Chris-Craft Carina 20: Don’t Call it a Bowrider

This classic builder designed the Carina 20 to serve as a launch for larger vessels, but it has plenty of appeal all its own.

28th February 2013.
By Lenny Rudow

Chris-Craft is one of the truly legendary names in the marine industry, yet even though they’ve been around for well over a century, they continue breaking new ground with red-hot retro runabouts like the Corsair 22, classy center consoles like the Catalina 26, and dreamy day-boats like the Catalina 29 Sun Tender. Their latest attempt to mix classic design with modern performance and dedicated utility, however, cruises down a different path—although the Carina 20 may look like a bowrider at first glimpse, this boat is intended to be a tender for owners of much larger yachts.

Chris-Craft carina 20

Well, maybe you could call the Chris-Craft Carina 20 a bowrider after all – but that wouldn’t be the most accurate description of this boat.

Although Chris-Craft already had a 20’ launch with similar dimensions, the Carina gets a huge styling upgrade. With a plumb bow, glistening teak in the deck and swim platform, and gobs of custom-designed polished stainless-steel, it’s pure eye-candy for the nautically inclined. A frame-less windshield seems to naturally grow out of the fiberglass, and diamond-patterned upholstery adorns the cockpit. The boat’s looks are stunning enough to put it in the running with other work-of-art runabouts like Hacker-Crafts, or the Cherubini Classics.

The Carina’s overall LOA comes in at 21’2” (since the boat is designed to give mega-yacht owners the option of parking in their mother-ship’s garage, the swim platform is included in the measurement), and beam is 7’11”. And since it weighs in at a beefy 2,913 pounds and carries an 18-degree transom deadrise, running through a chop to get from the yacht to shore and back should be no problem despite the boat’s relatively small size.

Chris Craft Carina 20 specificationsCould you, would you, should you get a Carina to use simply as a day boat? It will serve as a fully-functional bowrider, although the full-beam enginebox doesn’t leave a heck of a lot of space in the cockpit, and the bow cockpit is similarly small. On top of that, you can bet that this model is going to cost a pretty penny. Chris-Craft hasn’t set pricing for it just yet, but some of their other runabouts can cost over $4,000 per foot of LOA. If, on the other hand, your plans are to use the Carina as a tender for your mega-yacht, you probably couldn’t care less about the MSRP. Besides, don’t they say that a true work of art is priceless?

For more information, visit Chris-Craft.


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About the author:

Lenny Rudow

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Lenny Rudow is Senior Editor for Dominion Marine Media, including boats.com and YachtWorld.com. With over two decades of experience in marine journalism, he has contributed to publications including Boating Magazine, Marlin Magazine, Boating World, Saltwater Sportsman, Texas Fish & Game, and many others. Lenny is a graduate of the Westlawn School of Yacht Design, and he has won numerous BWI and OWAA writing awards.
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