Rodman 1290 Evolution first look: Tough and stylish in equal measure

The 1290 is the second model in Rodman’s revamped Evolution range, following the launch of the 1090 in 2019.

This update of the 1250 model, which was originally launched in the late 90s and has been a great success for the Spanish shipyard, keeps the original boat’s well proven sportsfisher hull and adds up-to-date engines and drivetrains and a much improved interior.

There are changes on the outside as well, including the elongated hull windows, new cockpit doors and a sliding door adjacent to the helm that will boost natural ventilation in the saloon and make single-handed skippering far easier.

The standard boat is a hardtop fitted with a Webasto sunroof as standard but for £7,000 extra there is a flybridge variant with a twin helm position and a wrap of seating ahead of it.

Article continues below…

Recommended videos for you

There’s plenty of variety in the engineroom where you can have twin shafts with either Volvo Penta or Yanmar diesels or the choice of two IPS options with either 380hp or 440hp.

The 440hp lumps in shaft or IPS form should be good for a top speed of 37 knots and a cruise of 22 knots for 280nm of range.

With that beautifully flared hull, the Rodman 1290 Evolution should be able to cope with anything you chuck at it – bear in mind that there is a 1250 in the Rodman fleet that went up to the icebergs of Greeland under her own steam.

The interior isn’t exactly radical in its layout but it’s bright, well put together and far more contemporary than it used to be.

A combination of light woods and upholstery, and teak flooring create a warm, welcoming atmosphere and the two cabins and separate bathroom are a good size.

The Rodman 1290 Evolution is still tough as old boots but it looks more designer than Wellington these days.


LOA: 43ft 6in (13.28m)
Beam: 13ft 8in (4.21m)
Engines: Volvo Penta IPS500/600 or twin D6 440hp shaftdrives
Top speed: 37 knots
Starting price: £416,400 (inc. VAT)