|Length Overall||28' 0''||Dry Weight||7,300 lbs.|
|Beam||9' 2''||Tested Weight||N/A|
|Draft||36''||Fuel Cap||120 gal.|
|Deadrise/Transom||21 deg.||Water Cap||20 gal.|
|Max Headroom||open||Bridge Clearance||8' 6'' w/arch|
|Prices, features, designs, and equipment are subject to change. Please see your local dealer or visit the builder's website for the latest information available on this boat model.|
|Std. Power||1 x 375-hp MerCruiser 496 MAG|
|Tested Power||2 x 260-hp MerCruiser 5.0L Sterndrives|
1 x 425-hp MerCruiser 496 MAG HO
2 x 260-hp MerCruiser 5.0L
A cruiser that seems to have it all.
With the sleek Formula styling this boat is sure to raise some eyebrows.
The helm on the 280BR is well laid out and features Gaffrig controls and instruments.
Seating For All
With the generous seating arrangement you can bring all your whole family out for a day on the water or entertain guests in style.
With several seating areas and the large sunpad up forward you can find a spot all to yourself.
In The Action
With the bench seat to port more people can join in the action when underway.
A boat for all occasions.
The 280 BR is full of welcomed features and options like the 13 drink holders throughout the boat for your boating pleasure.
A New Breed of Bowriders Has Arrived
Tested by Capt. Brandon DeNatale
Although she sports racing lines and outstanding performance, Formula didn’t forget the family when designing this boat. With more seating room than most sportboats, sporty formula styling and loads of features, this 280 Bow Rider is clearly a different breed.
Up on the Bow
Starting up in the bow I found there to be enough seating to fit five adults comfortably. These seats are a great place to experience the thrilling performance, and there are handholds and drink holders for convenience. There is also abundant storage under both port and starboard sides. And when it’s time to lay back and catch some rays, this area can be turned into a sun pad. All the way forward is the anchor locker, which helps to keep the area clean. There are two large cleats up here and the stainless steel rail gives you something to grip when underway. Another feature on Formula boats is a year of free Sirius Satellite radio service.
The walkway is wide and provides easy passage to and from the bow. And on those cold or wet days, you can simply close off the section to keep everyone warm. Also found here is the starboard side storage compartment, which provides room for larger items and houses the ships breaker panel, CD stereo radio and amplifier. And to make your time spent on the water more enjoyable there is a built-in head. The lighting was good as was the ventilation.
At the Helm
The windshield on this boat was extra sturdy with the polished stainless steel frame. The helm area is well designed and provides great access to all the needed controls and switches. All the gauges are set in a burl-wood panel and are easy to view, and with the Gaffrig throttles you’ll have precise control. The stereo and all the rocker switches are out of the way but accessible on either side of the wheel. Seating at the helm is comprised of a double bench seat that features independent bolsters for each person.
The port helm area features a bench seat that can fit up to three. This helps bring more people up into the action with the driver. Underneath this seat there is storage for gear, or if you remove this cover you can store several fenders here with ease.
Directly astern of this seat is the wet bar, which is great for entertaining guests. On top there is room to prepare meals with hidden freshwater sink and cooler compartment with drain. Below there is access to the ships battery switches and breakers along with a refrigerator for storing your provisions.
The aft seating is arranged in a large U-shape and can seat several guests. There are drink holders surrounding the seating area, and with these two removable tables you have the perfect spot for an afternoon picnic. The tables store away here in this compartment to keep things organized.
The engine is under the rear aft seats, which lifts with the help of a single ram. The hatch opens wide enough to give good access to all the major points on the twin 260-hp MerCruiser 5.0Liter engines. You can fit between the engines and most of the major points are up high where you can reach them. The wiring and installation are first rate down here with double hose clamps on everything.
The walk-thru transom is convenient and this door keeps everyone in when underway. The stern platform is wide, but I would like to see an option for an extended platform in the future. My only concern is the placement of the concealed swim ladder with the sterndrives and propellers. There is a remote for the stereo here, ski tow eye, and the shore power connection. The radar arch, which is an option provides a perfect place to mount antenna’s, and with the grab rails give good support when boarding.
Formula’s 280 Bow Rider measures in at 28’ with a beam of 9’ 2’’. She draws 3’ with the drives down and needs 8’ 6’’ of clearance with the radar arch.
Although this boat is larger than most bowriders I’ve tested, I found it to be more responsive than some of the smaller models. I really liked that she looked and performed like a high performance sportboat. At full throttle we reached a top speed of 51.7mph at 5,000 rpm’s. And we found the most economical cruise speed to be 29.2mph at 3,000 rpm’s. With the 120 gallon fuel tank you can expect to travel 214 miles between fuel stops.
|CD Stereo||Sirius Satellite Radio|
|Outlet: 12-Volt Acc|
= Standard = Optional
|Warranties change from time to time. While BoatTEST.com has tried to ensure the most up-to-date warranty offered by each builder, it does not guarantee the accuracies of the information presented below. Please check with the boat builder or your local dealer before you buy any boat.|