PBR runs a careful eye over this reasonably priced and lively sports cruiser from a company with an impressive history to live up to …
The original Cranchi Endurance 39, launched nearly two decades ago, made Cranchi a mainstream player in the UK. In the late 90s the likes of Fairline and Princess were dominating the sports cruiser market with some very capable boats. With the launch of the Cranchi Endurance 39 in 1997 came a great sea boat that was a contender in terms of performance and seakeeping, and a clear winner in terms of price. Though the Endurance 39 and 41 would give way to the demand for hardtop boats, the Endurance name has lived on with the Endurance 33.
The latest Endurance 33 should not be confused with the earlier version as they are different boats. The new Endurance has a wider 3.5m beam as opposed to the 3.1m beam of the first Endurance 33. However, they have much in common, both featuring deep-vee hulls and the open-plan internal layout used across the Endurance range. You notice the extra beam on the new Endurance 33 as soon as you step on board, but don’t let this fool you as this boat is not a maritime caravan. The extra hull width allows the engines to be mounted further apart, making vectoring of the sterndrives when berthing more effective. Tucking the boat back into a very tight berth at the end of the day without need for the bow thruster proved this point.
Once out in Studland Bay with a cheeky south-westerly blowing in, the Endurance 33 came alive. Nailing the throttles she hit 30 knots in less than 12 seconds. Two 300hp Volvo D4s in a 6-tonne boat is a great match and we had no problems getting a two-way average of 39.4 knots. You only need to trim up 2 degrees on the legs to get the last 3 knots out of the boat. When out of the lee of Studland and Old Harry I got a better feel for the hull’s seakeeping. With the weather on the beam there was no need for trim tabs. This may not be the case in a stronger sea, but in the conditions of the day that extra beam certainly paid dividends in keeping the Endurance on an even keel, as she showed no tendency to lean into a beam sea. Running into head seas the ride is remarkably soft for a boat this size with a 3.5m beam; in fact, bar a Windy Khamsin 34, I can’t think of a comparable boat that betters it. Where the Endurance really excels is in the turns. Russell of Salterns told me: ‘Turn as hard as you like, but hang on because she won’t slide.’ He wasn’t wrong. I turned the wheel hard at 30 knots and she just carved an incredibly sharp turn and shot out of it barely losing a knot. Most boats slide a little in the turn but the Endurance gives nothing away. You do need to be prepared for it by either sitting firmly in the seat or standing on the footboard wedged against the flip-up seat bolster. The experience is a seat-of-your-pants ride that you would not want to repeat with your mother-in-law on board, but as a sports boat it certainly gets full marks in this department. If you are looking to tow skiers or wakeboarders I can’t think of many boats of this size better suited. Having a wide beam with a sharp transom deadrise angle of 23 degrees gives the hull plenty of draught (3ft 1inch is quite deep for a 33ft sports boat), which can only help in digging the hull in when she is banked over.
From the domestic perspective, the Endurance 33 benefits from its extra girth below. The traditional Endurance layout of a large forward U-shaped seating area that converts to a very large double berth if needed may not suit some, but there are many benefits. You get more cabin seating than most 40-footers, but the only purely sleeping space in the boat is a not overly generous double berth under the cockpit sole, which, having no door to separate it, is in effect open plan. This is clearly no family cruiser and some couples may baulk at the idea of having no separate cabin, but as a long weekender or dayboat the layout has its benefits. The seating area can comfortably accommodate four around the table; alternatively a couple can sprawl out comfortably on a wet evening watching television. The heads is impressive. It must be one of the few 33ft sports cruisers built with a truly separate shower compartment that does not result in the heads being turned into a swamp when you take a shower. This is sensible given that this boat is likely to get used frequently as a water sports tool. The galley is certainly compact and limited in storage, but Cranchi have still managed to squeeze in the core essentials. You get a two-ring hob, full-size fridge (well nearly), small sink and a microwave. The headroom in the galley area is full standing and the deep slide-out storage drawer is nicely made, but realistically, brews, butties and quick food will be the order of the day in the galley. Sensible teak-effect flooring is used in the galley area, though sadly not in the forward seating area of the cabin.
The cockpit has been well thought out. It has a great driver’s helm, forward seating for three, a wet bar complete with fridge, plenty of sociable seating, a double sun pad and walk-through access to a big bathing platform. The helm ergonomics are great, and need to be, given the boat’s lively nature. Your hand falls perfectly on the throttles, the wheel is adjustable, and the tachometers and chartplotter sit under your line of sight over the bow. If you sit you do not look over the windscreen unless you are exceedingly tall, but this seating stance would be reserved for long passages. Alternatively, when you succumb to this boat’s white-knuckle side you will stand with your feet on the foot step wedged securely into the flip-up seat bolster. This position is great as you can see clearly over the bow, and unless you have a strong sea off rather than on the bow the prominent chines keep the spray out of your face. For those lazy anchored moments the L-shaped seating area will easily cater for four. However, the novel drop-down table that fits neatly into a deck recess will only cater for two at a squeeze.
The bathing platform and sun pad are very generous for a 33-footer and much of this is down to the boat’s beam. Engine access could be superb if there were some steps fitted. As it is, once the sun pad has been raised you have a bit of a step down onto the top of the port engine. This is not really ideal, especially if the boat was rolling or pitching at anchor. Retrospectively this could be sorted with the addition of some steps, which I would advise. Once down in the engine bay there is plenty of space, with all service items easily accessed and footboards placed where you need them. All the electrical cables are routed through substantial conduits and notably the raw-water strainers are positioned so you can look directly into them the moment the sun pad is raised.
The Endurance 33 is a very lively sports cruiser with a strong emphasis on sports. Few sports cruisers take off like this boat when you push the throttles forward and few easily nudge 40 knots. Though wider in the beam than the previous Cranchi Endurance 33, it is a capable sea boat with a deep-vee hull that provides a soft ride. It does lack a separate sleeping cabin but it actually has plenty of space below decks and an impressive heads for a boat this size. Considering its reasonable price, which has got better with the euro’s decline against sterling, it has few competitors in this field.
Options & Upgrades
This boat has a long list of options that should really be included in the price, such as the cockpit camper cover at £5,300. The bow sun cushion set at £1,000 is pretty steep, but in contrast the electric trim tabs offered at the same price are very good value. The leather interior that this test boat had would cost £1,150, which is good value, as is the bow thruster at £3,000. The cockpit fridge and microwave cost £720 and £520, respectively, which for this boat are essential extras that you can’t ignore, even at these prices. The electronic packages on offer vary in price from £1,800 for a 12″ plotter to £5,500 for a plotter and radar, which is par for the course. If you feel you need it you can opt for a 4.5KVA generator at £9,000.
What We Thought
- Genuine 39-knot performance
- Rapid acceleration
- Very responsive handling
- Soft ride
- Solid build
- Very good helm ergonomics
- Spacious accommodation for size of boat
- Safe deck access
- Plenty of space around engines with service items easily accessed
- Fairly narrow mid-cabin berth
- Lack of steps into engine bay
- Limited galley storage
Maximum Top Speed
39.4 knots (two-way average with two crew, 50% fuel and 100% water) with wind conditions F3 gusting 5.
- LOA: 10.25m
- Beam: 3.50m
- Displacement: 6.0 tonnes (light)
- Fuel capacity: 530 litres
- Water capacity: 120 litres
- RCD category: B for 10
- Engine options: Twin diesel 260/300hp Volvo D4s or twin petrol 320hp 5.7-litre GXIs both with duo-prop sterndrives
As Tested: £202,800 (inc. VAT)
Package Price: (with twin 300hp Volvo D4s) £202,800 to include a year’s berthing at Salterns Marina, Poole.
Tel: +44(0)1202 707222
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