Reviewed by Richard Crowder
There’s something about a Formula that exudes quality, from the choice of materials, colours, and fabrics to the fit and finishing details. The 400 SS (Super Sport) exemplifies this. Look in every nook and cranny and behind every opening and fixture and you can see that quality is built-in, not just added on.
The 400 SS rides on Formula FAS³Tech® hi-performance multiplane hull, and in the case of our demonstrator, was powered by twin 370 hp Volvo Penta D-6 diesels utilizing DPH duo-prop sterndrives and joystick control.
The 400 SS is a big, commodious, accommodating, entertaining-friendly boat yet sporty in appearance and handling. A pneumatic-assist transom door leads from the integrated swim platform past the convertible sunlounge with massive storage below to the one-level cockpit. A U-shaped convertible lounge with dual-height cockpit tables and filler cushions plus a port lounge, provide seating along with the two dual-position helm seats. A molded wetbar with pullout, stainless steel-fronted refrigerator, beverage racks, and two portable coolers offers ample refreshment opportunities. The hardtop is optional, but full canvas is standard.
The cabin is sumptuous, inviting, and airy with its 6’2” headroom, four overhead screened hatches plus six screened port lights for natural light and ventilation. Again, the quality of materials and finish is immediately obvious. Forward is a huge, probably eight-seater, curved Ultraleather™ convertible sofa cum dinette with dual-height cherry tables which have dedicated storage of course along with the filler cushions. The aft-stateroom offers a queen-size berth with memory foam mattress and another cedar-lined hanging locker with automatic lighting. Reverse-cycle air conditioning/heating with digital climate control is standard. A dedicated, fully equipped entertainment center services the cabin area.
The galley is complete as you would expect with a stand-up stainless steel refrigerator with freezer, concealed electric stove, microwave, blender, lighted showcase with two tempered tumbler sets, and hardwood, dovetailed drawers. The head compartment has a separate shower area with a Corian seat, vanity, and a porcelain Flush and Forget® VacuFlush™ toilet.
There are just so many other extras to talk about, but we wanted to get the 400 SS out onto the water. First off, we can’t say enough about joystick control, especially on a boat of this size and weight. The combination of joystick control, digital engine management and readouts of everything you could possibly want to know, along with all of the available GPS- interfaced navigation electronics has taken virtually all of the guesswork and uncertainties out of boating. And this 400 SS had it all. It was a joy to handle and the unusually deep (for a boat this size) 22° deadrise of its performance stepped-hull design coupled with its foam-filled, continuous molded structural grid and chemical bonding of hull and deck, made for a most comfortable, dry, quiet, and solid ride.
Between 1500 and 2000 RPM, the 400 SS accelerated smoothly from 9 to 19 mph. Wide Open Throttle (WOT) was 3600 RPM (these are diesels, remember) at 49 mph while consuming less than 42 (US) gallons per hour (GPH). A most comfortable, relaxing, economical, and surprisingly quiet cruising speed was found to be about 2500 RPM at 30 mph while sipping a relatively miserly 18.3 (US) GPH. The Formula 400 SS is a unique combination of quality, performance, and spacious, comfortable accommodations.
|Length:||41' 6"||12.65 m|
|Draft:||3' 0"||91 cm|
|Dry weight:||16100 lbs||7303 kg|
|Fuel Capacity:||250 US gals||946 l|
|Engine / Drive:||370 hp Volvo Penta D-6 diesels|