Formula’s 37 Performance Cruiser was made to create an upscale cruiser capable of providing luxurious and classy overnight accommodations for four-to-six people, as well as provide a roomy entertainment platform on deck for day boating -- all at speeds that are more typical of a sportboat. Just like the Formula name suggests, the 37 Performance Cruiser aims to make a statement about styling, quality, and the taste of the owner.
Imron Graphics. Formula offers Imron graphics on the hull standard. The polyurethane paint will last the lifetime of the boat and look new with proper care. The Ashland Maxguard LE gelcoat comes standard as well.
Pressure-treated Perma Panel. Interior bulkheads and other wooden structures are made with Perma Panel, the trademarked name for a "best practices," kiln-dried marine resin and wood matrix that provides protection against fungal decay and rot and has a lifetime warranty.
Electric Windlass with Chain Counter. Formula is one of the few builders that provides a full length of anchor chain -- 200' of chain to be exact -- plus a polished stainless steel anchor chute, and chain counter, which is invaluable when anchoring at night. All standard equipment.
Standard 7.5 kW/120V Gas Generator or 8.5 kW/120V Diesel Generator. It is unusual for a builder in this class of boats to offer a generator as standard, but Formula takes that one step further and offers a choice of either gas or diesel. Typically, an owner will match the fuel type to the main engines so fuel can be drawn from the same tank. The gas generator is a Kohler Low-CO emissions unit, which is the best way to go for gas generators in our opinion. The diesel generator offered is a Kohler as well with sound shield.
Under Seat-Lockers Fiberglass Lined. All storage compartments are fitted with their own integral fiberglass liners, which are easy-to-clean.
18,000 BTU Reverse-Cycle A/C. Again, it is unusual for a boat in this class to come standard with A/C and digital climate control. Another 16,000 BTUs is available as an option for the cockpit. Since it is reverse-cycle, this option turns the boat into a four-season vessel.
WalVac Sweeper System. Easy-to-access plates in bulkheads around the boat make keeping the interior clean a five-minute chore with no lugging of a vacuum sweeper around.
Five-Year Formula Guard Program. Formula has a five-year comprehensive service contract program that covers most mechanical items on the boat, and only a handful of builders offer anything like it.
Exclusive Designer John Adams. Designer John Adams has been creating boats most of his life, and for the last 30 years, he has worked exclusively for Formula. His distinctive styling has set the trend for boats in this class for years. His meticulous attention to detail and his early adoption of new technologies has kept Formula on the cutting edge of boats in the sporty cruising class.
Construction. The deck-to-hull joint is chemically bonded and thru-bolted. The chemical bonding joins both hull and deck as a single unit with no flexing or creaking under load and is as strong as it would be as a single piece of fiberglass. Stringers are preformed and are chemically bonded to the hull in the same way.
Perma Panels. As mentioned above, the bulkheads and wood sub-structures are made of Perma Panel, which is a superior Douglas fir marine-grade plywood product that has a minimum of 30% resin content instead of the 19% that is typical in most marine-grade plywood laminates. All the panels are kiln dried to an ideal moisture content from 12% to 15%, according to the manufacturer. This wood is guaranteed against delamination or breakdown of the glue for the lifetime of the panel.
Surface Finish. The gelcoat finish on the 37 PC is second to none due to both the quality of the gelcoat resin but also because of the compounding, buffing and waxing process that goes into every boat.
Full-Size Head. The head comes with a VacuFlush head unit, 37-gallon holding tank, and dockside pumpout. Corian countertops, a vanity, custom molded sink and faucet, with an exhaust fan and woodgrain-finish flooring. The head also has an enclosed shower with hinged acrylic door.
Starting at the Stern. The standard full-beam swim platform comes out 3’ from the transom. The platform can be outfitted in a range of decking options -- woodgrain vinyl in aged teak, slate teak, and natural teak that can be extended to the cockpit decking as well.
A hatch in the center of the platform conceals a three-step reboarding ladder. Options are also available to extend the swim platform ($10,115), equip it as a multi-position sun lounge while also extending it ($10,115), or finally adding a concealed swim seat with boarding step in addition to the extension ($12,610).
Large trunk storage can be accessed via the swim platform as well, held open by two gas assist struts and gaskets all around keeping it waterproof and vibration-free during operation. This is the dedicated storage for the cockpit table as well as four custom fenders and lines.
Connections for shore power cords, TV, and phone lines are to starboard just above the city water inlet. Standard courtesy lights are located just below the trunk storage.
The cockpit entry is located to the port hand side. The cockpit deck is 9” (22.9 cm) above the swim platform and a standard hot/cold transom shower is nestled into the bulwarks. An acrylic gate keeps the walkthrough safe. It has a positive close against a full-length molded frame which prevents the gate from accidentally opening should someone fall against it. Immediately to port is a step leading up to the nonskid caprail, which, in conjunction with the stainless grab rail mounted to the hardtop support, will allow guests to board the 37 Performance Cruiser from a fixed pier.
The cockpit features J-shaped seating with storage underneath all of the seats. Pedestal bases will accommodate the standard cockpit table. The cockpit seating features weather-resistant PreFixx coating, Tenara element-resistant thread, DriFast foam, and StarLite XL synthetic marine panel construction.
Two removable cocktail tables can be installed amidst the J-shaped seating area for entertaining and meals, and then converted with cushions to extend the seating into one large king-sized sun pad.A day hatch is located in the center of the deck for daily engine checks. For more involved maintenance, a larger hatch is electrically actuated to provide full access to the engine compartment.
The helm deck is up two 6” steps and features a lounger to port and a double-wide helm seat to starboard. The lounge has storage under the center seat cushion and a rounded door is under the aft seat and it swings out. Part of the storage will be taken up if owners opt for the optional 16,000 BTU cockpit air conditioner ($8,490).
The helm seat is double wide and both seats have flip up bases that form leaning posts. A convenient perk to this setup is that having the captain seat in the lowered position, and the observer seat flipped up the captain gets an armrest.
The helm features a complete lack of clutter thanks to the multifunction screens set into the faux burl wood panel. A SmartCraft vessel view is off to the port side with the dual fuel gauges located just above. The panel is laid out to accommodate the optional Raymarine eS127 12'' GPS map system ($5,180). Formula offers an option to add radar ($13,140) and a radar/autopilot combo ($23,900) to the GPS functionality. Sirius satellite weather is also available ($2,040). Above the autopilot display on our test boat were the dual trim gauges and chain counter for the standard windlass. There is also the option for a hardtop ($23,360).
A radar arch with masthead light is standard.
The bow can be accessed by either transiting the narrow side decks or utilizing the windshield walkthrough. The walkthrough is accessed via molded steps next to the helm. A stainless grab handle provides security and peace of mind against slipping. The opening windshield has latches that are interconnected; a feature we always like to see as the lower hatch can be difficult to reach. The foredeck features three opening hatches providing light and ventilation to the cabin below. To either side of the center walkthrough are dual sun pads measuring 6'10" (2.08 m) in length with backs that lift up into chaise lounge position.
Rail height goes from 19” at the windshield to 27” at the working end of the bow. Fully forward a flush-mounted hatch opens to reveal the standard windlass with foot control switches and chain stopper leading the stainless steel anchor chute that runs out the stem. An access port is just to starboard of the windlass itself for accessing the rode under the deck in order to manage tangles.
The 37 Performance Cruiser’s cabin has up to 6’7” (2 m) of headroom and can be accessed through a curved, sliding acrylic door. The cabin sleeps six people -- two in the stateroom, two in the aft lounge area, and two in the main salon. Much like the cockpit’s convertible cocktail tables, the dining tables in the lounge and main salon can be lowered to expand the seating space into a berth with the addition of cushions.
The 37 Performance Cruiser's main cabin is equipped with a 32″ LCD/ LED HDTV with DVD and Blu-ray combo and a Clarion AM/FM/CD stereo with iPod/USB docking station, Bluetooth, four 6.5” speakers and an 8” subwoofer. Formula also offers a subscription-ready Sirius satellite radio.
The sofa is crescent-shaped and upholstered in a combination of Ultraleather and suede. Just above sits two portlights, cabinet storage, and the stereo controls and hookup hub.
The mid-cabin. A separate "sitting room" with 5’ (1.5 m) of headroom is located just behind the stairs and it adds another gathering area in close proximity to the main salon. This area will cordon off with a privacy curtain when converted to a berth.
The forward stateroom features a queen-sized centerline island bed with Sensus memory foam mattress with headroom just before the berth measuring 6'2". Natural light comes in through the overhead hatch and two opening portlights to either side. Storage is beneath the berth as well as to both sides in cedar-lined cabinets.
The galley is located to port upon entry to the cabin. The galley features a coffee dock behind a frosted glass door. A microwave is recessed into the forward end of the upper cabinetry. An opening portlight adds natural light and ventilation.
A two-burner stove is recessed into the counter beneath a hinged lid that is connected to a micro-switch that shuts off the stove when in the closed position. A trash receptacle is located just outside of the single basin stainless steel sink. A dual voltage refrigerator freezer is below along with additional storage.
The Formula 37 Performance Cruiser offers five separate engine options at the purchase point:
- MerCruiser Twin 8.2 MAG ECT 380 Bravo Three X DTS
- MerCruiser Twin 8.2 MAG HO ECT 430 Bravo Three X DTS
- Volvo Penta Twin D6-370 Duoprop Diesel EVC
- Volvo Penta Twin IPS 450 Diesel 330HP with Joystick
- Volvo Penta Twin D6-400 Duoprop Diesel EVC
The Formula 37 Performance Cruiser has a length overall of 38'5" (11.71 m), a beam of 12’ (3.7 m) and a draft of 34” (.86 m). With an empty weight of 17,500 lbs. (7,938 kg), 70 gallons (265 L) of fuel and two people on board we had a test weight of 18,340 lbs. (8,319 kg).
Our test boat was powered by a pair of MerCruiser 430-hp 8.2 L MAG High Output ECT DTS engines with Bravo III drives. This is a step up from the standard engines which are the 380-hp 8.2 L MAG versions. The more powerful engines are only $16,450 more, so I would go with them.
Top speed was at 4800 rpm and 46.7 mph. At that speed fuel burn was 67.5 gph giving us a range of 147 miles. Best cruise came in at 3500 rpm and 32.2 mph. That reduced the fuel burn to 33.25 gph, which the 37 PC could keep up for 6 hours and 24 minutes and 206 statute miles while still maintaining a 10% reserve.
We had a time to plane of 4.8 seconds, accelerated through 20 mph in 6.6 seconds, 30 in 11.6 seconds, and continued accelerating through 40 mph in 18.8 seconds.
Upon accelerating the bow of the 37 Performance Cruiser comes up 12-degrees and because the bow was so far forward I did lose sight of the horizon for a short time. She leans approximately 10-degrees into a turn, which I found quite comfortable. She has a sporty feel and good responsiveness to the helm with 2-1/2 turns from lock-to-lock on the steering, but she doesn't turn so quickly that the turns become uncomfortable.
When taking power off she settles back into the water stern first, which again brings the bow up just above the level of the horizon. Overall the 37 Performance Cruiser provided a solid ride and outstanding handling characteristics that I’ve come to expect from Formula… and have yet to be disappointed. I think a big part of the reason for this consistency of handling characteristics with all Formula boats I have tested over the years is because they have all been designed by the same person -- John Adams. He has found the groove and stays in it.
When at idle speed and sitting on the seat I was looking through the windshield. At cruise speed the five-degree bow high attitude again gave me good visibility when sitting, and when standing I could easily see over the windshield frame. At either idle or cruising speed sitting on the bolster did not work for me as in both cases my eye level was right at the windshield frame. This situation was fine with me as I'd rather be sitting on the seat or standing in any case.
Standing headroom was more than adequate, even for a skipper well over 6' tall. Standing, of course, the helmsperson will be looking over the windshield, and in the rain through the isinglass, which comes with the standard Bimini top or with the optional hardtop such as on the boat I tested. Windshield wipers are standard.
Because the 37 Performance Cruiser has a hardtop, operators are naturally going to have an obstruction when making any turns to port. But an interesting feature is how the overhead hatch also serves to provide visibility of the horizon through the hardtop. Her 12-degree roll into the turn brings the hatch down to the horizon line.
Options to Consider
- Bow thruster (non-IPS engine package)
- Polished stainless LED bow docking lights <
- Three blue LED underwater lights
- Cockpit hardtop with polished Bomar venting hatches and polycarbonate Lexan front connectors
- Transom-mounted stainless propane grill with infrared technology, stainless shelf and carrying case
- 16,000 BTU reverse cycle cockpit air conditioner
- MerCruiser®Axius™ Premier sterndrive docking system
- Volvo sterndrive joystick control
- Cockpit 120V icemaker
- Aft cabin 24” LED/LCD HDTV/DVD combo player
- 1,500W/120V cabin heater
- Electronic security safe
- Macerator discharge
- Gray water holding system
The Formula 37 PC has a base price of $690,000 with the twin Volvo Penta IPS 450 diesel 330-hp and joystick control. This will vary of course not just with engine choice, but with the myriad options and customizing Formula allows for in the purchase process.
Her sporty handling characteristics combined with her comfort level make her a fine step up from a sportboat, pocket cruiser or smaller express to a real cruising boat. She has, or can have, virtually everything a weekend cruiser could want. As a day boat, she is fast and she is comfortable both on deck for as many as 10 people and below decks for as many as six.
As we always note when testing Formula boats, she does not come cheap. Formula has not stinted on the quality of materials or the amount of standard equipment that most builders leave on the option list. Formula management knows how its buyers use their boats, and they know the options that are nearly always selected, so they just cut to the chase and include them in the base MSRP. Obviously when comparing apples-to-apples equipment the gap between other boats and the Formula 37 PC will narrow. However, there are some elements of the 37 PC that the others don’t have, like the 5-year protection plan, the paint options and the multitude of man-hours and TLC that go into her finish, so comparisons can only go so far.
People looking for the least costly boat in class should look elsewhere. People wanting something special, a boat with real sizzle, and that will impress peers who know something about boats, then the Formula 37 PC should be on their list.
Test Result Highlights
- Top speed for the Formula 37 Performance Cruiser (2017-) is 46.7 mph (75.2 kph), burning 67.55 gallons per hour (gph) or 255.68 liters per hour (lph).
- Best cruise for the Formula 37 Performance Cruiser (2017-) is 32.2 mph (51.8 kph), and the boat gets 0.97 miles per gallon (mpg) or 0.41 kilometers per liter (kpl), giving the boat a cruising range of 206 miles (331.52 kilometers).
- Tested power is 2 x 430-hp MerCruiser 8.2 MAG HO.
Standard and Optional Features
Boats More Than 30 Feet
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