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The Boats of Fall - Boat Show Special - Sail

Sailing is back. Actually, it never went away — even during the lean years of recession, people found ways to go out on boats

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As the economy improves, they are also considering buying boats again, and this fall the choice of new sailboats at the shows in Newport, R.I., Annapolis, Md., and Fort Lauderdale, Fla., will entice potential buyers to think about taking the wheel or tiller of their own, rather than sailing OPBs (other people’s boats).

Among the new sailboats that will be introduced is Beneteau’s Oceanis 38, which comes in three distinctly different configurations to suit the sailing styles of the company’s clientele. Catalina Yachts is rolling out a simple but sporty 27-foot daysailer/weekender that promises to interest families, upsizsers and downsizers alike.

Domestic demand for cruising yachts in Germany has been softer than normal because of Europe’s muddied economic outlook, but that didn’t slow Bavaria Yachts, which has rolled out five new models and will bring two of them to the United States this fall. Fans of German engineering also may take delight in the Dehler 38, which marks the 50th anniversary of the fabled brand, which was struggling before Hanse Yachts bought it.

The strong showing of U.S. builders includes the luxurious Morris M46 and the equally spiffy Alerion 41, two cruising yachts that combine classic looks with modern performance. J/Boats is rolling out the new J/88, a racer/weekender that follows last year’s smash hit J/70. Aeroyacht’s U.S.-built Alpha 42, which debuts in Annapolis, will offer multihull fans a domestic alternative in the midsize range of cruising catamarans.

Aeroyacht Alpha 42

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This new production cruising cat is the result of cooperation between Gregor Tarjan, principal of Aeroyacht, and naval architect Marc Anassis, of Alpha-1 Composites. Built by a U.S. company (Alpha Yachts) with a production facility in Patchogue, N.Y., this boat lays claim to the “Made in the USA” label. The Alpha 42 promises versatility and performance with such features as a modern hull design with wave-piercing bows and multiple chines that help maximize interior space and add longitudinal stiffness, optional daggerboards and a forward lounge that seats six. The builder says there will be custom options for the interior. The boat will be shown at the U.S. Sailboat Show in Annapolis in October.

LOA: 42 feet, 1 inch

BEAM: 23 feet, 10 inches

DRAFT (boards up/ down): 28 inches/ 6 feet, 8 inches

DRAFT (with keels): 3 feet, 6 inches

DISPLACEMENT: 20,000 pounds

SAIL AREA (standard): 938 square feet

ENGINES (standard): twin 30 hp

PRICE: $395,000

Alerion 41

Alerion goes offshore. The recently launched 41 is the largest Alerion thus far. It continues the tried-and-true concept that started with the Alerion 28 and meshes classic lines and proportions with modern rigs and appendages. All sheets and control lines are led aft out of sight, so the boat can be sailed single-handedly or by a small crew. The boat has a fold-down transom cover that reveals swim steps and a boarding ladder. The cockpit is equipped with reversible electric winches, a large steering wheel and large seats. Below, the owner’s cabin is forward, and the guest accommodations are aft and to starboard, with two additional berths in the saloon. Interior trim choices are American cherry or teak.

LOA: 40 feet, 6 inches

LWL: 30 feet, 6 inches

BEAM: 11 feet, 6 inches

DRAFT (standard/shoal): 5 feet, 11 inches /5 feet

DISPLACEMENT: 16,000 pounds

BALLAST: 6,000 pounds

SAIL AREA: 942 square feet

ENGINE: 40-hp Saildrive

PRICE: $569,000


Germany’s largest sportboat manufacturer has been rolling out new models at a torrid pace by expanding its Vision line and revamping the Cruiser series. It’s proof positive of the company’s successful collaboration with Farr Yacht Design of Annapolis and Design Unlimited in the U.K. However, only two of five recently introduced models will find their way to U.S. shores this fall: the Vision 42 and the Bavaria Cruiser 41. The former is a continuation of the Vision concept, which features an asymmetrical cockpit layout and targets private owners with a desire for comfort and elegance. The Cruiser 41 maximizes the interior space of an existing hull shape with modern and larger windows, more headroom, additional stowage and an updated interior for an improved look and feel.

Bavaria Cruiser 41

Bavaria Cruiser 41:

LOA: 40 feet, 6 inches

LWL: 35 feet, 4 inches

BEAM: 13 feet

DRAFT (shoal keel): 5 feet, 5 inches

DISPLACEMENT: 19,135 pounds

SAIL AREA: 883 square feet

ENGINE: 38-hp Saildrive

PRICE: $247,000

Bavaria Vision 42:

LOA: 42 feet

LWL: 37 feet, 5 inches

BEAM: 13 feet, 3 inches

DRAFT (shoal keel): 5 feet, 4 inches

DISPLACEMENT: 21,605 pounds

SAIL AREA: 947 square feet

ENGINE: 40-hp Saildrive

PRICE: $267,000


The Beneteau dock will be packed, as always, and among the boats in display will be the new Oceanis 38. Designed by Finot-Conq, this boat is available in three configurations: daysailer, weekender and family cruising boat. The main difference among the versions is the interior layout, with two or three cabins and different styles of accommodations below deck. A continuous full-length chine, deep-draft T-shaped keel and twin rudders hint at a certain performance bent. Also shown will be the Oceanis 55, which made its U.S. debut earlier this year. Designed by Berret Racoupeau, the flagship of the Oceanis line has hard chines and a mast that’s farther aft for better sailing balance, according to Beneteau. Plenty of storage, as many as five cabins and larger windows in the cabins make the 55 a comfortable choice that resonates with big families.

Oceanis 38:

LOA: 37 feet, 9 inches

LWL: 35 feet, 2 inches

BEAM: 13 feet, 1 inch

DRAFT (shoal/deep): 5 feet, 3 inches/6 feet, 9 inches

BALLAST (shoal/deep): 4,540/3,945 pounds

SAIL AREA: 748 square feet

ENGINE: 30 hp


Oceanis 55:

Beneteau Oceanis 55

LOA: 55 feet, 1 inch

LWL: 52 feet, 6 inches

BEAM: 16 feet, 3 inches

DRAFT (deep/standard/shoal): 7 feet, 3 inches/5 feet, 11 inches/4 feet, 9 inches

DISPLACEMENT: 36,800 pounds

BALLAST (deep/standard/shoal): 11,680/10,934/9,678 pounds

SAIL AREA: 1,437 square feet

ENGINE: 75 hp

PRICE: $650,000

Catalina 275 Sport

Catalina’s latest Sport Series boat targets those who want to downsize and enjoy the sport with less bulk, as well as those who are trading up from dinghies or smaller keelboats. Suitable for weekend cruising, daysailing and buoy racing, the 275 is expected to appeal to a range of sailors with her long waterline, lower freeboard, modest beam and large cockpit. Catalina says accommodations with an enclosed head are “adequate for weekending or just getting out of the weather.” Retail pricing was not set at press time.

LOA: 27 feet, 6 inches

LWL: 26 feet, 7 inches

BEAM: 8 feet, 4 inches

DRAFT (fin/wing keel): 4 feet, 5 inches/3 feet, 5 inches

DISPLACEMENT: 4,800 pounds

BALLAST: 2,000 pounds

SAIL AREA: 380 square feet


Dehler 38

Dehler, now part of the Hanse Group, introduced the spiffy 38 just in time for the company’s 50th anniversary. This performance cruiser was designed by Judel/Vrolijk to satisfy a range of uses, including sailing with a family and a small crew, comfortable cruising for two and racing with a performance package that includes a carbon stick, a deeper keel and more sail area. The boat offers features that aren’t necessarily standard with the competition in this segment, according to Judel/Vrolijk’s managing director, Torsten Conradi. The mast is positioned farther aft to increase the foretriangle, there is an option for a racing-grade deep keel, and the boat is equipped with a large and rather pretty fold-down swim platform that closes off the cockpit at the stern.

LOA: 37 feet, 1 inch

LWL: 34 feet, 2 inches

BEAM: 12 feet, 4 inches

DRAFT (standard/deep/shoal): 6 feet, 7 inches/7 feet, 3 inches/5 feet, 3 inches

DISPLACEMENT (standard/deep/shoal): 15,600/14,900/16,000 pounds.

SAIL AREA (standard/competition): 853/931 square feet

ENGINE: 28-hp Saildrive

PRICE: $187,000 (standard model)


Two new models are on tap from the French builder. The Dufour 410 Grand’Large replaces the 405 and was designed for coastal cruising and occasional offshore passages. This dual-purpose boat has a wider stern with chines, a rig with upper shrouds attached to the hull for better load distribution and a small overlapping headsail. Below, the 410 beckons with different layout configurations in the forward cabin, more space aft, a movable nav desk in the saloon and choices for color and decor that include Moabi woodwork, solid hardwood trim, Corian countertops and laminated floorboards. The Dufour 500 replaces the 525 and the 485 and surprises with an unusual but very functional layout below, with a forward galley that is separated into two segments. With bright surfaces, large windows and a nifty lighting system, the saloon of Dufour’s new flagship feels more like a loft than a sailboat interior. There are only two winches in the cockpit to better separate the areas for sailing (aft) and recreation (forward).

Dufour 410 GL:

LOA: 40 feet, 6 inches

LWL: 36 feet, 6 inches

BEAM: 13 feet, 9 inches

DISPLACEMENT: 20,326 pounds

DRAFT (shoal/deep): 5 feet, 10 inches/6 feet, 8 inches

BALLAST (shoal/deep): 5,952/5,732 pounds

SAIL AREA (standard/performance): 792/844 square feet

ENGINE: (standard/option) 40/55 hp

PRICE: $270,000

Dufour 500 GL:

LOA: 48 feet, 11 inches

LWL: 45 feet, 2 inches

BEAM: 15 feet, 8 inches

DISPLACEMENT: 31,305 pounds

DRAFT (shoal/deep): 6 feet, 4 inches/7 feet, 6 inches

BALLAST: (shoal/deep) 9,587/9,259 pounds

SAIL AREA: (standard/performance) 1,076/1,184 square feet

ENGINE: (standard/optional) 75/110 hp

PRICE: $436,774

Hanse 345

Replacing the Hanse 355, the new boat was introduced last year in Amsterdam and is making its U.S. debut. Though shorter and narrower than her predecessor, the 345 has practically the same waterline length, which hints at improved performance. In addition to reworking the hull, which has more beam in the stern, and more freeboard and cockpit space, Hanse has stretched the cabin top. All sheets and control lines are led aft to be handled from the helm. Options include a mind-boggling number of interior decor choices and a double aft cabin. A T-shaped keel, self-tacking jib, full-battened mainsail and twin steering wheels are other defining features.

LOA: 34 feet, 1 inch

LWL: 31 feet, 3 inches

BEAM: 11 feet, 5 inches

DRAFT: (standard/shoal) 6 feet, 1 inch/5 feet, 1 inch

DISPLACEMENT: 13,640 pounds

BALLAST: (standard/shoal) 4,470/4,840 pounds

SAIL AREA: 592 square feet

ENGINE: 18-hp Saildrive

PRICE: $152,000


Following such popular models as the J/111 and J/70, this 29-footer is a racer/weekender with a large and variable sit-inside cockpit, an inboard engine and a simple interior that includes a head. J/Boats aims it at “small keelboat sailors looking for the next step up in speed and comfort and big-boat sailors looking to downsize to a more fun, affordable and manageable boat that can be single-handed.” A slippery hull shape, light displacement, a simple sail plan (no overlapping jibs) and a retractable bowsprit for an asymmetrical downwind sail are tried and true J/Boats features. The builder has found success with new designs but never forgets the needs of its core customers, who are looking for speed and fun without clutter. J/Boats touts a low cost of ownership, saying the boat is simple to maintain (no varnish) and can be trailer-sailed.

LOA: 29 feet, 3 inches

LWL: 26 feet, 11 inches

BEAM: 9 feet, 6 inches

DRAFT: 6 feet, 6 inches

DISPLACEMENT: 4,850 pounds

SAIL AREA (100 percent): 439 square feet

ENGINE: 12 hp

PRICE: $150,000

Morris M46

This fall, Morris is showing the new M46, which promises “maximum sailing performance and interior accommodation space.” Designed by Sparkman & Stephens, the M46 claims vestiges of the famous S&S yachts of yore, including Dorade and Stormy Weather. The elegant sweep of the sheer, her lavish overhangs and the neat proportion of freeboard and superstructures are pleasant to the eye, and her modern appendages and slim waterline hint at spirited sailing. She comes with flush hatches and a standard teak deck that enhance the appearance as much as the optional folding swim step, which is concealed under a stern hatch. It’s a cool boat for a cool million.

LOA: 46 feet, 9 inches

LWL: 37 feet, 11 inches

BEAM: 12 feet

DRAFT: 6 feet, 3 inches

DISPLACEMENT: 28,250 pounds

SAIL AREA: 1,054 square feet

ENGINE: 53 hp

PRICE: $1,098,000 

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October 2013 issue