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Aviara AV40 (2022-)
2 x 520-hp Ilmor 7.4L HO
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Drawing on MasterCraft’s 50 years of building quality boats, the Aviara brand was created to elevate the dayboat experience with upscale finish work, quality build and elevated handling that appeals to discriminating buyers. The AV40 embodies all those attributes and more.
|Weight Capacity||Yacht Certified|
|Person Capacity||Yacht Certified|
Acceleration Times & Conditions
|Time to Plane||5.8 seconds|
|0 to 30||18.3 seconds|
|Load||3 persons; 53.55 gal. fuel; 50 lbs. gear|
|Climate||89 deg.; 78 humid.; winds: 10-15; seas: <1|
2 x 520-hp Ilmor 7.4L HO
Aviara AV40: Flagship of the Model Lineup
Captain’s Report by Capt. Steve
The Aviara AV40 was designed to seamlessly integrate functionality with innovative style and bring upscale features to the dayboat market. Aviara had a goal of creating a functional dayboat that could also expand the boating experience into the evenings.
- Twin fold-down terraces
- Sleeps four
- Submersible platform
- Barstool transom seating
- Convertible aft lounge seating
- Standard joystick functionality
- On deck gourmet wetbar
- Power sunroof
- Seakeeper gyro option
- Cockpit TV
- Available in Sterndrive or Outboard power
- Twin 520-hp Ilmor 7.4L HO engines
With the dual 520-horsepower Ilmor 7.4 HO engines run up to 5300 RPM, our speed topped out at 43.5 MPH. Best cruise came in at 4000 RPM and 30.8 MPH. It was at that speed that the 42.1 GPH fuel burn translated into .7 MPG and a range of 235 statute miles. All while still only back a 10% reserve of the boat's 357-gallon (1,351 L) total fuel capacity. In acceleration tests, we reached planing speed in 5.8 seconds and she’ll hold plane right on down to 11.1 MPH. We accelerated to 20 mph in 10.5 seconds and 30 in 18.3 seconds
First off, it's a 40’ (12.19 m) boat so it's not going to handle like a sportboat. She feels more solid and beefy. In turns, she won’t grip into the water and throw everybody and everything over to one side so there’s comfort throughout the maneuver. She does bleed off a lot of speed in the turn. Go ahead and add throttle, get through the turn, straighten out and then bring the speed back again once it comes up on its natural 5-degree bow high running attitude.
Inside the engine compartment is a 7.4-liter 520-horsepower HO engine and this is the only power choice for this sterndrive application. Just ahead, we have the upgraded 9.5 kW Westerbeke generator. The standard is 7.5-kW, but the upgrade is because we have the Seakeeper gyro.
The most significant aspect of the AV40 is the ability of the drop-down terraces to expand the usable entertainment space. They increase the AV40’s beam from 12’3” (3.72 m) to 18’3” (5.55 m). Add the convertible, 79” (200.66 cm) wide, three-across lounge seats at 22” (55.88 cm) wide each and the pop-up pneumatic bar stool seating and the area becomes a formidable gathering area, whether coving, at anchor or just swimming. Even with the terraces up, there’s still 20” (50.80 cm) of side deck space. Decking is all non-skid SeaDek.
For those who like to raft to other boats and share the party, fret not. There’s still the ability to do so, even with the terraces down thanks to three side-mounted cleats that allow for tying up ahead of the deployed terrace to either side. Even better is the ability to step from that boat’s swim platform to the AV40’s terrace.
Storage is under the seats and the premium Klipsch Audio sound system adds significantly to the atmosphere. To both sides of the aft seating, there are deck hatches that lead to clever fender storage and there are even dedicated holders for the optional fender clips.
Ahead and to starboard in the cockpit is the wetbar. It features plenty of counter space, an option for one or two electric grills, refrigeration, sink and trash receptacle. Additionally, there’s an optional 32” (81.28 cm) TV on an electric lift attached to a swivel mount. At the forward end, there’s a built-in 42-qt (39.75 L) cooler in a pull-out drawer. The cover to the cooler is mounted inside and above so that when the drawer is closed, the cover goes into place. Directly across from that and under the bench seat is a carry-on cooler.
The center of the Aviara AV40 is a 5’9” x 6’6” (1.75 m x 1.98 m) open deck with bench seating across the port side. Another seat is ahead of the aft seating island. As with the stern, all decking is non-skid SeaDek. This area is where the elevated level of fit and finish really shines on the AV40. The upholstery is soft- and cool-touch so it’s not uncomfortable even in direct sunlight.
There are lumbar supports and the seat bases are angled to the back so occupants sit in the seat rather than on. Beverage holders are recessed into the seatback, along with grab rails. The beverage holders are mounted to solid surface counter material but that can be swapped out for teak. There’s an option to add heat to both the seat base and lumbar supports.
Under the seat, there’s an accommodation for an optional cockpit table that adds to the area’s functionality. Next to that is an outlet for optional cockpit heat and an 11” (27.94 cm) subwoofer, one of two on the boat along with 10 speakers that are 8.5” (21.59 cm) and all connected to the premium Klipsch Audio System custom engineered to the AV40.
The cockpit area is under the protection of the fiberglass hardtop that measures 12’ x 11’ (3.65 m x 3.35 m). It’s 7’ (2.13 m) off the deck and includes aft-facing speakers, downward-facing speakers and RGB LED lighting. It’s constructed with internal aluminum framing so there’s no need for forward supports that tend to block the operator’s view. There’s an opening sunroof and at the trailing edge is a Makefast extendable awning.
The helm consists of a glass-dash with three screens. One is dedicated to the vessel's switching and it includes stereo controls. The center screen is a Garmin multi-function display with selectable screen displays. To the right of the panel is the Ilmor screen and this display can be scrolled with a pushbutton on the joystick mounted to the right of the helm seat.
Even though there’s a dedicated screen for digital switching, there are still physical switches for more immediate items such as the horn, bilge pumps and nav lights. To the right are the digital engine controls and the joystick. A switch in the cubby just behind will move the 75” (190.5 cm) wide electrically actuated seat fore and aft. This seat also has the option for the heated seat base and lumbar support.
A flip-down base at the deck elevates the operator 5” (12.7 cm) off the deck — in addition to the base that the helm is mounted to that is already 4” (10.16 cm) off the main deck. Visibility is through a single-piece windshield that measures 7’3” x 3’4” (2.2 m x 1.01 m). That measurement doesn’t even include the walk-through portion to port.
One thing to consider when starting the Aviara AV40 is that there’s a safety feature to the swim step that prevents the engine from being started when the step is deployed. That said, operators that may have trouble with the engine not turning over would be well advised to check that the swim step is fully and properly stowed.
Just before the walkthrough to the bow, there’s a padded bolster ahead of the portside bench seating that serves as a leaning post. Below is a trash receptacle. Continuing forward the walkway has a minimum width of 23” (58.42 cm). A bi-fold air dam and walkthrough windshield can both be closed off to keep things palatable on those chilly mornings. Additionally, the deck is a single level from bow to stern… no steps.
As for the forward social zone, it starts with a safety factor of 41” (104.14 cm) high bulwarks. Wraparound seating is supplemented with full padded bolsters all around. A bow table can be added as can a filler cushion to convert the area into a sunpad. Storage is underneath all seats, including a built-in cooler under the forward seat.
The ground tackle is accessed from under an RTM hatch, so it’s finished on both sides. Aviara added a support strut to hold it in the open position. The opening is gasketed all the way around against water intrusion, but even if water did get into the recessed compartment, it’s self-draining overboard.
Inside is a Lewmar windlass with a rope and chain rode. A remote is mounted against the port bulkhead. There’s a dedicated mount for the manual wrench and a washdown is provided on a coiled hose that gets dedicated storage as well. A cleat is mounted slightly to the starboard side. With the rode secured to this cleat, there’s a slight risk of chafing against the edge of the anchor roller that is mounted through the stem.
One of the goals of the Aviara design team was to create a luxury dayboat that extends the onboard experience into the night. A door to the port side of the helm, held open by a magnetic catch, leads to the cabin.
Inside there’s 6’1” (1.85 m) of overhead space. A forward 67” (170.18 cm) deep berth has a lifting cushion mounted to a ratcheting hinge that creates L-seating. An overhead skylight adds natural light along with the side windows. To port, there is a 43” (109.22 cm) TV mounted to a swivel base with a solid surface counter, refrigeration, microwave and storage underneath. The entirety of the cabin is one single piece of molded fiberglass, but it’s also finished off with upholstery. In other words, no creaking or squeaking of separate bulkheads at a joint.
The mid-cabin is accessed from alongside the companionway. The berth measures 67” x 86” (170.18 cm x 218.44 cm). Storage is to the sides and there’s an overhead clearance of 30” (76.2 cm).
To the side of the companionway is the ship's main electrical panel. It controls the 110-v system that is connected to the standard 7.5kW generator. Our test boat has the upgraded 9.5kW generator since the boat also had the optional Seakeeper gyro stabilizer.
Options to Consider
- Forward and aft-facing docking lights
- Seakeeper 3 gyro
- Upgrade generator to 9.5kW from 7.5kW
- Power retractable sunshade aft
- Fiberglass sunroof
- AutoGlide automated trim tabs
- Engine flush kit
- Chilled cupholders at the helm
- Cockpit TV
- Built-in vacuum-sealed drawer cooler at the wet bar
- Cockpit heater
- Heated helm and cockpit seating
- Transom barstools
- Submersible swim platform
The Aviara AV40 has a base price of $1,069,101 and price as tested of $1,169,501.
With three independent social zones plus the expanded social zone in the stern along with the overnighting capabilities, the Aviara AV40 is a formidable opponent in the dayboat market — especially in the luxury end of the spectrum.