The T-bird's a much better boat, IMO. The Hughes/Northstar 26, despite it's good lineage (S&S - as was most of the Hughes line) is a pudgy, not-so-pretty boat that looks too short for it's other dimensions (again, my opinion....)
1984 Fast/Nicholson 345 "FastForward"
".. there is much you could do at sea with common sense.. and very little you could do without it.."
Capt G E Ericson (from "The Cruel Sea" by Nicholas Monsarrat)