Beneteau Flyer 8 Review

topRik team introduces you to two modifications of the Beneteau Flyer 8 motor boat in one review – SUNdeck and SPACEdeck. Find out what are their differences and similarities, advantages and disadvantages.


As usual, we invite you to familiarize yourself with the opinions of famous yachtsmen-journalists about the presented boats; we supplement the story with photos, layout plans and a video gallery.

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

When it comes to Beneteau’s model range, the name Flyer exists since the 80s, but it did not always mean the same thing as nowadays, although the idea was similar: a light boat with a powerful outboard engine, useful both for a trip with the family and for active recreation. The French brand decided to simplify and streamline the situation with the name Flyer in 2013, forming a whole line.

It currently includes five models with hull lengths from 5.5 to 10 m. Each of them is offered in SPACEdeck and SUNdeck versions.

The first is designed to provide maximum usable deck area at a single level and accommodate as many passengers as possible on board, providing them with an equal level of comfort:

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

And the second is distinguished by the presence of a raised bow sunpad and, more importantly, a small cabin below it:

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

The cabin version of the Flyer family tries to find a compromise between sportiness and utilitarianism as a family weekender. The result does not live up to expectations of some yachtsmen, but the diversity of the Flyer line can smooth out the controversial issues.

For example, the Flyer 8 SUNdeck can accommodate 8 people: two, including the skipper, in separate seats, and the rest on a convertible aft sofa and folding side seats. When folded, they do not impede passage through the cabin, and the table around which all the seats are located can be removed. The aft sofa has a folding design: its right side is hinged, it can be folded to provide free passage through the stern when disembarking or landing.

At the bow there is a sunbathing area for two with soft mats. In the SPACEdeck version, the space in the stern of the boat serves this purpose, but in the SUNdeck the emphasis is placed specifically on the bow area. Below it is a small cabin. I don’t want to say “cramped”, because there are no complaints about the level of illumination and width, but a desperate search for a compromise is evident here: the cabin was designed because it was needed, and not in order to provide passengers with a truly high level of comfort.

The seating level may seem suboptimal. Seats are high enough so that a tall passenger does not rest his head on the ceiling, but at the same time too low in order to provide a decent area for the resulting bed. In other words, the cabin on board the Flyer 8 SUNdeck will not be the central gathering place. The ceiling height on the starboard side is only 1.53 m, on the left side, thanks to the passage, it is 1.63 m. On the left there is a kitchenette, which is convenient to use only with the door open. On the starboard side at the base of the control console there is a toilet, but the low ceiling in it is not that noticeable.

Despite this, the presence of a cabin makes the Flyer 8 SUNdeck a versatile vessel for an overnight stay or a family vacation (if the family is small).

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

There are no complaints about the quality of finishing materials: the gray upholstery fabric may seem rough, but it will certainly last a long time.

The main advantage of both modifications of the Flyer 8 can be considered its sporty character, which is due to the initial focus of the developers on using the vessel for outdoor activities. The range of engines and the design of the transom, capable of accepting heavy models, only confirms this.

Flyer 8 is designed to accommodate one outboard engine. Maximum power is 350 HP, with Suzuki and Mercury being default engines for this brand.

On the water, the Flyer 8's character is sharp enough for a family boat - it will require careful attention to the angle of the motor to remain docile at high speeds. The nose rises quite high, maneuvering will require certain skills. Those who initially choose Flyer 8 SPACEdeck probably have them, but the performance features should be taken into account by the family men buying the SUNdeck version.

Despite a number of compromises that the creators had to make in order to give the boat family status and make it look like a weekender, the Flyer 8 SUNdeck evokes positive emotions overall. The low ceiling in the cabin is a major drawback, but otherwise the boat has no faults in either ergonomics or design. Regarding the latter, we can say that Beneteau Flyers look like memorable, modern boats.

It should be added that Beneteau's patented technology for manufacturing the V-shaped composite Air Step hull, which has been successfully used for a decade and a half on shipyard’s boats up to 50 feet in length, was also used in Flyer 8.

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

Air Step technology provides engine-powered Flyers with more dynamic acceleration, reduced fuel consumption by reducing the wetted surface area of the bottom, stable and controlled maneuvering, as well as a smoother ride even in rough sea conditions.

This is how it works: the air passes through the side pockets (air intakes) to a special arrow-shaped step on the bottom of the boat, from where it spreads along the longitudinal steps along the bottom in the aft part of the hull. The air seal that is formed due to this significantly reduces the friction force of the housing surface on the water. This is especially noticeable in planing boats, which can reach high speeds. Their efficiency increases significantly with the Air Step system, which is confirmed by many years of testing and numerous tests both in calm water and in waves.

All features of Beneteau Flyer 8 were highly appreciated by the maritime community: both versions became Best of Boats Award 2023 winners in the Best for Beginners category, and were also nominated in the equally prestigious European competition Powerboat of the Year 2023.

 

Features of Beneteau Flyer 8

  • Brand: Beneteau
  • Hull type: Monohull
  • Overall length, m: 8.17
  • Overall length, ft: 27
  • Width, m: 2.53
  • Draft, m: 0.9
  • Displacement, t: 2.251
  • Air draft, m: 2.45
  • Water tanks, l: 80
  • Exterior design (architect): Beneteau Powerboats
  • Interior design: Adreani Design
  • CE Certification: C10/D10
  • Engine: 350 HP
  • Fuel tanks, l: 340
Flyer 8 SUNdeck Get Price Flyer 8 SPACEdeck Get Price
 
 

Maximum Speed

Max speed Up to 40 knots
Cruising speed Up to 20-25 knots
Fuel consumption 38.5 l/h when planning at a speed of 20 knots
 

Review of Beneteau Flyer 8 by topRik Team

Looking at Beneteau Flyer 8 boats from afar, without the ability to look overboard, it is difficult at first glance to distinguish the exterior of the SUNdeck modification from the SPACEdeck version.

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

Almost identical V-hulls with a single outboard engine, center helm console and strong handrails from deckhouse to bow. They can be distinguished by the presence of a side window on the SUNdeck, allowing the natural lighting enter the bow cabin below.

And this is practically the only difference between the two modifications of Beneteau Flyer 8, which also leads to differences in the organization of space on deck. If you already read reviews from the topRik team dedicated to Beneteau Flyer 9 and Beneteau Flyer 10, then in this review you can get acquainted with their relatives and trace the development of engineering thought of Beneteau Powerboats naval architects.

 

On the Transom

The transom of both modifications is completely identical, especially if the same types of engines are installed between the two beach island platforms. You can choose both brand and power.

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

In addition to the engine, a water skier’s stand is also mounted on the transom board. It can also be adapted as a support for spinning rods during fishing. An addition to the upper frame T-top can also be equipped with fishing rod holders, as in the photo below.

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

And the Flyer 8 Pilot Edition version, which is still in development, also includes the ability to equip the cockpit with a real fishing station with a well for live bait and other attributes.

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

 

The Cockpit

But for now, the aft cockpit of both modifications is almost identical and has an effective modular furniture system. The aft sofa is folding, the side benches are folding, the table is removable and foldable, the helmsman's chairs can be turned towards the table.

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

So you can organize your cockpit space yourself using this modular system, which allows you to create a dining area or sunbathing area, freeing up a significant area for free movement.

Please note that the photo above shows the SPACEdeck cockpit, and the photo below shows the SUNdeck cockpit.

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

The back of the aft sofa, when folded, imitates the wall of a closed cockpit. In fact, these are, of course, models with an open cockpit, the entrance to which is opened by a gate from the platform on the port side.

In the center of the cockpit there is a locker for storing rescue accessories.

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

And under the folding benches there are lockers for storing fenders and other necessary things on any boat. If the vessel is used for fishing, this is an excellent place to store the catch.

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

 

The Wheelhouse

This is where the similarity of the SUNdeck and SPACEdeck modifications is not as evident, apart from the helm station (helm panel can be further customized according to your wishes).

In both versions, the helmsman's and assistant's chairs can be turned in the desired direction - towards the helm, dining table or aft sofa if the table is removed.

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

They can be adjusted to your height and position at the helm (standing or sitting).

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

The shape of the seats can be chosen - it can be two individual chairs or a double version in the form of a sofa with footrests.

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

The contents of the helm panel, as we said, depend on the owner, with the exception of the most necessary navigation instruments and indicators, which are included in the standard list. Options allow you to fill the entire helm panel if you want a second display and additional gauges to monitor your boat's equipment.

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

We appreciated the reliability of the engine control lever, the strength of the metal parts at the level of an outstretched arm, which will help the helmsman to keep his balance when rocking, as well as the good height of the windshield. Of course, good only for those experts whose height did not reach 2 meters. Our colleague, exactly the same height, was very happy that the version we tested lacked T-top, and he didn’t even bother going down to the cabin.

Speaking of cabin - this is where the main differences begin. See the transparent hinged door to the left of the steering panel? If you look there in the SPACEdeck boat , you will see this picture:

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

Yes, a toilet next to a refrigerator can confuse any land citizen, but not a boater.

And what is hidden behind the same door of the SUNdeck version? Now do you understand why our colleague refused to explore the cabin? But most experts agreed that for an 8-meter boat these are not bad conditions if you need to spend the night on board.

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

In addition, in case of rain, you can move your meal here. Fortunately, the refrigerator, microwave and sink are nearby.

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

The bathroom is separated from the cabin by a door. The owner can choose the type of toilet.

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

Now we just have to examine the bow of the boat and determine what changes in the design made the existence of this cabin possible. At the same time, let’s compare the bow of both modifications.

 

At the Foredeck

When we examined the bow of both versions, it became clear why the Beneteau Flyer 8 SUNdeck has the opportunity to accommodate even a small cabin.

This is the bow of Beneteau Flyer 8 SPACEdeck:

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

We think you immediately understood which photo shows the bow part of the SUNdeck and SPACEdeck. In both versions, this area is given over to relaxation with the ability to transform modular sun loungers and furniture, as shown in the photo below.

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

But, as you noticed, the difference is that the sunbeds in the SUNdeck version are located on the deck, which covers the part of the bow cockpit of SPACEdeck with modular furniture. By covering the bow cockpit, the cabin of the “sunny” version was formed.

Next, we return again with similarity - chain boxes with an anchor installation and a bowsprit in the form of a bow step ladder (optional) are the same for both versions of Beneteau Flyer 8.

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

The only difference is that in the SUNdeck version the lid of the chain box is hidden under the cushion, while in the SPACEdeck version it opens freely.

 

The Sea Tests

The test sample was equipped with the flagship Suzuki DF350, the potential of which will probably seem excessive to some. With this engine, the Flyer 8 SUNdeck reaches 40 knots (74 km/h) in mere 15 seconds, demonstrating truly impressive dynamics. The maximum speed is not significantly higher - it reaches 83 km/h (about 45 knots) at a maximum of 6100 rpm, but few people will want to drive in this mode for a long time due to high fuel consumption rate. At the same time, at a cruising speed of 20 knots (37 km/h), the consumption will be about 38.5 l/h.

If the budget allows for a 350-horsepower engine, then this is the best choice, but just for the Flyer 8 SPACEdeck, which has a different positioning. For SUNdeck, with its family orientation, it is acceptable to have less powerful and significantly less expensive engines. In terms of weight rather than price, you can save 30kg with the 300PS V6 DF300 and nearly 100kg with the 2.9-litre four-cylinder Suzuki DF200. The 275 kg 250 hp DF250 may be the golden mean for a family boat, with a top speed of 40 knots (74 km/h), but in most other modes the fuel economy can be quite significant.

Review Beneteau Flyer 8

 

Advantages of Beneteau Flyer 8

Benefits of Beneteau Flyer 8 start at the cost of the SUNdeck and SPACEdeck modifications. For such seaworthy qualities of the boat and excellent conditions for the skipper and passengers on board, this is quite a budget option if you just love the sea, and you don’t need to prove anything to yourself and others. At the same time, you can take your whole family with you for a weekend trip, if its number does not exceed 10 people. The same applies to the company of fishermen. Both versions are suitable for fishing from the side, but the SPACEdeck has much more space for this.

 

Reviews of Beneteau Flyer 8 from Professionals

In reviews from experts, we considered it necessary to give the floor to the editors of Barche a Motore - in their review, both modifications of the Flyer 8 are compared and the results of testing boats on the water are given. As always, John Ford organically supplemented this test, exploring the Beneteau's Flyer 8 SPACEdeck in Australian coastal waters for Trade a Boat.

The editorial examines both versions of Beneteau's Flyer 8. But the most interesting thing, in our opinion, is that at the end of the review there is a table of test results at sea for boats: SPACEdeck with a 300 HP engine and SUNdeck with a 350 HP engine. The authors add that in both cases there were 4 people on board, the water tanks were empty, and the fuel tanks were completely full.

In both cases, high performance (speed 40 knots and above), good controllability and maneuverability were noted.

Tests on water were carried out in calm weather. The authors recommend not exceeding speeds of more than 30-33 knots in order to feel as comfortable as possible on board and at the helm.

Some differences were noted in the behavior of the boats when accelerating depending on the design of the versions, but at the same time, both modifications demonstrated the safety of the design, quick planing and the ability to stop quickly, which is very important in extreme situations, and which the topRik experts didn’t cover.

Of course, the review paid a lot of attention to the exterior and interior features of both modifications of the Flyer 8, their comparative characteristics and the features of each version.

A cabin cruiser and a sports weekender - this is how the authors of the review described the presented versions. At the same time, they characterized the SPACEdeck version as less aggressive compared to the cabin modification, but more active, intended for sports owners, including fishing enthusiasts and fans of other water sports, in particular towing and underwater.

Staying on English and American boats diet – that’s how John Ford explained his surprise with each new yacht from the French Beneteau. Flyer 8 SPACEdeck surprised him with its versatility - it is a day boat, a tractor for towing water sports enthusiasts, a fishing vessel and a cruiser. And all these hypostases are decorated in a European style, to which an inhabitant of Australia should get used to.

Next, John pays tribute to the exterior and explains what features are enhanced by the choice of body shape.

Then the author dwells on the technologies that were used in the making of the boat and the design features. Each element is explained in terms of its effect on the boat's seaworthiness.

John describes in detail all areas of the Flyer 8 SPACEdeck in terms of design, comfort and convenience for the helmsman and passengers.

Next, the author talks in detail about how the boat was tested on the water, starting the story with the characteristics of the engine with which the boat being tested was equipped.

John assessed how the second-generation Air Step hull affects the performance of the Flyer 8 SPACEdeck and provided the results of testing at sea: at what second and at what speed the boat took off, as well as the dependence of fuel consumption on speed.

 

Video Reviews of Beneteau Flyer 8

Now let’s check out how this boat looks in the frame, shall we?

We will start with SPACEdeck first:

And then take a look at SUNdeck version:

More detailed review of SPACEdeck:

 

Conclusion

Beneteau Flyer 8 motor boats not only offer excellent cruising speed, maneuverability and fuel efficiency, but also allow you to choose a modification that meets the different needs of owners. As a result, these boats are in demand:

  • for a safe coastal cruise for several days with a small family or group of friends (SPACEdeck version);
  • as weekend day boats (SUNdeck version);
  • lovers of sea fishing (both versions);
  • fans of towing water sports (both versions);
  • lovers of underwater diving - hunters of marine life, divers, researchers of sunken objects.

So, both modifications of Beneteau Flyer 8 will also be in demand by charter companies, because it is so convenient: renting a boat for a family vacation weekend or going to sea with a group of fishermen.

Flyer 8 SUNdeck Get Price Flyer 8 SPACEdeck Get Price
 

Where to Buy Beneteau Flyer 8 at a Bargain Price

To find out where to buy Beneteau Flyer 8 at a good price, you don't have to look through dozens of websites. Here you can have this and other questions answered.

TopRik marketplace experts are very familiar with Beneteau yachts – it was with the sailboats of this manufacturer that the formation of our SimpleSail fleet began, now located in our Mediterranean marinas.

Therefore, take advantage of your privileges and receive free consultations on the configuration of your future Flyer 8 boat. You can combine two bonuses: receive free consultations from our experts and at the same time complete your Beneteau version for free Flyer 8. To do this, just go to the Price Calculator section – having fun with this virtual yacht configurator will not even require you to register on the topRik marketplace website.

After you have exhausted all the bonus options, you can entrust our specialists with the rest of the work:

  • negotiations with the manufacturer or dealer;
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Our experts can accompany you along this entire troublesome path, or they can take care of all the worries entirely, it’s up to you.

Just call or send a message: our contacts can be found at the top of the page or in the Contacts section.

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