Mustang 430 Sports Coupe

By: David Lockwood

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Mustang is being turned around from a builder of knockabout boats to one that manufactures world-class craft. We take a look at the new 430 Sports Coupe.

Mustang 430 Sports Coupe
Mustang 430 Sports Coupe
  • Impeccable finish
  • All-seasons entertainer
  • Inherent seaworthiness
  • Absolute control and visibility from the helm station
  • Great family boat
  • Efficient

Whereas previous Mustangs were somewhat formulaic and finished in keeping with the affordable end of the production-boat spectrum, the 430 Sports Coupe has a world-class finish, better performance and greater utility. Engineering has also improved.

A pair of Volvo Penta IPS 600s producing 435hp a side (Cummins MerCruiser Zeus are optional) and an off-shore-bred hull mean the 430 Sports Coupe is raring to go.

Building blocks

The 430 Sports Coupe, hull #1 tested, was impeccably finished. The soft furnishings, upholstery and headliners were a cut above, while the hull sides in optional black looked wonderful.

General Manager Chris Heaton shares his philosophy behind the new Sports Coupe range, which will include a 500 and 560 in the future:

"We believe we’re a new company and we’re starting to demonstrate that. I’ve just come back from three weeks touring international dealerships and the 430 Sports Coupe will be right at home on the world stage," Heaton explains.

"But the fibre we are weaving through all our boats is the same: usability and functionality. This flows from the Flybridge to the new Sports Coupe range. The latter holds particular appeal for experienced boaters who have grown weary of climbing flybridge ladders. At the same time, a young family looking to do lunch aboard will love the boat."

Bluewater foundation

Construction of the 430 Sports Coupe is solid GRP with a Kevlar layer for impact resistance. There is coring in the decks and flybridge superstructure to reduce weight and a watertight collision bulkhead forward. The boat comes with a 10-year structural hull warranty.

All the wiring and plumbing is colour-coded and loomed, there are double hose clips on all lines below the waterline, and ball valves.

With the IPS system, the electronic diesel D6 engines are located well aft in the boat, beneath the cockpit floor, in what would otherwise be the lazarette in a shaft-driven craft. By moving the engines outdoors, noise levels are greatly reduced, too.

The 1900lt of fuel is carried in wing tanks in the utility space, roughly amidships, with the 670lt of water on the centreline where it won’t impact on trim.

Of great benefit to serious boaters is the gain in servicing space. In fact, the utility space has room for an extra 500lt of fuel should you want it, and options such as desalinator, washer/dryer and custom storage.

With the 9kW Kohler generator mounted back aft with a sound shield, there’s also less noise in the boat’s living areas. The 12v 60-amp and 24v 30-amp battery chargers are also located in the utility space, but a combo inverter/charger might be a smarter solution.

Engine checks? You only need extend your finger and press two rocker switches to activate the hydraulic actuator that lifts the cockpit sole. There is an emergency hatch in the boat’s boot in case of power failure.

Either way, you can jump down and around all sides of the compact D6 engines, which were also fitted with an emergency engine-driven bilge manifold. The boat’s AGM batteries are outboard with the fuel filters forward, and sea strainers positioned for visual inspection.

Volvo Penta’s electronic management panels tell you when you need to top up the coolant, oil and whether there are heating or fuel related problems.

On deck

The 430 Sports Coupe demo boat had an optional extended hydraulic swim platform, wide sidedecks, and bowrails lead to the foredeck lifestyle area, which counts as a separate lifestyle zone.

We noted a Maxwell windlass, deep chain lockers, saltwater wash, and Jabsco spotlight. Back aft, there’s the requisite hot/cold cockpit shower, a huge boot for storage and, alongside, an aft-facing built-in barbie and sink. Underwater lights, blue strip-lights and LED courtesy lights illuminate the decks and fish, and there are pop-up stainless steel cleats.


The aft galley is traced by solid counters, with two-burner electric hob, convection microwave oven, dishwasher and counter-height fridge. The sink is a deep one, the drawers are the soft-close type and we love the push-button automatic pantry. The Sony Bravia is alongside and linked to a DVD player.

Besides an icemaker and dedicated glass storage, the wet bar harbours the boat’s control panel. Instead of the usual toggle switches it has a CAN-bus system with touchpad control for all the boat’s functions, as well as preset modes.

Twin European helm chairs upholstered in black leather denote the helm station, which features twin 12in Simrad NX45 screens, Volvo Penta displays and electronic gear shift, Joystick docking device, air-con vents, QL trim tabs, and wipers with washers.


We tested the two-cabin version of the 430 Sports Coupe. It was an inviting cabin, with big bed, slimline portlights, escape hatch, mirror-fronted hanging locker and cabinet. A door leads to the en suite, which doubles as a communal head, via a second door.

It’s great to find a nice big shower stall, porcelain sink and the latest Vacuflush loo with push-button flush instead of foot pedal. Across the companionway is a starboard-side guest’s cabin with two truly generous adult-sized berths.

With a great sense of space, the boat will easily sleep a family of four. That said, you could probably make better use of the boat’s space. When you hinge up the stairs leading down to the accommodation there’s a huge storage room seemingly going to waste.

IPS power

At 2710rpm and 21kts the engines use 90lt/h in total. Pull this back to 2500rpm and 18kts and you will find a frugal 74lt/h cruise.

The D6s rev to 3620rpm for a 32.5kts top speed. If you want a fast cruise then sit on 3000rpm and 25kts for about 100lt/h or 3200rpm and 28kts for about 120lt an hour.

To read in-depth boat reviews see the latest issue of Trade A Boat magazine, on sale now.

(Price as tested approx AU$971,286)

LOA 14.98m
Beam 4.61m
Draft 1.2m
Engines 2 x 435hp Volvo IPS600
Weight 15,000kg (dry w/std engines)
Berths 4/6 (depending on layout)
Fuel 1900lt
Water 670lt
Holding tank 120lt

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