If you look at a Sea Ray Sundancer 320 built, say, 10 years ago, it bears little resemblance to the brand new model that debuted earlier this year at the New York and Miami boat shows. Sure, the new 320 is still a sport cruiser with the requisite Sea Ray badge centered on each hullside, but other than that, any hint of similarity seems to fade with the years in between. Watch this short video we shot on the 320, and you’ll see what we mean in no time.
From a visual perspective, the design is fresh, with crisp lines along the hullsides that trace in new directions. The profile is different, too, with a sweeping motion from bow to stern that accentuates the angular, full-width windshield and standard Bimini arch. What becomes more evident when you board the 320 is how much new thinking has been applied to this sport cruiser. For example, the typical design for a cruiser foredeck is to have the cabin door double as a staircase up and through the wraparound windshield. On the bow you would find a sunpad that was as much an afterthought as it was a feature, and using it while the boat was underway would be a dicey proposition. On the new 320, however, you access the foredeck through a lovely walk-through on the port side, and when you arrive at the bow, you find three forward-facing lounges with articulating headrests and fold-down armrests. High hand rails make it safe to access and use even while the boat is underway.
Because of the clever way in which Sea Ray architects designed the foredeck, it still allows for plenty of headroom in the cabin underneath. The forward dinette converts to a V-berth in the conventional way. There’s also a midcabin beneath the helm. The cabin comes standard with twin berths that slide together to form a single larger bunk, so a couple using the new 320 for overnighting need never convert the forward dinette. The cabin also reflects some other new thinking because of what it doesn’t have: a galley. Sea Ray designers took the galley out of the cabin and put it on deck, a big trend we see in boats of all stripes these days. It makes perfect sense, really, as opposed to sticking the cook (and the mess) in the cabin while everyone else is outside enjoying the water. The cockpit galley comes standard with a microwave, a dual-voltage refrigerator, and loads of stowage. A grill is optional. To add to the social aspect of the 320, Sea Ray designers included a two-up passenger seat that rotates to face the cockpit. The standard cockpit setup is ample, but Sea Ray offers an optional transom sunpad, which features a rear backrest that swings to the side to open up to the stern—which can be fitted with an optional hydraulic extended swim platform.
A lot can happen in 10 years and certainly a lot has happened in the design department at Sea Ray. The new Sundancer 320 shows that design is a body in motion, and the 320 pushes the boundaries of what boats can be based on how we use them.
Other Choices: Cruisers Yachts 328 Bow Rider utilizes a similar starboard-side cabin/port-side walkaround design, but with a very different bow arrangement, with wrap-around dinette-style seating. The Cobalt 336 may also be of interest, though this boat has a center walkthrough and splits the cabin into the consoles (one for the head and the other for a berth/settee). A slightly larger option would be the Formula 350 CBR, which also splits the cabin, and can be had with stern drives or outboards.
For more information, visit Sea Ray.
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|Fuel capacity||170 gal.|