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New Boats: Just Launched

Although the torrent of new models from the big European builders has slowed to a trickle now that old product lines have mostly been replaced, there is still plenty going on: including the fact that the Italian yard Cantiere del Pardo, which was briefly owned by German giant Bavaria Yachts, has announced its first new Grand Soleil model in a couple of years.

Although the torrent of new models from the big European builders has slowed to a trickle now that old product lines have mostly been replaced, there is still plenty going on: including the fact that the Italian yard Cantiere del Pardo, which was briefly owned by German giant Bavaria Yachts, has announced its first new Grand Soleil model in a couple of years. 

The LC46 is a departure from the low, sleek designs typical of Grand Soleil, with tall topsides, a long cabintop, molded anchor platform and cockpit arch that should attract a broader audience than the racier models in the yard’s portfolio. This is not to say the boat is a sluggard—far from it. Beneath the cruiser-friendly trimmings sits a high-performance hull form, driven by an easily managed sailplan that combines a small jib with a large mainsail. Displacement is a middleweight 11 tons. The shallower of two keel options draws 6 feet. 

This boat is intended to be cruised far and wide—LC stands for “Long Cruise”—and the renderings show an attractive and functional three-cabin, two-head layout trimmed in white oak. Tankage is commensurate with the boat’s bluewater brief, as is stowage. 

Speaking of bluewater cruising, Florida’s Island Packet Yachts is working on its biggest boat to date. The IP 520 is based on the proven hull of the center cockpit IP485, stretched and tweaked with an aft cockpit layout. Island Packet aficionados will find the specifications comfortingly familiar—rugged construction matched to a sturdy rig, and an interior packed with carefully detailed and well executed joinery. Hull #1 will be making its debut at Strictly Sail Miami in February.

Island Packet has also given its innovative motorsailer, the SP Cruiser, a makeover. According to the yard, a new hull shape offers improved performance under both power and sail, and with control lines for the furling main and self-tacking jib all led to electric winches, sailing will be a no-sweat affair. Equal parts trawler yacht and sailboat, whether you love it or hate it, you can’t deny the SP Cruiser Mk II has a unique character.

Back across the Pond, Hanse Yachts has put its popular 445 out to pasture and replaced it with the all-new Hanse 455. Sporting the “largest and most innovative cockpit in its class,” according to the yard, the 455 takes to an extreme the recent trend of concealing sail-control lines from sight. Everything—halyards, sheets, reefing lines—runs belowdecks from the mast to the rope clutches and winches at the helm stations. The lofty high-aspect fractional rig features Hanse’s trademark self-tacking jib paired with a large mainsail. Electric winches are standard, making this powerful boat a breeze to sail singlehanded.

As usual Hanse offers a number of mix-and-match interior options based around three layouts, with up to four cabins. Going by the drawings, the considerable volume has been used wisely, with plenty of stowage for coastal and longer cruises. 

CONTACTS:

Grand Soleilgrandsoleil.net

Island Packet Yachtsipy.com

Hanse Yachtshanseyachts.com

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