The Evolution of the C&C 27 Cruiser-Racer


C&C 27 Mark III

C&C Yachts produced four versions-and nearly 1,000 hulls-of its popular C&C 27 boat. Called the C&C 27 Mark I, Mark II, Mark III, and Mark IV, these boats differed in various ways, but the hulls were similar. A fifth design, the C&C 27 Mark V, was a totally different design. Heres a look at the various editions of the C&C 27, and how they differed from one another.

Mark I: Production ran from 1970 to 1972; hull numbers 1 through 167. Shorter hull and shortest rigs, with single upper and single lower shrouds. Mainsail traveller mounted aft in cockpit. Standard equipped with tiller steering and Atomic 4 gas engine.

Mark II: Production ran from 1972 to 1974; hull numbers 168 through 451. Same hull and sail area as the Mark I. High-aspect rig was two feet taller than Mark I. Rigged with one upper and two lower shrouds. Same aft traveller, Atomic 4 engine, and tiller steering as Mark I.

Mark III: Production ran from 1974 to 1981; hull numbers 452 through 914. Hull similar to previous editions but six inches in length were added to cockpit/stern area. Traveller was moved forward to bridgedeck mount, and wheel steering became an option in 1975; diesel power became option in 1978 (Yanmar). Draft and sail area increased; ballast decreased; displacement remained same as previous marks. Rudder redesigned with higher aspect shape. Small interior changes made but basic layout the same as marks I and II.

Mark IV: Production ran from 1981 to 1982; hull numbers 915 through 979. Most changes in Mark IV were cosmetic; teak interior replaced with off-white melamine, trimmed with teak and dark-anodized aluminum. Forestay moved aft about seven inched to make way for a bow roller. Auxiliary power option upgraded to two-cylindar Yanmar.

Mark V: Production ran from 1984 to 1986; hull numbers 1 to 169 (Niagara-On-The-Lake plant) and 500 to 610 (Rhode Island plant). The Mark V is a completely different boat than the other 27s; it is not considered part of the evolution of those previous designs. Geared more toward racing sailors, the Mark V was designed to meet the Midget Ocean Racing Club (MORC) rule.

* Compiled with data from the C&C 27 owners association,

Darrell Nicholson, editor of Practical Sailor, grew up boating on Miami’s Biscayne Bay on everything from prams to Morgan ketches. Two years out of Emory University, after a brief stint as a sportswriter, he set out from Miami aboard a 60-year-old wooden William Atkin ketch named Tosca. For 10 years, he and writer-photographer Theresa Gibbons explored the Caribbean, crossed the Pacific, and cruised Southeast Asia aboard Tosca, working along the way as journalists and documenting their adventures for various travel and sailing publications, including Cruising World, Sail, Sailing, Cruising Helmsman, and Sailing World. Upon his return to land life, Darrell became the associate editor, then senior editor at Cruising World magazine, where he worked for five years. Before taking on the editor’s position at Practical Sailor, Darrell was the editor of Offshore magazine, a boating-lifestyle magazine serving the New England area. Darrell has won multiple awards from Boating Writer’s International, including the Monk Farnham award for editorial excellence. He holds a U.S. Coast Guard 100-ton Master license and has worked as a harbor pilot and skippered a variety of commercial charter boats.


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