July 13th 2017. By Lenny Rudow.

Cabo 35 Express: A Compact Fishing Yacht in High Demand

The Cabo 35 Express was a smash hit among bluewater anglers, and remains popular on the brokerage market today.

Cabo yachts built a number of convertible and express-style fishing boats, ranging from a 31 up to the beefy Cabo 52 Express, but one of the most popular offerings they ever created was the 35 Express. Small enough to be run economically but large enough to handle far offshore waters, it was a top choice for serious bluewater anglers in search of the perfect saltwater fishing boat.


Most Cabo 35 Expresses you see on the market, like this 1999 model currently offered for sale in Brielle, NJ, are rigged for serious offshore angling.

Most Cabo 35 Expresses you see on the market, like this 1999 model currently offered for sale in Brielle, NJ, are rigged for serious offshore angling.

Outfitted with twin straight-shaft diesel inboards like 435 HP CAT 3208 TA’s or 450 HP 3126’s, a 35 Express can be expected to cruise in the upper 20-knot range and hit a top-end of 30 to 34 knots. Range at cruise, thanks to a 400 gallon fuel capacity, is in excess of 300 nautical miles. Some newer models had Cummins QSC 8.3 diesels, bumping the total horsepower up to 1080. Engine access is via a lifting helm-deck, a system which Cabo adopted earlier than most builders of the time and which provides exceptional engine access for maintenance chores. Wiring in the engine room (and throughout the boat) is among the best seen on any sportfishing yachts, period, with well-marked, loomed, ramrod-straight runs.

Cabos in general including the 35 were known for excellent construction. Premium materials including vinylester resins, Baltec hullside coring, biaxial-stitched fiberglass, and heavy-duty hardware were used throughout. As a general rule the Cabo 35’s seen on the brokerage market tend to be solid vessels, and most were also well-maintained as they tended to be owned by very serious fishermen who ran far offshore on a regular basis.

As one would expect from an express of this size, the cabin had an open layout with sleeping accommodations forward, a galley and stand-up head to port, and a settee with dinette to starboard. The 35 was offered with two berthing arrangements, an off-set Queen berth forward to port, or a V-berth with two single bunks and two Pullman berths. The dinette could also be converted into a berth for extra sleeping accommodations. The majority of the boats sold, however, had the Queen berth arrangement.

The 35 Express was introduced in 1992 and was built through 2008. The hull design was updated in 2001, in an attempt to reduce spray and improve the ride. Cockpit layout remained the same, however, as it earned the accolades of anglers of all stripes. The cockpit is just over 100 square feet, twin macerated fishboxes are in the deck, the port module houses a rigging station with a sink, and the starboard module houses a cooler that on some boats was fitted with a freezer plate. There’s also a tackle stowage module aft of the helm.

Cabo also produced a flybridge version of this boat, though fewer were sold and as a result, there are fewer listed on YachtWorld.com today. Along with the expected differences of having a flybridge and an enclosed saloon, this version of the boat also had a (very small) second stateroom with over-under berths.

The Cabo 35 express is a boat in demand, and is likely to remain so for the foreseeable future. As a result they retain their value well, and current offerings on the market range from just over $135,000 to about $275,000.

See all Cabo 35 Express listings.

LOA: 35’0” * Beam: 13’0” * Draft: 2’6” * Displacement: 20,000 lbs. * Transom Deadrise: 17 degrees * Fuel Capacity: 400 gal. * Water Capacity: 80 gal.

Lenny Rudow
With over two decades of experience in marine journalism, Lenny Rudow has contributed to publications including YachtWorld, boats.com, Boating Magazine, Marlin Magazine, Boating World, Saltwater Sportsman, Texas Fish & Game, and many others. Lenny is a graduate of the Westlawn School of Yacht Design, and he has won numerous BWI and OWAA writing awards.