Access More Boat Tests

Captain's reports and/or test numbers for this model are archived.

To get full access to this content, please:

login   or   Register

Sea Ray SDX 250 OB (2019-)

1 x 300-hp Mercury Verado

Brief Summary

The Sea Ray SDX 250 OB is a deckboat with a wide topside flare forward that has superior social space for up to 14 people. This Mercury outboard-powered sibling to the sterndrive version is geared toward more room and storage for families and friends.

Key Features

  • 14 person or 2,300 lbs. (1,043 kg) capacity
  • Extensive flexible seating
  • Oversized enclosed head compartment
  • Premium Fusion® audio system
  • Large storage capacity

Test Results

600 3.2 2.7 0.7 4.3 3.8 246 214.2 56
1000 4.7 4 1.2 3.8 3.3 214 186.4 63
1500 6.5 5.7 2 3.3 2.9 189 163.9 60
2000 8.2 7.1 3.2 2.6 2.2 147 127.5 65
2500 9.1 7.9 4.8 1.9 1.6 107 93 74
3000 12 10.4 6.4 1.9 1.6 106 91.8 75
3500 16.3 14.1 8.7 1.9 1.6 106 92.2 76
4000 26.6 23.1 10 2.7 2.3 151 131.5 83
4500 32.8 28.5 11.9 2.8 2.4 156 135.7 86
5000 38.2 33.2 14.7 2.6 2.3 148 128.3 87
5500 42.3 36.7 18.5 2.3 2 130 112.7 87
6000 46.9 40.7 22.7 2.1 1.8 117 101.7 85


Length Overall 27' 6'' / 8.38 m
Beam 8' 6''
2.59 m
Dry Weight 5,557 lbs.
2,521 kg
Tested Weight 6,480 lbs.
2,939 kg
Draft 36''
0.91 m
Deadrise/Transom 21-deg.
Max Headroom open
Bridge Clearance N/A
Weight Capacity 2,300 lbs.
1,043 kg
Person Capacity 14
Fuel Capacity 63 gal.
238 L
Water Capacity 10 gal.
38 L
Total Weight 6,480 lbs.
2,939 kg

Acceleration Times & Conditions

Time to Plane 4.3 sec.
0 to 30 9.2 sec.
Ratio N/A
Props 17p x 4 Revolution
Load 3 persons, 5/6 fuel, no water, 50 lbs. of gear
Climate 75 deg., 52 humid; wind: 0-5 mph; seas: light chop

Engine Options

Tested Engine 1 x 300-hp Mercury Verado
Std. Power Not Available
Opt. Power 1 x 200-hp Mercury 4-stroke
1 x 250-hp Mercury Verado in Black
1 x 250-hp Mercury Verado in White
1 x 300-hp Mercury Verado in Black
1 x 300-hp Mercury Verado in White

Captain's Report

By Capt. Peter d'Anjou

Sea Ray SDX 250

Sea Ray offers the SDX 250 in outboard (OB) or sterndrive models. The standard OB model has a Mercury 200-hp Verado; our test boat had the 300-hp option.

Wake tower

The Sea Ray SDX 250 OB is available with an optional wake tower. Note the windshield walkthrough on the port side.


The Sea Ray SDX 250 OB has space bigger than a normal bowrider. A deckboat is exactly what the name implies, a boat with a lot of deck space, and it derives the name and the space from a flared hull design in the topsides forward to create—guess what? — more deck space. And with more deck space comes more room for family and friends, seating, amenities and stowage.

Distinctive Features

  • Console with port side walk-through to bow

Major Features

  • Fore-and-aft facing bow seating
  • Double helm bench seat with reversible backrest
  • Sliding cockpit seating w/multiple convertible backrests
  • Mercury Verado outboard with power tilt and trim
  • Mercury VesselView®
  • Deep-v hull with 21-degree deadrise

Over wake

Operators of the SDX 250 OB may find themselves turning for the sheer pleasure of it.



The Sea Ray SDX 250 OB has more seating space than one might expect in a 25’ boat, due in part to the unusual walkway designed to create flow through the boat. Reversible seatbacks maximize seating flexibility.

The Sea Ray SDX 250 OB design has married a flared topside to a v- hull - something we are seeing more and more of in bowriders and runabouts seeking more space on deck.  And while Sea Ray has taken this concept to deckboat levels of space, what is unusual to see in a 25’ deckboat is such well-thought out flow through the social zones. The SDX 250 OB has all the social zones we’ve come to expect, but the intentional traffic flow pattern from the aft swim platform, through the cockpit, past the windshield walk-through to the spacious bow seating, is used not only to connect the zones, but to maximize each zone’s seating.

The Sea Ray SDX 250 OB is the smallest of the SDX deckboat series. Both the larger 27’ and 29’ models are available with Merc sterndrives or outboards, as is the 250. The outboard version of the 250 SDX provides more storage space aboard in the form of in-deck storage.

Deep V hull

Four parallel lifting strakes can be seen here running the full length of the deep-v hull.

She has a 21-degree deadrise at the transom, which is on the high end for inshore boats of this type. The bow has a soft chine dropping to a fairly deep-v that cuts efficiently through the water at non-planing speeds.


Sea Ray claims its manufacturing facility is the most advanced boat-manufacturing plant in the world. That’s a hard claim to verify but Sea Ray is now part of Brunswick Boat Group and automation on the shop floor is evident.

One verifiable fact about Sea Ray is worth particular note. The average employee tenure in its plant is 18 years. 

Foam mock up

Engineers and staff examine the foam mock-up of a bow seating area.

In addition to state-of-the-art computer design and development, a mock-up of each new Sea Ray model is constructed out of foam and other materials to create the look and feel of the boats that will be built from the design.

Then a plug is carved out of foam using one of two company-owned milling machines. The plug will be used to build a precision mold and the mold will be used to create a prototype.

Each new prototype model is put through a minimum six week, on-water testing. Once everything checks out and there’s a final design, it’s time for fabrication, lamination and assembly.

Sea ray plant

Precision is the name of the game at the Sea Ray plant.

The company fabricates more than 5,000 parts a day, all cut with precision, computer-guided tools. Nearly everything that goes into a Sea Ray is fabricated or created in-house. That’s pretty amazing considering the company sells 35 models from 19’ to 65’.

Robotics arm

Robotic arms used to apply gel coat ensure the same amount of material is evenly applied to all surfaces.

The combination of technology, automation and experienced craftsmanship is what gives the SDX 250 OB and all Sea Rays superior fit and finish, as well as sturdy construction, and outstanding style.


Full throttle turning

The deep-v hull sheds water to the side during a turn at WOT of 46.9 mph, ensuring a dry, stable, exhilarating ride for everyone onboard.

The Numbers

The Sea Ray SDX 250 OB has a LOA of 27’6” (8.38 m), a beam of 8”6” (2.59 m), and a draft of 36” (91.44 cm). With an empty weight of 5,557 lbs. (2,521 kg), 84-percent (53 gallons/203 L) of fuel and three people onboard, the Sea Ray SDX 250 OB had an estimated test weight of 6,480 lbs. (2,939 kg). 

With a single 300-hp Mercury Verado turning a 17P Rev 4 propeller and wound up to 6000 rpm, the SDX 250 OB reached a top speed of 46.9 mph (75.4 kph). Best cruise came in at 4500 rpm and 32.8 mph (52.8 kph). It was at that speed that the 11.9 gph (45.1 lph) translated into 2.8 mpg (1.17 kpl), and a range of 156 miles (251 km), all while still holding back a 10% reserve of the boats 63-gallon (238 L) total fuel capacity. 


The SDX 250 OB reached planing speed in 4.3 seconds with minimal bowrise, accelerated to 20 mph (32 kph) in 5.7 seconds and 30 mph (48 kph) in 9.2.

Time-to-Plane:   4.3 seconds

Zero to 20 mph: 5.7 seconds

Zero to 30 mph: 9.2 seconds


17 Degree roll

Turns have a solid feel with a 17-degree roll and barely a hint of chine walk.

Once up on plane, add just a couple of shots of trim to get her to run slightly bow up. This is a nice handling boat that’s very responsive to the helm and shows no pounding or hull slap as we transition across the only waves we could find on our test day. 

She will continually bleed off speed to the point where the stern almost falls off the turn so keep adding power in the hardest turns. Normal turns show none of this and none of our aggressive maneuvers caused the prop to ventilate even when trimmed to running position.

Boat Inspection

Power Options

The standard Sea Ray SDX 250 OB package comes with a Mercury 200-hp four-stroke outboard engine. Power options include a Mercury 250-hp Verado® in black or white. The maximum power option is a Mercury 300-hp Verado®, also in black or white.

300 Mecury verado engine

We tested the Sea Ray SDX 250 OB at the maximum recommended horsepower, the optional 300-hp Mercury Verado engine.

Swim Platform

We board over the SeaDek non-skid covered swim platform. Sea Ray focused on maintaining space while still providing a mounting point for the outboard and enough buoyancy to prevent the stern wave from coming over when decelerating.

Underside hatch

Gel coating the underside of a hatch that will remain closed most of the time is a one of those extra touches of quality we’ve come to expect from Sea Ray.

There’s even space for a built-in insulated cooler with support struts holding the hatch open. A concealed reboarding ladder is mounted under the starboard side of the swim platform. 

Reboarding ladder

The reboarding ladder on the swim platform telescopes out from the starboard side of the platform.

Large board storage

The space below the port swim lounger is for large board storage but what is most interesting in this photo is the track alongside that allows the sun pad to shift 17” back when underway space in the cockpit is needed - flexible and versatile seating for a large group indeed.

The port lounger includes board storage below that goes all the way to the front of the port cockpit seating, 7 ½’ (2.29 m) ahead. 

Wakeboard storage

Wakeboards and skis have plenty of storage space. The storage compartment extends all the way to the front of the cockpit seating.

Aft lounge USB connect

The aft lounge also has USB connectivity and an accessory plug.


Access the cockpit via the 15” (38.10 cm) wide walkway on the starboard side. Right in this walkway boarding zone area is a hinged cover that hides the battery switch. The location is handy when ever boarding or leaving requires powering up or down.

walk way

The walkway between the swim platform and cockpit has a hinged gate.

Battery switch

The skipper can switch the batteries on or off as he or she boards or disembarks.

Seating is across the back and along the port side. Additional seating along the starboard side makes the cockpit into a conversation pit. 

Pedestal table

The cockpit with a side-mount pedestal table in place can host a large group, especially when the seatbacks from the helm seats are flipped.

When the party transitions into the cockpit, we simply slide the swim sun pad seat aft, 17” (43.18 cm), and flip the backrest to provide more cockpit room. This is a great space utilization since neither the swim platform nor aft lounger should be used while the boat is underway.

seat back

The seatback is padded and upholstered on both sides so it can be flipped and used for either the swim lounger sunpad or the cockpit seating. It’s the seatbase that slides 17” fore and aft that is truly unique.


Upholstery details add to the quality feel of the SDX.

Helm displays

Side-mounting the pedestal table creates more usable space on the cockpit sole.

Beverage holders are tucked into the face of the seat bases. A pedestal table is secured to a side mount, adding greatly to the area’s functionality.

Under the port seat there’s dedicated space for the table pedestal and a fire extinguisher.

Removable cooler

The first of two 25-qt (23.66 l) removable coolers is located below the cockpit seat to starboard.

Optional bimini

An optional bimini adds overhead protection. Here we can see the helm and companion seatbacks flipped to face aft for expanded cockpit seating.

The companion and helm seats also have seatbacks that flip, which easily allows these seats to be utilized in the cockpit grouping or to face forward when underway. 

Outboard power means a lot more storage on this boat… and we mean a lot. The boat has a massive in-deck compartment with an added storage shelf. It’s under a hatch with gas support struts and it’s finished on both sides.

In deck storage

In-deck storage space recaptured from the inboard model provides more storage in the outboard model.

Forward cockpit storage

Forward in the cockpit is another in-deck compartment that includes dedicated storage for the cockpit table and the bow fillers for a sun pad conversion.


Helm storage

The helm console with head compartment door alongside has a soft touch brow and a simple uncluttered appearance.

Helm displays

Optional 9 or 12” Simrad displays can be configured to the helmsman’s personal choice.

Kill switches

The kill switch safety cable dangles from the shift/throttle control where it’s least likely to get accidentally tangled during operation.

When it’s time to get underway, the helm seatback reverses from cockpit to helm configuration, and the flip-up bolster can be positioned to suit. The helm has a soft touch dash 7” (17.78 cm) below the windshield frame.

The standard panel has analog gauges. Our test boat was upgraded with the Simrad multi-function display that features a preloaded chartplotter, sonar with transducer and media connectivity.

Steering wheel

The soft-touch horizontal surfaces in the helm add a softening texture to an area that’s usually all about technology. The wheel is mounted to a tilt base. Steering is power-assisted.

Choose from the optional 9” (22.86 cm) or 12” (30.48 cm) Simrad touchscreen displays, Both will come with Mercury’s VesselView® link that displays full engine readouts and diagnostics, pretty much all the information you need to make life easier on the water.

Display options

Display options are clearly labeled with high-contrast lettering to make them visible in heavy glare.

Smart tow Includes towing modes for preprogrammed tow speeds and ramp settings. 

Drag and drop features

The drag and drop feature allows users to create their own combination screens.

Faux marble panels on either side of the MFD add some style to the helm. 

Another soft-touch panel with beverage holders on either side creates a narrow shelf. There’s a convenient cubby cut into the center of the panel.

Apollo series fusion stereo

The award-winning Apollo series Fusion stereo, the horn button and three electrical switches are mounted to the left of the wheel. USB connections and the ignition are on the other side.

Helm companion

The helm companion seat has a grab rail connected to the windshield frame.



Adding a large head to a 25’ deck boat won’t make it an overnighter, but it sure adds a level of comfort that isn’t seen in other boats in this class.

To the left of the helm is the head door with an integrated glove storage compartment. We can extend the day on the water by utilizing this expanded head that runs from just short of the port side, all the way under the helm console to the starboard bulkhead, and forward under the bow seating. 


The cushioned head compartment has a hinged cover that drops over the toilet as a filler cushion. We don’t consider this a cabin but it is a spot one could get out of the sun for a short time.

Toilet compartment

Here’s the head compartment devoid of cushions. Note the additional storage under the step and under the molded platforms. A pump out toilet system is optional.



The walkthrough to the bow has a door that can act as an airdam when the windshield is closed.

Latching hatch

The latching hatch and opening windshield allow the bow to be isolated or opened according to the needs of those onboard.

The black net under the forward seat contains another 25-quart cooler.

The bow is accessed from a 15” (38.10 cm) walkthrough to port. The opening windshield latches into position.

This offset access allows for expanding the forward seating with a 3-across aft seat and a full width forward seat that is between 11” (17.94 cm) and 18” (45.72 cm) ahead. Beverage holders, speakers and upscale fit and finish are all present, as is connectivity and charging. A 5” bolster (12.70 cm) wraps fully around. 


The table is easily mounted in the bow.

Grab rail

The stainless grab rail on the caprail conforms to ABYC standards for grab rails around seats.

Filler cushions can convert the entire area into a sun pad. The second removable cooler 25-qt (23.66 L) is under the forward center seat, with storage under the side cushions.

Bow storage

More storage below the forward bow seats flank the cooler.

For safety, the bow area’s depth is 31” (78.74 cm) to the caprail and 34” (86.36 cm) to the top of the grab rail. 


Another hatch on the foredeck has a turn and lock latch. The hatch conceals a forward swim ladder above the anchor locker.

Bow ladder

No need to swim all the way to the stern when swimmers jump or dive from the bow area.

Cover snaps

Notice the snaps for the bow and cockpit covers. The cockpit cover actually covers the windshield too.

Equipment Discussion

An optional trailer is available.

Color options

Ten hullside color options are available.  White is standard, all others, including metallics, involve a small fee.



The water sports tower has a tow pylon and integrated Bimini.

Optional Equipment to Consider

  • Bimini top, boot with stainless steel ball, socket hardware 
  • Cockpit cover with tonneau cover 
  • Mooring cover 
  • Water sports tower - manual with integrated Bimini 
  • Air compressor for water toys 
  • Blue or white LED lighting package 
  • Bow and transom sprayer 
  • Docking lights 
  • Quick-connect fender clip system
  • Flagpole with base and US flag
  • Interior ventilation window
  • On-board battery charger 120v/60 To 12v 
  • Premium PTM ski mirror 
  • Pump-out head
  • Swivel wakeboard racks
  • Tandem axle trailer (painted) with disc brakes )


All 2019 gas-powered Sea Ray SDX models (both sterndrive and outboard) feature Sea Ray’s 5-year, bow-to-stern factory warranty on the boat and its components from defects in materials and workmanship. The engine is covered for the same 5-year period. In addition to the 5-year bow-to-stern coverage, all sport boats also have a limited lifetime structural hull/deck warranty to original owner.


Sea Ray boats are NMMA certified.



Kudos to Sea Ray designers for inventive seating, storage, and flow solutions that work.

The SDX 250 OB is a day boat with a larger head compartment than is normally found on this size boat. She has substantial power and performance, especially with the 300-hp option. We believe the Sea Ray SDX 250 OB will satisfy buyers who enjoy driving a comfortable boat and those who want to spend their days on the water socializing, enjoying towed water sports, or simply swimming off the boat. The boat is big enough for 14 people, making it the right size for family fun and entertaining.