From my first glimpse, I knew I was lost. This is a boat that seizes your attention and holds it ransom from reality. My test boat had a mostly black cockpit and, yes, I could hear the sizzle of my bare skin turning to pork rinds when I leaned against the rail in the midday Florida sun. Who cares?
Yes, the berth down below is fine for the kids or a cat nap, but not overnighting. Who cares? The sheer animal power of this yacht holds you captivated.
The latest offering from Marquis Yachts, the Marquis M42, is one of the new breed of express dayboats and has a lot of contradictions, which I realize is just a few letters away from addictions. Appearing to be long and seemingly lean, it’s actually 18 inches wider than a VanDutch 40. I’ve been aboard deep-V ocean crushers with $100,000 paint jobs that didn’t attract a fraction of the attention of the M42.
Interior and Accessories
From the reversed bow (ax, battleship, snub?) to the wide swim platform, the M42 is all about fun. There’s a huge sun pad aft, wraparound cockpit dinette, and big cantilevered T-top (an option, but you know you want it). The sleek outdoor galley, with black carbon fiber peeking through the clear coat, has all the ingredients. My test boat had a sink, fridge and ice maker, plus stowage for bottles and glasses. An optional grill is available.
The helm would please Darth Vader mightily: black and angular, with room for twin Raymarine 16-inch monitors and everything placed so the skipper can easily see or tweak all the buttons and switches. The joystick was inboard and right where you want it, whether you’re right- or left-handed. A double-wide helm seat has a backrest high enough to be all-day comfy, bolsters for standing, and footrests at just the right height.
Step below and you’ll find some interesting contradictions. For example, there’s a one-burner stove on the galley, but also a walk-in shower with room for two, if you’re feeling slippery (the teak shower seat adds interesting possibilities).
Clearly this is a boat where you’ll either grill in the cockpit or eat ashore, using the cabin galley for, hmmm, what? Down there, you’ll find a microwave to pop the popcorn or heat the morning espresso, and the countertop is big (even for larger yachts) at 36 inches wide to lay out your PB&J sandwiches. The Isotherm fridge comes standard and will keep the Champagne cold.
The berth—ah, the berth. It’s the result of a dinette that is great for getting out of the heat or even the rain, as on my test afternoon, and it morphs into a 75-inch-wide (an inch shy of king) berth, but shaped so oddly, any idea of fitted sheets is hopeless. Just throw a pile of sheets and blankets on it and settle in.
The cabin gets big points on two fronts: First, the headroom is 6 feet, 5 inches throughout, and second, the wraparound windows provide both light and a view of the outside world.
Marquis does a great job with the details. The electrical panel is just inside the cabin door at eye level, so no stooping to find it. There’s even a hanging locker near the door so you can hang wet jackets or, I suppose, thong bikinis to drip into the bilge.
Access to the engine room should shame much larger yachts. The entire sun pad lifts on hydraulics, allowing you to walk down on steps to reach the engines and generator. The wiring and plumbing are seamanlike and tidy, the batteries accessible, and your service tech will love you.
Even better, a separate locker is built under that sun pad, offering great storage for lines or shore cords, and another huge locker under the cockpit floor eats fenders and all the other gear.
Power for our test boat was a pair of Cummins QSB 480 hp diesels, which pushed us to just shy of 40 mph. Now, 40 mph on the road will get you honked at even in the slow lane, but 40 mph in the Gulf Stream is a whole ’nother critter. It’s not too much speed that Aunt Edna is going to scream, but she might grab her bonnet and shout, “Whee!” I know that my co-skipper, Armando Notz from Sovereign Yachts in Stuart, Florida, and I couldn’t get enough wheel time. “My turn, my turn!”
Marquis will be offering an outboard-powered version of the M42 later this year with triple Mercury Verado 400s. Getting rid of the diesel weight and upping the horsepower ante by 300 ponies should get you into the 50s, but you’ll lose that wonderful hydraulic swim platform that is so perfect for sandbar days. Your call. If you’re shopping, the VanDutch 40 ($695,000) has similar power and features.
When it comes to handling, Donald Blount and Associates’ hulls are known for seaworthiness and stability, and the M42 proved both nimble and reassuring as it slashed across the Gulf Stream. The boat reverse-threw the spray out and away, with few drops reaching that wraparound windshield. A little more fuel in the tanks, and we might have been tempted to run away to Bimini in the Bahamas.
Be careful when you first visit a Marquis M42; it’s a known addictive substance. You’ve been warned.
How We Tested
- Engines: Twin 480 hp Cummins QSB diesels
- Drive/Prop: Acme 22″ x 24″ 3-blade Nibral
- Gear Ratio: 1.64:1 Fuel Load: 250 gal. Water on Board: 10 gal. Crew Weight: 410 lb.
- Great stability and tracking offshore.
- Every nook and cranny have been turned into stowage.
- Crowd-stopping good looks.
- Black cap across the windshield is directly at horizon level for the skipper’s eyes.
- Permateek decking is hot in the sun.
Pricing and Specs
|Displacement (approx.):||23,000 lb.|
|Transom Deadrise:||17.5 degrees|
|Max Cabin Headroom:||6’5″|
|Fuel Capacity:||320 gal.|
|Available Power:||Twin Cummins 480 hp diesels or triple Mercury Verado 400 hp outboards|
Speed, Efficiency, Operation
Marquis Yachts – Pulaski, Wisconsin; marquisyachts.com