Power boat, but which one? We explain the eight “basic” types


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A: “I got a motor boat!”

B: “Wow, cool. What kind?”

A: “Um, a lob..rider…. I mean, aft it’s open…maybe it’s a flybridge though…it doesn’t have outboard…whatever, you get it?”

B: “…”

In the vast sea of ever-changing categories, let’s try to understand what the “basic” types of powerboats are.

Power boat, here are the 8 “basic” types

Inflatable boat

The inflatable boat from a small inflatable craft to a real boat, even a cabin boat. The evolution of the inflatable boat has been meteoric in recent years, thanks to the adoption of a rigid fiberglass hull surrounded by an inflatable tube. Today in this type you find from the three-meter inflatable boat that serves as the main boat’s tender and go all the way up to a super-technologically designed 18-meter with inboard, a worthy rival to traditional boats. Everything in between fits every need.

Hair Tempest 50


These are the speedboats, the others are motor boats! Open, open boats in name and in deed, The cockpit is a huge sunbathing tank, the forward deck long and tapered, Fast even moored. If they are not fast they look it, even when standing still. And despite trying to twist the category in a thousand ways, there are still those who produce true opens, whether they are fast day boats with no comforts that the sea (or nearly so) or luxurious yachts with fabulous interiors.

INVICTUS 250CX motor boats 4
Invictus 250 CX


Literally “bow riders.” Different boats, but united by the ability to experience the forward part of the cockpit console as an extension of the cockpit. Bowriders have a true forward cockpit and originated as a typical American open boat, they are becoming increasingly popular in the Mediterranean as well. Born for water skiing or quick days at sea. By their nature they are generally small in size, but there is no shortage of cabin variants (increasingly numerous) or true long-range yachts.


Many yards insist on calling them open, but if you put a hard cover (usually always openable for much of the canopy) in addition to the windshield, you have created something else. The size of this category is the largest in the review. They share the spirit of the open: sporty and sleek lines, but with the added convenience of having an “outside” indoor part. In larger models some add an upper deck, but don’t call it a fly bridge, at the limit sun deck.

Fjord 44 Coupe
Fjord 44 Coupe


The convenience of having a second “cockpit” plus a second open-air, elevated command station has enticed many, so some manufacturers have not hesitated to introduce models in this class with ridiculously small dimensions (and which have found buyers): sneering at and consecrating the category that represents the ultimate motoryacht, or adult powerboat. Again, the available range is from a few meters to megayachts.

Astondoa 66 Flybridge
Astondoa 66 Flybridge


They derive from typical designs of fishing boats the early and and cruising boats of the early 1900s. They have many features in common, incredible space and volume below deck and displacement hulls even though today’s trend is to make them planing. Massive in appearance, they ensure safety even in rough seas. They often have a fly bridge to increase the livable area on deck even more. Ideal for the family and for those who want to make long sailings without hurrying and without consuming too much fuel.

boats beneteau-swift-trawler-44
Boats Beneteau Swift Trawler 44


Traditionally, these are understood to be boats with a central wheelhouse, sometimes with a superstructure that is also very elongated, for example with a tuna tower and a hull with a very pronounced leapfrog, with high broadside at the bow (always with considerable momentum) and low broadside at the stern. Often, however, small center consoles or walkarounds, “all-cockpit” boats not necessarily intended for big game, but for more coastal and… daytime. Interiors, if any, are always appropriate for the size.

used fisherman


Maine-born lobster boats have become, especially in the early 21st century the great love of Mediterranean boaters and beyond. Today, they still have a convinced group of admirers, who appreciate the undoubted elegance of this type, which was created to confidently face the harsh ache of the North Atlantic. Among its main features are the curved powers that support the covering of part of the cockpit and the hull line with high, slender broadside at the bow and low, inverted broadside at the stern.

boats solaris-power-55

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