New Boats Debut at Fall Shows

It’s fall, and boat show season is upon us. It kicked off on the East Coast with the Newport International Boat Show, in France with the Grand Pavois de La Rochelle, and in England with the Southampton Boat Show. A jetlagged Peter Nielsen visited all three in one week. Here’s what he saw…
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It’s fall, and boat show season is upon us. It kicked off on the East Coast with the Newport International Boat Show, in France with the Grand Pavois de La Rochelle, and in England with the Southampton Boat Show. A jetlagged Peter Nielsen visited all three in one week. Here’s what he saw…


Opening day of the Newport International Boat show was bright and sunny, which showed off new arrivals like the Mystery 35, a slim cruiser from England, to good effect. The retro feel of this boat extends to the cockpit, dominated by the tiller


Here’s another take on cockpit design, this time on the Moody 45 Classic, a British import. Those wrap-around seats are comfy in the extreme


Jeanneau’s new Sun Odyssey 439 features understated, subtle styling belowdeck; the nav station is cunningly disguised as a desk


The Sun Odyssey 379 looks like a fine cruiser, and the optional swiveling plotter mount puts the screen in just the right place


The little sister to the award-winning Beneteau Sense 50, the Sense 43, shares the same styling and functional layout


Then it was on to France and the annual boat show in La Rochelle, Brittany. The French sure love their sailing. This is one of three big marinas holding thousands of boats.


The French also love multihulls, though boats like this Bamba 50 are rare even here. It’s a motorsailer catamaran; if you’ve got a stiff breeze on the beam, just unroll that big genoa and shut down the monster diesels


Big ketches are making an appearance again. This is the Alubat 58, an imposing boat built in aluminum by the French yard


The Amel 55 is the replacement for the Amel 54, a cult boat if ever there was one. It’s bigger, faster and more modern-looking, but it retains the ketch rig and the interior layout is practically identical

It was the first showing for Fountaine Pajot’s new Sanya 57, a big, bold and beautifully appointed cruising cat. Among its features: a big solar panel array on the hardtop, and a large lounging/sunbathing cockpit alongside the helm station


And here we have the Nautitech 441, a fast and well built cruising cat. This one is due to appear at the Miami boat show in February


I was taken with this Dutch-built folding-wing trimaran, the Trimax 1080. The 36-footer weighs under 3 tons and apparently hits 20 knots with ease

And then there was this little beauty, the Bandit 800, built in France. Carbon fiber rotating mast, self-tacking jib and room down below for a family of four who like to cruise at double-digit speeds; what more do you need?

The Malango 9.99 is a perfect example of the kind of niche boat that thrives in France. Fast and pretty, it can dry out on a stub keel and twin rudders, and there’s a dinghy garage under the cockpit – not bad for a 34-footer


From the department of “what on earth is that” comes the Multimono - like a mutated dory or skiff, with the crew weight on the wings providing most of the righting moment, and a 30hp outboard to get you up on the plane when the wind dies

The next big thing in sailboat design? The Dynamic Stability System features a laterally sliding fin that generates lift and allows the boat to sail faster while heeling less. It was seen on an unfinished prototype boat

The Minibee 650 is a perky little trailerable cruiser with offshore credentials. Twin flip-up rudders and a retracting bulb keel allow it to take the ground. Note the hull chine


So a cruising cat doesn’t have enough hulls for you? Perhaps you should look at the Neel 50, a 50-foot cruising trimaran


Now we’re in England, at the Southampton boat show. This was my first sighting of the Broadblue 345, a “starter” cat with an amazing amount of interior volume for its size. The cockpit enclosure is a must for British weather

Now that chines are all the rage, the RM 1060 is at the cutting edge of cruiser design. The hard chine plywood/epoxy hull is well finished and tough, and twin keels allow it to take the ground when the tide goes out


The beautiful Oyster 655 displays a subtle but effective mainsheet system

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