The All New Chaparral 287 SSX
All new for 2017, the Chaparral 287 SSX bowrider has completely re-written the rule book in the bowrider world. Chaparral’s goal with the 287 was to give the consumer a big, deep bowrider with an open layout that features lots of seating. They needed to give the consumer high-end electronics and premium level trim as well. After spending some time on the 287, we can say that Chaparral met that goal, and then some!
Exterior Styling and Size
One of the most important features in a large bowrider is a big, deep hull with high freeboard. This is a key aspect in how well the boat performs in rough water. It’s also important to help the passengers feel safe in harsh conditions. The Chaparral 287 SSX does very well in this department.
The 287 SSX measures 29′ in length and has a 9′ beam. This boat weighs approx. 6,200 lbs. and has a maximum horsepower rating of 430. It is a huge boat and the depth of the hull rivals many 30′-32′ boats on the market today. The 9′ beam is a key feature of this boat as it gives it great stability as well as adding some extra space to the interior.
As for gelcoat & color options, the 287 is available with quite a few different combinations. The standard gelcoat option is the wide band colored hullsides. Optional colors include stealth grey, blue, black, electric blue, & roulette red. The other gelcoat option is the Eclipse which featured colored sides and a colored underside. You will then get to choose a colored hull stripe which is painted on rather than the vinyl decals many companies use.
Tops & Towers
The Chaparral 287 SSX comes standard with a bimini top for shade. This bimini has a metal frame and a canvas top. It covers the majority of the cockpit.
Most of the 287 SSX models you will find are equipped with an electric arch option. This arch comes standard with a bimini top canvas that actually mounts to the top of the arch framework. For storage & low clearance areas, the arch is electric & folds down with the top staying in the horizontal position.
For 2018, Chaparral has released an electric hardtop upgrade option as well. This features the same arch, but the top is a solid fiberglass hardtop instead of the canvas top. This gives the boat a very high-end look and also includes 2 tinted sunroof panels. We expect this to be a popular option on the 287.
One of the key design features on the Chaparral 287 SSX is an oversized extended swim platform that sits at water level. This platform is large enough to cover the entire outdrive. Some boats with smaller platforms leave the outdrive exposed. This can be a hazard when jumping off the back of the boat.
Having the platform nice and low makes boarding a piece of cake. This eliminates having to climb up a ladder to a high platform which can be challenging for some people. The platform also extends quite a bit further back from the hullsides which makes it much easier to board from the side.
For hardware, the 287 SSX has a large stainless steel grab handle in the back center of the platform. It also includes 2 pop-up cleats on the back of the hullsides along with 2 more on the back corners of the platform. These 2 back corner cleats make it nice to cross tie the boat in tight quarters without having ropes rubbing against the boat.
Aft Seating & Features
The Chaparral 287 SSX features a 3/4 wide aft-facing bench seat. The back of the boat has become the activity center for many people when anchored out, so this large bench seat is a welcome addition. The starboard side is cutout for a walk-thru entry with a fresh water shower. This is a great position for the shower so that you can wash off dirty feet right before you enter the boat. The port side also features a stereo control panel.
One great option that really dresses up the platform is the Plasdeck Swim Platform Mat. This mat is a synthetic material and features a plank look available in either silver or teak to match the boat’s interior. It also includes the Chaparral logo in the center.
Chaparral 287 SSX Spaciousness
The Chaparral 287 SSX interior was designed to give boaters an open-cockpit atmosphere. One thing that helped Chaparral give this boat so much room is the 9′ beam (width.) One thing you won’t ever have to worry about on the 287 is legroom. No more knees hitting in the center of the boat with a crowd on board.
Standard width on most trailerable boats is 8’6″ which is the legal limit in most states for towing. Don’t let that scare you away from towing the 287 around though. It’s fairly simple to get a permit to tow this boat in most states, and the cost is minimal. For most people, the additional interior room is well worth that price.
Regarding the interior trim, Chaparral has introduced a new level of luxury in the 287. In comparing to other boats, the 287 features what we consider to be probably the most detailed and luxurious interior trim on the market today. Every piece of upholstery is hand stitched which creates the most perfect fitting and detailed interior around. To top it off, Chaparral uses what many people consider to be the highest quality vinyl on the market today. The seats also have a high-density foam which will hold it’s shape extremely well over time.
Chaparral 287 SSX Layout
The port side of the boat features a wraparound L-shaped layout. The cushions are hinged with deep storage compartments below. The entire cockpit has a wraparound backrest. As a result, there isn’t a bad seat in the house! There are multiple stainless steel grab handles for extra security when the water gets dicey. You will also find built-in stainless steel cupholders and speakers for entertaining. To top things off, the 287 has blue LED lighting throughout.
On the starboard side is another bench seat with backrest. Below the large section of this seat is a cooler with hinged access. The remaining area also features more storage.
Chaparral 287 SSX Driver’s Helm
The helm on the 287 is among the best designed and most attractive in the industry today. This is a full fiberglass helm with vinyl wrap and lots of high end features.
The Chaparral 287 SSX helm is equipped with the most up to date and advanced technology available today. The dual touch screen “Glass Dash” helm offers navigation, engine management, full gauge compliment, and can be customized to your personal preferences.
All the switching functions are backlit, easy to use one-touch push button operation. Every 287SSX is equipped standard with Mercury DTS™ or Volvo EVC™ Fly By Wire Throttle control. The helm also includes stereo controls for the driver, premium steering wheel, & built-in cupholder.
The drivers helm chair is also upgraded on the 287 SSX. The 9′ beam gives Chaparral room to add an overwide helm seat. This has room for an adult, adult & child, or possibly two adults. It features a flip-up bolster & premium seat controls on the front sides rather than the common levers under the seat.
Chaparral 287 SSX Enclosed Head
As we continue throughout the 287 tour, it’s clear that Chaparral’s goal was to make this a premium level boat, and the head is no exception.
Let’s start with the head door. Chaparral just plain “gets it” when it comes to integrating an enclosed head into a boat. We see so many boats that have a nice, big head compartment, but getting into the head is another story. Chaparral has designed the door on the 287 to open from the front, top and side which makes it easy for both children and adults to enter the head.
Once inside, the luxurious trim levels continue. The 287 comes standard with a porta-pottie. This is probably best for people who don’t plan to use the head as it can be removed. From this point the enclosed head can be utilized for more storage area.
For people who do intend to use the head, we recommend the electric head upgrade. This includes a holding tank for waste. In addition to the electric head, we suggest the counter upgrade as well. This will give you a solid-surface counter top, stainless steel sink, and freshwater faucet with removable wand for washdown.
The back of the head compartment includes a storage area with blue LED accent lighting above. The flooring is wood, as is most of the rest of the compartment’s trim and cabinets.
Chaparral 287 SSX Bow
The Chaparral 287 SSX bow seating area is BIG. It features a traditional layout, but the seating area is extremely deep. This gives riders a great sense of security in rough water. In addition, Chaparral provides large stainless steel grab handles to give passengers something to hold onto when conditions get dicey.
The side seats are hinged and feature storage below. The loungers feature flip-up armrests with cupholders and speakers to the side. The front center seat is removable to reveal a non-skid step for boarding with a built-in cooler underneath. There is a filler cushion options as well which converts the bow to a large sunpad area.
Off the font of the bow is the anchor locker. The lid and sides of this locker are topped in non-skid to provide a large boarding platform. The navigation light even folds flush to eliminate any tripping hazards.
One option we highly recommend on the 287 is the anchor windlass. This includes 200′ of rope with chain and has a davit which comes out through the hull near the top of the hull. The windlass can be controlled from the bow and also the driver’s helm. For some extra bling, go with the polished stainless steel anchor option.
The Chaparral 287 SSX is loaded with storage areas throughout the boat, but we are going to cover a couple of our favorites.
The driver’s helm is fully fiberglass, so this allows Chaparral to utilize this area for storage inside. There is a bow walk through door which stores flush against the helm. This opens to block off the bow and eliminate wind in the cockpit area. Behind this door is a storage drawer on top, and a large storage area below with secondary door.
Another great storage area is found in the ski locker. This locker in the floor of the cockpit is a huge compartment with room for anything you can imagine. In addition, there are 2 side storage drawers which pull into the center for extra suspended storage. This is a great example of Chaparral making use of every square inch on their boats.
As we mentioned earlier, the Chaparral 287 SSX is a big, deep boat capable of handling some very rough conditions. However, the 287 is also a great performing boat in spite of it’s massive size.
Engine options on the 287 SSX are available from both Mercruiser and Volvo Penta, and horsepower ranges from 350-430. More power is always better, but it also needs to be justifiable in relation to the price. We have found that nearly all 287 SSX’s currently being sold are equipped with the 380hp option. This engine will push the boat to a top speed around 50mph with plenty of holeshot.
A big part of the impressive performance of the 287 SSX is due to Chaparral’s patented Extended V-Plane Hull. This hull design takes the mounting point for the outdrive on the transom and continues the hull further back on each side. This creates a flat takeoff, helps keep the boat on plane at lower speeds, improves fuel economy, and provides a smoother ride in the chop. It also helps the boat to ride more “on top” of the water, thus improving performance.
As you have probably gathered by now, we are big fans of the Chaparral 287 SSX. Chaparral most definitely did their homework with this boat. It is big and beefy which makes it great in rough water. The 9′ beam and open layout create a huge interior seating area. Trim levels are second to none. And it’s features & electronics have set the standard in the industry. If you are in the market for a big bowrider, the Chaparral 287 SSX should be at the top of your shopping list.