World Cat 280 DC-X Boat Test

April 10, 2019, by , under Powerboat Reviews

The rise of the dual console has paralleled the rise of luxury center-consoles and outboard-powered bowriders, in part because they are a combination of both. They have the functionality to entertain the family, the credibility to satisfy hardcore anglers, and the ability to roam far outside the inlet. In many ways, in the battle between fishing and family entertainment, it’s the perfect compromise. Perhaps no boat is better suited to meet that mission than a power catamaran like the World Cat 280 DC-X. The dual hull provides superior seakeeping and stability when compared to many monohulls of the same length and displacement, and the twin hulls allow World Cat to maximize deck space.

Note how wide and deep the bow seating is, made possible by the twin hulls allowing the beam to be carried all the way forward while still allowing each hull to maintain a sharp wave-slicing forefoot. No one will knock knees sitting forward in this boat. The same applies to the main cockpit, with double-wide seats at the helm and portside consoles. The portside backrest is adjustable to create a rear-facing recliner. The port console also hides a spacious head. The transom sports an aft jump seat that folds out of the way for fishing. On that note, the livewell, coaming bolsters, fore and aft rod holders, insole fish boxes, and hardtop rod holders and outrigger mounts will satisfy any angling itch.

Performance? We had plenty of tightly stacked 3-footers to contend with on test day, and the 280 DC-X handled them superbly whether we ran in head, following or quartering seas. In calmer waters, we hit a top speed of 46.5 mph at 5,500 rpm. Throttle back to 25 mph at 3,500 rpm and this boat has the range to run offshore all day.

Cats are not usually known for their dockside curb appeal, but the pickle-fork-bow look, frameless windshield design, sleek hardtop, rising sheer line and aft tumblehome give the 280 DC-X serious style points.

High Points

  • Double-wide helm seat leaves room for a co-captain.
  • Huge bow cockpit is deep and secure.
  • Terrific water access from the aft platform thanks to the On-Ramp swim ladder between the two engines.

Low Points

  • Optional SureShade is great for keeping guests cool but, even when retracted, makes it harder to access the hardtop rod holders.
  • A boat made to handle rough seas would do well to add fiddles to the head and entertainment-center counters.


Toughest Competitor
Because it’s hard to find a comparable cat, take a look at a monohull like the Boston Whaler 270 Vantage ($222,309 with a Mercury 300 and joystick).

Price: $226,421 (as tested)

Available Power: Outboard

How We Tested
Engine: Twin 200 hp Yamaha F200 four-stroke outboards
Drive/Props: Outboard/Reliance 14 1/4″ x 18″ 3-blade stainless steel
Gear Ratio: 1.86:1
Fuel Load: 145 gal.
Water on Board: 0 gal.
Crew Weight: 500 lb.

World Cat – Tarboro, North Carolina; 866-485-8899; worldcat.com

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