By: Gary Reich
Vanquish Boats has revealed an updated Doug Zurn-designed center-console that includes a forward cuddy and other improvements. The builder says it is designed for customers who day cruise with family and friends. “We aimed to improve our existing 26 center console with a cuddy and other comfort features,” says Vanquish Boats president Morgan Huntley. “From the thoughtful application of wood trim to the quality and placement of the seating areas, this is an amazingly comfortable boat. The Doug Zurn hull rides like a dream.
Perhaps the most interesting new feature is a cuddy cabin tucked away in the bow. The area is beneath a striking wood hatch with gas-assist struts and a teak entry door. There’s room inside the cabin for two people to take a snooze, or for kids to use as a play space out of the weather, or to stow gear. Abaft the cuddy is U-shaped seating that can be open to the sun or covered with a canvas dodger. A seat forward of the center console rounds out this social area. For more seating, there’s a transom bench in the aft cockpit.
The center console itself is beneath a new hardtop that is incredibly rugged but thin and lightweight. Under the console is an enclosed head behind a louvered teak door. Back up top, the helm is free of switches and instruments on the vertical portion of the console—the kind that can be real kneeknockers— and the engine controls and steering wheel are mounted on a nearly horizontal surface that’s comfortable to the hand. There’s room for a couple of multifunction displays in the teak-covered dash.
A relatively flat sheerline gives the 26 the look of a launch, but generous bow flare and aft tumblehome create more of a Downeast vibe. Standard power is a 200-hp Mercury FourStroke outboard. Optional power is a 250-hp Mercury Verado V-8 outboard, which is good for a 46.6-knot top end and 36.5-knot cruise, according to Vanquish. A 200-hp Yamaha F200 4-stroke outboard is optional, too.