The 457 Center Console is the second center-console boat in Formula’s lineup.
By PRA’s Gregg Mansfield
One year after making a splash with a return to the center-console market, Formula Boats is betting big again.
Formula plans to introduce the 457 Center Console Fish and Sport models at the 2024 Miami International Boat Show, joining the company’s 387 Center Console. Though Formula was late rejoining the center-console market, the response from customers and dealers gave the builder confidence to offer a larger sibling.
With a length of 45’7” and 13’9” beam, the 457 Center Console is 7 feet longer and nearly 2 feet wider than the 387 Center Console.
“It is a bigger version, but it’s a lot better version,” said Abe Haines, product specialist for Formula Boats. “It’s a wider platform, it’s got more horsepower. Obviously, more room in the cabin and more room in the cockpit.”
While Formula is still prototyping final versions of the 457 Fish and Sport models, Haines said designers are taking what they learned from the 387 and incorporating it into the new boat.
“We’ll have some stuff that is new to the market and some stuff new to us on the 387,” Haines said. “Having the additional space gave us more to work with.”
In the cockpit, Formula added a second row of seating and will offer a wet bar or a bait prep station, depending on what version a buyer selects. In addition to a refrigerator in the cockpit, there is a large electric pullout cooler with a split lid.
Formula went with more robust framing for the windshield and hardtop since the company will be offering an optional upper station on the Fish or Sport models. The upper station can seat four people on two separate helm seats and a lounge.
The cabin below boasts 6-foot-6 headroom and with the extra room the 45-foot boat provides, Formula designed a spacious head that features a separate stand-up shower, something it can’t offer on the 387 version because of space considerations.
Formula plans to offer a galley that includes a refrigerator, sink and a microwave, opting for a cooktop in the cockpit. The U-lounge seating comes with a table and can be converted into a two-person berth.
Both the Fish and Sport versions have the same rugged Formula build, such as the grid is glued to the deck. “Each of our fish boxes or any tub that you see when you open the deck is actually grid,” Haines said. “It’s not a second tub that we glue in and that just adds to the stability.”
The 457 Center Console features the FAS3Tech running surface, a stepped hull that Formula perfected while competing in offshore racing. The boat will be powered by triple Mercury Marine 600 Verado outboards.
Formula doesn’t have an anticipated weight yet, but it will be much higher than the 387 Center Console that tips the scales at 22,500 pounds. Haines said Formula boats aren’t built to be the lightest on the market.
“The feedback from our customers is how that extra weight translates into smoothness on the water,” Haines said. “We had just done a poker run in Lake Cumberland and we’re cruising at 50 (mph) with the other boats and you see them bouncing up and down. We’re sitting there with the radio on and having conversations, so that extra weight really turns into a great ride.
The Sport has a sculpted aft lounge and a spacious swim platform, while the Fish replaces that with foldaway aft seating and pressurized bait wells. It will include two 50-gallon live wells and a fish box capacity of 280 gallons. Buyers can pick between a bait station/wet bar or entertainment-ready cockpit galley.
Both versions will have stylish bow seating with an elevated sun lounge and wraparound seating with a power-adjust table. Both helms will have triple 22” monitors with a choice of Raymarine or Garmin products. On warm days, the crew will enjoy the air-conditioned helm that comes standard. Another AC unit can be added for the second-row passengers.
Formula plans to give more details about the 457 Center Console at the 2023 Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show, October 25-29, with the V-bottom making its debut at the Miami show in February 2024.
Formula 457 Center Console
Fuel capacity: 700 gallons
Power: (3) Mercury 600 Verado
Max Horsepower: 1,800
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