According to Baja Marine CEO Johnny Walker, who was quite the busy man during the first few days of the Miami International Boat Show, the first Baja 23 Islander OB model on display at the boat show has already sold.
The first 23 Islander OB from Baja Marine was sold during the 2015 Miami International Boat Show.
Powered by a single 300-hp Suzuki four-stroke outboard engine—the first non-stern-drive 23 Islander from the Washington, N.C., company—the 23-footer features a spacious U-shape lounge (where the engine compartment normally would be) with a clever easy-to-remove table that extends out from the back of the bench and swivels 90 degrees. Walker said an optional aft seat filler cushion package is available to convert the U-shape lounge into a large sun pad.
Below the port and starboard lounge cushions are built-in insulated coolers, and on the end of each bench are removable backrests that sit securely in receptacles that resemble fishing rod holders but double as cupholders. Speaking of cupholders—there are more than a dozen in the 23-footer, which can set eight people comfortably.
The boat’s color-matched blue and white bolsters rotate 180 degrees from forward to rear facing and its open bow features a U-shape lounge with matching upholstery. In the walk-through in front of the co-pilot’s seat was a sizable head compartment, and ahead of the starboard-side driver’s station were the accessory switches and a pair of digital gauges from Suzuki mounted on blue, marble-looking dash panels.
Check out the slideshow above for additional images of the Baja 23 Islander OB.
“I was tired of the carbon-fiber and the woodgrain look—we’ve been doing that stuff for years,” Walker said. “So, while trying to think of something different we could do, I saw a piece of marble and wondered if we could get that look on our panels. Our guys came up with a way and I think it turned out great.”
Walker said there wasn’t much opportunity to dial in the boat before it left for the show, but he did see a top speed of 52 mph in choppy conditions with wind gusts up to 35 mph during a test run on North Carolina’s Pamlico River.
Walker said he has received positive response to the boat so far at the show and is planning to start trying outboard power on other boats, including the 23 Outlaw and 26 Outlaw. The 23 Islander OB featured a boat-show friendly price of $71,000 (retail is $84,000 with the 300-hp Suzuki engine).