Review: Lowell 38

In Yarmouth, Maine, brothers Jamie and Joe Lowell carry on a 4-generations-old tradition of building Downeast workboats and “lobster yachts.” Thus, it’s appropriate that hull Number One of the new Lowell 38 should be named Thorobred. She’s an elegant sedan cruiser with a hull that sails easily at displacement speeds, cruises efficiently from the upper ‘teens to the low-30s, and, with her 800-hp MAN common-rail diesel turned up, shows her heels at 39 mph.

Credit that range of effective speeds to the evolution of hull shape, materials, and diesel power. Hull construction is cored fiberglass and vinylester resin for strength, with carbon fiber and epoxy resin in the deckhouse for stability.

Her elegant, nearly flat “skeg-built” running bottom flows into a built-down belly just large enough to allow for low engine placement and an efficient shaft angle, with tight chine radii to throw spray outward. That midships section carries the engine and salon, with the flared bow fine enough to cleave seas while allowing space for a comfortable V-berth. The shape is an effective hybrid of 2 Downeast hull forms, and, according to her owner, “peels the water away very efficiently.”

Accommodations are simple but comfortable, with the galley up in the salon opposite a settee and table, helm and companion seats with chart table to port, and in the cabin, a head with enclosed shower and a settee aft of the V-berth.


  • LOA: 38’ 9”
  • Beam: 13’ 1”
  • Draft: 4’
  • Weight: 21,000 lbs.
  • Base price: $500,000

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