The new Chaparral 300 OSX combines sportboat functionality with a modified center console helm in an outboard-powered boat. One of the reasons, we think, that this concept will find a robust audience is that many operators like to stand when driving a boat, something that is not particularly comfortable on most sportboats. Could the OSX be starting a trend?
Article Reprinted from the Jan. 11, 2019 issue of Soundings Trade Only
“We probably spent as much time designing this boat as any we’ve ever come up with,” Chaparral founder and executive vice president Buck Pegg told Trade Only Today. “We spent six months just deciding on the concept. It was definitely a blend of ideas.”
The company was trying to create a product the public didn’t yet know it wanted, said Chaparral senior vice president Mike Fafard.
“That’s the advantage we have in building fishing boats [with the Robalo line] and sport boats, and seeing them grow inland,” said Fafard. “I think it’s an indicator people want something functional.”
“Our purpose from the beginning was to do something completely different that would appeal to people on the coast, as well to push some of the outboard business inland to lakes,” said Pegg.
The boat was “highly anticipated” going into the August dealer meeting, said Ann Baldree, senior vice president of Chaparral. “A lot of innovation went into this boat,” said Baldree.
The boat is designed for entertaining with its wraparound sunpad. The helm seat can be rotated from the navigating position to the starboard deck wall, creating an open cockpit atmosphere for entertaining without compromising access to the cabin, according to the company.
The “Vista View” lounge is designed to allow full-length lounging in the forward or aft positions, and the cockpit is covered with a large, integrated fiberglass hardtop system with lighting, bonded skylight, and optional SureShade.
“The cockpit is all about entertainment,” said senior vice president Bill Pegg. “Most of these boats end up on sandbars, but they want to get there fast,” said Fafard. “This boat works perfect on the Florida coast and on the lakes. Hopefully we’ll get it into Lake of the Ozarks and it catches on there.”
Having the side console gives more space below, said Buck Pegg. “There’s actually room for someone to lay down and rest,” he said. “If you’re on a sandbar it’s comfortable to come in and use the head. It’s just a more comfortable boat. By doing a single side console, there’s much more space.”