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Cruisers Yachts 54 Fly (2017-)

2 x 725-hp Volvo Penta IPS950

Brief Summary

The Cruisers Yachts 54 Fly has low top hamper which gives the boat a sleek look. The bridge includes an open air galley with grill, sink and refrigerator, and a flip-down top turns this area into counter space. The aft galley below flows out through a broad serving window into the cockpit area, where a couple of fixed bar stools welcome visitors to an evening drink.

Key Features

  • Flybridge with plush seating, a built-in grill and wet bar for entertaining, and a hard top for absolute protection
  • Cockpit with wrap-around seating and a large settee that can be used as one large entertainment area or split to become two pieces
  • Electric hi-lo table that can convert into a sun lounge or rise for cocktails
  • Helm includes flip-up bolsters, armrests, digital throttles, joystick controlling, and space for devices
  • Transom storage
  • Upper salon features a complete 360-degree view with open-concept galley, dinette and helm
  • Retractable windows in upper salon
  • Lower salon includes a sofa and retractable TV
  • Master stateroom with walk-around island berth with café table, two built-in seats, nightstands, a vanity, and spacious storage

Test Results

600 7.2 6.3 2.5 2.9 2.5 1347 1171.2 N/A
1000 10.6 9.2 9.1 1.2 1 547 475.3 N/A
1250 12.4 10.8 18 0.7 0.6 322 280.2 N/A
1400 13.3 11.6 26 0.5 0.4 240 208.9 N/A
1600 16.2 14.1 35.5 0.5 0.4 213 185.4 N/A
1800 21.3 18.5 43.5 0.5 0.4 229 199.1 N/A
1900 23.6 20.6 46 0.5 0.4 241 209.1 N/A
2000 27 23.5 48.5 0.6 0.5 260 226.4 N/A
2100 29.7 25.9 52 0.6 0.5 268 232.8 N/A
2200 32.9 28.6 57.5 0.6 0.5 267 232.5 N/A
2300 36.1 31.4 63 0.6 0.5 268 233.3 N/A
2400 38.3 33.3 68 0.6 0.5 264 229.3 N/A
2500 41.1 35.7 75 0.5 0.5 256 222.9 N/A
2547 41.4 36 75.5 0.5 0.5 257 223.3 N/A


Length Overall 53' 4'' / 16.25 m
Beam 15' 6''
4.72 m
Dry Weight 47,500 lbs.
21,546 kg
Tested Weight 51,475 lbs.
23,348 kg
Draft N/A
Deadrise/Transom N/A
Max Headroom 6' 6"
1.98 m
Bridge Clearance N/A
Weight Capacity N/A
Person Capacity N/A
Fuel Capacity 520 gal.
1,968 L
Water Capacity 150 gal.
568 L
Total Weight 51,475 lbs.
23,348 kg

Acceleration Times & Conditions

Time to Plane 8.7 sec.
0 to 30 10.5 sec.
Ratio N/A
Props P5
Load 5 persons, 1/2 fuel, full water, 50 lbs. of gear
Climate 87 deg., 74 humid.; wind: 5-10 mph; seas: calm

Engine Options

Tested Engine 2 x 725-hp Volvo Penta IPS950
Std. Power Not Available
Opt. Power Not Available

Captain's Report

Contents of Report


The Cruisers 54 Fly is 53’4” (16.28 m) LOA, has a 15’6” (4.75 m) beam, and can sleep as many as six.


Cruiser Yachts’ new 54 Fly is a mini-resort on the water. The 54 Fly can accommodate as many as six across three staterooms -- the Master, the VIP, and the Third -- with a highly functional galley all set in a design that is open, comfortable, and full of natural light. By keeping the top-hamper low, the 54 Fly is able to maintain the sleek lines of the 54 Express -- with the added functional advantage of the added helm and entertaining venue.


An overhead view of the 54 Fly’s main deck from stern to cockpit to main deck and the foredeck lounge.

54 Fly vs. 54 Cantius Express

The obvious question to ask is what is the difference between the two models? Are the added entertaining space and improved piloting views on the flying bridge worth a slight reduction in top speed, fuel efficiency at cruise, and a higher CG? (Cost difference notwithstanding.)

The difference in top speed is only about 1 knot, and best cruise is a mixed bag. The 54 Fly is the most fuel efficient at 31.4 knots at 2300 RPM with a range of 233 nmiles compared to the 54 Cantius Express which has a best cruise at 2000 RPM and 25.3 knots and a range of 285 nmiles.

As in all boats of this type, when making turns there is slightly more inward inclination because of the higher CG of the flying bridge version, but this is controlled to some degree by the IPS system which governs how hard a turn can be.

Cruiser Yachts has followed the lead of most European builders and has designed the 54 with low top-hamper which maintains the sleek lines of the express model, so aesthetics should not be an issue.

Overall, consumers must ask themselves if the greatly expanded seating for guests and much-improved piloting visibility (and, of course, price) are worth the slightly diminished performance.


One of the 54 Fly’s key design features is its flybridge, which has a helm, wet bar, and lounge seating.

Major Features

Flybridge views. We will tackle the amenities on the flybridge later -- and they’re in keeping with the rest of the boat’s stellar features list. Unobstructed for nearly 360-degrees, the flybridge will be a popular social space for experiencing the sights and provide an ideal place from which to pilot the boat.

Wealth of Entertainment Space. Space for entertaining guests is clearly a must for a large yacht, and the 54 Fly has a number of them. The flybridge features ample seating. The cockpit offers much of the same with proximity to the galley and lower deck. The upper salon has open views but protected depending on mood, weather, or time of day. The lower salon offers a less formal, night-cap type space with comfortable seating and entertainment options.


The galley on the 54 Fly looking out port-aft toward the cockpit. The rear window retracts creating a bar in the cockpit for cocktails or snacks.

The Galley. One of the more elegant design touches on the 54 Fly is its galley, which not only maximizes its utility while minimizing its footprint but creates a flow and social atmosphere with the placement on the main deck near the cockpit. One leg of the galley’s U-shaped countertop extends beyond the window above it out to the cockpit, creating a breakfast bar and seamless flow from one space to the next.

Retracting Rear Window. This opens up the galley creating a cocktail bar or a snack bar.

Aesthetically Pleasing. The 54 Fly is an excellent example of a yacht on the leading interior design edge. The 54 Fly’s design reflects a more modern sensibility -- increased window space for lighting and views, clean, simple wood accents and color schemes, tasteful use of stainless steel.

Spacious Staterooms. The 54 Fly has three -- two of them, the Master and VIP staterooms -- are notable for their spacious design. Both have 6’6” (2.01 m) of headroom and don’t simply feature a berth that fills up the entire space. Particularly in the Main stateroom, there is space to move around (including a walk-in closet) with seating, a vanity, and a café table.

IPS with Joystick. The 54 Fly comes standard with IPS pod drives and joystick control.

High-Quality Build. The joiner work and overall fit-and-finish is top yacht quality.

Features Inspection


Accessed via steps off the portside of the cockpit, the flybridge sits under a hard-top for protection from the elements. The profile of the hardtop brings very little in the way of obstruction of view -- two support posts to starboard and port. The support arch and hardtop are both black, which enhances eye-appeal by making the structure less visible.


The flybridge helm. Note the digital throttle control and joystick installed at right.

Flybridge Helm. There is a double-wide captain’s seat, room for a companion. The dash panel is a simplified version of the main helm station.


The aft flybridge seating area with woodgrain table that can fold up into a cocktail table, or expand to serve dinner.

Flybridge Seating. Just to port of the helm station is a C-shaped plush seating space with a woodgrain table in the middle that can fold up or out, depending on the occasion and party size.

In the aft section of the flybridge, just to port of the access stairwell, is a slightly larger U-shaped settee, also with a woodgrain table with folding versatility. Both seating spaces have a bolster-like plush backrest extending all the way around, as well as cup holders positioned at the ends of the bench seating for both.


The flybridge wet bar with sink and faucet, grill, refrigerator, and ice-maker. Note the presence of a lid on the struts -- this folds down to create counter space.

Wet Bar and Grill. On the portside of the flybridge, between the two seating spaces, is a wet bar and grill. This dramatically improves the capability of the flybridge. The sink and grill sit under a countertop latch, with refrigerator and icemaker just below behind stainless steel doors.


Transom Storage. The 54 Fly’s stern has a large swim platform with port and starboard access to the cockpit. At the transom, it is a spacious storage container, accessed via a lift-up handle at the bottom of it’s large “lid”. Perfect for water toys, it can stow any number of large items.


A view facing forward on the cockpit. The barstools sit up against the breakfast bar that is in turn part of the galley in the main salon.

The Cockpit. The central element in the cockpit is certainly the large, “U”-shaped settee seating space, which centers around a cocktail table. This table is electric, and can lower or rise depending on activity -- rise up for cocktails or hors d’ oeuvres, lower to add a cushion on top and convert the space to a lounging area.

Forward the seating area is the access points for up to the flybridge (to starboard via staircase) and main salon and helm -- which comes via a stainless steel door. To port of the door is a window over two barstools; the window is electrically operated and opens to the countertop in the galley that can serve as a breakfast bar and further creates a flow between the salon, galley, and cockpit.

Main Deck



A view forward from the galley.

The Galley. The galley is positioned between the cockpit and salon seating. It has a U-shape design to portside with a small console containing the wine cooler to starboard.

The galley features a dishwasher, microwave, icemaker, refrigerator, and a cooktop. There is a full sink with a stainless-steel, fully-articulated faucet that can work in washing at any angle. Cabinet space is there both above and below in a dark wood finish.

Dining and Salon. Moving forward of the galley brings one to the main salon and dining area. To port is a luxurious settee seating space, wrapped around a dining table. The seating faces the starboard side, which features a smaller love seat just up against an HD TV.

This TV is retractable and lowers out of sight at the push of a button.


The main dining area, to port on the main deck in the salon. The table can fold up to provide more room.


The starboard loveseat in the main deck salon. Note the retractable HD TV compartment behind it.

The design of the interior main deck is absolutely one of the 54 Fly’s high points -- besides feeling roomy and never cramped, the use of 360 degree windows with minimal mullions or obstruction has a breathtaking effect -- being able to take in the entirety of one’s surroundings, inside, on a boat, is likely a new experience for many. These windows can, of course, be covered with blinds for desired effect.


The captain's chair is double-wide bench-style seating. It has a flip-up bolster and armrests.


The helm. Note the touchscreen displays on the dash, the roadster-style steering wheel, and the digital throttle and joystick to starboard.

Joystick Controls Come Standard. The 54 Fly comes standard with Volvo Penta’s IPS joystick docking control. Driving a boat of the 54 Fly’s size may be new to many owners and the joystick control is a great way to bridge that gap.

Dashboard features. A panel on the console holds the large-screen readouts and can be outfitted with the owner's choice of equipment. The steering wheel is a roadster-style design with ergonomic grip-leather wrapping the stainless steel wheel itself. Trim tabs sit to the right of the wheel, radio to the left.


Pop-up lounge chairs. The 54 Fly also has a foredeck lounge area, not uncommon on yachts this size. Accessed via the cockpit to port and starboard with stainless steel grab-rails for safety, the foredeck feels like a quiet escape from the remainder of the boat’s social spaces. With a sunpad that features twin pop-up backrests, it is perfect for reading, staring into the horizon, sunning, or some combination of all three. Both lounge chairs have cup holders to their outside edge. An anchor locker sits at the front of the bow.

Lower Deck

Stateroom accommodations. The lower deck is accessed via a companionway (three small, wood-slatted steps) in between the helm and dining area on the main deck. Descending delivers one to an “atrium,” where doors lead to the three staterooms on the 54 Fly. There is no overhead obstruction here from the light coming in from the boat’s windshield, giving it a beautiful, open effect.


The VIP Stateroom in the bow. Note the window sill/nightstand, windows, and reading lights.


A view of the VIP stateroom facing aft toward the door. Note the direct access to the lower deck head to port.

VIP Stateroom. Working counter-clockwise from the third stateroom, the next door leads to the VIP stateroom, which is in the bow. The VIP stateroom has a queen-sized berth nestled in the crook of the bow with two panoramic windows extending along each side of the bed.

The windows have long sills that can act as nightstand or usable surface with a closet and drawers under the bed for storage. The VIP stateroom has direct access to the head, which features a walk-in shower as well.

Wine Cooler and Prep Table in Atrium. On the port side of the atrium foyer, between the VIP and master staterooms, is a small countertop with wine cooler below, ideal for staging a large breakfast-in-bed, pouring wine for the end of the night, or cutting up bread and cheese.


The Master Stateroom, situated amidships with nightstands, reading lights, storage below the queen-sized berth, breakfast nook and windows with blinds.


The Master Stateroom facing forward towards the door. Note the washing machine, HD TV, and breakfast nook.

Master Stateroom. Finally, sitting amidships and aft of the VIP stateroom is the Master Stateroom, a full beam space with walk-in closet, a private head with shower, breakfast nook with seats and café table, and nightstands. The staterooms all have 6’6” (2.01 m) of headroom, and the master, in particular, feels very roomy with space to move around. The windows are present on each side of the space with a large chest of drawers under a countertop on the port side.

The design is simple, but chic, and comes with an entertainment system that includes a large-screen HD TV and a stereo system as well.


A view of the vanity in the master head. Note the portlight just under the mirror and stainless steel faucet.


A view of the group head on the lower deck, which the VIP Stateroom has direct access to. Walk-in shower access via a separate door.

Master Head. The head off the master stateroom is of a piece with its counterpart, offering sleek, artful lighting, designer fixtures, wood detail, and a wealth of space. The head has a full-standing shower along with its vanity and expansive mirrors, extending the luxury of the stateroom into its head.


The Pullman-style bunk bed berth in the third stateroom. Note the storage above and below; HD TV can be optionally installed.

To starboard is the “third” stateroom, which is the least luxurious of the three; a Pullman style berth, there isn’t much space or extravagance but the beds are comfortable, there is storage, and it even features a TV.



A view of the 54 Fly’s engine room.

The 54 Fly operates on your choice of a 725-hp Volvo Penta IPS 950 engine or 600-hp Volvo Penta IPS 800. “IPS” stands for “Inboard Performance System” and features a twin front-facing counter-rotating steerable pods that produce 40% longer cruising range, 20% increase in top speed, 30% reduction in fuel consumption, 30% reduction in CO2 emissions, and 50% lower perceived noise creation.


The 54 Fly running.


The Cruisers Yachts 54 Fly had an LOA of 53’4” (15.26m) and a beam of 15’6” (4.72m). With an empty weight of 47,500 lbs. (21,546 kg), 58% fuel and 5 people onboard, we had an estimated test weight of 51,475 lbs. (23,349 kg).

With a pair of Volvo Penta 725-hp IPS950 pod drives powering our test boat we reached a top speed of 36 knots at 2547 rpm. Best economic cruise came in at 2300 rpm and 31.4 knots. It’s at that speed that the 63 gph fuel burn translated into .5 nmpg and a range of 233.3 nm.

Cruisers Yachts 54 Fly dataCruisers Yachts 54 Fly data

Of course, it’s worth noting that the miles per gallon remained the same from 2000 prm and 23.5 knots on up to full speed so this is more of a boat that can be operated with more regard to comfort in prevailing conditions rather than fuel economy.


As for her handling… she responds well to the helm and exhibits the same wide turning radius of all IPS powered boats due to the reduced turning arc of the pods at speed. Visibility is nearly 360 degrees with wide windows all around providing that benefit, particularly the 5’5” (1.65m) x 4’8” (1.42m) forward windshields. We did find that the higher center of gravity of the flybridge added a bit of lean into the turns, which we measured at roughly. But this only manifested itself during the heavy-handed maneuvers of a performance test, maneuvers which no one would do during normal operations.


In close confines of a narrow marina, the 54 Fly, like her sister ship, really shines. She’s quite responsive to the helm, and when the area becomes even more constricted, maneuvering on the joystick alone works quite well.

As for bringing her into the slip, just small pulses on the stick will set her in motion and then it’s a simple matter of guiding that momentum. In this manner, she can be steered in with exacting precision. I found that from the flybridge helm there was good visibility to the rear of the swim platform by looking down the ladder to the cockpit deck, and an equally good view of the whole starboard side, and it is this combination that compelled me to dock from this elevated station even though two others were readily available… the lower helm and the cockpit station. That said, with all stations favoring the starboard side, I’d like to see the aft station mounted to port so that both sides can be handled with equal ease.

Options to Consider

  • Wine Captain, Lower Salon (120 V/220 V) 
  • Main Deck TV, 28” (71.1 cm) 
  • Amtico Flooring, Lower Salon 
  • Power Blinds 
  • Underwater Lighting
  • Swim Platform with Hydraulic Lift 
  • Cockpit Joystick Docking Station 
  • Desalinator Watermaker 



The 54 Fly is a roomier yacht than the 54 Cantius and adds more amenities.

The Cruisers Yachts 54 Fly is a smaller version of the 60 Fly introduced just a few months before. The 54 Fly has most of the features of her larger sister but obviously, all of the living spaces are a bit smaller.

While her beam is just 6" less than the 60 Fly, her displacement is 11,421 lbs., or about 19% less. 

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