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Baja 242 Islander

1 x 425-hp MerCruiser 496 MAG HO

Brief Summary

The 242 Islander is an exciting sportboat perfect for the entry-level boater looking for something easy to handle, yet still a lot of fun.

Key Features

The 242 is a mid-sized sportboat in the Islander line. She features a spacious cockpit with good seating all-around. Up in the bow a small table is available for having a snack while anchored, and a filler cushion is also available to convert this area into one large sun pad. Behind the helm there’s a compartment large enough for a port-potti, which your guests or family will greatly appreciate. The 242 Islander offers an exciting layout, with a comfortable helm that has everything within easy reach. She’s a stylish sportboat with a good turn of speed, that you’ll really enjoy owning.

Test Results

750 4.1 3.5 1.6 2.53 2.2 182 158 76
1000 6 5.2 2.1 2.93 2.55 211 183 76
1500 7.9 6.9 3.7 2.16 1.88 156 136 76
2000 8.5 7.3 7.1 1.2 1.04 86 75 80
2500 23.6 20.5 8.2 2.88 2.5 207 180 87
3000 33.5 29.1 10.3 3.25 2.82 234 203 90
3500 38.1 33.1 14.3 2.66 2.31 192 167 94
4000 47.3 41.1 19.7 2.4 2.09 173 150 95
4500 55.4 48.2 27.5 2.01 1.75 145 126 94
4800 58.3 50.7 29.9 1.95 1.7 140 122 97


Length Overall 24' 2''
Beam 8' 6''
Dry Weight 4,400 lbs.
Draft 3' 2''
Deadrise/Transom 24 deg.
Max Headroom open
Bridge Clearance N/A
Fuel Capacity 102 gal.
Water Capacity none


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Acceleration Times & Conditions

Time to Plane 3.9 sec.
0 to 30 9.9 sec.
Ratio 1.49:1
Props 14 1/2 x 19 3-blade stainless steel
Load 2 persons, 5/8 fuel, no water, min. gear
Climate 86 deg., 45% humid.; wind: 10-15 knots; seas: 1 ft

Engine Options

Tested Engine 1 x 425-hp MerCruiser 496 MAG HO
Std. Power 1 x 320-hp MerCruiser MX 6.2L
Opt. Power 1 x 375-hp MerCruiser 496 MAG
1 x 425-hp MerCruiser 496 MAG HO


Deck Warranty Extended 5-year Limited Warranty
Engine Warranty Extended None
Gelcoat Warranty Extended 3-Year Limited Warranty
Hull Warranty Extended 5-year Limited Warranty

Captain's Report

A Runabout Designed to Satisfy the Water Lover
If you're in the market for a family runabout, then you need to take a look at what Baja Marine brings to the market. Their ‘Water Adventure Vehicle Series’ of boats exhibit bold and innovative concepts for the water loving consumer. We had the opportunity to test their mid-sized entry into the market, the 242 Islander, and this is what we found.
At 25 feet, 10 inches, the Islander is a good sized boat to start with. The Baja designers utilized every inch of space to build a boat that makes you feel like you’re in the cockpit of a large express cruiser. Starting forward, you will notice that the signature bow is not like your ordinary bowrider configuration. The walk-through is on the port side, this provides space to have a love seat with a wraparound seat and a chaise lounge. This is the best seat in the house because two people can stretch out and soak up the sun or enjoy the ride while blasting about the lake. There are plenty of cup holders up here and lots of storage too. A small table is available for the bow, as is a filler cushion that converts the bow into a big sun pad.
Moving aft, we transition through the offset wraparound windshield. The molded, console walk-through door doubles as the cabin door when in the open position. By using this offset console configuration, Baja was able to use the space underneath the helm to provide a small cabin. When I say it is a small cabin, I should probably call it a large head. Either way, there is plenty of room for the porta-potti and for changing into your swim gear.
With a beam of 8 feet 6 inches, the 242 Islander has a roomy cockpit. Drop bottom bolster seats are at the helm, while an aft bench makes up the seating in the rear. The helm layout is like all the other Baja models, functional and easy to use. Faria gauges and Kiekhaefer controls are complimented by the custom steering wheel. To port is the companion seat with access to the marine grade Clarion CD stereo and a large glove box.
At the stern, you have two choices of deck configurations. First is your typical performance boat layout, with a beam width aft bench seat and large engine hatch sun pad. Or, you can opt for the dual transom access version that has a narrower bench seat in the center. Which ever way you go, the 242 incorporates a large swim platform with a recessed swim ladder to make re-boarding a breeze.
The V-bottom hull and end-grain balsa construction provide a solid, comfortable ride. Getting up on plane was quick at only 4 seconds. At wide-open throttle, we recorded a respectable top speed of 58 mph. These numbers were achieved with the optional MerCruiser 496 HO Magnum engine that puts out 425 horsepower at the prop. The standard engine is the MerCruiser 496, which delivers 375 horsepower. This boat weighs in at just under 5,000 pounds, so I would go with the HO engine.
Once you have the opportunity to look at the 242 Islander, you’ll appreciate her smooth flowing lines and colorful graphic options. Baja has done a great job with design functionality and aesthetic appeal. The family runabout market is a tough field with so many competitors and too many choices. But Baja has set themselves apart from all the rest by producing something totally different and very satisfying to the eyes and to your speed gene.
By Capt. Ron Svoboda
Test Captain

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