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Chris-Craft Launch 28 GT (2018-)
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Brief Summary

Chris-Craft is full steam ahead on its new Launch 28 GT. The new runabout is expected to appeal to boaters who like the name recognition, classic lines, remarkable design details, and an impeccable build. The Launch 28 GT offers plenty of choices: sterndrive or outboard propulsion, no fewer than 11 paint hues for the hull, and an optional sport arch with canvas top.

Key Features

Specifications

Length Overall 28’ 10''
8.7 m
Beam 8’ 6''
2.59 m
Dry Weight 6,948 lbs.
3,151.56 kg
Tested Weight N/A
Draft N/A
- Draft Up N/A
- Draft Down N/A
- Air Draft N/A
Deadrise/Transom N/A
Max Headroom open
Bridge Clearance N/A
Weight Capacity N/A
Person Capacity N/A
Fuel Capacity 85 gal.
321.76 L
Water Capacity N/A
Length on Trailer N/A
Height on Trailer N/A
Trailer Weight N/A
Total Weight
(Trailer, Boat, & Engine)
N/A

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.

Engine Options

Std. Power Not Available
Tested Power Currently no test numbers
Opt. Power 300-hp Mercury V-8 6.2-liter B3 Sterndrive w/ Digital Throttle & Shift
300-hp Mercury Verado Outboard w/ Digitial Throttle & Shift

Editor's Report

Chris-Craft Launch 28 GT running
The Chris-Craft Launch 28 GT is a new model for the builder, available with either outboard or sterndrive power.
Chris-Craft Launch 28 GT drawing
This photo shows the Chris-Craft Launch 28 GT in its outboard configuration.

A Quick Look

When we first approached the new Launch 28 GT at the Miami boat show there were so many aesthetic details, one hardly knew where to look first. Boarding from the stern across the swim platform, it was hard not to notice the rounded reverse chine and tumblehome, both of which are hallmarks of the Chris-Craft line. The angle of reverse, the radius of the stern quarters and the amount of tumblehome are all exactly right – as far as our eye is concerned. It is amazing to us how many builders get it close, but not quite right.

The hull was painted with polyurethane in a deep Sapphire metallic color that made the boat look every bit the waterborne sports car that she is. As with all Chris-Craft models, the idea of creating a one-of-a-kind boat through hull paint combinations and interior upholstery choices is a big part of the game here, and it works because these boats rarely fail to catch the eye.

Chris-Craft is one of the few boat builders in class that offers painted hulls as an option. In this case it cost $9,490, roughly 2% of the boat’s base price, and well worth it in our book. Gelcoat oxidizes and needs to have lots of maintenance – compounding and waxing – to keep its luster. In this day and age, most people simply don’t have the time to give the hull the level of TLC needed to keep it looking its best for years.

Chris-Craft Launch 28 GT hard top
The optional hardtop ($14,200) on the Chris-Craft Launch 28 GT folds down for storage or towing, and can be fitted with a tow point for watersports.

The Importance of Brightwork

The bow caprails are trimmed in dark varnished mahogany ($980), that when combined with the curves of the hull, the metallic painted hull and the classy upholstery treatment, all go together in a harmonious combination that reeks of class. The little pieces of brightwork and polished stainless steel strategically placed on the boat literally make her look like a million dollars.

The folks at Chris-Craft know that it is hard to keep varnished mahogany in Bristol fashion, and usually after a few seasons, the brightwork might need to be stripped down, sanded, and re-varnished – not something that most boaters relish these days. Not to worry. Chris-Craft now has built the boat in such a way that the varnished strips can come off and be sent back to the factory to be refurbished. We think this is a brilliant solution to a dreaded maintenance problem.

A Walkthrough

The Chris-Craft Launch 28 GT has a walkthrough in the transom on the starboard side, making it easy to step aboard from the swim platform. There’s a sun pad on the stern that shares a backrest with the L-shaped cockpit lounge. The sun pad backrest moves fore and aft, depending on whether its occupants would like to lounge facing aft when at anchor, or sit with guests underway in the cockpit.

Plenty of consideration goes into the seating on the Launch 28 GT. Chris-Craft says the model has a new upholstery pattern to go with the company’s metallic paint finishes and varnished mahogany. For this builder, attention to detail is the name of the game, and adding the kind of luxurious appointments that Chris-Craft owners have come to expect, from a leather-wrapped and gleaming mahogany wheel to sun-warmed teak decks.

In the console to the port side is room for an optional Tecma Head System ($2,250). Forward is wraparound seating in bowrider fashion, but upholstered in such a way, that this area reminded us of the plush seating on the fantail of a luxurious classic yacht.

Chris-Craft Launch 28 GT helm
Take command from the helm of the Chris-Craft Launch 28 GT. Note the lower part of the dash is also varnished mahogany.

The Launch 28 GT comes standard with a Garmin 7610XSV electronics package and a CZone digital electrical switching system. This is the same device that is used on megayachts these days. On one screen, all of the electrical functions of the boat can be controlled.

Power Options. On the boat we boarded, the engine had been upgraded to a Volvo Penta V8 CE 6.2L 380-hp engine that drives a DuoProp and was freshwater cooled. ($10,340). The Launch 28 GT comes in either outboard or sterndrive models, so selecting which one to buy will be the hardest decision many people will have.

Other options on this boat were a bow thruster ($8,890) and windlass with anchor and line ($2,900). Mahogany tables are available for both the cockpit and the bow ($2,990 for both).

Chris-Craft Launch 28 GT back rest
The backrest for the cockpit lounge has an armrest which folds down and contains two cup holders. The tufted upholstery pattern gives the boat a rich, elegant look, in keeping with the positioning of this vessel. The upholstery colors are Oyster Wave Base with a Portabella Accent and Navy Stitching.
Chris-Craft Launch 28 GT seat back
The seat back slides forward to create a chaise lounge on the sun pad aft. Note the side mount bracket for a table. The woven deck covering is Seagrass ($1,580).
Chris-Craft Launch 28 GT cockpit seat
Looking forward we see that the cockpit seat backs serve double duty. Fender storage is at left.
Chris-Craft Launch 28 GT helm seat
The comfortable helm seat continues the wave upholstery pattern. Note the armrest placed behind the throttle and the stainless steel bar around the seat, something we rarely see.
Chris-Craft Launch 28 GT companion seat
The companion seat also has a bolster and note the MP3 and USB ports forward of the cup holders in the mahogany trim panel. The optional head is in the compartment to the right.
Chris-Craft Launch 28 GT bow
The bow has wraparound seating and ample room in the footwell. The armrests fold down.
Chris-Craft Launch 28 GT anchor locker
We like the anchor locker and windlass under the forward hatch. The non-skid decking material in faux teak is accented by the varnished mahogany strips. Note that the pull-up cleats are set in a stainless plate rather than just in fiberglass. A beach boarding ladder is available.
Chris-Craft Launch 28 GT dive door
A dive door will simplify boarding on the Chris-Craft Launch 28 GT and we recommend it. It also aids boarding from a floating dock.

Watch for a Corsair version, the closed-foredeck model, built on the same hull to be introduced in the summer, as is Chris-Craft’s standard practice for introducing new models.

Observations

Over the last 17 years, Chris-Craft has created a special niche in premium runabouts and sportboats. There is virtually no other brand built in the U.S. that has the look and the quality of a Chris-Craft in this size range. People who appreciate fine boat building, and can afford its $186,510 base price tag, should take note.

Having said that, this boat is not for everyone. For example, first-time boat buyers will probably not appreciate the subtle and exquisite details of this boat. The compound curves that require molds within molds and the many details that a trained eye can appreciate will be lost on many. Other boat buyers just want lots of seating and a lightweight boat that will go fast, then to store the boat in the north forty for the winter. They should look elsewhere. And, of course the boat is not inexpensive. Fewer than a thousand Chris-Crafts will be sold this year.

Owning one automatically makes the buyer a member of a very exclusive club, indeed.

Standard and Optional Features

Marine Electronics

GPS/Chart Standard

Systems

Head: Fixed Optional
Windlass Optional

Exterior Features

Hardtop Optional
Swim Platform Standard

Boats More Than 30 Feet

Bow Thruster Optional

Warranty

Full Warranty Information on this brand coming soon!

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