Compared to everything else on the center-console market, the Sea Vee 39 with Volvo Penta IPS drives offers – within its 39 feet – precious few “me-too” center-console features. Rather, it proffers true innovation in every aspect of its being – from fishing to performance to design.
The calm seas offered little in the way of a challenge for this hull. Fortunately, I have run the outboard version of this in terribly rough stuff and came through it dry and unbowed.
Nonetheless, you have to love it when you push the throttles forward on this boat and the turbocharged and supercharged Volvo diesels flex their muscles. Twin 435 hp diesels react with big-block V-8-gas-engine response, thanks to the supercharger developing boost instantly at low rpm and the turbocharger taking over at higher rpm.
Cruising at half throttle, firewall it and the 39 fairly leaps forward, displaying unsurpassed midrange response.
With an empty water tank forward, we topped out at 51.6 mph (3,650 rpm), burning an impressively modest 42.8 gph total. A 40 mph cruise at 2,850 rpm used 23.2 gph.
Interestingly, the electronic steering is speed-oriented. The faster you go, the wider the hard-turn radius. Volvo does this to prevent anyone from having mischief visited upon them. Slow down and turn sharper. At 40 mph, reversing course took about four boat lengths, with no loss of speed.
“Sport Fish Mode” may be the coolest fishing accessory since the invention of the drag reel. Engage this function and the pods cant outward to their maximum range. Then, just use the throttles (no wheel) and I defy any fish – or angler – to keep up with the maneuvering ability of this system! All you can say is “Wow!”
And finally, the Volvo IPS joystick lets you maneuver around the docks in any direction – fore/aft, sideways or diagonally. I’ve watched a 12-year-old girl who had never driven a boat before dock an almost million-dollar yacht like a pro after only 10 minutes of instruction. It rocks!
Perhaps the only shortcoming anyone may find with this boat concerns its ability to get into places as shallow as the same boat powered with outboards. But if you happen to be trading down from a 50-footer, you’ll find a 37-inch draft more than acceptable.
The owner of our test boat sailfishes using kites. Since he likes virtually infinite flexibility, he had Sea Vee mount 22 rod holders in each gunwale, running stem to stern. He augments these with six more along the trailing edge of the hardtop and five more behind the helm seat. You can also get nine optional rod holders on each side of the center console. In addition to a complete rigging station in the helm-seat module, you get a ton of storage space as well. Two livewells, one in the transom and the second under the forward deck, eliminate the need to run aft to refresh your bait when casting from the bow.
This boat sports a “transom door” with a built-in ladder in the hull side rather than at the stern, keeping your fish and swimmers away from the stern. More storage belowdecks forward and aft can accommodate fish as well as dry goods and rod/reel combos.
The foredeck fish box has a split lid, with one hatch larger than the other. Open the small hatch by itself or when latched; it locks both hatches together and opens the whole nine yards at once.
At a trolling speed of 8.5 mph, the wake has definite subsurface turbulence, but it dissipates by the third wave back – a matter of about a boat length.
Design and Construction
Gain access to the center-console interior – where you’ll find the porcelain head – via a pneumatic actuator that slides the console front seat aside. Other innovations include the storage shelving in the forward bulwarks as well as the best-designed (and executed) foredeck foldaway seating, also in the bulwarks. Another foldaway seat hides in the transom.
Open the cockpit hatches, where you’d normally find fish boxes, and you’ll find the Volvo Penta 600 IPS pod installations with drive shafts extending back from the engines mounted amidships under the helm seat. Just forward of those hatches are others: To port is access to fuel filters, the oil-change system and a primer pump. To port is the swim ladder for the side-mounted thru-hull door. Beneath the rigging station’s cutting board, a hatch opens for easy access to the routine maintenance points of the Volvo.
Additionally, the entire helm-seat module rises on an electric worm gear for more expansive access.
Sea Vee builds a spectacularly tough boat, thanks to a four-stringer grid system bonded chemically and mechanically to the hull and deck. The company incorporates Divinycell and PVC coring above the waterline and a poured-urethane transom in every hull. And Sea Vee sells factory-direct so you always have a principal with whom to discuss your semi-customization. However, smart prospective owners will do more listening than talking. After all, building one of the most innovative boats anywhere engenders considerable credibility.
HULL DRAFT……3 ft. 1 in.
MAX HP……(2) 550 hp Volvo IPS diesel
MSRP……$367,000 (w/ (2) 435 hp Volvo IPS diesels)
_Sea Vee Boats / Miami, Florida / 305-759-6419 / _www.seaveeboats.com