Ray 420 Sedan Bridge
— By Capt. Ken Kreisler
— December 2003
|Part 2: Sea Ray’s spin on natural selection seems to be working.|
Another spatial feature worth noting is the galley, down and to starboard. While headroom in the saloon measures more than 6'5", down the three steps to the galley it’s a whopping 9'6". As with her progenitors, the 420 has a well-equipped galley that features ample stowage in cabinets and drawers, Corian countertops, a Panasonic microwave/convection oven, a two-burner electric stovetop, a three-quarter size Norcold refrigerator and freezer, and the can’t-do-without Black & Decker coffee maker in its own cabinet. There is additional stowage beneath a hatch in the galley sole and in a pantry with seven shelves that’s just forward in the hallway to starboard. Plenty of space for ship’s stores for extended cruising.
The 420’s accommodations also benefited from past successes with interior space. Sea Ray took its proven Sundancer midcabin profile and mixed it with its 560 layout, producing a port-side stateroom containing a double berth and an impressive overhead clearance of 6'8" that tapers to just over four feet. A cedar-lined locker is also provided, and the day head is just forward of here. The forepeak master has an en suite head, and its centerline queen island berth has stowage beneath the mattress as well as in two drawers in its base, a pair of cedar-lined lockers, and ample, bulkhead-mounted cabinets.
The 420 Sedan Bridge even inherited spirited performance, courtesy of the MerCruiser-Cummins synergy. My test boat was equipped with a pair of optional 446-shp (480-bhp) 480C-E Cummins diesels, along with with the optional SmartCraft electronic monitoring system. Putting her through her paces on a dead-calm day—great for boating but not for a sea trial—I posted a 30.1-knot (34.7-mph) WOT speed, and at 2000 rpm I measured a 20.7-knot (23.8-mph) cruising speed. When I nudged her up to 2250 rpm, she clipped along at 25.1 knots (28.9 mph). With 350 gallons of fuel, she should have a 272-NM range at slow cruise and 250-NM range at fast cruise.
Given the conditions I expected nothing less than a smooth, soft ride and true tracking on straight runs, and that’s what I got. When putting her into a rather tight slip back at Surfside’s marina—the place was jammed for an open house—I really appreciated her extra-slow idle speed capability and optional Vetus bow thruster.
Sea Ray’s spin on natural selection seems to be working, as the 420 Sedan Bridge has all the features and amenities necessary to thrive in the competitive big-boat environment. So what’s next? Well, given the company’s continual efforts to evolve its boats to suit the ever-changing needs of its buyers, you’ll most likely see some of this boat’s better attributes in the next generation of Sea Rays.
Sea Ray Phone: (800) SRBOATS. www.searay.com.
This article originally appeared in the November 2003 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.