2011 Best Boats Innovation Award: Beneteau Sense 50

In many ways, the Beneteau Sense 50 was the hit of the Annapolis boat show. The 50-foot performance cruiser with modern Euro styling was tied off in a small square basin just a few feet longer than the boat. Every hour on the hour her crew cast off the dock lines and spun the boat in its own length, stopping every 90 degrees to drive directly sideways up to the dock. It did so with ease, even in
Author:
Publish date:
Social count:
0
screenshotbeneteau

In many ways, the Beneteau Sense 50 was the hit of the Annapolis boat show. The 50-foot performance cruiser with modern Euro styling was tied off in a small square basin just a few feet longer than the boat. Every hour on the hour her crew cast off the dock lines and spun the boat in its own length, stopping every 90 degrees to drive directly sideways up to the dock. It did so with ease, even in a brisk wind. The performance never failed to draw a round of applause from the watching crowd.

The technology that makes this possible is Beneteau’s new Dock & Go system, comprised of a powerful bow thruster coupled to a rotating sail drive that spins through 360 degrees in less than a second. An autopilot supplies positioning, heading and rate-of-turn information. The system is controlled with a simple joystick. It takes sophisticated software and some complicated machinery to translate joystick movements into commands that simultaneously rotate the sail drive and power it and the bow thruster to smoothly move the boat in any direction. But from the operator’s perspective it is very easy to use.

This kind of technology has been available in the powerboat world for several years now, and as such is well tested and proven. But this is the first time we’ve seen it on a sailboat. The Beneteau system is a joint effort of Groupe Beneteau and ZF, an automotive giant and major manufacturer of marine transmissions. At one stroke, Beneteau has taken the stress out of docking in difficult and tight quarters. It is a considerable achievement. As of 2011, the system will be offered on all larger Beneteaus and Jeanneaus. For more information, visit beneteauusa.com

SPECS

LOA: 49ft. 2in

LWL: 49ft. 2in

BEAM: 15ft 11in

DRAFT: 5ft 6in

DISPLACEMENT: 31,195

SAIL AREA: 1,313 sq ft

Related

GG17-SAONA47-DX0796

Boat Review: Fountaine Pajot Saona 47

Here’s a riddle: What is less than 50ft long, has two hulls, three big cabins and four decks? Answer: The Fountaine Pajot Saona 47. In fact, it may even be five levels if you count the large engine rooms. This boat is a “space craft” in every sense of the word.DESIGN & ...read more

RichardBennettMIDNIGHT-RAMBLER3249x202

Storm Sails: Do you Need Them?

Many sailors embarking on ocean passages will take along the obligatory storm jib and trysail, with the vague idea that they may come in handy. Few sailors, however, have a real understanding of how and when to set them.It doesn’t help matters when we hear from seasoned sailors ...read more

IntheWater(1)

Boaters University Unveils Rescue Course

Boaters University has just announced its latest online course, Safety & Rescue at Sea, taught by Mario Vittone, whose name you might recognize from the pages of our sister publication, Soundings Magazine and his Lifelines blog.Mario Vittone is a retired U.S. Coast Guard rescue ...read more

IMG_20170920_132819

How to: Installing New Electronics

I had been sailing my Tayana 42, Eclipse, for a few years without any installed electronics on board. I’d gone pretty far up and down the New England and Mid-Atlantic coasts with paper charts, the Navionics app on my Android phone, a hand-bearing compass and the ship’s compass. ...read more

02-Douglas-Adkins---Coriolis---Orcas-Island-KevinLightPhoto

A Phoenix-like Concordia

Cutting a fine wake on the cobalt-blue waters of West Sound on Orcas Island, Coriolis sparkles like a diamond. Her lovely silhouette is offset by emerald forests that frame the ocean, within spitting distance of the border with Canada. Seen up close, this Concordia yawl is a ...read more

IMG_1051

The Latest Boat Trends from Dusseldorf

The world’s biggest boat and watersports show, held in Düsseldorf on the banks of Germany’s Rhine River each January, is the place to scope out emerging trends in the boat design and building.What would be the new trends for 2018 and beyond? Hint—sophisticated electronics figure ...read more

TOTW_PromoSite

SAIL's Tip of the Week

Presented by Vetus-Maxwell.Got a tip? Send it to sailmail@sailmagazine.comGood ConnectionsI wish I’d had a dollar for every time I’ve cobbled together an electrical fitting with a “that’s good enough” shrug. An old shipwright once taught me that “good enough is not good enough” ...read more

tides2

Gear Test: Tides Marine Sailtrack

Gravity is an important force at work on a sailboat. It keeps the boat upright, it makes the anchor drop to the bottom, and it makes the mainsail slide neatly down the mast to be flaked and put away at the end of the day… until it doesn’t.In the case of dropping the mainsail, the ...read more