altMore of What You Really Want

Could the Four Winns H310 be the boat that gives you more of what you really want?

When we think of a power boat that's over 31 feet long with a 9' 8" beam, we would assume that it would be an express cruiser, but the Four Winns H310 is actually one of the biggest bowriders on the market.

Is a bowrider what you want? Well, we really applaud the out-of-the-box thinking that drove the design of this big bowrider because the main attraction in current express cruiser designs is to have a big open space where family and friends can be together. People also like a single expanse of flat floor with no stairs to trip over. Buyers look for lots of space to stretch out on comfortable lounge seating and when they reach the anchorage, everyone loves a huge swim platform and a transom shower.

The 310 has all that and more.

Although the lines are sleek and racy, it is still a big boat. The hull weighs 8,340 pounds and even though Four Winns offers an optional trailer to go with the H310, you won't be pulling this behind your minivan!

An ideal way to keep this boat would be at a dry slip marina where you could quickly pull a mooring cover over it, leave it in the security of an indoor building and get it out when you want easily. Out on the water, this boat will not only carry a whole gang of family and friends but the 21° deadrise vee hull will cut through rough water for an impressive ride.

Our test boat was equipped with the very desirable MerCruiser Axius power package with twin MerCruiser MAG 377 engines featuring electronic fuel injection and ECT (Emissions Control Technology) that uses catalytic converters for clean air operation.

In addition, the Axius system features joystick docking so just like the latest big yachts, you can stop this boat, spin it in its length, walk it sideways into a slip, or even hold its position using the built-in GPS and Skyhook feature…and that’s just a sampling of the features included in Axius.

The whole package delivers impressive performance. Swinging 26 pitch Bravo3 propellers by Mercury, our twin-engined H310 planed off in just over 6 1/2 seconds which is plenty quick enough to pull a water skier or wake boarder; the boat reached a full 50 mph at just over 5000 RPM at the top end.

Handling was effortless. The boat responds instantly to the helm, turns sharply without protest and, in spite of its big size, feels nimble and easy-to-manage at virtually all speeds.

One of the interior highlights is the double-wide helm seat with standard power adjustment. An elegant wood rim steering wheel and MerCruiser's impressive SmartCraft multifunction instrumentation along with the Garmin navigation unit mounted in the center, means that monitoring all functions on this boat is very simple.

The SmartCraft DTS (digital throttle and shift) control box is particularly nice to use and the power tilt and trim system for the SeaCore drives allows simultaneous one-button adjustment of both drives. The test boat also had a trim tab system to adjust the running angle or to level the boat in a side wind.

We often wax poetic about the elegant teak and holly wood deck and flooring offered in some yachts. Four Winns has duplicated that lovely look using snap-in carpet which actually stays cooler in the sun, feels soft on your feet and can be removed for cleaning or storage.

Overhead, our test boat had the optional full Camper canvas allowing an owner to enclose the boat completely for sleeping aboard. It's also great to have some shade when you're spending the day cruising, especially to protect small children from sunburn.

Four Winns expects you to spend the day onboard. In fact, you can easily stay overnight. On the starboard side underneath the helm area is quite a spacious sitting height head. It's finished bright and white with an opening porthole for ventilation, a side door, storage, sink in a vanity and a hand-held shower fixture as well. It's not like home, but it's great for a bowrider!

Opposite to port is an enclosed cabin. This also has an opening porthole plus a screened sliding window into the companionway. It's a bit snug, but you and your sweetie could spend the night behind closed doors and it's perfect for a sleepy grandchild who wants to get out of the sun. A couple of little folks could also sit there to play games.

The cabin in our test boat also was equipped with a Contoure microwave; the big stereo system is located here as well, keeping it safe and out of the weather.

The most popular yacht design these days is to have a family room on the water. That is where the H310 really excels. Starting at the stern, there is a large pullout boarding ladder for swimming and a hand-held shower on the transom. A remote for the stereo is convenient and the shore power connections are there as well. The cables store under the aft seat cushions.

These cushions are really ‘trick’. They can make up rearward facing seats, fold flat for a huge expanse of tanning bed or be tilted up like lounge seats. The transom walk-through helps to make the whole swim platform area, part of the living space.

For engine access, the entire back seat is on an electric lift, opening up the entire engine bay from the top for easy service although the two big MerCruiser V8's have to be mounted very close together. (Be thankful you're not the mechanic who has to change the inside sparkplugs!)

The interior can be set up as individual seats or filled in to make a full horseshoe-shaped conversation pit. A clever feature is that the cockpit table mounts not in the center of the floor, but with a side bracket to keep the foot area clear ; it can also be moved to different locations on board or stored when it's not required.

There's lots of storage under all of the seats, stainless-steel handholds are conveniently located and on the starboard side behind the helm seat is a refreshment area.

While a portable cooler is included, our test boat had the optional full refrigerator. There's a hand rail/fiddle on the counter edge, a small sink with water, trash locker and storage. If you have a barbecue with a swim platform mount, you could prepare full meals, especially remembering that our test boat had an optional microwave.

Last but by no means least is the bow area. First, this is a huge space. Not only is there plenty of seating for four or five people, but with the filler cushion, it is like an adult playpen with sturdy recessed handrails all the way around. At the bow is a large anchor locker with an electric windlass for effortless anchoring.

We suspect that this boat probably has a lot of what you really want, plus handling that is ‘runabout’ easy, a high level of performance and all-day accommodation for a whole gang of people. This boat could be a real bargain!

By Andy Adams

To see if this boat is available, go to www.boatcan.com to check listings!

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