Here’s a crossover open-bow boat that redefines the category by dramatically expanding forward seating space yet retaining the nimble, responsive and smooth ride of a premium V-bottom. The Four Winns HD270 does it with outboard power too, making it a sure hit in coastal settings.
The Mercury Verado 300 proved responsive with integrated power steering. Even with a large crew, acceleration was exciting with power to spare. Sitting at the bow, you could stretch out fully across the beam. The seating area was nearly square with ample fore to aft seating as well. Both the design and the upholstery, our notes reflect, make for a comfy spot. Coaming pockets are richly upholstered and protect stereo speakers and stainless-steel cup holders. There’s a bow boarding ladder and you can access the anchor without disturbing the ladder.
The skipper and mate get bucket seats that swivel and recline. Flip up a bolster for elevation when docking or to simply stand up for better close-quarters visibility. The helm station offers a clean, upholstered and padded design with a three-spoke steering wheel and a clear, unobstructed view of the water ahead — even with passengers seated forward.
The cockpit is complete with a walk-through to the transom. Most transom seating areas on boats have a backrest that tilts fore and aft, converting the seating into a sun pad. Four Winns relies on the forward area for a sun pad and does so using optional filler cushions, but the advantage of the fixed aft seat is the easy-lifting hatch that covers a bodega of storage.
If you weren’t already down with the luxurious accommodations on the HD270, we failed to mention a portside head compartment, which offers comfortable space and a port light and can be equipped with either a flushing toilet or a porta-potty.
The HD270 rings up at $93,538 (base with test power) and the wakeboard arch with Bimini and board racks costs $7,977, and tower speakers cost $1,177. It’s priced right for coastal boaters who appreciate the convenient maintenance schedule of outboard power.
Comparable Model: Sea Ray 270 Sundeck OB