Talk about having a vision. In 1971, Doug Smith and three boating buddies came across an old, abandoned skating rink in their hometown of Bucyrus, Ohio. In less time than it took to say “speed boat,” they knew this was where they were going to build the high-performance racing boats they all dreamed of piloting. Baja, which means ”low” in Spanish, is a fitting description for the sleek designs they had in mind. Within two years, Baja Marine had launched a line of 14- to 20-foot freaky fast, distinctively styled motor boats – each sporting the company’s immediately recognizable classic, low-profile racing stance. Over the next 30 years, Baja Marine evolved from a small midwestern boat builder into a brand with attitude – one that was recognized nationwide.
While some boat manufacturers might cross their fingers and hope their latest boat performs as expected, Baja analyzes, reviews, evaluates, tests – and then retests – every step of the boat design, engineering and build process. This strategy not only decreases negative outcomes, it leads to breakthrough engineering and an advanced product line that appeals to performance-driven boaters. To this day, Baja Marine always puts style and innovation first.
For Quick Boat Getaways and High-Speed Boating Fun
Baja’s Boat Series
In the late 1990s, Baja launched a new boat series and branded it “Outlaw.” The line took off like a shot and developed a loyal following over the years. Powered by Mercury Marine outboard motors, these bad boys boast the most revolutionary technology to date, breakthrough designs and trailblazing engineering. Plus, their hulls are reinforced with carbon fiber making them strong enough to cross the finish line even in the toughest conditions. The latest generation of Outlaws – 36, 27 and 24 models – made its debut in 2020.
Over the decades, Baja Marine has created dozens of models, and built and sold thousands of them. Because of the company’s obsession with innovation, technological advancements and nontraditional designs, newer models are always on the horizon. Some of the Baja boats that have been retired include the world-class offshore 240 and 420 Sport series; Blast and Jet series from the ‘90s; Baja 278 and Hammer X Performance models; Baja 30, 35, 26 and 23 Outlaw models; and Baja 247 and 277 Islander models.
Even though these particular models are no longer being built, they’re still out there turning heads as they fly by.
Baja’s new and used bowriders make every-day racing or relaxing with family and friends a blast. Perks include v-berth cabins, flat decks, mini galleys, squared-off transoms, comfy interiors, sunpads, swim platforms, flip-up bolster seating, powerful sound systems and much more.
In May 2016, Custom Marine Group, located in Washington, North Carolina, acquired Baja Marine and moved production to its 66-acre site, which includes a 225,000-square foot factory and marina.
Co-founder: Doug Smith
Established: 1971, Bucyrus, Ohio
Acquired by Custom Marine Group, 2016
Shipyard/Marina, Washington, N.C.
Type: High-performance speedboats, bowriders, day boats
Size: 14 to 42 feet
Models: DLX Cruisers, Fish & Ski, HLS, Sport, Islander, Performance, Outlaw
Construction: Balsa and fiberglass laminate; Plexus fiberglass fusion adhesives
If you’re looking for a boat with a reputation for precision handling, forward-thinking design and, most of all, speed, check out the Baja boats YATCO has for sale.