2023 Bennington 27 RX Sport Swingback

Bennington 27 RX Sport Swingback running
The 27 RX Sport Swingback offers a confident, surprisingly soft ride. Bill Doster

Choose the right color and Bennington’s 27 RX Sport Swingback takes on an almost menacing appearance. In this case, blame—or rather credit—an abundance of deep, glossy black. It covered our test boat’s trademark fence panels in smooth cladded aluminum that gives the perimeter a masculine vibe. It blacked out the steeply raked, frameless glass windshield and the smoothly cladded overhead Sport Arch. And at the stern of this racy pontoon boat, it showcased the powerful pair of Verado outboards in the most classic of Mercury colorways. Add a splash of eye-searing green as the lone accent and the boat took on a ’70s muscle car’s powerful presence.

Unlike a Chevelle or Plymouth Hemi, the twin Mercury Verado outboards purred whisper-quiet at idle and peaked at only 88 decibels as the speedometer approached the near 58 mph top speed. In the time it took the boat to leap onto plane—4.2 seconds—it was already passing the 30 mph threshold. Throw the 27 RX Sport Swingback into a turn and you won’t experience a muscle-car skid, but rather sports-car-like tracking. Bennington’s ESP Performance Package, a unique layout of 25-inch-round outer tubes paired with a 32-inch elliptically shaped center tube, gives the boat aggressive overall handling with a spirited inside lean through the turns and nimble agility. When conditions took a turn for the worst, the pontoon configuration also proved its worth in the rough stuff, powering across whitecaps with a confident, surprisingly soft ride. 

27 RX Sport Swingback helm
The helm is well equipped. Bill Doster

Bennington decked out the 27 RX Sport in its Swingback floor plan, a mix of nearly 6-foot-long parallel couches at the bow, twin captain’s chairs, and the namesake multiposition lounger aft. Morph the Swingback into multiple configurations focused fore and aft, including as an inviting chaise. The hinged Swingback mechanism also allows the backrest to disappear completely below the cushions, leaving just a flat sun pad. A gleaming, stainless-steel keeper rail allows the use of all seating options while underway. Cup holders, an audio system head unit and high-speed USB charging points are all within easy reach.

27 RX Sport Swingback bow seating
There’s a pair of nearly 6-foot-long parallel couches at the bow. Bill Doster
27 RX Sport Swingback sunpad
The hinged Swingback mechanism also allows the backrest to disappear completely below the cushions. Bill Doster

High Points

  • Standards include LED nav and docking lights, wireless USB chargers, and swim platform speakers.
  • Optional joystick piloting makes docking easy.
  • Twin engine ’toon with a trailerable beam width.

How We Tested

  • Engine: Twin Mercury 300 Verados
  • Drive/Props: Outboard/Mercury Rev 4 14.6″ x 20″ 4-blade stainless steel
  • Gear Ratio: 1.85:1 Fuel Load: 69 gal. Crew Weight: 160 lb.

Pricing and Specs

Price: $229,240 (base with twin Mercury 300 Verados)
LOA: 28’3″
Draft (max): 2’8″
Dry Weight: 4,791 lb.
Seat/Weight Capacity: 15/5,000 lb.
Fuel Capacity: 83 gal.

Bennington Marine – Elkhart, Indiana; 574-264-6336; benningtonmarine.com

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Source: https://www.boatingmag.com/boats/2023-bennington-27-rx-sport-swingback-bbg/