Here are my thoughts from doing a back to back sea trial of a 2014 Cigarette Huntress 42 with 5 Verado 300s and a 2015 Sea Vee 390Z with triple Yamaha 350s. After spending the day at the Miami Boat show going back and forth talking to salesmen my entire perception of these boats had changed. I heard promises and opinions from the companies owners and staff on both sides and was starting to doubt the obvious differences between these two boats. The clear solution was to take both boats out in identical unfavorable conditions. We ran the day of this post February 19, 2015 in Biscayne Bay, near Miami and it was blowing at least 40 mph. I have included a screenshot of the conditions.
These boats both perform exactly the way you would expect. Cigarette for cruising on beautiful sunny days at 75mph and Sea Vee for crossing the gulf-stream to the Bahamas in the worst of anything mother nature can throw at you.
The Cigarette is the most beautiful center console on the planet, if money is absolutely no object. At nearly a million dollars there are a lot of choices in that price range, including two Sea Vee 390Zs. The cabin is absolutely amazing, and I could see myself foregoing accommodations when island hoping with only my wife on board. The fit and finish resembles more of a fine Italian Yacht than a center console and the usability as a day cruiser left me amazed at where these fishing boats from the past have come.
The Sea Vee 390Z is, in my opinion, the best boat on the planet for my uses. Most of my boating is done in Miami during the winter months and the gulf stream can get pretty nasty. I measure every boat for my personal use by safety and speed vs wave height. The 390 makes you feel indestructible and rough conditions become fun and impressive. The boat seems to defy gravity when she is pounding through the 6 footers at 40 mph.
There where no surprises in this test, the Cigarette is a mini yacht and the Sea Vee is a tank. If you looking to run in the roughest conditions take the SeaVee, if you prefer flat days and lounging at anchor there is no competition that even comes close to what the Huntress offers.
Here is a short video of the Huntress in action.
Here is a long and boring video that we made for our client to help him make a decision about purchasing. Very good video if you are in the market as it is very thorough.