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MJM 35z (2018-)

2 x 350-hp Mercury Verado

Brief Summary

The MJM 35z is a Downeast-style outboard-powered express cruiser, an early entry into a now-burgeoning category. MJM has long produced extremely well-built powerboats with an eye toward using the latest technology to advantage, while providing a comfortable experience in a variety of conditions. The 35z is no exception, dialing in the outboard propulsion system to optimize performance and ease of operation. The boat has accommodations suited to a cruising couple and a versatile, single-level main-deck layout that lets everyone on board spend time together and feel closer to the water.

Key Features

  • Epoxy-composite construction
  • Outboard power from twin 350-hp Mercury Verados
  • On-deck bridge design keeps friends and family together
  • Opening windshield for ventilation underway or at anchor
  • Flush deck
  • Side boarding doors
  • Roll up side curtains or sliding glass windows
  • Optional Seakeeper gyro stabilizer

Test Results

600 3.4 3 1.6 2.2 1.9 494 429.2 62
1000 5.1 4.4 2 2.6 2.2 574 498.9 64
1500 7.7 6.7 4 1.9 1.7 433 376.6 71
2000 10.1 8.7 6 1.7 1.5 377 327.7 69
2500 12.2 10.6 8 1.5 1.3 343 298.4 73
3000 13.8 12 10.5 1.3 1.1 296 257.1 75
3500 17.4 15.1 16 1.1 0.9 245 212.8 75
4000 28.2 24.5 20.5 1.4 1.2 310 269.1 77
4500 34.6 30.1 28 1.2 1.1 278 241.8 78
5000 39.1 34 35.5 1.1 1 248 215.2 79.5
5500 44.3 38.5 50 0.9 0.8 199 173.2 81
5900 47 40.9 62.5 0.8 0.7 169 147.1 81


Length Overall 37’ 11'' / 11.56 m
Beam 11' 0''
3.35 m
Dry Weight 13,279 lbs.
6,023 kg
Draft Up 21''
0.53 m
Draft Down 32''
0.81 m
Deadrise/Transom 19.7-deg.
Max Headroom 6' 1"
1.85 m
Bridge Clearance N/A
Fuel Capacity 250 gal.
946 L
Water Capacity 58 gal.
220 L


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Acceleration Times & Conditions

Time to Plane 4.0 sec.
0 to 30 9.5 sec.
Ratio 1.75:1
Props Rev 4 17P
Load 3 persons, 3/5 fuel, 1/4 water, 50 lbs. of gear
Climate 86 deg., 28 humid.; wind: 20-25 mph; seas: <1

Engine Options

Tested Engine 2 x 350-hp Mercury Verado
Std. Power Twin 300-hp outboards
Opt. Power Twin 350-hp outboards

Captain's Report

Contents of Report

MJM 35z test day

The outboard-powered MJM 35z makes short work of a light chop on our test day.

Back Story

MJM Yachts was started by a lifelong sailor by the name of Bob Johnstone, who with his brother Rod also founded J/Boats, a company that developed and built a variety of sailboat models and helped expand the sport of sailing and introduce it to many people the world over. Johnstone was looking to make his next move and get into power cruising, but wanted to bring the power of technology to bear on the challenges of Downeast-style cruising. He started building boats with lightweight hulls and sterndrive propulsion, eventually swapping out the I/Os for Volvo Penta IPS pods. Johnstone embraced the Seakeeper gyro stabilizer as well, making it standard equipment on the largest model, the 50z.

While the company still builds those IPS-powered boats, the MJM 35z, designed by Doug Zurn of Zurn Yacht Design, is the company’s first foray into outboard power. The latest generation of outboards have proven themselves to be engineered to provide the kind of performance, NVH abatement (noise, vibration, harshness), and efficiency that discerning cruisers welcome aboard.

Features Inspection

Let’s have a closer look at the MJM 35z and see all of the features that make this a comfortable cruising yacht.

MJM 35z single-deck layout

The single-deck layout from the companionway aft makes it easy for guests to get around even in sporty conditions.


All MJM Yachts are built at Boston Boat Works using proven high-tech methods including wet prepreg construction, which means that Eglass and Kevlar fabrics are impregnated with epoxy resin prior to layup and, in conjunction with Corecell coring material, placed in a mold to be oven cured. The result is a lightweight, stiff, and strong hull that is fused to a cored deck structure to create a monococque. Every other aspect of the boat, from performance to fit-and-finish looks and feels better because the boat makes her start with this solid foundation.

Stern Platform

The twin 350-hp Mercury Verados are mounted in a splashwell in the swim platform, which has a synthetic teak deck that allows full access to both sides and ahead for simplified daily checks and engine inspection, as well as any required service. The outboard installation is clean, with steering and rigging lines taking up minimal space.

The swim platform has longer sections extending to either side of the outboards, which help it serve its function for swimming and boarding. There’s full access across from one side to the other in front of the engines. A fresh water shower is to the port side. The false transom has rod holders and beverage holders on top to each side. A center grabrail is a good safety touch on the aft side of the platform. There’s a transom seat on the forward side, in the cockpit.

MJM 35z platform extends

The platform extends to either side of the outboards, allowing for more complete engine care, even away from the dock.

MJM 35z shower

The pullout shower to port on the swim platform has a fold-up cover and a separate mixing valve.

MJM 35z rod and beverage

Everything an angler could hope for is on the false transom: rod holders and beverage holders, with a grabrail for safety in between.


Both transom gates open outward to allow them to drain the cockpit quickly should the boat ship a following sea. The cockpit has opposing seating fore and aft, with two aft-facing benches to both sides at the forward end of the cockpit. Each seat has a locker beneath it, adding to the stowage capacity of the boat. The forward seats each have a step to the side deck built into the molding and finished with non-skid.

MJM 35z grab handle

The transom seat has a grab handle positioned for the occupants to hold on, per ABYC specification. Those hatches to port and starboard house mechanical equipment.

MJM 35z portside cockpit locker

In the portside cockpit locker are batteries for the genset (and the port engine, not shown) and the steering pumps, as well as some tidy rigging for air conditioning and other systems, all well labeled.

MJM 35z stowage space

With the lockers open, the cockpit shows off the available stowage space.

MJM 35z transom seat locker

The locker beneath the transom seat contains some of the rigging for the outboards and also some interesting features: Built-in stowage bags keep fenders handy in this cavernous space, and flexible tubes drain the beverage holders out of the aft ventilation grates.

Hull-side doors are in the cockpit to both port and starboard providing a 16” (40.64 cm) opening and a 7” (17.78 cm) step. The doors are held open with magnetic catches, so they’re easier to close without having to feel for latches. Beverage holders are just abaft the doors, recessed into the bulwarks.

MJM 35z hullside doors

The hullside doors open inward and make boarding from a floating dock easy. They have a rugged stainless steel latch as well as an aft handrail on the covering boards that makes reboarding even safer.

MJM 35z aft-facing seats

The cockpit’s aft-facing seats are a little larger than just for one person, and the handle to lift the seat for access to the locker beneath, but it also serves as a grabrail.

Side Decks

Transiting from cockpit to foredeck is made simpler by a number of features, including steps to outboard of the seats to either side of the cockpit, along with vertical stainless grabrails mounted on the aft coachroof supports. The side decks are 9 ½” (24.13 cm) wide amidships and 12” (30.48 cm) wide forward and are finished in nonskid in a contrasting color to the white decks. There’s a grabrail along the coachroof that lends security until one reaches the bow rail that rises from the toerail at the B-pillar of the coachroof on either side.

MJM 35z vertical grabrail

Our test captain steps up to the side deck to move forward, always keeping one hand for the boat. Note the vertical grabrail on that forward pillar as well.


On the foredeck, the trunk cabin and working deck areas all have that same buff-colored nonskid as the side decks. The 28” (71.12 cm) high bowrail lends security to this area. Fully forward, there are two 12" (30.48 cm) cleats with a clear run to the caprail mounted chafing gear. Those fairleads are designed to also serve as bollards to secure docklines. In the center is an electric windlass, managing the all-chain rode that leads out to the stainless anchor roller. Foot-control switches are to the starboard side. There is no access to the chain locker from the foredeck, instead there is access through the forward bulkhead belowdecks. There’s a rail-mounted LED spotlight that is controlled remotely from the helm.

MJM 35z three hatches

There are three hatches on the trunk cabin as well as additional rails to help those on the foredeck to feel safe and protected. The hatches offer light and ventilation to the interior spaces below, and, in the case of the forward hatch, egress as well.

Main Deck

Continuing forward from the cockpit into the main deck area beneath the fixed coachroof, the deck remains on a single level, making it easy to get around, and a rail on the starboard side of the walkway between the cockpit seats gives something to grab. The area on our test boat is enclosed with Strataglass curtains, which can be rolled up for ventilation. Full glass windows that slide open are another option.

Upholstered settees to either side have lockers beneath. A pedestal-table base is set into the walkthrough but it’s off centerline. The varnished pedestal table has expandable leaves that let the owner use as much or as little as needed, and still allow people to move fore and aft. Speaking of moving fore and aft, two rails on the overhead let people move about safely while underway in reasonable conditions.

MJM 35z overhead rails

Our test captain held onto the vertical grabrail aft. Note that the rails in the overhead are placed to make it safe to transit the walkway.

MJM 35z pedestal table

The pedestal table has a deep shine and expands with leaves.

MJM 35z large lockers

The settees to either side open to large lockers sized to hold folding bicycles, golf clubs, and even hard-sided suitcases.

MJM 35z water tanks

Also contained in the locker beneath the settee to port is one of two fresh water tanks, and the water heater.

MJM 35z double clamped hoses

Our test captain admired the double-clamped hoses, with guards on the clamps, as well as the tidy rigging and universally labeled components.

Helm Area

The helm is to starboard at the forward end of the coachroof. The helm position is handy to the companion seating as well as the main-deck social area.

MJM 35z gyro stabilizer

The helm and companion seats are not isolated from the settees where guests will gather. That large hatch in the deck gives access to the optional Seakeeper gyro stabilizer.

MJM 35z flatscreen tv

A flat-screen TV folds down from its secure position near the helm at the forward end. Note the opening hatches in the coachroof, equipped with shades and bug screens.

Helm Dashboard

The helm dash on our test boat has an upper panel with a 15” (38.1 cm) Raymarine multifunction display along with an autopilot and the Mercury VesselView helm display, (this is basically a rebranded Simrad display with dedicated control and monitoring of the outboard functions). The lower panel has the electrical switches, the bow thruster control, and the Mercury Joystick Piloting for Outboards control on the port side. Moving starboard is the remote control for the bow spotlight.

Further to starboard is the Zipwake auto trim tab control, the remote for the main display, and the Digital Throttle and Shift with its selectable features, including Single Lever Control, Engine Sync, and RPM Adjust. On the vertical aft panel of the helm console are the bilge-pump controls and the generator panel. The steering wheel is wood and stainless.

MJM chose placed the VHF on the outboard bulkhead. The helm seat is from Stidd and fully adjustable, with a teak footrest. We appreciate that MJM included two grab handles at the helm – one to port on the console itself and one to starboard, outboard on the coachroof support.

MJM 35z uncluttered helm

This uncluttered helm is designed to pay close attention to sightlines, and the lower edge of the side window does not interfere when looking to the sides, without requiring the operator to lean out.

MJM 35z side power

The Mercury Joystick Piloting for Outboards is positioned near the Side Power bow thruster control.

MJM 35z zipwake interceptor style

The Mercury throttle-and-shift binnacle is accompanied by the ZipWake interceptor-style trim tabs and the remote keypad for the electronics (in case it’s too rough for a touchscreen).

MJM 35z stidd helm seat

The Stidd helm seat is ergonomically designed and adjusts in numerous ways for operator comfort, and even rotates to serve as an additional seat for social gatherings.

MJM 35z windshield panes

The windshield panes each open on hinges at their top edges, and our test boat was equipped with the power rams which make them easy to open and adjust while underway. They open all the way to the full horizontal position, so the frame isn’t right in the line of sight. A manual system is available.

On a couple’s boat such as this, the companion seat is key and here it’s done as well as the helm seat. The grab handle setup mirrors the helm, and goes one better with one on the fiddled flat placed forward of the seat. A flat panel can accommodate another multifunction navigation display if desired.

The Stidd companion seat is the same model as the helm seat, and MJM even placed the same design of teak footrest before it. To starboard is the trifold top door section designed with a lip that serves as chart flat. Open that door and the lower pocket door to access the ignitions, the Fusion stereo, and the 12-volt and 120-volt electrical panels.

MJM 35z companion station

The companion station to port is designed to keep both halves of a cruising couple engaged and happy with good lines of sight.

MJM 35z companionway

The companionway is slightly to port from the centerline and opens wide with a two-part door. Also shown is the Stidd companion seat, the same as the helm seat.

Lower-Deck Accommodations

We transition to the lower deck through the companionway. That trifold top door section folds out of the way and a pocket door slides to port.


Down three steps is a galley to port. At the bottom of the stairs, the headroom is 6’1” (1.85 m). The galley has a Corian counter, a sink with a cutting-board cover, a single-burner electric cooktop, microwave, and drawer-style refrigerator. There’s a dedicated trash receptacle, and a fiddled shelf above has enough of an edge that it also serves as a functional grabrail.

There are lockers for stowing appliances and provisions that are behind the counter and have sliding doors that don’t sweep the counter when opened and soft close. Drawers are on the front of the cabinet beneath the cooktop. The galley is all beautifully finished in cherry joinery that’s well made and suitably nautical.

MJM 35z compact galley

The compact galley has a shelf above that will stow gear with a rail that can help keep the cook upright in rough seas.

Opposite the galley is a hanging locker with a louvered door in cherry, and the cherry door to the head compartment. The berth area is forward, including a V-berth with a pedestal table between for use as a dining table or desk, with foldout leaves.

MJM 35z duffel shelves

Duffel shelves are to port and starboard over the V-berth, and have a lipped edge to keep soft luggage in place. Note the teak decking, finished with epoxy instead of varnish for durability and ease of maintenance.

The head is located to starboard. It is a wet head with pullout shower in the sink, Corian counters and stowage behind cherry doors with push-pull latches. Lockers behind the vanity counter have sliding, soft-close doors, and are topped with a fiddled shelf. The sole is finished in nonskid. There’s an opening portlight for ventilation and an opening hatch in the overhead that serves as a skylight.

MJM 35z molded fiberglass

The head is bright with molded fiberglass and a light-colored Corian counter.

Fine Finish

The cherry woodwork represents an attention to detail, even down to the framing of the portlights. The seams are all even and there’s no need for caulking to hide defects because everything seems to fit together.

MJM 35z curved top

Notice the curved top to the head door, just one detail, while the fit of these door trim pieces on the overhead is impeccable.


The MJM 35z has an LOA of 37’11” (11.56 m), a beam of 11’ (3.35 m), and a draft of 28” (71 cm). With an empty weight of 13,300 lb. (6,033 kg), 63-percent fuel and three people, we estimated our test weight at 14,923 lb. (6,769 kg).

MJM 35z lower strakes

The MJM 35z knocked down any spray on the lower strakes on the light chop of our test day.

With the twin 350-hp Mercury Verados turning 17 pitch Rev 4 propellers and spooled up to 5900 RPM, we reached our top speed of 40.9 knots. With the throttle pulled back to 4000 RPM we measured the boat’s best economy at 24.5 knots. It was at that speed that the 20.5 GPH fuel burn translated into 1.2 NMPG and a range of 269.1 nm, all while still holding back a 10-percent reserve of the boat’s 250-gallon (946.35 L) total fuel capacity.

MJM 35z spray


In the light chop of our test day we had no pounding, and in fact got better top speeds than MJM got during their tests: 40.9 knots vs their 38.6. She’s also a well-mannered boat. In hard turns, she drops her shoulder slightly to give a gentle roll into the turn. We noticed no ventilation of the prop, even when left in the trimmed position. If we kept her hard over, she bled off speed initially, and then recovered and held the speed so we didn’t have to accelerate into the turn.

MJM 35z sliced

The MJM 35z sliced through the wake of our camera boat and kept right on running.


The MJM 35z accelerates on a nearly level attitude with no loss of sightlines to the horizon and then settles into her 5-degree bow high attitude. She’s also quick to accelerate, reaching planing speed in an average 4 seconds flat. She continued on to 20 mph in 6 seconds and 30 came and went in 9.5 seconds.

MJM 35z hard acceleration

The MJM 35z keeps the crew happy even under hard acceleration.


Coming into the dock, we brought her in between a t-head and a rock wall against a 20-knot crosswind and saw no problem with her characteristics. The joystick was dialed into this installation and I liked the positioning of the Mercury joystick just behind the bow thruster stick and how both can easily be worked with one hand. And it was in that manner that we slipped her in and held her while the lines were tied.

MJM 35z mercury joystick

The Mercury joystick let our test captain bring the MJM 35z in easily.

MJM 35z lines of sight

The lines of sight from the helm, coupled with a docile, easy-to-handle boat, made docking the MJM 35z a simple task for our test captain.

Standard Equipment

  • Stidd 500 helm and companion seats on telescoping swivel bases
  • Electric Zipwake 450S Interceptor trim tabs
  • General Ecology Seagull water purifier
  • Retractable Armstrong swim/safety ladder on transom


$650,000 - $700,000


Warranty information to come.


To design a boat for the way it’s used 80 percent of the time, as MJM has said it does in the past, is a sensible approach that serves as a guidepost for many decisions. And when we inspect the boat and consider that rule, we see why decisions are made the way they are.

Overall, the MJM 35z was a pleasure to drive because she is docile and visibility from the helm was excellent. The idea of building a boat like this with outboard power may change the equation for many boaters. The reason is that friends and family who are used to center consoles and sportboats will find the seating comfortable and the shade of the hardtop welcome.

The placement of the helm within the social area is a key to the MJM design philosophy. The boat has been designed with its own version the flying bridge social area: It’s even been called, “the main deck flying bridge,” and offers similar views (albeit much lower) and companionship.

Most importantly, the companion station elevates and involves the cruising partner – well, there’s a reason you’re together, right?

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