the 400 Sport Yacht with range, speed, sporty handling, and uncanny docking agility. Push the levers. The 400 Sport surges forward, climbs its bow wave like a mountain goat with a puma in pursuit, then slingshots to a 41-mph top speed. When collecting performance data, I don't use the tabs, but it's silly for you not to use them to fine-tune for trim, load, and conditions. Similarly, you can dock an IPS-powered boat like the 400 Sport Yacht without using the joystick. But why would you? The technology is aboard, is proven, and makes life easier. The 400 Sport Yacht spins and backs into its slip with grace.

The 400 Sport Yacht also has excellent range, the result of the combination of diesel power, the reduced drag and "flat" shaft angle the IPS drives provide, and the slipperiness of its hull design. At 3000 rpm, fast cruise in a chop for this boat, we made our best efficiency: 31.5 mph burning just 25.4 gph. Net economy exceeds 1 mpg over a wide throttle range.

The 400 Sport Yacht is quiet underway, as are all IPS-powered boats. But in this case the lack of noise is also a result of the sound-deadening program Monterey implemented. I took decibel readings with the engine hatch open and closed. At 3000 rpm my meter read 79 with the hatch closed and 91 with the hatch open. Decibels are logarithmic; an increase of 10 represents doubled volume. Monterey's smart construction and installation of insulation results in a boat that's roughly half as loud as the already quiet IPS system.

You can see some of this great engineering by hitting the button and opening the engine hatch. The 400 Sport Yacht has one of the best engine rooms I've seen in boats with less than 50' LOA. Straight, easy-to-follow wire and plumbing runs are accompanied by 360-degreee engine access and the ability to lay your hands on every service point. The hatch opens so wide that you can stand up and work with daylight pouring in so you can see what you're doing. Electric lighting provides visibility at night. Note the deep hatch gutter that directs water overboard.

On a Mission

Like a house with good bones, the 400 Sport Yacht's physical plant allows it to better fulfill its primary purpose-cruising. To that end, you'll find a standard chaise sunpad on the bow. These are optional aboard other boats, such as Doral's Mediterra ($503,950, powered like my test boat), though the Mediterra boasts dual lounges of slatted teak. Unfortunately, my tester's rode locker hatch hit the bowrail, preventing it from opening fully. A redesign is said to be in process.

In the cockpit, a unique foldout table deploys from the aft portside lounge. The sun island, aft in centerline, is just that, a big two-person settee. Its backrest is hinged to fold down partway to make a chaise, or lay it flat to create a sun lounge. The platform features a four-step ladder. The lazarette hatch-beautifully finished-drains and will stow six big fenders.

Belowdecks is a two-head, two-stateroom arrangement. The 400 Sport Yacht is one of three 40-footers with two heads and the only one with access to the forward head from both the stateroom and the salon. Cabinets run short of touching the fiberglass headliner. This provides a custom, open look. The feel is bright and airy.

I was especially impressed by the convertible salon settee. A lift-and-lay design allows you to simply pull it out and voilà-it's a berth. It beats a convertible sofa because you don't lose the stowage within and it's far better than those convertible dinettes in which you need to assemble Filler A with Pedestal B. The 400 Sport Yacht is chock-full of such clever refinement.

Extra Point: The air-conditioning return vent is removed several feet from the compressor itself, making the 400 Sport Yacht's climate control quieter than those aboard other boats.