Time has changed that perception and these high powered 30ft plus centre consoles are fast becoming a common sight on our waterways — an evolution that’s transformed them into one of the more popular styles of boats on the market, and that due to smart innovation and versatility incorporated into the boats.
Popular global brand Boston Whaler has been and will always be at the top of the boat manufacturing charts, particularly so in the centre console range. It’s a no-brainer as their boats are stacked with smart innovation, multipurpose versatility and high-end quality throughout.
We recently grabbed a test on Queensland Marine Centre’s latest Boston Whaler 330 Outrage centre console and, as to be expected, this 33ft beast of offers 900hp of high-performance muscle, attractive styling and superb versatility throughout.
Designed as the ideal crossover centre console, the new 330 Outrage combines serious offshore fishability with innovative quirks to entice family and friends onboard, and I like the multipurpose versatility rather than it being solely dedicated to sport fishing.
Onboard, well, the layout design and inclusions are worth looking at in detail. To start, I do like the Yank boats having higher capacity ratings, and in this case you can load the 330 Outrage up with 14 persons. Can it cater for 14 on seats? Well, the new seating arrangements includes bow seating, helm, and stern seating options, so yes it can accommodate for 14 — however, I would say 11 persons would be the ideal number, without sitting shoulder to shoulder.
The finer details include the bow having access to a decent sized anchor-well with windlass, as well as compact triple seat, without restricting the full fishability of the bow. Adding to multipurpose use, the additional table insert is a side-mount instead of posts with deck base — it’s a great idea as it allows for an extra flush-mount deck hatch below. As part of the console, the new daybed/lounger incorporated into the bow is another great addition to the 330, and again without completely restricting the bows fishability. Expecting standard storage below, I opened the seat up to find an innovative storage solution including, dive cylinder rack, bucket storage, and a game fishing rod rack that protrudes into the head compartment.
A worthy creature comfort of the 330 Outrage is no doubt the head built into the console. Access is via the starboard side console door with a stepdown leading to a fair-sized head with Vacuflush toilet, small vanity with moulded sink, and pull-out sprayer that serves as a shower head.
The console includes a full front screen with wiper, as well as side screens and optional clears available for added protection from the elements. The insulated hard top includes a port side ladder rail with access to the top for the fisherman requiring a dual control station, as well rocket launchers, LED lighting and plenty of room for extra electronic storage. Bow and stern shade sails mounted to the hard top are another option available to this model.
At the helm, the captain’s domain has comfortable seating with footrests, as well as easy access to all controls and electronics. The dash layout is as stylish as they come, with full length switch panels, electronics, and controls ergonomically positioned to simplify operating. Tricked up with some big options, this 330 Outrage is ready for the deep with the twin Raymarine 16in Axiom Excel multifunction touch screens with Real Vision 3D sonar.
As part of the helm seating, cocktails and dreams are taken care of in the 12V fridge on the starboard side, as well as having a bit of tackle storage on the port side, and this model was optioned with the stern facing bench seat with innovative back rest that converts to a prep/drinks table. Catering for more bums on seats, there’s an additional pull-out bench seat neatly tucked away into the transom. Access to batteries, plumbing pumps, steering pump, cockpit teak table and extra storage can be found in the large flush-mount deck hatch.
A large live-well, plenty of coaming rod-holders, gunwale pole/gaff racks, outriggers and two colossal-sized fish hatches takes care of the fisherman’s needs, as well as the cockpit having dual access via the transom door or port side dive-door.
Again, I do like the entertaining and social aspect incorporated into the 330 Outrage which don’t compromise too much on the fishability. With a number of cockpit layout options available, as a serious fisherman, I would probably look at the cockpit leaning post options with sink and storage, and even add a cooker to serve up the catch of the day, instead of having the extra seating behind the helm.
With twin Mercury 450hp Supercharged Verados this 330 has 900hp of serious gumption attached to the transom. So, I didn’t expect anything less than high-performance and what I received was a healthy dose of X-factor mixed with ‘I’m bloody impressed’ type of performance.
I’ll hit straight for the jugular, with full noise on this weapon cracking up a ridiculous 98km/h or 53kt. Now that’s just hearsay, as we would never sneak a quick burst at WOT in calm waters where speed zones are 40 knots, so this speed was obviously achieved offshore. In short, these V8 450R (Racing) supercharged Verado’s are quite something as they run smooth, exceptionally quiet for a V8, and provide smile enhancing performance throughout the rev-ranges. If you don’t like tranquillity onboard, switching over to sports exhaust solves that problem which then it growls like it should — quite a sexy feature suited the Gold Coast.
For the dedicated fisho’s, 1000rpm will give you a slow troll speed of 5kt and economy of 12L/h combined, while 1500rpm produces 7kt, and 2000rpm gives you around 8-9 knots depending on the conditions. Economy varies between 24-43L/h.
So, performance gets a 5/5 for sure, but what about the ride and handling? Well firstly, handling is a breeze as this 330 is loaded with joystick piloting, active (auto) trim, trim-tabs, digital controls and mercs vessel view to make life easier at the helm.
Tested in some pretty ordinary conditions offshore, the variable deadrise to 23 degrees at the transom produces a nice stable, soft, and dry ride throughout. I do like the quietness of ride on these boats which is due to Boston Whalers solid and quality build.
Like anything, high-end quality does not come at budget prices and this particular 330 Outrage had a number of high-end option boxes ticked, taking the end price to $829,000. For those still wanting a quality but not as much bling, you can get into a standard 330 Outrage with twin Mercury 300hp outboards for just over $600,000.
As a centre console, the Boston Whaler 330 Outrage ticks the boxes for multipurpose versatility, X-factor performance, good fishability and refined attention to detail throughout. The moulded finishes are a standout, the grab-rails are all recessed, the coamings are bolstered for extra comfort, the fittings and accessories are quality, and again, it’s built solid — even rated unsinkable for that extra piece of mind — so the positives are endless.
Overall, it’s a dedicated sport fisher that will get you to the reef fast and comfortably at that, as well as being a fantastic day-boat suited to family boating and summer cruising with the mates.
Find more on Boston Whaler here.
BOSTON WHALER 330 OUTRAGE
PRICE AS TESTED $829,000
• Twin 450hp Mercury Super-charged V8 Joystick (JPO) Outboards
• 2 x Raymarine 16in Axiom Excel Multifunction Touch Screens R
• Bow Tow Eye
• Underwater lighting
• Bow sunshade
• Self-levelling TAB system
• Cockpit refrigerator
• Aft cockpit tables (teak)
• Electric anchor windlass with full chain
• Radial outriggers
• Removeable bow table
• Scuba tank rack
• White rubrail/steel insert
$609,000 with Twin 300hp Mercury and standard features.
TYPE Centre Console
PEOPLE 14 (day) 0 (night)
WATER (RAW) 24L
WATER (FRESH) 151L
MAKE/MODEL Mercury 450R
TYPE Supercharged V8 [64 degree] with 32-valve Dual Overhead Cam [DOHC]
RATED HP Rec. HP: Twin 300hp, Max. HP: Twin 450hp
DISPLACEMENT 279 CID/4.6L
GEAR RATIO 1.6:1
PROPELLER REV4 20P
Queensland Marine Centre (QMC)
Unit 10, 71 Shipper Drive, Coomera QLD 4209
PH 07 5519 9035
Twin Mercury Verado 450R, 2 persons, REV4 20P. Range calculated leaving 10 per cent fuel in reserve (1135L tank). Weather conditions: Wind 0.25kt in variable storm conditions and sea was 1-1.5m storm seas.