Sea Ray L650 Fly
The Sea Ray L650 Fly is the full realization of good old American ambition. A big boat that can take you just about anywhere you want to go in comfort and style, and also make your neighbors at the dock a bit envious. She’s Sea Ray’s attempt at busting down the door into the rarefied air of the true yacht class. And that’s quite a big task to handle for any builder, regardless of past experience. Let’s see if the builder was up to the task …
The boat’s accommodations deck was certainly up to snuff. Handsomely dressed in distressed hickory throughout, it’s both roomy and light. A forepeak VIP features a sizable en suite head, while matching guest staterooms aft of that have a full 7 feet of headroom and convertible twins. The option is available to convert one of these rooms into an office, which Sea Ray believes will be a popular choice considering many of their owners still work. The guests are serviced by a dayhead in a well-lit passageway that leads aft to the full-beam, amidships master. That stateroom is packed to the gills with amenities that will be enticing to any owner. It’s en suite, of course, with his-and-hers sinks and a huge shower with a rainmaker shower head, which is very nice indeed. But what I appreciated the most about the master’s head is that it’s situated between the engine room and the berth, which helps cushion engine noise and keep the stateroom quiet and suitable for getting some rest.
That aforementioned engine room is another highlight. On my test boat it housed twin 1,100-horsepower Caterpillar C18 ACERTs as well as two Seakeeper 8000 gyrostabilizers, the sound from which was all but gobbled up by thick sound insulation encasing the room. (Note that the decibels never cracked 80, even at WOT.) Four Racor fuel/water separators provided excellent redundancy, while a 27.5-kW Cummins Onan genset takes care of the auxiliary power duties. Headroom here required a slight crouch out of my 6-foot frame, but accessibility was a highpoint. Everything, and in particular that generator, would be easy to work on when the time comes.
For me, the upper helm is nearly always optimal to the lower helm. I just like the wind in my hair. So that’s where I conducted the majority of my sea trial of the L650. With the hammer down the boat just crested 30 knots, no small feat for a vessel displacing 80,000 pounds. Cruise speeds are closer to 24 knots for maximum efficiency. All in all I’d say it’s a pretty good showing from the propulsion system, which is highlighted by those bruising C18s. The boat was—again thankfully—very maneuverable. She’s pleasingly responsive to the wheel, and slalomed around and through the boat traffic with confidence and ease at both cruise and WOT. At slower speeds the twin hydraulic thrusters spun her like a top. They are controlled by joysticks at both helms, and a third in the cockpit, which make her a snap to dock.
The L650 comes with Sea Ray’s Concierge Package, a nod to the high-end customer service the company knows it must supply if it is to succeed in this market. The main upshot from the Concierge Package is that if you break down anywhere in the world, Sea Ray will get a service professional to you in 24 hours. And that could be a huge plus if you can only find a week to squeak away to the islands one summer. This is certainly a good boat for doing that.
Sea Ray, 321-449-9073; www.searay.com
: 73,500 lbs.
: 1,030 gal.
: 140 gal.
: 2/1,100-hp Cat C18 Acerts
: Upon request
: 27.5-kW Cummins Onan
: Veem 34 x 37