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Posted by on Nov 9, 2010 in Boat Reviews, Express Cruiser, Powerboating, US |

Tiara 3100 Open Christened at Lauderdale

One of the most popular models from Tiara Yachts gets another redesign.

Tiara Yachts introduced its new 3100 Open at the Fort Lauderdale Boat Show, and although the company has introduced “new” 31 foot models in the past, this one does have some changes that will catch your eye.

The new Tiara 3100 Open has a new interior and a new integrated hard top.

The new Tiara 3100 Open has a new interior and a new integrated hard top.

The 2011 Tiara 3100 Open is a retro-reintroduction; the 3000 it replaces was one of Tiara’s most popular models, which in 1996 replaced the old 3100 (“Tiara 3100 Open – A Crown Jewel“) which had last been updated in 1992, after its original introduction way back in ’76. This newest version of the hull shares the same basic specs: 33’0″ LOA, 12’6″ beam, a 210-gallon fuel capacity, and a displacement just over 13,000 pounds. And, also like its predecessors, the 3100 is designed with a wide-open attitude. The cockpit is unencumbered and spacious, and the cabin layout is designed for maximum elbow room. What’s changed is the belowdecks arrangement. On the old 3000 the forward section of the cabin was a V-berth which converted into a settee. On the new 3100 there’s a pedestal berth forward, with the settee to starboard. The settee converts into a second berth, so this model still sleeps four. A galley with a single burner stove-top, microwave oven, sink, and refrigerator sits to port, with a fully enclosed head aft.

Another generational divide between the old and the new is the hard top. The new model’s top has been updated to include molded-in recesses that integrate spreader and courtesy lighting, frameless windows, handrails, a sunroof, and opening vents. It looks both slick and sturdy, and provides complete protection at the helm without inhibiting visibility at all. More about that helm: it’s a tilt-away, so accessing the rigging is a piece of cake. It’s also bigger than you’d hope for on a boat of this size, with an electronics flat that’s wide enough to handle a flush-mounted 15” MFD display plus digital gauges or a VHF. Engine gauges are mounted along the brow, so they’re easily visible but they don’t eat into the room set aside for navigational goodies. The entire helm station is also tinted, to reduce glare.

Christening the 3100, the champaign bottle slammed into the boat four times before finally breaking.

Christening the 3100, the champagne bottle slammed into the boat four times before finally breaking.

Like other Tiaras I’ve written about (see “Tiara 3900, Express Combo“), the 3100 is constructed tough, with fully-encapsulated wood and foam cored stringers, a balsa cored deck, and a solid glass hull with balsa cored hullsides. Just how tough is it? During the christening, the champagne bottle absolutely refused to break and a Tiara babe had to whack the side of the boat four times, as hard as she could, before it finally shattered. Each impact created a solid “thunk” instead of the hollow drum-like sound you’ll hear when banging on the hull sides of a lightly built boat.

Info is still tight on the 3100, which hasn’t made its way to all of Tiara’s dealers yet and isn’t even mentioned on the builder’s web site as of this writing. If you want to find out more about this model (which MSRP’s at $264K with twin 375-hp gas inboards or $350K with twin 330-hp Cummins diesels), you can, however, find a spec sheet on Boats.com’s sister site, Yachtworld.com.

- Lenny Rudow