Is the Boston Whaler 405 Conquest a serious fishing boat, or is it really a comfortable cruiser? Yes.
Do a search on boats.com for power cruisers and then do another one for sportfishing boats, and under each category you’re just as likely to run across the Boston Whaler 405 Conquest. What gives? Doesn’t the boat have to be one or the other? Not by a long shot—and after spending some time aboard the 405 Conquest, we think this boat not only fits into both categories but also sets some new standards for each.
No doubt you noticed that Whaler put a lot of emphasis on creating a roomy, comfortable cabin and helm-deck. That’s because this builder is quite in tune with its market, and they know darn well that most of their customers put a premium on comfort. Sure, building out the cabin and helm-deck means that less of the boat can be dedicated to the cockpit space that anglers treasure, but it’s also one of the reasons why the power cruiser moniker doesn’t merely fit but describes the capabilities of the boat to a tee. Other power cruisers in this class may be able to offer a private stateroom, a mid-cabin, and a convertible dinette that all together provide sleeping accommodations for three couples, but few fishing boats can make that boast.
The same can be said of the helm-deck. Between the dinette, the passenger’s double-wide seat, and the helm, there’s room for the entire crew to sit in air-conditioned comfort—yet there’s also space for a full wet bar (with a wine rack, refrigerator, sink, 120-V receptacle, and stowage). And Whaler provides an interesting perk up here that we don’t normally see: there’s a 16” Raymarine Axiom display mounted not only at the helm, but also in the dash on the passenger’s side. While talking with their customers Whaler discovered that passengers often wanted to see the electronics in action during the cruise, but it was always tough to view the LCD screens at the helm from such an angle. With this set-up, they can check out the chartplotter or review the radar without craning their necks or relocating behind the captain. Added bonus: you can also get a passenger’s-side joystick, to make docking easier when pulling into a pier on the port side.
Another nifty feature found in this part of the boat is the aft seat of the dinette, which has a backrest that can be flipped forward so you can face the back of the boat to watch trolled baits or communicate with those in the cockpit. You say you’ve seen that before? Sure you have. But sit in that seat, reach down, and pop open the easy-access hatch between your knees. You can reach right into the drink box without having to get up and lift the seat base, as is the case on most boats.
More about that drink box: you’ll never have to fumble with bags of ice to chill it down, because Whaler integrates an (optional) glycol cooling system that can take it right down to freezing temperatures. Same goes for the in-deck fishboxes.
What about the boats’ fishy form? Basic angling features include five flush gunwale rodholders; a pair of under-gunwale rodracks; cockpit toe rails with downrigger ball holders molded in; fresh and raw water washdowns; and a 19-gallon livewell in the transom. If you’re thinking 19 gallons is on the thin side for a boat of this size you’re right, but there are options for more capacity and that’s merely what you’ll be left with if you outfit this boat to tilt more towards cruising and less towards fishing. Owners can make a fairly substantial change to push the boat in one direction or the other, by how they choose to outfit the transom. Yes, the transom is variable in nature.
Those folks most interested in angling will opt for the “delux prep center with livewell” back here, which is a modular unit that fits into the center of the transom and includes another 40 gallons of bait-hauling ability. It also has a sink, some tackle stowage, and a dedicated spot to house your five-gallon bucket. If, on the other hand, you’re happy to let fishing features play second fiddle, you can opt for a “summer kitchen” option. In that case, instead of all those angling goodies the module houses an electric grill (the sink and stowage remain mostly unchanged).
Before you scroll down any further, glance back up at that picture of the transom again—yes, you do see four outboard cowlings back there. The 405 Conquest comes stock with quadruple Mercury Verado 300 V-8 outboards. And you have the option to upgrade to either quad 350s, or even quad 400s. Go for the 400s (why the heck wouldn’t you?) and you’ll break 50 mph at top-end, and cruise all day long in the low- to mid-30s while turning 4500 rpm and burning a hair over 50 gph.
Whether you’re a cruiser or a fisher one other thing you’ll appreciate about the 405 Conquest is that it’s totally teched-out. Sit at the helm and you’ll have a marine-rated inductive phone charger/mount, multiple USB ports, and 12-volt plugs at your fingertips. What you won’t have is a giant switch panel, because this boat features integrated digital switching. Yes, there are a few switches for critical systems, but the entire boat can be controlled via the touch-screens at the helm. And as a result, it was easy for Boston Whaler to integrate a complete theft-deterrent system with remote connectivity. Not only do you get geo-fencing alarms and cellular/satellite monitoring (for systems like engines, tanks, batteries, shore power, and high-water alarms), you also get remote control of the air conditioning system, lighting, and the chiller system. Yes, with a few swipes on your cell phone you can cool off the cabin and chill down the fishboxes, hours before you ever arrive at the boat—nifty.
Another thing every boater will like no matter their activity of choice is the fact that the 405 Conquest is built in the tried-and-true Boston Whaler manner. Outer and inner hulls are laid up and put inside of a massive steel mold that gets clamped shut, and then pressurized liquid foam is pumped in between the outer and inner layers. As the foam cures it heats to over 400-degrees, fills every gap, and bonds to every surface. You could cut the resulting glass-foam-glass sandwich into 1,000 pieces, and each and every one of those pieces would float. Unsinkable isn’t just a marketing term, it’s a reality. And on top of that the structure that results is insulating, cuts water noise when running through the seas, and eliminates the hollow drumming and vibrations that reverberate through some boats as you run through the waves.
So back to square one—should we call the Boston Whaler 405 Conquest a cruiser? Or, would it be better termed a sportfishing boat? In this case, the boat unquestionably fits into both categories. And many people would say it tops both categories, too.
Those with a fishier attitude who want a similar style may be checking out the Cabo 40 HTX, a twin-diesel inboard. If one wants to stick with outboards the Intrepid 430 Sport Yacht will be of interest.
See Boston Whaler 405 Conquests for sale on boats.com
LOA – 41’4”
Beam – 13’6”
Draft – 2’7”
Displacement – 30,360 lbs.
Transom Deadrise – 19 degrees
Fuel Capacity – 620 gal.
Water Capacity – 90 gal.
For more information visit Boston Whaler.