Boat Test Videos
Content courtesy ofThe name Ilmor has been part of recreational and performance boating for over a decade, but now they’ve teamed up with Formula boats to provide the first crossover powerplant designed for both markets. To commemorate the event, Formula created all new graphics that signal that this boat means business.
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.
Typically go-fast boats are made to do exactly that… Go fast. The recipe is a simple one, take a long, narrow hull, add massive engines with straight pipes, move levers forward as desired. Everything else is typically inconsequential, especially the fit and finish of the interior.Formula decided to take a different route. Rather than make its performance boats the fastest on the planet, they chose to make them go fast enough while providing the luxury, upscale features, and fit and finish that they are so well known for. The result is the FAS³Tech line. While these boats may not crack 100 mph barrier, for most of us 80 mph will do just fine while it happens in one of the best looking boats in class on the planet.
Imron is a relatively expensive paint and the process to apply it can be difficult and time-consuming. But in the end, the looks are stunning and that's why Formula goes to the trouble of using it. But it doesn't just use it to change the color of the hull, they use Imron for the graphics.
Adjustable Foot Rests.
While the high-performance McLeod bucket seats do not have a fore and aft adjustment, the foot rests do. In this manner a captain of any height will find comfort while operating the 353.
This 353 FAS³Tech is styled much like a missile. She has a narrow 8'3" (2.51 m) beam that seems to emphasize her length even more. Attention to cockpit and interior styling detail is exactly what we've come to expect from the design team at Formula. A hot boat should have bold interior trim and colors and the 353 has them -- but they are tasteful. That is to say, painted on flames, neon colors and rhinestone trim will not be found here.
The Formula Recipe
The Formula brand was born back in the heady early days of the sport of offshore powerboat racing with pioneers like Don Aronow and Jim Wynn, beating the hell out of their kidneys racing from Miami to Nassau. The Porter family, which has owned Formula for decades and built it into a world-class brand, is no stranger to racing. Company president Scott Porter is a former offshore World Champion and for years Formulas were campaigned on racing circuits all over the world. Today, because of the world economic situation Formula is taking a more subdued approach to racing, but its commitment to building high-quality, plush, high-performance boats is unabated.
The new FAS³Tech line is denoted by its new hull design that incorporates three separate running surfaces produced by two steps built into the hull. The “steps” actually serve to force air under the hull and thereby reduce surface friction for an even faster ride than a boat with a smooth deep-V. Some builders put in one step, but Formula puts in two.
Strength Requires Weight
So now we have the stepped hull and the horses doing their job, but we’re slowing the boat down a bit because it’s relatively heavy… 9,500 lbs. (4,309 kgs.), which is 1,000 – 1,500 lbs. heavier than most, but not all, of the other high-performance boats. So what makes the 353 so heavy and why does Formula do this? The weight comes from the construction methods, added materials, and to a lesser extent, the amenities. Rather than use a traditional stringer system, Formula utilizes a separately made fiberglass grid system that gets chemically bonded to the bilge. Because the boat will be hitting square ones at 80 mph or more, the hull laminate is sold fiberglass and tough. The result is a heavier boat, but a stronger and beefier one, and that means a more solid riding boat as well as a safer one. It also means that the 353 might be slower than some go-fast boats that are lighter.
Speed Requires Strength
We can’t stress enough the importance of having a strong hull when operating at these high speeds. At 85 mph, waves are not soft, rather they are more like concrete without the rebar. That is why the shape of the hull, the deadrise and the strength of the boat are all so important. Picture a car going over speed bumps every 15 feet while traveling at 70 mph and one will get an idea of the punishment a boat like this has to endure.
And Then, The Amenities
Let’s not forget that the 353 FAS³Tech is still a Formula. It didn’t just make an empty cabin in the hopes of keeping it light. The 353 FAS³Tech has a plush cabin flush with perks. Starting at the bow with an Ultraleather double bow berth, then an Ultraleather wrap-around lounge seat that can convert to another double berth with filler cushions, a removable Corian cocktail table, an entertainment center with polished stainless steel sink and Corian countertop, a dual-voltage refrigerator and a private head compartment.
Sitting at the helm, with the 353’s long and narrow foredeck, makes one feel like they’re sitting at the controls of a missile. But it is a comfortable missile. Dual wrap-around McLeod electrically adjusted seats are built for sustained high-speed operation. These McLeod seats have been developed over years of offshore racing use. And both the driver and observer get an electrically adjustable McLeod footrest. Any height captain will feel right at home on the 353 FAS³Tech.
So if getting there ahead of the rest of the pack and arriving in first class style are part of the float plan, then the Formula 353 FAS³Tech might be just the boat to fill the need. She is definitely not for everyone -- and that's a big part of her appeal.
Test Result Highlights
Full Warranty Information on this brand coming soon!
Pricing Range: $343,060.00Prices, 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.
Test Results - Change Measurement Unit
All fuel consumption numbers are the total for all engines in the boat. Speeds are measured with Stalker ProSports radar gun or GPS. Fuel consumption (gallons per hour) measured with Floscan digital fuel-flow meter or by on-board factory-installed diagnostic instruments. Range is based on 90% of published fuel capacity. Sound levels determined using Radio Shack digital decibel meter on A scale. 68 dBA is the level of normal conversation. Time to plane is measured from start of acceleration to formation of rooster tail behind boat.