Bayliner 642

The sports cuddy makes a triumphant return

Like Republican voters and users of Yaho, the global boatowning demographic is an ageing one. But as sales jobs go it shouldn’t be that hard to entice younger people in.

What’s not to like about a fast, fun and status rich pursuit that can be as relaxing or exhilarating as you want it to be? Well, for starters, there is a something of a price hurdle to clear, and the desire for something new and exciting to entice newbies in.

So, good news everyone. As we head into 2013, there has rarely been a better mix of boats for those seeking to start out. Look at the Starterboat category for the 2013 Motorboat of the Year Awards (page 26) and you’ll find it awash with top drawer craft.

Bayliner has been a starterboat champion for years, making 20ft-plus sportsboats and cruisers since forever. Back in the 80s its Capri range ruled the budget cuddy roost. Bizarre Space Invader- style instruments, glued in carpets, flat hulls and questionable build quality aside, these boats were seriously affordable.


  • Practical, comfortable, capable and good value.


  • Lacks the effortlessness of a V6 engine.


Cheap but decidedly cheerful, the perfect route afloat.


Beam: 8ft 0in (2.43m)
Engines: MerCruiser 3.0lt 135

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