2012 Best Boats
One of two new aft-cockpit designs from the venerable Moody yard on England’s River Hamble, the 45AC is a classic-looking cruiser that combines a traditional raked transom with a nearly plumb bow and a long, low cabintrunk. A tall fractional rig, fin keel and large, partially balanced spade rudder should ensure sprightly performance under sail.
The new-look Oceanis line has now expanded to four boats, with more to come. Designers Finot-Conq have focused on making the 45 user-friendly, with a small, easy-to-tack jib, a helm seat that lifts to reveal a wide-open transom, and voluminous accommodations in a hull designed to be well-mannered under sail.
This boat’s 50ft big sister was the star of the show at Annapolis last October. The Sense 43 shares the same sharp styling and daring interior treatment. Size apart, the main difference from the bigger Sense is that it can’t be specified with the optional Dock & Go joystick control. beneteauusa.com
LOA: 43ft, 4in
With its modern lines and dramatic deck saloon configuration, which puts the cabin sole at the same level as the cockpit— la the typical cruising multihull—the Moody 45DS has been turning heads for a couple of years over in Europe. Now it’s headed for U.S. waters, where its nearly plumb stem and transom, dual rudders, twin wheels, spacious accommodations and unique approach to cruising are sure
Designed by Judel/Vrolijk, the Hanse 445 features the same aggressively angular look that is a hallmark of the current Hanse line. A plethora of hatches and a pair of large hull ports let plenty of light into the saloon. A self-tacking jib makes the boat easy to handle, while more than 1,000ft2 of working sail provides lots of horsepower on passage.