2009 Best Boats Flagship Over 50ft: Outbound 52

Large center-cockpit monohulls are quite common these days, so we were curious to see how Phil Lambert of Outbound Yachts, whose Outbound 44 and 46 bluewater cruisers have gained such a strong reputation over the past decade, might interpret the breed with the introduction of his new Outbound 52 center-cockpit cruiser. We were impressed enough to give the Outbound 52 the nod in this category. The boat exhibits a plethora of well-conceived details—from the stanchion-mounted fuel-tank vents, to the stainless-steel work-table top concealed under the skipper’s seaberth in the starboard-side walk-through, to the two separate day fridges for storing frequently accessed food and drinks—all of which reflect a careful blending of the often-competing dictates of comfort, convenience, and cruising functionality.

All these details are contained in an aesthetically pleasing package (the cabinhouse superstructure has one of the lowest profiles we’ve ever seen on a center-cockpit boat) that is very solidly constructed. With its watertight bulkheads fore and aft, solid vinylester hull, vacuum-bagged Divinycell-cored deck, through-bolted hardware and deck joint, properly bonded interior bulkheads and furniture, and well-executed systems installations, the Outbound 52 is without doubt a boat you can rely on. Better yet, it is very reasonably priced, with a standard-equipment list (Hood sails, a 900-amp Mastervolt battery bank, Cantalupi lighting, ultra-leather or -suede cushions, to name but a few standard features) any builder would be hard-pressed to duplicate.

The interior joinery is superb and can be executed in a variety of pleasing hardwoods. The accommodation plan can be customized to a large extent. How does Phil do it? The boat is built in China, where he now lives, and he supervises the construction of each and every Outbound he sells. For more information, visit Outbound Yachts


LOA: 52’0″

LWL: 47’10”

Beam: 15’4″

Draft: 7’6″

Displacement: 40,000 lbs

Ballast: 14,000 lbs

Sail area (100% Foretriangle) : 1,312 ft2

Designer: Kernan Yacht Design

Builder: Outbound Yachts

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