Like other builders in its class, Pursuit Boats welcomed the news when Yamaha introduced the F350 V-8 engine last year. Not only did this new power plant boost performance on existing models, it also gave the company the opportunity to build a new express boat from the keel up: the OS 375 Offshore. Launched at the Palm Beach Boat Show this past spring, it is the company’s largest outboard-powered offering. A couple weeks after its debut, I had the chance to see what it would do near Pursuit’s facility in Fort Pierce, Florida.
After clearing the no-wake zone in the Indian River, I took the helm and fire-walled the throttles. The bow rose as the strakes provided noticeable lift before dropping to a level running attitude. From the comfortable, bolstered helm chair I had a commanding view through the unique – and stylish – infused-fiberglass/tempered-glass windshield that comes with a freshwater washdown system and integrated wipers. Reflected surface glare was non-existent due to the console’s gray gelcoat finish, and the thoughtful layout allows easy scanning of gauges and screens.
Our test craft was rigged with triple V8s, which produced a top speed of nearly 55 miles per hour. That’s pretty impressive for a boat of this size and weight. Equally noteworthy was the fuel economy (38.0 gph) while making nearly 34 miles per hour at 4,000 rpm. Pursuit design engineer Eric Hess told me that performance with twin F350s was projected to be 48 miles per hour, top end, with a cruising speed of 35 miles per hour. So there’s not really a huge difference between triples and twins, although when we tried to get on plane on a single engine, we couldn’t quite break over.
For its size, the 375 is very nimble. It responds quickly to the slightest course correction, and steering is effortless because of the power-assisted hydraulic system. Big swells from passing trawlers proved to be a non-issue for this brawny express. The sharp entry forward transitions to 18 degrees at the transom for a nice combination of seaworthiness and stability. When I leaned over the side to simulate releasing a fish, the waterline barely budged.
To carry the weight and torque of more than 1,000 horsepower, Pursuit designed the 375 to be extremely strong. The absence of creaks and shudders underway confirms its solid construction. The one-piece stringer grid system is infused fiberglass and extends all the way to the engine mounts. The beefy transom is composed of multiple layers of marine plywood infused with resin for added strength.
Pursuit also paid close attention to serviceability. For example, the water manifold system is easily accessible through a panel in the head. Electrical panels are labeled on both sides so you don’t have to flip back and forth when tracing wiring harnesses. And you can get to the battery bank, fuel filters, pumps and standard Fischer Panda diesel generator via the cockpit service hatch without twisting into a pretzel.
For owner/operators, this boat has a standard bow thruster to make docking easier. The L-shaped lounge on the port bridge deck allows guests to chat with the skipper or watch baits while underway. Bridge air conditioning is standard. The fiberglass hardtop provides welcome shade, along with spreader lights, rod holders in the stanchions, recessed speakers, LED courtesy lighting and life-jacket storage. A 64-quart refrigerator-freezer is positioned behind the helm seat. A convenient tackle cabinet is located aft of the lounge.
A second insulated refrigerator-freezer, this one 300 quarts and similarly equipped with a digital thermostat, is built into the transom centerline. Next to it is a 50-gallon livewell finished with bait-calming Oceana-blue gelcoat. The cockpit has dual 40-gallon insulated fish boxes in the deck along with a reinforced backing plate to install a fighting chair. Eight gunwale rod holders are standard, and a four-rod transom rack is available as an option. So is the Rupp outrigger package.
After lines out, appetizers can be prepared and cooked on the electric grill in the cockpit. The cabin galley is outfitted with a two-burner glass cooktop, microwave, stainless-steel sink and stainless-steel refrigerator-freezer. The starboard private head includes a fiberglass shower, glass vessel sink, Corian vanity and Vacu-Flush head with holding tank.
For weekend stays, the master pedestal berth has a 5-inch-thick mattress. The mid-cabin berth also sleeps two comfortably. A 16,000 BTU air conditioner with reverse-cycle heat maintains comfort no matter the season. A Clarion CD stereo system, two flat-screen televisions and a DVD player round out the entertainment features.
Big block four-stroke outboards are changing the way anglers approach big-game fishing. And with all the creature comforts of the OS 375, I’m guessing it’ll result in fewer hotel reservations, too.
Pursuit OS 375
**Weight: **15,000 lbs.
**MAX. HP: **1,050
**WATER: **65 gals.
**FUEL: **370 gals.
**w/triple F350 Yamaha outboards
Pursuit ? 772.465.6006 ? pursuitboats.com