Twenty two years ago Hustler was born because of our need for a faster, safer, offshore boat with more accommodations than anything currently available. In the early 80’s performance boats were achieving speeds of 50 and 60 mph but encountered tremendous problems chine walking and porpoising. The major manufacturers recognized that consumers wanted to go faster but these boats were simply unsafe at these speeds. The result was the 32 Hustler design. This model has won dozens of accolades including numerous national and world championships. In 1982, Hustler had refined the 32 design and it was able to run 74 MPH with twin 330 HP engines and surface drives. In 1984 the 32 Hustler LE was taken to the prestigious Powerboat Magazine performance trials where it shocked the High Performance world with an incredible speed of 85 MPH . This performance was the first national attention Hustler had achieved. For its time frame in history, the 85-MPH was shocking, but the way the boat handled at this speed was even more incredible. That year, 1984, Hustler won the coveted award from Powerboat Magazine for Product Excellence. The experts loved the speed and handling of the boat, but were even more impressed with its construction. In 1985, the 32 Hustler would make the high performance offshore world realize that Hustler was the fastest, toughest, best riding V-bottom in the world. With a pair of 630 HP engines, the 32 ran 106 MPH like it was on rails. In 1986, the now celebrated 32 Hustler achieved another milestone some experts feel was even more monumental then the 106 MPH clocking with 650hp. How fast would the boat go with stock 330’s? A 32’ race boat equipped with a pair of 330 HP Pleasurecraft engines hooked to Arneson surface drives went undefeated in the Sportsman A, APBA tour and won the World Championships in Key West, Fl. Their victory was so convincing, their opponents could not believe a boat could run so fast, the entire class protested, but to no avail, and the Hustler 32 was now the undisputed and undefeated World Champion. In 1989, the 32 Hustler was awarded Powerboat Magazine’s Offshore Performance Boat of the Year, for the second time.
In the midst of all this the seed for Hustler’s next design had been formulated. Design a bigger boat that would go fast, ride well, but have headroom too! Hence, the 40 Hustler was born. We recognized that some customers wanted boats that were capable of cruising to further destinations creating a need for comfort and livable quarters. Some companies designed 40’ boats with roomy cabins, but no matter what engines were used, they attained speeds of only 70-80 MPH. We developed our first stepped ventilated deep-vee design which was put into production on the 40’ Hustler in 1986. This was the first use of the stepped hull on a performance boat in the U.S. The third 40 Hustler out of the mold equipped with twin 850 HP Hi-Tec engines and Arneson Surface Drives clocked a celebrated 106 MPH. As a result of this performance breakthrough it was evident that Hustler had developed a sleeping giant. In 1990, at the Powerboat Performance trials, the Hustler 40 powered by three Mercruiser 365 HP engines, outpaced an identically powered competitive 42 pad bottom by 11 MPH. (The Hustler had over a foot more headroom and more luxurious accommodations.) To further bring into perspective the magnitude of the boat capabilities, Hustler sent a stock 40 boat with everything but electric windows and powered by triple 454 Magnums to the 1990 Powerboat Magazine Offshore Trials. What was unique about this opportunity was our chief competitor, Fountain Powerboats, sent their 40 Fountain with the exact engine and drive combination. The Hustler with 6’4″ headroom and an opulent interior was now going head to head with what most people consider, including all those at Fountain, the fastest offshore V-bottom in the world. The Hustler ran an unbelievable 82 MPH and the Fountain ran 71 MPH. Hustler again won the coveted Offshore Performance Boat of the Year!
In 1993 the Hustler 50 was built utilizing the Tek Step concept which was later awarded a U.S. patent. In recent years, many performance boat manufacturers have struggled to achieve performance equal to the Hustler with their own stepped hull designs, but because of our patent, they cannot utilize the benefits of the Tek Step concept and have fallen short of Hustler’s performance. The Tek Step design provides the fastest, most stable ride attainable in a deep-vee hull. While others still try to lift the hull on its keel or pad which leads to inherent chine walking at higher speeds, the Tek-Step hull does just the opposite by allowing the strakes which are set outboard of the keel to carry the full hull load and entrap air under the keel providing a stable ride even at higher speeds. The Tek-Step patent also provides a more comfortable ride in rough water by allowing narrow strakes in the bow area to cut through big water and wider strakes in the stern to carry the heavy engine load. This design also allows our boats to come on plane with very little bow rise.
In 1995, 9 years after Hustler had been building stepped hulls, many of the US manufacturers started producing their own version of the stepped hull including Fountain, Donzi and Wellcraft.
In February 1997, we introduced to the public, the Hustler 388 Slingshot Twentieth Anniversary Edition Hi-Performance Powerboat at the Miami Boat Show. The Hustler 388 Slingshot carries Hustler’s famed attention to detail and quality of manufacturing by incorporating State-of- the- art construction materials, vacuum bagging with High-tech, hybrid fabrics such as Kevlar and carbon fiber and vinylester resins in the hull construction. The 388 Slingshot is the sleekest, fastest, most technologically advanced boat to emerge from the boating industry in 20 years. The final design was the result of hundreds of test runs with subtle changes to the bottom. The final result was speeds in excess of 90 MPH with twin Mercury 500’s and Bravo drives, incredible cornering ability and a rough-water ride better than anything in its class. In 1999, a Hustler 388 Slingshot christened, Team Snap On powered with a pair of HP Mercruiser 500’s, led the Sarasota Offshore Grand Prix from start to finish. The F-II fleet was the biggest ever, with 18 entries making the start, it was the largest line-up in the three-year history of the class. Ten manufacturers were represented including Fountain, Formula, Phantom, Velocity, Nortec, Sutphen, Wellcraft, Eliminator, Outerlimits, and Hustler. “Team Snap On” formerly known as “Team Hustler” had an impressive history of wins in 1998 including an undefeated record with USORA rounding out 10 victories for the season. Also in 1999, the 388 F2 was first place runner-up in the APBA World Championships out of a field of 24 entries. The 388 Hustler remains the dominating factor on the Factory II circuit. At 38 feet, she is the largest and still the unprecedented fastest. Hustler believes that winning is everything and it shows! In 1999 the 388 was awarded POWERBOAT OF THE YEAR by Powerboat Magazine.
In 2000, it was a banner year for Hustler. At the Miami Boat Show this year Hustler unleashed the 344 Cheetah! The 344 Cheetah was bred from her big sister the 388 Slingshot. Although similar in appearance, exhaustive and intensive bottom testing bred a new generation of the TekStep design. The 344 Cheetah with a 34’4’’ centerline and a beam of 8’4” powered by a set of Mercruiser 500 EFI’s will make prey out of any boat in its class. Standard power is the Mercruiser 502 MPI used to maintain warranty and resale value. The 344 Cheetah’s most notable traits are her speed and handling.
Also in the year 2000, due to increased sales and expanding product line we have moved 12 short miles from Hampton Bays, to Calverton. The factory is located in the Grumman Aerospace facility, which in the past produced the F14 Fighter jet, A6 Intruders and numerous stages of the Apollo program including the lunar landing module. The entire property encompasses over 1 million square feet under roof and has 2 miles of aircraft runway. The new factory just makes it easier to carry Hustler’s famed attention to detail and quality of manufacturing into the new millennium. The only difference is “the house just got bigger.”
In 2006, Hustler introduced their new 41 Razor, giving their line a whole new look and style. The Razor body lines have the look and feel of an Italian performance car but with all the comforts of home. Its amenities include 6’4″ headroom, full stand up shower and a state of the art entertainment center. She debuted with Twin Mercury 700 SCi Engines and ran an impressive 98 mph. Hustler spent 6 months designing and engineering the Razor to include more usability such as a walk on hatch for easy boarding, battery switches located under the rear seat for quick access and fuel shut-off valves in the cockpit. The Razor is truly the best of both worlds if you’re looking for luxury and performance.
In 2007, Hustler has been working on the next generation of performance boats. With the demand of consumers wanting to go even faster, Hustler has been researching and developing their new 39′ Rockit, a high speed performance boat capable of speeds well over 120+ mph. Again Hustler has taken on the task of creating a boat that can handle these speeds safely and with stability. Most boats manufactured today become uncontrollable at speeds over 100mph and the new Rockit has solved that issue, allowing the hull to settle in at high speed instead of riding on the edge of the keel. The Rockit will also enhance the passengers experience using the latest electronic and technology available. The 39 Rockit debuted at the 2008 Miami Boat Show to rave reviews. With the success of the 39 Rockit, Hustler decided to make a smaller, more affordable version, while maintaining the speed and stability of the 39 Rockit. After two years of research and testing, the 29 Rockit was unvield, wowing the 2010 Miami Boat show crowd with speeds capable of over 80+ mph.