For those of a certain age, it may be difficult to use the words “Blackfin” and “center console” in the same sentence. Add the word “outboards,” and it’s practically impossible.
Yet the new Blackfin 302CC is a worthy successor to the many legendary Blackfin iterations. Blackfin, like many brand names, has had its challenges since it was launched in 1973 with a 29-footer that capitalized on the success of the Bertram 31. Now firmly settled under the Monterey Yachts corporate umbrella, these new Blackfins will please both serious anglers and families alike.
The 302CC fills a niche between the Blackfin 272CC and 332CC, and it runs on a Michael Peters-designed double-stepped hull with twin full-length strakes and a deep-V, 23-degree deadrise clearly descended from Peters’ offshore boats. The result is a soft ride in a chop and offers plenty of speed to get to the canyons.
The 302CC (32’8” LOA) won’t exactly surprise you with its layout, but it’s in the details where she truly shines. Take, for example, the hinges on the port side door, which is equally convenient for hauling in big fish or big swimmers. These hinges could have been borrowed from a hatch on a nuclear submarine.
And if you think those are big, check out the pantograph hinge that opens the spacious head compartment under the console. This not only keeps the open door from blocking the walkway, but it seals the door tightly as well. The head, by the way, is family-friendly electric with a holding tank.
The bowrider-style seating is straightforward, but under the cushions you’ll find insulated, oversized bin stowage with overboard drains (and note the armrests for the console seat). Both of the side seats can morph into forward-facing lounges with clever removable backrests. Add a table with a SeaDek inlay, and you can either dine or convert it into a casting platform.
The skipper gets a command center with dual Garmin MFDs, lighted pushbutton switches, triple helm seats with bolsters and a raised platform. Overhead, the powder-coated T-top includes a locking box for electronics, and the windshield has a power vent for breeze on those sticky days. One surprising standard item is the bow thruster, which takes the white knuckles out of close-in maneuvering.
Just aft is a bait prep station with a removable 45-quart Yeti cooler, cutting board, sink with pull-out sprayer and four tackle boxes. You can swap out the fishing accoutrements with an aft-facing seat that converts to a leaning post, thus satisfying both families and anglers. The cockpit is big enough for several anglers to fish comfortably alongside a 30-gallon see-through lighted baitwell and twin 54-gallon fishboxes. Rod holders? I lost count at 18, but I know I missed some. There’s also a fold-down transom bench seat when needed. Salt and freshwater washdowns will keep the cockpit tidy as well as rinse off swimmers.
Standard power is a pair of Mercury 300-hp Verados, but twin 350s are available from both Mercury and Yamaha. With the 300 Verados, you’re looking at a shade over 47 knots flat out, and a comfortable, economical cruise at nearly 30 knots (and 1.4mpg!). The transom bracket is wide enough to allow passage from side-to-side, and a swim ladder is hidden under a hatch.
With the 302CC, Blackfin has created a gold-standard in the category that carries its name forward with a high-quality build, thoughtful features and a solid hull.
Blackfin 302CC Specifications:
Displ.: 12,750 lbs.
Fuel: 240 gal.
Water: 50 gal.
Power: 2/300-hp Mercury V-8 300 Verado
Cruise Speed: 29 knots
Top Speed: 48 knots