Cruisers vs Coastal
Cruisers versus production boats. Quite the debate. After much research here is a list of the differences the way I humbly see it. Most of the differences are below the waterline and in the interior of the boat. That is why a newbie may not notice these details until after an initial look:
Typically older as most are no longer in production
Very solidly built hull
Typically "full keel" protecting the hull and the rudder
Due to the full keel (+drag) they are slower than "production" boats
Their interior designs are more classic but well kept they are great.
Their "capsize" ratio is double that of production boats. More resistant to it
Their "comfort ratio" shows they can ride the waves more gently due to their roundish hulls and full keels.
They have large fresh water tanks and fuel tanks. Can spend weeks at sea without refueling or refilling the water tanks. More autonomy.
In summary: Sacrifice a bit of speed/comfort for a lot of "seaworthiness" and a lot of "sea kindliness".
Typically newer since most are still in production today
Hull built for speed and lower costs...i.e. they are lighter so weaker.
Typically have a "wing" keel and a spade rudder. Low drag and fast... but Grounding or collisions could cause severe damage to both.
Interior designs clearly aim for the "wow" factor by today's comfort standards.
Their Capsize ratios are half of Cruisers. Ergo higher risk in high seas.
Their "Comfort ratio" is also about half of cruisers. They "pound" on the waves because they are flat hulls. Ergo uncomfortable in typical waves out at sea.
They have much smaller fresh water tanks and fuel so their "autonomy" at sea is reduced...again they are more designed for coastal navigation where a port is always 1 or 2 days away tops.
In summary: Sacrifice of "seaworthiness" and "seakindedness" in search for higher speed, cheaper cost and more interior comfort.