Formula 430 SSC

Formula 430 SSC Mar 18, 2020

A big bow rider featuring a full cabin for overnighting.

By Zenon Bilas
Boat Test #1617

Formula Boats newest model, the 380 SSC features a 38’ length and a beam of 11’6”, nicely bridging the gap between the 350 Crossover Bowrider and the 400 SSC. The 380 SSC has a bigger boat feel to it, making it a perfect choice for larger lakes and offshore boating.

The 380 SSC (Super Sport Crossover) is a big bow rider, featuring a full cabin with overnight accommodations for four. Instead of the hull and deck featuring color in the gelcoat and decals to create striping, Formula sprays paint onto the boat, using first a base paint and then applying Imron paint. The multi-step process gives the 380 SSC a vibrant finish that reduces chalking and fading in sun and saltwater. Except for cabinets in the cabin, there is no wood in the hull or the deck.

The interior and exterior of the 380 SSC features abundant edges and straight lines. It’s hard to find a curve anywhere in the boat and this gives the 380 SSC a modern stealth like look. A key John Adams design feature is the one level deck, which eliminates the need to step up as you move from stern to bow. Even the swim platform only requires you to step up a few inches to get onto the deck. Once on the deck, you can easily move from stern to bow through the wide passageway.

At the helm, the spacious and luxurious triple command seating featured on the Formula 400 and 430 models has migrated to the 380 SSC. Because the all-composite dash is spacious and well organized, viewing the chart plotters, VHF radio and gauges is easy and not intimidating. The throttle and joy stick and bow are perfectly positioned for the driver.

There are plenty of opportunities to entertain and enjoy the boating experience. A Rockford Fosgate stereo system has 10 6 ½” speakers and two subwoofers in the bow and cockpit. Thirty cup holders are spread throughout the 380 SSC from bow to the optional add on swim platform. The 380 SSC include three Corian tables for use in the cockpit, bow section and cabin. The tables can convert to shorter legs to create a large lounge seating area in the cockpit, bow section and cabin. The stern bench seat converts into a luxurious aft-facing sun pad. The cockpit also features an outdoor kitchen with sink, refrigerator and optional electric grill.

The add-on swim platform can be hydraulically lowered below the water to make it easier for swimmers to get back on board. The swim platform also features a rack that holds paddle boards for water sports enthusiasts.

The cabin is spacious for a bowrider and due to a deep hull, the cabin height is 6’5” high. The cabin has room to sleep four between the convertible V-berth and aft stateroom. The head that includes a stand up shower is spacious and easy to clean.

Behind the wheel, the Formula SSC is a pleasure to drive and very maneuverable for its size. The test boat featured the optional twin 520 hp Mercury Racing sterndrive engines featuring Bravo III outdrives. In the test, the 380 SSC reached a top speed of 50.1 mph.

The 380 SSC features 8.2 L 430 hp MAG HO MerCruiser sterndrives as the base engines but, because of the weight of the boat, the 380 SSC will be most likely be powered with the stronger 520 hp Mercury Racing engines. In addition to the 380 SSC, Formula is also working on an outboard version that will feature either triple or quad outboards.


Length: 38’ / 11.4 m
Beam: 11’ 6” / 3.45 m
Dry Weight: 21,200 lbs / 9,636 kgs
Fuel Tank: 250 gals / 950 L
Draft: 41” / 1 m
Hull Deadrise: 21 degrees
Engines as Tested: Twin 520 HP Mercury Racing sterndrives.
Outdrives: Bravo III with stainless steel F22.5, R24 propellers
MSRP: from $888,130 US

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