The new Sea Ray SLX 350 is a 2019 redesign of Sea Ray’s luxury sport boat. She’s a twin inboard Mercury-powered bowrider with Bravo III sterndrives that straddles the line between dayboat and cruiser due to a reconfigured hideaway berth.
- Seating for 18
- Enclosed head
- Deep-v hull design
- Yacht Certified
- QuietRIDE™ Technology
|Length Overall||34' 6'' / 10.52 m|
Acceleration Times & Conditions
|Time to Plane||6.1 sec.|
|0 to 30||15.1 sec.|
|Load||3 persons, full fuel, no water, 50 lbs. of gear|
|Climate||85 deg., 52 humid; wind: 5-10 mph; seas: 1|
2 x 380-hp MerCruiser 8.2L MAG Seacore
2 x 300-hp MerCruiser 6.2L MPI ECT Bravo III with Axius
2 x 300-hp MerCruiser 6.2L MPI ECT SeaCore Bravo IIIx with Axius
2 x 350-hp MerCruiser 6.2L MPI ECT Bravo IIIx with Axius
2 x 350-hp MerCruiser 6.2L MPI ECT SeaCore Bravo IIIx with Axius
2 x 380-hp MerCruiser 8.2 MAG ECT Bravo IIIx with Axius
2 x 380-hp MerCruiser 8.2 MAG ECT SeaCore Bravo IIIx with Axius
Captain’s Report by Capt. Peter d’Anjou
Sea Ray’s SLX Series are luxury bowriders ranging from 23 to 40' (7.01 m to 12.19 m). The newly redesigned SLX 350 has refinements in seating, storage, cabin layout, swim platform, engine, and helm upgrades to deliver superior ride and handling.
- Carbon-fiber reinforced fiberglass hardtop with sunroof
- Twin MerCruiser V8s with Bravo III sterndrives
- Active Trim with integrated GPS, speed-based automatic engine trim system
- Extended swim platform with optional submersible section
- Wet bar refreshment center with grill option
- Hideaway berth
Large triangular planes in the hull create an articulated running surface that improves acceleration, reduces bow rise, and keeps the boat at optimal trim, no matter the load.
Sea Ray emphasizes that “comfort and style are woven into every surface, every line of the SLX series”. The ergonomically designed seating has been refined in every zone of the vessel.
The bow has a soft chine dropping to a fairly deep V that cuts efficiently through the water at non-planing speeds.
Sea Ray employs multiple ways to reduce sound and vibration aboard its vessels during construction that they collectively call their Quiet Ride technology.
Quiet Ride technology begins when composite panels are laminated right into the hull. The panels convert vibration energy to heat which is whisked away by the water. Windshields are engineered with softened edges which limit the amount of wind noise. Transoms with drive units, like musical instruments, can act as sound boards to transmit sound and vibration throughout a boat, which is why Sea Ray partnered with Omni products on a patented way to “tune” a transom so that engine noise and vibration are dampened. Voids in liners are foam filled to isolate noise. One-inch thick acoustic foam is used on engine room bulkheads. Rubber gaskets and neoprene isolators are used on hatches and when installing tankage to brackets - the list is quite extensive, as a 10 decibel drop in noise is akin to a 50% drop noise reduction, according to Sea Ray.
BoatTEST tests noise levels at the helm of boats, some of which is wind noise on a speeding boat, so look for the decibel (dBa) levels of this boat in the performance section to see how effective Sea Ray is in reducing sound and vibration and making a day on the water more enjoyable.
Sea Ray attributes the high-level fit and finish to the lack of vibration and noise. They clearly take the whole build quality aspect of quietRIDE technology seriously.
The Sea Ray SLX 350's hull with the integral, extended swim platform has an overall length of 34' 6" (10.50 m) and a beam of 10' 6'' (3.20 m). The boat draws 39" (99 cm) with the sterndrives down and 25" (63 cm) with the drives up. With an empty weight of 13,890 lbs. (6,300 kg), full fuel and three people onboard, we had an estimated test weight of 15,557 lbs. (7,057 kg).
Propelled by a pair of 380-hp MerCruiser 8.2L MAG engines turning Bravo IIIx sterndrives with 28 pitch duo propsets and run up to 4800 rpm, our speed topped out at 50.8 mph. Best cruise was reached at 3000 rpm and 28.7 mph. It was at that speed that the 25 gph fuel burn translated into 1.1 gph and a range of 183 statute miles.
Interestingly, the hull-to-engine match with the twin 380-hp MerCruisers was enhanced beyond the standard power plant so that now, the best cruise setting could be run in choppy conditions. In calmer water, we could bump the revs up to 3500 and hit 36.1 mph while still enjoying the same 1.1 mpg fuel economy. We still held back a 10-percent reserve of the boat’s 177-gallon (670 L) total fuel capacity.
We reached planing speed in 6.1 seconds. Once up on plane, start adding trim and feel the boost in speed, like shifting gears. There’s no noticeable change in the spray or bowrise. Continue accelerating to 20 MPH in 9.1 seconds and 30 passes by in 15.1.
Time-to-plane: 6.1 seconds
Zero to 20 mph: 9.1 seconds
Zero to 30 mph: 15.1 seconds
Sound levels at idle (600 rpm) were 64.4 dBa and rose to 86.5 at WOT of 4800 rpm and 50.8 mph. The wind was 5-10 mph during our tests which contributes to overall wind noise at the open air helm. Interestingly, when the boat hit best cruising speeds between 3000 and 3500 rpm, the noise level dropped from 82.8 dBa at 2500 rpm to 78.9 dBa at 3500 rpm.
Enhanced handling is another hallmark of the SLX lineup, and this newest version is no exception. She has a nice solid feel to her handling. We were running in 1’ (.30m) chop with no pounding or hull slap and therefore no need to restrict speed.
Turned hard over, she’ll roll 22-degrees into the turn. Gentle turns are by their nature, much more docile and comfortable. In either case, she will put her shoulder into the turn and bleed off speed until you ease off the turn or she drops off plane, so don’t be shy about adding power.
Engines and Power Options
The standard Sea Ray SLX 350 package comes with twin gas MerCruiser® 6.2L MPI ECT Bravo® III with Axius Propulsion (300-hp each).
Twin gas/Axius® options:
- Twin MerCruiser 6.2L MPI ECT SeaCore Bravo IIIx with Axius (300-hp each)
- Twin MerCruiser 6.2L MPI ECT Bravo IIIx with Axius (350 hp each)
- Twin MerCruiser 6.2L MPI ECT SeaCore Bravo IIIx with Axius (350-hp each)
- Twin MerCruiser 8.2 MAG ECT Bravo IIIx with Axius (380-hp each)
- Twin MerCruiser 8.2 MAG ECT SeaCore Bravo IIIx with Axius (380-hp each)
Twin diesel Axius® options:
- Twin Mercury® Diesel 370 TDI® 4.2L SeaCore Bravo IIIxr with Axius (364-hp each)
The engine compartment hatch is electrically actuated. The Quiet Ride technology is evident with enhanced soundproofing all around. The tuned transom absorbs still more sound and vibration.
Gone in this redesign is the old undermount swim step. An optional 18” (45.72cm) submersible center section has replaced it. In the previous SLX 350, only one person could step back aboard from the water. The new iteration has more of a beach experience that can be enjoyed by more people.
The submersible platform can be stopped at various levels. The undermount reboarding ladder with a grab handle to remain NMMA compliant per ABYC standards is located under the starboard wing of the swim platform.
A rumble seat style cover over the aft seating has also been enhanced. We can still flip-up the seatback and enjoy the view out of the stern when not underway. The support for under the legs has been made easier to use.
It’s an example of refinements to the boat’s ease of use that appears throughout. Beverage holders and USB connectivity plugs are mounted to the sides. A Fusion stereo remote is in the center of the transom.
We enter the 40” (101.6 cm) deep cockpit through an 18” (45.72cm) angled walkway, elevated 10” (25.40cm). The angle maximizes the seating. There’s a speaker in the riser.
The “ease of use” theme continues in the cockpit. No hunting for the battery switch, it’s tucked into the bulwark as you enter. Just ahead is the switch for raising and lowering the swim platform and engine hatch. This location allows the user a direct view of the action.
Seating wraps around the aft and port sides of the cockpit with a smaller bench on the forward starboard side. There’s plenty of room for snacks, meals or conversation.
A cockpit table expands the functionality of the area. Fold the leaf up and over to reveal a curved grab handle reachable from the after cockpit seats. The forward corner seat has its own grab rail, beverage holders, and a continuation of the elegant upholstery. Below is a 36-qt (39.64L) carry on cooler. A subwoofer for the premium Fusion stereo is mounted alongside.
All seats have been enhanced with new upholstery choices but what we really liked is the space between the seat base and seat backs. This not only creates a quickie storage area for the shirts and phones we all need to stuff somewhere, but at the end of the day we can hose down the seats and not have trapped water between cushions.
Grab rails, USB ports, and beverage holders are close to every seat.
Wet Bar Refreshment Center
The starboard side of the cockpit features a Corian topped refreshment center that includes a sink with fold-up faucet, an optional electric grill, a wrapped grab handle, a drawer-style 2.3 cu ft (.07 cu m) refrigerator and a trash receptacle.
Forward of the cockpit, the helm and passenger seats are wide enough to seat two across, 38” (96.52cm), so we can now have four people facing forward when underway, and both include single flip bolsters and upscale treatments.
Sea Ray has partnered with Simrad to integrate two 9” (22.86 cm) multifunction displays into the flush panel. The MFDs include a chartplotter, echo sounder, full vessel electrical switching and a full Mercury Interface with the engines and controls to provide features such as troll mode, active trim or dynamic running surface, bow hook, skyhook, drift hook, and a full host of towing features, including programmable profiles for individual boarders.
Below the glass dash and from left to right, is the spotlight control, the upgraded Fusion Apollo series stereo with features that include Wifi connectivity, and SiriusXM enhancements. All electrical switches are pushbutton, the wheel is mounted to a tilt base. Trim tab controls are located to the right of the wheel.
On the bulwark to the right is the Mercury digital throttle and shift. The standard Axius joystick piloting system is aft of the DTS. Ignitions and USB connectivity are further aft and below the joystick.
Choice of flooring covers, infinity woven vinyl flooring or SeaDek, all snap in. Permanently installed teak decking is an option.
Perhaps the most significant enhancement for this latest version of the SLX 350 is in the head and berth compartments. They’ve been swapped with each other, so now the berth to port has much more room than the head to starboard.
The top of the cabin door has beverage holders and a small rail and padding adds a space for quick-drop items. A lockable acrylic glove storage is alongside. Ahead is a fixed skylight for the cabin.
The door opens toward the center of the boat and we’d like to see a strut or mechanism added to hold it open against the boat’s rocking. Inside, there’s 4’7” (1.40 m) of headroom and 3’7” (1.09 m) of seated headroom. There’s a comfortable couch facing a 19” (48.26 cm) TV mounted to the inboard bulkhead.
There’s storage shelves ahead with USB ports and a 110v outlet wired to the shore power system. The overhead skylight is supplemented by the hull-side window. There’s an opening portlight for ventilation. When it’s time to cool down, there’s optional air conditioning running off an inverter, so no need for an expensive generator option. Filler cushions convert the space into a berth.
The head is accessed from opening the helm console’s side door and releasing a latch to the steps. This fully fiberglass-lined compartment includes a Vacuflush toilet, 27-gallon (102 L) holding tank, a hull-side window with an opening port to supplement ventilation from the powered vent, a fiberglass vanity with molded sink, and non-skid treatment for the deck.
Shade and Canvas
Shade is a valuable commodity on any boat and here it’s well thought out. It starts, of course, with the well-supported hardtop, 6’5” (1.96 m) off the deck with carbon fiber styling accents.
Add the optional powered awning that deploys from the hardtop’s trailing edge and shade can be extended over the aft lounger. The center of the hardtop has a manually operated sunroof. And forward there’s an optional bow shade supported by carbon-fiber stanchions so we can cover the entire 35’ boat or expose it as desired.
The 35” (88.9 cm) cockpit depth in the bow provides security for those seated up front. Face-to-face seating offers a more intimate gathering area and rounds out the available seating for 18. Twin solid wood tables are supported from sidemount pedestal bases. The tables can be lowered to a second position to create a full-length lounge. Additional supports for filler cushions create a full sun pad.
The forward facing seats include flip-down armrests, quite an advantage over flip-up armrests that need to be locked and released. A 36-qt (39.64L) carry-on cooler has dedicated storage behind a door under the center seat. More of the same upscale treatments are present here, including lengthy grab rails along the caprail and the diamond stitched upholstery.
Fully forward is a hatch that conceals the windlass, rode locker, and plow anchor on a roller. A washdown is located to starboard of the cover and an optional spotlight is found mounted to port. Alongside are two of the boat’s four 10” (25.40 cm) cleats.
An international aluminum trailer is listed as an option, however, pricing was not available at the time of this publication.
The 2019 Sea Ray SLX 350 with twin MerCruiser 6.2L MPI ECT (300-hp) Bravo III with Axius joystick is $315,123. By adding the 380-hp engines found on the SLX 350 we tested,
(+ $30,769) along with desirable options like the submersible swim platform, powered sunshade, and premium audio system, a realistic price for the SLX 350 tricked out with options is likely in the 400K range.
Optional Equipment to Consider
- Two teak bow side tables ($1,529)
- Air conditioning in both berth and head ($5,385)
- Berth SeaDek flooring ($3,845)
- LED courtesy lighting ($2,369)
- Teak cockpit flooring ($6,769)
- Teak flooring for swim platform and walkthrough ($3,231)
- Extended sunshade ($8,385)
- Premier audio upgrade ($3,038)
- Simrad Halo 24 radar ($3,615)
- Cockpit heat ($1,348)
- Dynamic Running Surface™ ($3,526)
- Electric Grill (requires inverter) ($2,535)
- Submersible swim platform ($7,923)
- Inverter ($3,231)
- Grey water system ($634)
- Macerator/seacock ($1,102)
- Compressor ($238)
- Water heater (6 gallons) ($1,506)
Sea Ray took an already popular model and enhanced nearly every aspect, to bring this newest SLX 350 to the water. And nearly all of it was in direct response to customer feedback. The result is a premium-level dayboat that will encourage owners to spend extended time out on the water with their numerous friends.