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Formula 290 Sun Sport (2017-)
(w/ Currently no test numbers)

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Brief Summary

The Formula 290 Sun Sport is a serious day boat for those wishing to spend quality time with family and friends on the water. In the stern, there are various seating arrangements, which can convert to a doublewide sun pad, and an optional swim platform extends out to hide the boarding latter and make a great area from which to jump. With her open layout in the cockpit, she offers a variety of seating options, all of which deliver the luxury for which the longtime manufacturer is known.

Key Features

  • Transferable 5-Year Formula Guard Limited Protection Plan with 10-year Structural Warranty
  • Integrated swim platform with concealed stainless swim ladder
  • Waterproof dash-mounted stereo control with four speakers
  • Cockpit/swim platform blue/white LED courtesy lights with remote control
  • Dual position helm and companion seats
  • Color-coordinated dual-height cockpit table with Corian top, filler cushion and four polished drink holders
  • Aft-facing sun lounge with trunk storage and fender (2 included) storage below – converts to full-length sun pad
  • Light Cherry or Baltic Birch woodgrain-finish flooring throughout cabin
  • Ultraleather U-shaped forward dinette lounge/double berth with high-gloss, Bourbon Cherry, Ash or Wenge wood table and filler cushion
  • Specifications

    Length Overall 29' 0''
    8.84 m
    Beam 9' 0''
    2.74 m
    Dry Weight 8,950 lbs.
    4,060 kg
    Tested Weight N/A
    Draft 40''
    1.02 m
    - Draft Up N/A
    - Draft Down N/A
    - Air Draft N/A
    Deadrise/Transom 22-deg.
    Max Headroom 5' 1''
    1.54 m
    Bridge Clearance 8' 2''
    2.49 m
    Weight Capacity N/A
    Person Capacity N/A
    Fuel Capacity 112 gal.
    424 L
    Water Capacity 21 gal.
    79 L
    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 Four MerCruiser engines from 300-hp to 430-hp
    Four Volvo Penta engines from 300-hp to 320-hp

    Captain's Report

    Formula 290 Sun Sport running shot
    The Formula 290 Sun Sport measures 29’ long (8.84 m) with a 9’ (2.74 m) beam. She’s shown here with the optional extended swim platform.

    Mission Statement

    Formula designed the 290 Sun Sport for serious dayboating. Her aft-facing seat converts to a doublewide sun pad, and in the cockpit, there’s a wet bar plus wraparound lounges that can convert to a big playpen. Below decks, there’s a dinette that can turn into a V-berth, plus a private head. Owners can choose between single and twin engines.

    Formula 290 Sun Sport layout
    The Formula 290 Sun Sport’s cockpit prioritizes social seating with a large wraparound lounge to starboard.

    Features Inspection

    The Stern.

    Formula was one of the first manufacturers to utilize an aft-facing lounge, and the 290 Sun Sport has one that converts to a flat sun pad. It has fender (two fenders come standard) storage in the base of the seat. The boat comes with an integrated swim platform that has a concealed boarding ladder, LED lights and shorepower and dockside utility connections to starboard. There are pull-up cleats on each side of the stern positioned well for cross-tying in a slip.

    Formula 290 Sun Sport swim platform
    Here we see the aft-facing lounge laid out as a sun pad.

    The Cockpit.

    To port, a passageway that closes with a stainless-steel gate leads from the stern into the 290 Sun Sport’s cockpit. The primary seating in the cockpit is in a lounge that wraps around to starboard. Outboard to starboard, there are storage trays plus stainless steel cup holders and grabrails. There’s a socket in the deck for a portable table that turns this area into a booth or lowers, so the area can be filled with a cushion. Formula provides storage and dedicated space for an Igloo 17 ½-quart (17-L) in the base of the seats. Across from the lounge, the color-coordinated wet bar comes with a sink, Corian countertop, 30-quart (28-L) Igloo cooler, and a trash container.

    Formula 290 Sun Sport gate
    This stainless steel gate closes off the port side passageway to the swim platform.
    Formula 290 Sun Sport cockpit lounge
    Notice the contoured corners of the backrest for the cockpit lounge, and there’s even a cushion integrated into the base of the radar arch.
    Formula 290 Sun Sport cockpit lounge
    Here, we see the aft cockpit lounge converted into a two-person sun pad.
    Formula 290 Sun Sport cockpit table
    With the cockpit table in place, there’s still plenty of space to starboard.
    Formula 290 Sun Sport cockpit table
    The table can also be lowered and topped with a filler cushion to create this lounge.
    Formula 290 Sun Sport wet bar
    The wet bar has a sink beneath the cutting board and four stainless steel cup holders.
    Formula 290 Sun Sport storage
    There’s storage space in the base of the wet bar, and there’s a rubber mat to cushion the contents.
    Formula 290 Sun Sport wet bar
    There’s space in the wet bar for an optional 120V/12V refrigerator.

    Portside Lounge.

    Just ahead of the wet bar to port is a lounge where a single passenger can recline while facing aft, or two people can sit facing inboard. Two of the on-board 12 stainless-steel cup holders are forward to port, and there’s storage in the base of the seat. Between this seat and the helm, there’s an in-floor ski locker as well.

    Formula 290 Sun Sport port side lounge
    Across from the helm, the port side lounge can seat two people.
    Formula 290 Sun Sport storage
    The bottom cushion for the port lounge opens on a two-position hinge to make it easier to remove the table.

    The Helm.

    At the 290 Sun Sport’s helm, the captain and a companion sit side-by-side on seats that adjust individually and have fold-up bolsters. The dash is available in two dark finishes that help reduce glare. The boat comes standard with a Ritchie compass, a digital depthsounder and instruments and controls from Livorsi Marine. The leather-wrapped steering wheel tilts, and accessory switches are positioned on each side of it. Just ahead of the shifts and throttles, the Bennett trim tab switches have built-in position indicators. For entertainment, there’s a remote control for the stereo, which has an iPod/MP3 port, plus a 12-volt plug and two USB charging ports.

    Formula 290 Sun Sport captain
    The captain can stand up and lean back against the fold-up bolster while a companion can sit down if he/she prefers.
    Formula 290 Sun Sport helm
    The helm is available in either Gray (shown here) or Morning Sand with the liquid black panels in the vertical section.

    Foredeck.

    Stairs adjacent to the helm lead up to the 290 Sun Sport’s stainless-steel-framed walkthrough windshield. On the bow, there are rails on each side, plus two pull-up cleats and an anchor locker. An optional windlass is available.

    Formula 290 Sun Sport stairs
    Stairs next to the helm and a stainless-steel rail lead up to the opening center section of the 290 Sun Sport’s windshield.
    Formula 290 Sun Sport anchor
    The anchor locker hatch opens on a gas strut, so a crewmember can use two hands when handling ground tackle.

    The Cabin

    A sliding hatch opens the 290 Sun Sport’s cabin. Below decks there is a V-shaped Ultraleather dinette lounge around a table that lowers to convert the area into a berth. There are two overhead deck hatches, and the entertainment center is equipped with a Clarion AM/FM/CD stereo with iPod and USB port, Bluetooth, two speakers, and a hanging locker.

    The cabin sole

    can be finished in Light Cherry or Baltic Birch flooring and owners can choose among Bourbon Cherry, Ash, or Wenge for the table and entertainment center. The countertop is Corian. The molded private head compartment comes with a porcelain toilet, a vanity with a sink in a Corian counter and a mirror.

    Formula 290 Sun Sport cabin
    With twin overhead deck hatches and LED lights in the overhead, the 290 Sun Sport’s cabin has an inviting feel.
    Formula 290 Sun Sport filler cushions
    Lower the table and add filler cushions to create a berth.
    Formula 290 Sun Sport head
    The head is all molded fiberglass, and the screened port opens to let in fresh air.

    Looks Matter.

    While most manufacturers finish their boats in gelcoat, Formula has always taken the extra step of doing their boats’ graphics in paint. Formula personnel then buff the boat numerous times before it’s approved for shipping. Additionally, Formula builds all its tooling (plugs and molds) in-house. This takes more time, but the results speak for themselves. Formula boats consistently have some of the best finishes in the industry.

    Formula 290 Sun Sport running shot
    Formula boats are known for having some of the best graphics in the business.

    Behind the Beauty.

    Formula builds the 290 Sun Sport with a structural stringer and bulkhead matrix made with pressure-treated Perma Panels composites and filled with flotation foam. The hull-to-deck joint is chemically bonded, and the cockpit and cabin are one-piece finished liners. The boat comes with six stainless-steel pull-up cleats. Engines are installed on through-bolted race-style mounts, and there are two batteries in heavy-duty boxes.

    Performance

    The 290 Sun Sport rides on a V-bottom with 22-degrees of deadrise at the stern. We haven’t tested the boat, but Formula has some numbers. She can be powered by twin small-block stern drives or a single big-block from MerCruiser or Volvo Penta.

    Estimated top speed

    with a 380-hp MerCruiser 8.2 MAG ECT Bravo Three X is 43 to 46 mph. Add two mph for the 430-hp version.

    With twin 300-hp

    sterndrives from MerCruiser or Volvo Penta, the top speed is 50 to 54 mph. Boost the power to twin 320s, and the top number goes up to 56 or 57 mph. With the twin 320-hp MerCruiser 377 MAG ECT Bravo III sterndrives, best cruise came at 3500 rpm where the boat ran 36 mph and burned 21 gph, according to Formula. That translates into 1.7 mpg, which gives her a range of 157 miles with 90% of the boat’s 112-gallon (424 L) fuel tank in reserve.

    Formula 290 Sun Sport running shot
    The 290 Sun Sport is available with single or twin sterndrive engine packages.

    Options to Consider

    • Electric windlass with 75’ of chain, a polished anchor, and remote control
    • Removable swivel-head tow pylon for watersports
    • Radar arch with mast light and air horn
    • Custom stainless sport arch with mast and wakeboard swivel-head towrope mount
    • Custom stainless sport arch with Sunbrella sunshade, mast light, and raised wakeboard swivel-head rope mount
    • Extended watersport swim platform with four drink holders and concealed boarding ladder
    • Extended watersport swim platform with four drink holders and under-mount swim seat
    • Woodgrain vinyl decking on swim platforms
    • 120-volt shorepower with fail safe galvanic isolator, 50-amp battery charger, 30-amp cord, transom hookup, GFI outlet, and a stainless-steel microwave oven
    • Transom mounted stainless-steel propane grill with infrared technology and carrying case
    • 120V/12V pull-out refrigerator
    • VHF radio with antenna
    • Mercury or Volvo Penta digital shift and throttle controls
    • Garmin 547 GPS color chartplotter
    • Raymarine e7D GPS widescreen color plotter with depthsounder
    • JL Audio blue LED lighted chrome finished speakers with 200W subwoofer
    • Blue LED cockpit lighting
    • Cockpit heater
    • Woven cockpit mat
    • Light-duty Sunbrella cockpit cover
    • All-weather cockpit cover
    • Sunbrella Bimini top
    • Front and side curtains
    • Sliding screen door for cabin
    • 6,000 BTU reverse cycle air conditioning
    • 19” LED/LCD HDTV/DVD combo player with antenna and cable connection
    • VacuFlush toilet with 23-gallon holding tank and dockside pump-out
    • VacuFlush toilet with 23-gallon (87 L) holding tank and macerator with Y-valve for discharge or dockside pumpout
    • Remote battery charging panel
    • Engine freshwater flush system

    Price

    • $199,590 with a single 380-hp MerCruiser 8.2 MAG ECT Bravo Three sterndrive
    • $221,910 with twin 300-hp MerCruiser 6.2L ECT Thravo Three sterndrives

    Warranty

    • Transferable 5-year Formula Guard Limited Protection Plan with 10-year Structural Warranty
    Formula 290 Sun Sport shift
    Digital shift and throttle are among the many options available on the 290 Sun Sport.

    Observations

    The 290 Sun Sport carries on the tradition of versatile day boats that Formula started with its award-winning 400SS years ago. With her open layout in the cockpit, she offers a variety of seating options, all of which deliver the luxury for which the longtime manufacturer is known. From the performance side, we would probably opt for the twin-engine package for redundancy and to ease the load that an 8,950-pound (4,060 kg) boat would put on a single drive. Remember, Formula’s test numbers were with only two people aboard. With a 9’ (2.74 m) beam, she’s a little wider than legal limits in some states without a special permit, but experienced boaters with a big truck would consider her tow-able.

    Standard and Optional Features

    Marine Electronics

    GPS/Chart Optional
    VHF Radio Optional

    Systems

    Air Cond./Heat Standard
    Battery Charger/Converter Optional
    CD Stereo Standard
    Head: Fixed Standard
    Shore Power Optional
    Trim Tabs Standard
    TV/DVD Standard
    Windlass Optional

    Galley

    Microwave Optional
    Refrigerator Optional

    Exterior Features

    Outlet: 12-Volt Acc Standard
    Swim Ladder Standard
    Swim Platform Standard
    Transom Shower Standard

    Canvas

    Bimini Top Optional

    Warranty

    Full Warranty Information on this brand coming soon!

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