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Description: Prestige and Jeanneau Boats

boat te JEANNEAUs t LEADER 8 JEANNEAU AZURE LIMITED EDITION boat test LEADER 8 AZURE LIMITED EDITION Easy Easy CoNvErt CoNvErt STORY JEFF sTRaNG PHOTOS JaCK MURPHy STORY JEFF sTRaNG PHOTOS JaCK MURPHy White topsides a navy blue hull and snappy decals announce the navy blue the azure White topsides a arrival of hull and snappy Limited edition Leader 8. JEFFof the azure decals announce the arrival STRANG reports theedition Leader 8. JEFF STRANG Limited smallest sportscruiser produced by reports giant Jeanneau is greater than French the smallest sportscruiser produced its by French giant Jeanneau is greater than footprint its footprint 72 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 1 72 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u SS trictly speaking it s not a convertible a term which wouldtrictly speaking it s not a imply the vessel is convertible a only primarily a soft-top term which would imply the vessel is opened-up occasionally primarily a soft-top only when conditions encourage. It does opened-up occasionally close-up easily with a system of clearswhen conditionssun-canopy It does and a fold-back encourage. close-up easily with system but really this is open boatabuilt to of make clears and aevery glorious the most of fold-back sun-canopy but really this is blue-sky opportunity. open boat built to make the most of every glorious I came to this conclusion while blue-sky opportunity. flipping the Leader 8 through a I came to this turns on series spray-throwingconclusion while flipping the Leader 8 through a a yet another perfect Sydney series spray-throwing turns Harbour afternoon. With one handon a yet another perfect Sydney feathering the growling Volvo Penta Harbour afternoon. lightly D4 while the other rested With one hand feathering the it was easy on the sporty wheel growling Volvo Penta D4 while the other rested a to picture myself returning fromlightly day ofon the sportyfun and it was easy waterborne wheel frivolity to picture myself returning squeezing in a few final thrills from a to theday of waterborne fun and frivolity delight of my sun-and-salt squeezing in a few I knew soaked guests. Best of allfinal thrills to the delight of my would be the shutdown at the dock sun-and-salt soaked guests. Best of all I a straightforward affair involvingknew the more than a the dock would be not much shutdown at hose-down a minutes to zip affair involving and fivestraightforward the covers not much in place -- too easy. and clears back more than a hose-down and five minutes to Effectively the smallest zip the covers and clears back in in the sportscruiser-styled boatplace -- too easy. Effectively the smallest incredibly extensive Jeanneau rangesportscruiser-styled boat in the (there are at least 24 current incredibly extensive Jeanneau models by my count) the Leader 8 range (there are at least 24 is seen as something of an entry- current models by class. Personally level boat in thismy count) the Leader 8 is seen as something of an entryI don t like the term entry-level as level boat in is a class. Personally it implies that this this learner s I don t like to term entry-level as boat somewherethestart your it life but also a place learner s boating implies that this is ayou will boat somewhere to start your quickly move on from once a few boating life but also a place you will quickly move on from once a few The boat you want is now easier to find The boat you want is now easier to find 73 2 73 sea-miles have slipped under your hull. Perhaps in Europe this is more appropriate but given many Aussies are well versed boating wise by the time they let go of mum s apron strings it doesn t really seem to fit Down Under. So while the Leader 8 is a perfectly good learner s boat it is also a good match for a wide variety of experienced boat owners depending on their individual tastes and requirements. In case of point our test boat for the day the first Leader 8 to grace Australian shores was brochure-purchased by an individual with 18 years of boatownership experience. For this owner the new Leader 8 represents an upsize from his previous vessel a Sea Ray 220 Sundeck bowrider. It s a familiar configuration offering overnighting space and room for the grandkids. Like the Sea Ray it also features sparky on-the-water performance in a hardwearing low-maintenance package at the right price. For this customer a shiny new Leader 8 was a no-brainer so he went ahead and ordered it -- straight off the brochure. TOUR TIME The Jeanneau Leader 8 is the smallest of three models in the Leader range which includes the Leader 10 (tested in Trade-a-Boat Issue 432) and the Leader 9. The larger boats both feature hardtops and sunroofs rather than the 8 s 74 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 3 open-air approach. Today s boat was presented with white topsides and a navy blue hull -- a look termed the Azure Limited Edition. Leader 8 is boldly emblazoned on the aft quarter and adds to the its sporty appearance. With the red pinstripe this colour combination is my preferred option as to my eye it breaks-up the high sheerline of the hull better than the all-white alternative. The flooring throughout is timber laid (this is probably optional) and the vessel s notes tell me the wood is called ayous (Triplochiton scleroxylon) which is considered a more sustainable option than teak as it is cultivated on farms rather than being the product of continued rainforest devastation. A reassuringly large swimplatform provides the ideal place to negotiate The Leader 8 has a functional and stylish dayboat layout (top). The helm station (left) features a three-tier layout of for logical instrument separation. The single Raymarine system (inset baove) could make way for two if desired. [HIGHS] buck Plenty of boat for your Solid three-piece construction with concealed joins Surprisingly large interior and accommodation spaces Novice-friendly handling Solid performance [LoWS] area trimmed A bit tight in the saloon Not highly spec d or B oAt t e s t Clockwise from left Functional kitchenette private double cabin spacious U-shape couch with infill for extra berthing. a home for a radar transmitter receiver should one be desired. Most importantly this arch acts as a fixing point for the Sunbrella sun-awning and cockpit cover which can be deployed in a number of configurations to provide the optimal amount of shelter for the conditions. Add in the sunbed on the bow and Jeanneau have done a nice job of eking the maximum potential out of a relatively compact configuration. As a dayboat the Leader 8 would be a very comfortable proposition for a party of five maybe six at a stretch. MORE THAN A DAYBOAT dockside hazards and step aboard like a seasoned sailor. As usual we turned up with way too much gear. Although I was initially concerned we might face a few logistical issues -- the camera equipment cluttering opportunities to photograph the interior -- I was pleasantly surprised with the way anything vanished below decks into a seemingly Tardis-like chasm. It would be fair to say that above decks every ounce of space has been maximised. Deep and inviting cushions cover the five-seat U-shaped aft lounger surrounding the compact dining table. These cushions which incidentally are covered in a hardwearing and UV-resistant fabric called Silvertex in white and blue sapphire extend to a rear-facing three-quarter length recliner to port and the twin bench seat at the helm. Any space beneath these seats that could be The boat you want is now easier to find converted to storage has been and sensibly if that space has been recessed or welled drains have been added to ensure it doesn t hold water. READY TO PLAY Back out on that substantial rear swimplatform Jeanneau has gone to a reasonable effort to ensure the Leader 8 has all the fundamentals required for a decent and fulfilling day on the water. This boat boasts a tender mounting frame a stainless steel barbecue a freshwater shower nozzle a tow point for wakeboarding and waterskiing enthusiasts and a nice little manual boarding ladder recessed under the platform s teak-covered top. A swept-back and quite high targa arch adds to both the boat s sporty lines and to its general presence. As usual it s adorned with an antennae array and could happily provide If as a reader you got distracted and didn t read past this point in the story (I m writing this on Valentine s Day so there is a chance you got a better offer) you might think the Leader 8 is a bit of a one-trick pony. A smart-looking good-value sportscruiser up for most things in the company of friends but keen to be back in the pen come twilight. Well I suggest you think again. Heading below is a bit of a head spin. As I mentioned earlier there is an almost Tardis-like quality to the internal spaces. It s quite disconcerting really as looking at the boat from the outside you really don t expect there to be so much space in the interior. It s a trick achieved by ensuring the engine is pushed all the way aft freeing-up space under the cockpit sole. Much like in a larger pod-driven vessel the space where the engines used to be has been converted into a private double cabin complete with a small 4 75 The Leader 8 (above) is as much fun to drive as she looks so-much-so you won t want to stop and anchor anywhere. Sequence left A good-sized boarding platform has all the basics in place for a day on the water including a nicely hidden manually-operated boarding ladder. 5 76 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u B oAt t e s t EFFECTivEly THE sMallEsT sPoRTsCRUisER-sTylEd boaT iN THE iNCREdibly ExTENsivE JEaNNEaU RaNGE (THERE aRE aT lEasT 24 CURRENT ModEls by My CoUNT) THE lEadER 8 is sEEN as soMETHiNG oF aN ENTRy-lEvEl boaT iN THis Class washdown sink. Add in the fact that the saloon lounger and table upstairs also converts to a sunbed and you have sleeping room for five. In reality five is probably too many to overnight on the Leader 8 but two adults and two children would be nice company. The essential barby (above) ready for action. There is room on the targa arch (left) for more add-ons if needed. wardrobe and a low couch. You just don t expect to see this sort of thing in a boat with a hull length less than eight metres. Outside this cabin is the usual U-shaped couch and table which converts to another double bed a functional kitchenette fully moulded toilet compartment and The boat you want is now easier to find POWER TO IMPRESS I always like to ask the people we test boats with what their favourite feature is on a product. Matt Willett s answer came without hesitation. It s the ease of driving he said. With responsive steering and a bowthruster it s a boat a total novice will feel comfortable parking with only an hour or so of practice. After a few minutes behind the wheel I had to agree. The Leader 8 is probably the most carlike boat 6 77 B oAt t e s t JEANNEAU LEADER 8 AZURE LIMITED EDITION PRICE AS TESTED 224 384 199 000 Fa ct s & fig ur es PRICED FROM GENERAL [ What really impressed me was just how much boat you get for your money. The space below is probably class-leading and while it doesn t come with all the bells whistles and extra touches of trim we often expect to see these days it s an open boat designed to be used regularly and exposed to plenty of sun and salt. Anything fancier would just hike the purchase price and the ongoing maintenance costs. SAYS... ] MATERIAL Fibreglass TYPE Planing LENGTH 8.95m (overall) 7.94m (hull) BEAM 2.99m DRAFT 0.55m WEIGHT 2939kg (light ship) CAPACITIES FUEL 300lt WATER 100lt ENGINE MAKE MODEL Volvo Penta D4 320hp Volvo Penta 5.7 GI DP petrol (optional) TYPE Four-cylinder turbo-diesel RATED HP 260 DISPLACEMENT 3.7lt I have driven to date. The helm position feels completely familiar and the sporty wheel is finger-touch light. I particularly liked the level of visibility available over the console something that should also put novices to the randomness of boat traffic more at ease. The console presentation is uncluttered with single Raymarine e-Series HybridTouch unit central (there s probably room for two if needed) a range of engine displays across the top and the accessories spaced appropriately at the bottom. From memory the wheel was heightadjustable and the spec sheet tells me the helm seat has an integrated bolster. Power delivery comes in two options either a single 260hp Volvo Penta D4 diesel or single 320hp Volvo Penta 5.7lt petrol inboard both pushed through a sterndrive unit. My discussions with Matt clearly indicated he favours the diesel option. While acknowledging the higher capital cost of the Volvo diesel ( 23K) he points out that the fuel economy reliability and longevity of the diesel far outweighs the petrol. The petrol engine does give a slightly higher top-end speed -- around 1.5kts -- over the D4 Volvo but the latter with its highperformance duo-prop can still pull almost 32kts which is getting along 78 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 7 at a fair clip in anyone s book. For my 10 cents worth the Volvo D4 is a hell of a good engine and one I have had quite a bit of experience with. I know a couple of builders who actually talk customers out of the slightly bigger-capacity D6 engine in favour of the D4 because the space it frees-up is gold relative to the small drop in performance. In the case of the Leader 8 the D4 is putty in your hand by virtue of Volvo s superb fly-by-wire controller and delivers a precise and smileinducing ride that is bound to have you travelling further than intended -- just for the fun of it. SUPPLIED BY Matthew Willett Marine d Albora Marinas The Spit Mosman NSW 2088 Phone (02) 9930 0000 0488 821 112 Email boats Website FOR MORE INFORMATION Visit LAYOUT THE VERDICT In the Leader 8 the massive Jeanneau boatbuilding company has presented a boat offering few barriers to ownership. It is well put together easily maintained and easy to handle but the price is probably its most attractive feature. If you are wondering how they do it log on to Google and start researching the company and its incredible economy of scale. Of course the strong Aussie dollar plays a significant part in that picture as well. The Leader 8 is a good boat and would suit newcomers downsizers and time-poor water lovers equally well. Test day weather information supplied by boat test JEANNEAU N C 11 74 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 9 PHOTOS ELLEN DE WAR VIDEO GUY ALLEN CR ME FRESH It s been voted european Powerboat of the Year 2011 but is this French concept craft all its cracked up to be DAVID LOCKWOOD reports 75 10 N on Compliant. No Children. Or albeit wishful thinking No Charge. Sorry no chance. NC is the acronym for New Concept something the French aren t averse to exploring what with their avant-garde take on life and their unrelenting sense of adventure on the high seas. In fact such was the extent of creative design on French boatbuilding giant Jeanneau s so-called NC 11 sportscruiser that a gaggle of colleagues on the continent anointed it their European Boat of the Year 2011. Of course Europe and Australia are poles apart. So how does this boat stack-up Down Under That s what we sought to answer as we sallied forth on Sydney Harbour picked our way through the interior and eventually put the sporty conveyance through its paces. The first surprise came from the numerical part of the model designation. Presumably the 11 hints at the boat s length which actually measures 10.85m overall with the hull spanning 10.55m sans bowsprit. The boarding platform is part of the integral deck moulding and counts in the latter measurement. So let s put the apparent stretch Ooh la la It s cool cruising all the way in Jeanneau s ultra-modern NC 11 where the skipper (top) steps down from a high perch and starts cooking at the covered galley for impatient tummy-rumbling guests. down to enthusiasm. Yet in many ways Jeanneau has achieved something metaphysical with its NC 11 the boat feels much bigger. The reason is transparent -- loads more glass than you would otherwise find in a sportscruiser of this size. Rather than pepper the hull with puny portlights Jeanneau runs long glass panes from its forepeak to amidships cabin. While the black gelcoat panels in between make the portlights look even bigger the result is a veritable light show below decks compared with your pokey sportscruiser of yore. Then come the upper living areas traced by more glass quad-fold glass saloon doors that can be shifted and stacked from one side to the other a large see-through sunroof (auto activation on the demonstrator as an option) and a glass side-door flanking the portside helm station with opening 76 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 11 B OAT t e s t window opposite. The effect is almost biblical. Let there be light and behold there was the NC 11. FIRST IMPRESSIONS Clever design touches include convertible saloon seating (above). Wide doors (below) connect saloon and cockpit where an inviting transom lounge awaits (bottom). Back inside is a hatched storage well (bottom right) in the sole those sliding drawers are just right for fruit and veg. Of course first impressions count for a lot in the sportscruiser market. That s why this demonstrator now in Tasmania solicited so much attention when it debuted at the Sydney International Boat Show. Its pewter-coloured hull broken by the aforesaid tinted glass and black gelcoat eyes has a nice clean look. Add some teak accents on deck and you have an eye-catching sportscruiser whose hardtop also suggests utility. Indeed the NC 11 is more than just a show pony. The design elements extend to some clever convertible seating arrangements through an enlarged saloon thanks to the asymmetrical layout down to twin cabins and a head with a good splash of nautical style. Then comes the ride from modest twin 200hp diesel engines with sterndrives linked to a joystick docking device. Plenty of bang. THE PRICE IS RIGHT Needless to say Jeanneau is one smart boatbuilder. It knows that first impressions count. It knows how to put just the right amount of design in a boat while retaining production efficiencies. It builds boats fast and makes a franc. It isn t in debt and in fact the present rash of new models reflects savvy investing when others are treading water or worse. A collaboration between French Jeanneau Italian designer Vittorio Garroni and JF de Premorel Concept the NC 11 attempts to break new ground. That s another smart move in today s pared back boat market where would-be buyers need compelling reasons to upgrade and or start anew. To this end the blurb talks about a virtual floating apartment. I don t quite see the connection 77 12 The asymmetrical deck means the portside walkaround (opposite) is wider and deeper than the starboard side. saloon doors (above) stack left or right. but do note voluminous indooroutdoor living areas for a 35-foot sportscruiser and plenty of headroom throughout the two-cabin accommodation. Ergonomically the boat is hard to fault though it must be said it has a more assembled robotic feel to its fitout than other shall we say handbuilt craft. Fact is Jeanneau builds boats with terrific economies of scale uses automated assembly lines and CNC routers where possible and employs more than 2500 people to help assemble some 4000 power and sail craft selling through more than 400 outlets worldwide. It s for this reason that the NC 11 comes keenly priced at around 375 000 with twin diesel engines and a boatload of goodies. The Bavaria 34 soft top with twin petrol engines was selling for about 300 000 for example. Yet the closest competition may well come from sister brand Beneteau. (Read comments in tradeaboat SAYS...). Do consider however that the 375 000 includes a factory rebate for orders pre-October 31. Additionally should you choose a bowthruster in lieu of the joystick you ll save a further 13 000 off the price. This would be our choice -- and that of Sydney Jeanneau dealer Matt Willet -- since a twin sterndrive and bowthruster package lets you park with aplomb in any case. And the joystick docking device was a tad clunky I must say. While talking frank and dollars a generator and air-con add 19 500. You would have to seriously think about these things in tropical climes. Yet for most of Australia the saving is more heart warming. And due to all the hatches fresh air come gratis. Tug on the uggs in winter instead. FACTORY ROLLED The hull layup is GRP and but for the odd squeak of furniture it feels solid underfoot. There s a bit less glass in the moulded decks however and I found some flexing around the stanchions for the bowrail that had already led to gaping around the sealant. Another other sign of a massproduced boat is the joinery. While we commend the use of ecofriendly reconstituted Alpi timber in teak-veneer trim it s got a CNC router feel in its application. Below the floor the ply skeleton used for non-structural storage dividers isn t end-sealed in many parts. Together it all feels rather factory rolled. Such things are a result of parent company Beneteau 78 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 13 B OAT t e s t TOGEThER ThE NC 11 ThE 38 FLYER AND ThE BAvARIA REpREsENT A NEW EURO pOWERBOAT ORDER... 79 14 Group s aggressive price-point boatbuilding. I ve even heard it said that the French giant can make boats for 30 per cent less than other global yards. And let s be fair you get an awful lot of boat for 375 000. Besides there s nothing wrong with getting more bums on seats before buyers move up to their ultimate boat. The NC 11 pitches to a transient part of the market. CONVERTIBLE COCKPIT The innovation begins as you set foot aboard. The integrated boarding platform swoops around a moulded transom lounge that includes a handy fender line storage locker. The entire unit is mounted on tracks so you can relocate it farther outboard for a bigger (teak-topped as standard) cockpit or back inboard for a more intimate lunch setting. Add an aftermarket Euro awning pulling back from the moulded hardtop to a pair of poles plonked into deck-mounted rodholders and you ll get shade too. With a loose teak table lunch can be served forthwith outdoors. Elsewhere I found the showerpower connection manual bilge pump LPG gas-bottle locker -- gas galley appliances are standard -- although we d add a barbecue too. The boat comes with a hot cold deck shower courtesy of 240V and heat exchanger. Meanwhile engine access is back under the floor via a hatch before the lounge base. There s a divided storage for watersports gear your deflated rollup tender fishing gear and so on. As touched on there was plenty of unsealed ply edging and I must say very tight access to the bilge pump in the event of failure replacement or servicing. Float switches stick after time. While the twin 200hp Volvo Penta D3 diesel engines are snug their fuel filters strainers and coolant bottles are relatively easy to access. In keeping with European standards essential plumbing and wiring was labelled. There is also a nice big gutter back up top before the saloon doors to help stop slop coming inside as per CE requirements. The asymmetrical deck means the portside walkaround is wider and deeper than the starboard side. Yet the latter is still a perfectly acceptable route to reach the bow where there s a supplied windlass with remote good non80 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 15 A neat innovation on the Jeanneau NC 11 are the long glass window panes within black gelcoat panels in the hull (opposite) that run from the main forepeak cabin (top) to the amidships guest cabin (above left) and opposing head (above right) bathing these rooms in natural light. [HIGHS] Genuine innovation Class-leading amount of glass Walkaround decks and decent cockpit Generous accommodation plan with great headroom Very good performance and ease of docking with joystick Big-brand backing with local dealer network or thruster [LOWS] device Robotic feel to the finish and unsealed marine ply dividers Clunky gear shifting even after soft movements with joystick Too much flex on deck below bowrail stanchions Tricky access to bilge pump under floor B OAT t e s t ELECTRONIC ENGINE mONITORING shIFTs AND ThROTTLEs ADD TO ThE hIGh-TECh DRIvING ExpERIENCE ON ThE NC 11... skid and toerails and enough room to unfurl a towel or two. A sunpad is optional. The split bowrail with pulpit seat is handy for doing a cocktail or offloading crew to a jetty. But the mouldings around the stanchions need beefing up with too much flex for my liking and we d like to see a salt or fresh water flush for washing the anchor as standard. As it is a bucket and lanyard is needed de rigour for yachts but not in keeping with the boat s inferred style. One neat option is a stern-reel and pick that d be great for off-thebeach anchoring. Another is a bow ladder for getting ashore when nose in. forward to create an aft-facing lounge before the cockpit and vistas out yonder. (You can see the seating being converted in various ways in our exclusive video of the NC 11 at au There are also two moveable pouffes. But the top trick is when the forward section of the U-shaped lounge flips over to create a forward-facing bench seat before the windscreen. This derailed my concern about the lone albeit elevated portside helm seat. We re just not fans of boats in which the skipper is cast adrift. But with the aforesaid flip lounge three people can comfortably sit in a line facing the unbroken front windscreen pane and enjoy cruising together. The lack of mullions (and a supplied demister) enhances the skipper s view though I gained added insurance by standing up and poking my head through the hardtop during tight turns and later while inching about the marina during a single-handed berth and tie-up exercise. The view back through the four saloon doors reveals the boarding platform while the helm glass door allows you to poke your head outside and look down the starboard flank. The sunroof and sliding saloon doors adds to the sense of space attracting plenty of natural light on the teak-look joinery. Just as importantly storage comes in spades or via a bookshelf various holds cabinetry and best of all a big hold under the galley floor that even includes a series of pull-out shelves. Bravo Or should that be voila Fortunately for the gourmand the galley takes centre stage to port in the saloon. There s a good old gas two-burner stove and oven (delete for microwave option) benchheight 42lt fridge with freezer tray and 250lt of water for a weekend. The holding tank of 80lt will go that distance too. The pop-up TV is behind the SALOON TRICKS Things become even more creative in the saloon where the seating performs at your behest. The U-shaped lounge for six to starboard converts to a spare double berth. Its rear backrest flops 81 16 B OAT t e s t AT mORE ThAN 300Nm AT 24kTs LEAvING 10 pER CENT OF ThE 700LT IN REsERvE CRUIsING RANGE Is A hIGhLIGhT splashback so you can t do both at once. Oh well at least the glass and bottle racks are nearby. Crack a bottle of Burgundy and crank-up the onboard sound system while waiting for dinner. ACCOMMODATION PLANS Impressively the NC 11 has two decent cabins and a nicely styled head. Guests and kids won t be disappointed in the starboard cabin with adult-length -- quite huge actually -- single beds that with infill convert into a romping double. There s enough headroom before the beds to dress a hanging locker opening portlight and reading light. Owners will warm to the forepeak cabin with island bed double-sized hanging locker big fixed portlights and escape hatch drawer mirror and reading light. The head to port in between these cabins has an electric Jabsco loo square porcelain sink and separate shower. We also welcome the opening portlight for ventilation. Sunroof open it s time to go cruising. Cockpit lounge and sole tilt back revealing the step-down engine bay housing two perky volvo penta electronic turbo-diesels ideal for that quick getaway (top). PERFORMANCE & HANDLING Volvo Penta s D3-200 is an interesting engine. The in-line fivecylinder diesel donk hails from the auto world. It weighs just 353kg uses a compact 2.4lt block and features common rail injection for precise fuel burn and eco cred 82 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 17 (prepared for Tier 3 emission in Europe in 2012). Best of all the diesel engine isn t doughy and develops its impressive torque using a variable geometry turbocharger. The Swedish engine manufacturer says this bit of gear creates the effect of supercharging from very low revs up to maximum RPM. We felt that was the case with the NC 11 jumping out of the blocks like well Jane Avril. Lenco trim tabs were fitted -- most boatbuilders steer away from Volvo Penta s questionable QL tabs these days -- along with a Raymarine C90 and ST70. The low-glare and loaded dash panels look pretty sporty while the array of analogue gauges adds to the action. Eventually I slipped the boat back into its pen tied it up solo and virtually put it to bed on my own. We were smitten and upon shutting the engines down it dawned on me that the NC part of NC 11 may well stand for nice to command. Fa ct s & fi g u re s AT THE HELM J E A N N E AU N C 11 MAKE MODEL 2 x Volvo Penta D3-200 TYPE Common rail electronic inline five-cylinder turbodiesel RATED HP 200 at 4000rpm (max) DISPLACEMENT 2.4lt WEIGHT Approx 353kg GEARBOXES (MAKE RATIO) Volvo Penta SX DPS PROPS Duoprops Electronic engine monitoring shifts and throttles add to the high-tech driving experience on the NC 11 and with the doors closed the boat s pretty quiet too. There was the odd bang on the chines a few squeaks and rattles consistent with mass-produced boats with attached liners and timber furniture but the motion remained pleasant enough. At more than 300nm at 24kts leaving 10 per cent of the 700lt in reserve cruising range is a highlight. Top speed was nudging 34kts impressive from the twin 200s. Moreover owners will relate to the per-hour consumption of 45lt in total at that smooth cruise speed. That s less than half a 40-footer with flying bridge drinks. ENGINE SUPPLIED BY PRICE AS TESTED 375 207 w twin Volvo Penta D3-200 joystick and options below inc. 17 500 factory rebate for orders pre-October 31 OPTIONS FITTED Matthew Willett Marine Shop 4 83 Parriwi Road Mosman NSW 2088 Phone (02) 9960 1112 Matthew Willett on 0488 821 112 Email boats Websites You can t have everything as in keen price and custom build yet Jeanneau has done a great job of bundling its NC 11 new-concept cruiser with a boatload of style and utility. We love the convertible seating the walkaround asymmetrical decks and abundant light below decks. And we like the look. Handling is pretty good too. But the finish in parts is a little too reflective of a mass-produced boat. Remove the rawtimber edging we reckon. Price is keen at 375 000 and ironically the biggest competition also comes from the parent company. The Beneteau 38 Flyer Grand Turismo tested a few days later cost less than 400 000 with generator and air-con twin 300hp D4 engines joystick and a metre more hull length. Together the NC 11 the 38 Flyer and the Bavaria represent a new Euro powerboat order where prices and production times have been slashed in an effort to build more affordable boats and grab a bigger slice of the pleasureboating pie. And ultimately it s good news for buyers. Trim level Premiere with Volvo Penta joystick control electric toilet electric sliding roof carpet in saloon rear cockpit sofa covers storage system in bilge double berth conversion in saloon three-sided external covers for wheelhouse Raymarine electronics pack including autopilot LCD TV DVD MP3 in saloon 4kW scanner for radar and more SAYS... PRICED FROM GENERAL 349 000 w twin Volvo Penta D3-200 MATERIAL Solid moulded fibreglass hull and deck TYPE Hard-chine monohull LENGTH OVERALL 10.85m HULL LENGTH (ISO) 10.55m BEAM 3.73m DRAFT 0.9m WEIGHT 5600kg CAPACITIES BERTHS 4 ( 2 on convertible dinette in saloon) FUEL 700lt WATER 250lt HOLDING TANK 80lt LAYOUT 83 18 FEATURE JEANNEAU FACTORY TOUR Tour STORY PATrIcK BoLLeN PHOTOS SuPPLIed de Trade-a-Boat is in France for a firsthand look at the mighty Jeanneau boat manufacturing complex and process 88 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 19 force F rom Charles De Gaulle International Airport in Paris it is approximately three hours by very fast train to the township of Nantes in western France and then another hour farther south to Les Herbier in the French countryside. A city of approximately 300 000 inhabitants Nantes is the sixth largest city in France located on the beautiful Loire River just 50km from the Atlantic coast. An hour south and I was in Les Herbier capital of the northern Vendee. Les Herbier named after the rolling countryside one of the most dynamic and enterprising regions in all of France with national European and international businesses operating in the district including STX Airbus and Jeanneau. The Jeanneau boat operation and factory is a massive 37-acre complex situated just outside Les Herbier and is one of the region s major employers. Jeanneau has been in the business of building boats since founder Henri Jeanneau built his first under the brand-name in 1957. He had commenced boatbuilding the previous year when he also won the 6 heures de Paris powerboat race. Two years later in 1958 Henri produced his first fibreglass moulded hull thus marking the beginnings of the now world-renowned brand s Jeanneau yacht range. From 1958 to 1970 Jeanneau produced a series of speedboats under the Calanque brand and sailing yachts with the Sangria appellation. In 1970 corporate ownership of Jeanneau became the property of the USA based Bangor Punta with yachts being produced under licence and in 1990 a joint venture was set in place with the Italian builder Ferretti. While the Sun brand was first established in the 70s it wasn t until 1992 that the range became popular with the production of the 89 20 Sun Legende 41 under licence to Greece and the arrival of the Olympic Sea range. Then in 1995 Jeanneau was acquired by Groupe Beneteau creating the largest sailboat manufacturer in the world. ASSEMBLY LINE With that short history in place I can now take you on a tour of the build process of the extraordinary Jeanneau production facility at Les Herbier. First sighting of this massive complex left me astonished to say the least. I had never seen anything like it in recreational boat manufacturing. The closest is motor vehicle production and pretty much the build of Jeanneau yachts is exactly what Henry Ford pioneered back in 1913 with the assembly line. Today the build process is very much akin to the Ford ideal. Starting with the laminating and moulding of the hull and deck the layup process is carried out using a special chemical dye that reacts with the fibreglass to ensure an even spread of resin over vinylester layers that are incorporated to provide osmosis protection. Jeanneau uses considerable amounts of woven rovings during the build to provide strength and yachts 37 feet and bigger also use Kevlar rovings in below waterline areas to ensure strength in the keel to hull area. The layup is completed using a team of four or five laminators. Jeanneau continues to use traditional hull strengthening systems bonding wooden stringers 90 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 21 The 37 acre complex (top) is best appreciated from the air. Viewing it in this context explains why the Jeanneau factory is one of the region s most significant employers with more 1200 staff on site. State of the art fibre glassing processes are employed at all stages. F E AT U R E to provide rigidity. Once the hull is complete it is transferred to another monster hall where the moulded deck is shaped and computer cut to fit the hull. After arriving at the beginning of the fitout line it undergoes engine mounting installation of pump and sump systems generator mounting plumbing electrical and all throughhull fittings. The deck is bonded to the hull using a special Sikeflex adhesive with self-tapping screws fitted below and through the toerail assembly. The transom joint is reinstated and from the inside additional woven rovings are laminated into place. Computer pre-cut bulkheads using the best marine ply timbers and veneers are laminated into place. All panels are varnished using the most modern spray techniques in special dust-free enclosures within the complex. The joinery shop is equipped with a fully automated varnishing line approximately 150 feet in length. Huge sheets of teak-veneered marine plywood are automatically sprayed with three coats of varnish between sanding and drying. The varnished sheets are then intricately cut into desired shapes using big computer controlled cutting machines. All interior saloon settings saloon furniture cupboards closets lockers and drawers -- all previously sliced to size by computer controlled cutting tables -- are then lifted into place using big overhead gantries. The interior fitout continues as the boat progresses through the build. The boat is moved across the hall as each section nears completion from bilge fitout to the lowering of the deck. The cabin top or deck head (ceiling) is also cast during the laminating stage of the build. fIrST SIghTINg of ThIS mASSIve comPLex LefT me ASToNIShed To SAy The LeAST. I hAd Never SeeN ANyThINg LIKe IT IN recreATIoNAL BoAT mANufAcTurINg A production facility of this scale can afford few errors. Computers control the vast majority of the pre-assembly cutting work (top two photos) and the consistancy in the resulting hulls ready for outfitting (above and this photo) is staggering. TEAMWORK Teams of workers -- Jeanneau employs 1200 staff technicians craftsmen designers shipwrights engineers and electricians -- follow the boat from moulding to finished product. Detail is everything and quality control is stringently measured from moulding to completion. The deck is laid as the boat moves across the floor. Located in a well moulded to accommodate the new hull shipwrights are able to work comfortably and safely at bench height laying each plank of 10ml-thick teak to the fibreglass deck 91 22 F E AT U R E The BuILd ProceSS for The PreSTIge rANge TAKeS PLAce IN The SAme wAy AS The JeANNeAu yAchT rANge ANd AT The SAme moNSTer fAcTory IN LeS herBIer and cockpit. Once this is complete shipwrights then install the toerails and if required the rubbing strakes. The deck hardware including winches blocks cleats jammers and hatches are then fitted and secured with the required backing plates of end-grain balsa to ensure rigid stability. QUALITY CONTROL As the boat nears completion technicians and engineers constantly monitor the installation and setup of all systems including state-of-theart communications and navigation components being fitted throughout the vessel both in the navigation station located in the main saloon and on deck in the cockpit. Simrad is the navigation-GPS technology of choice employed by the Jeanneau operation. From this point the cabin sole is laid and the keel secured to the hull the pushpit and pulpit rails and stanchions are installed before the boat is lifted from the production floor and lowered into a testing tank where all through-hull fittings are checked for leaks. At this point the boat is again inspected. The hull and deck undergo a rigorous scrutinisation and final onceover before being shrinkwrapped and located outside the factory ready for shipment to sailing enthusiasts all around the world. Probably the most impressive factor of the entire build is how clean and tidy the entire operation is from hull mould to the ready-to-sail finished product. Jeanneau has more than 300 agents worldwide representing the famous brand s yachts ranging in size from 26 to 57 feet and most recently the new and exciting Prestige range of powerboats. the Jeanneau yacht range and at the same monster factory in Les Herbier. I have spent many years in the business of boat project management restoration repair and as a commercial skipper. I was so impressed by the Jeanneau factory that I needed to spend another few hours inspecting what I can say simply blew me away. We finished our tour by early evening before retiring to the stunning historical and luxurious Chateau Boisniard in the Chambretaud region. SECOND SIGHT PRESTIGE PROCESS 92 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 23 The build process for the Prestige range takes place in the same way as The following morning I went back to the Jeanneau factory where I once again took an unaccompanied tour of the whole complex to reinforce what I d experienced the day before. I was right. This boatbuilding facility in the French countryside is indeed one of the best boating experiences I have ever enjoyed and to any prospective buyer of a Jeanneau yacht or Prestige powerboat I strongly recommend jumping aboard a V Australia jet and heading to France to check it out for yourself. The Jeanneau operation has several facilities throughout France. In Les Once the basic hull is completed the process takes on a very automotive production line look. With the engineering in place (top image and insert) the pre-moulded floors (middle) and cabin tops go on and the product starts to look more like a finished boat (above). Herbiers the company produces the Merry Fisher and Cap Camarat range of outboard speedboats the Prestige range of luxury power craft to 60 feet and the Sun Fast and Sun Odyssey range of yachts. In Rochetrejoux Jeanneau specialises in the manufacture of the Leader range of sportsboats and the Prestige 36 while in Cholet it produces a range of 10m to 14m sailboats. boat test PRESTIGE 500 FLYBRIDGE JEANNEAU 58 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 25 O PHOTOS ELLEN DE WAr Euro StAr With her awards sash prominently draped across her gunwales JEFF STRANG invites Jeanneau Prestige s latest lady out for a dance on the bay... ne expects Jeanneau s Prestige 500 flybridge to be sitting low in the water such is the weight of expectation placed on its shining hull by the promoters. Still they do have reason to boast. Barely out her wrapping from the launch at the Dusseldorf Boat Show in January and new for 2012 the Prestige 500 flybridge has put more awards in the Jeanneau trophy cabinet than Black Caviar could have. These accolades include Best Interior Design at the World Yachts Trophies Awards in Cannes Best Motor Yacht at the Nautical Design Awards in Milan and most importantly the European Motor Yacht of the Year in the category of yachts up to 55 feet in length last January at Dusseldorf itself. Well that s Europe conquered now it s time for Australia. Wasn t Napol on from France All jokes aside those are the kind of accolades that deserve to get attention and I was very keen to see for myself just what had impressed those Northern Hemisphere judges so much. Dockside she strikes a very different pose to that we would expect to see from the better yards up north on the Gold Coast. Tall and refined her flybridge is topped with a well-tailored open bimini rather than a hardtop. The effect is a chic one and defines her as being an animal of the catwalk rather than racetrack. Before we even left the dock it was clear the Prestige 500 flybridge has plenty of Parisian attitude after all there is no excuse for not looking good. PRIDE OF OWNERSHIP I was delighted to discover the boat s new owner Chris would be joining us for the afternoon s cruise and photoshoot. If the enthusiasm in his greeting was anything to go by he was as delighted by the prospect of showing off his new pride and 59 26 [HIGHS] Vast expanses of Highly versatile master cabin Completely private outdoor living spaces Lean fuel performance PlayStation-like manoeuvrability accommodation options [LOWS] Slightly narrow access to the rear cockpit through the galley Light on fuel capacity Smallish children s cabin The main helm (top left) is comprehensive. It is virtually repeated on the expansive flybridge (left). Lifestyle enthusiasts will love the twin sun loungers (below left) on the bow and the barbecue module (below right). believes multilevel vessels with several staircases create unnecessary tripping hazards for excited youngsters. The boat also presents an interesting take on the master cabin access and configuration that could not be ignored and along with their long established relationship with Matthew the Jeanneau Prestige 500 flybridge was starting to feel like a really good fit. When it came time to discuss finances Chris and Rhonda were in for a pleasant surprise. It seems the strength of the Australian dollar combined with the Europe-based manufacturer s desire to sell boats made it particularly easy to strike a deal to please all the parties. Four months later a glistening new Jeanneau Prestige 500 flybridge arrived in Sydney ready for its final commissioning and a happy handover. WHAT LEXUS IS TO TOYOTA joy as I was about reviewing it. While the rest of the team were working through the details I took the opportunity to have a chat with Chris in private. As an owner of two previous vessels a Sea Ray Sedan Bridge and a Sunseeker Predator 56 Chris and his wife Rhonda had a very good understanding of what they desired in a new boat. Always intending to buy new they were looking pretty seriously at Australia s two premier local stables when a catch-up with Matthew Willet of MW Marine the 60 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 27 local Jeanneau powerboat dealer at the Sydney Boat Show allowed them the perfect opportunity to look over the 500 flybridge s sister ship the 500 S. As impressed as they were with the demo boat s overall presentation it was two or three specific features that really got them genuinely interested. High on the list of priorities was the vessel s suitability for weekend cruising with the grandchildren. Prestige s single-level approach to the living area and outdoor spaces appealed. Chris quite justifiably I think Trade-a-Boat writer John Zammit hit the nail on the head when he reviewed this boat s sister ship the Prestige 500 S late last year. He said The Prestige range is Jeanneau s answer to those buyers looking for a higher level of luxury refinement and specification in terms of fit and finish sort of what the Lexus is to Toyota. You certainly get that feeling when you stroll through the vessel. Jeanneau does not claim to be a fine tailor of bespoke craft. The company builds production boats and is very good at it. As well as its wide range B OAt t e s t New owner Chris and his wife love the single-level approach to the saloon galley (below right) and cockpit (above) living spaces. of yachts there are several models of powerboat including the Cap Camarat range of open runabouts Merry Fisher budget family day cruisers and the company s Leader and NC range of semi-luxury sportscruisers. Sitting right at the top and distinctly separate in terms of marketing and presentation is the Prestige range. acoustics. Whatever the cause the result is delightfully calming. This island of peace is serviced by an equally enjoyable en suite. A beautifully lit and generously mirrored vanity and hand basin leads to a minimalist but spacious shower -- a nice balance of functional simplicity and European chic. ACCOMODATION WITH OPTIONS PRIVACY FOR THE QUEEN In an interesting take on the usual accommodation layout of a powerboat where all the cabins and bathrooms are accessed via a corridor for ard Prestige has switched things around to afford the master and his queen an elevated level of privacy. A private stairwell aft opposite the galley leads to a charming and secluded enclave. The full-beam suite (by virtue of the pod-drive installation) features an expansive island berth a writing desk and an area at the foot of the bed designed to ensure taller sailors have an opportunity to enjoy full headroom. For me it was the expansive views that captivated my attention. The effect is slightly surreal and leaves you feeling totally immersed in the environment. Perhaps it is the way the water-reflected light illuminates the cabin or maybe it s the great The remaining two cabins reside forward as is more traditional. In what seems to be a growing trend led by the Europeans both the VIP guest cabin and the children s cabin feature split single berths that can be pushed together to form a double. The versatility of use these permit should not be underestimated as it allows the hosts more freedom to entertain guests on weekend cruises who may be friends but are not necessarily friendly . On the slightly negative the secondary children s cabin is on the cramped side and grandma may be hard pushed to keep the younger s accompanying mountain of accessories at bay but that will not detract from the adventure they are enjoying. Naturally a separate bathroom that double-duties as a dayhead services all the forward accommodation spaces. To Matthew Willet s credit he pointed out that the dual doors allowing hallway and en suite access for the VIP cabin bang into each other and commented about making a change on future boats. WATERFRONT PAD If you can see yourself in a modish apartment with uninterrupted sea views then the single-level living 61 28 B OAt t e s t ...thE PrEstigE 500 fLybriDgE hAs Put morE AWArDs iN thE JEANNEAu troPhy cAbiNEt thAN bLAck cAviAr couLD hAvE [ space will certainly appeal. I am no fashion writer so I will struggle to convey exactly what it is about the furnishing of Prestige makes it so distinctly Parisian. All I can say for sure is that no one would mistake it for American. Other than the helm seat there is no leather to be seen (probably too last week for the French) instead immaculately tailored off-white fabric couches with contrasting dressings invite the guests to settle in and absorb the view with an aromatic espresso. With comfortable seating for seven (not including the helm) there is no excuse for anyone to feel left out in the cold. I do think the galley is on the small side for a 50ft boat. Perhaps this is because the vessel is not intended as a long-range cruiser catering to hoards of hungry fishermen. But while it s a kitchen better suited to meals of more modest proportions it is tidily laid-out with adequate storage and easy access to the saloon or the cockpit. I m not sure about the centrally-located island-style bar either. Without the glass top it could help increase the usable bench space but it does impede the flow of traffic outdoors slightly. I think remove it all together and opt for fully opening rear doors if there is room. 62 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 29 It s a sun-lover s boat and an entertainer s boat. It s a boat to look for opportunities to use. It s a boat that will never embarrass the host and in that indefinable way of the French will add a touch of Je ne sais quoi to every occasion. SAYS... ] The master cabin configuration (middle and right) has won plaudits throughout Europe while the split singles in the guest cabin (above) are becoming more popular. Fa ct s & fig ur es JEANNEAU PRESTIGE 50 0 FLYBRIDGE PRICE AS TESTED 1 045 000 (subject to exchange rate) breeze wafting through I couldn t see any reason to leave -- except to refresh my beverage. SEA TRIALS RPM 700 1000 1500 2000 2400 2600 2800 3000 3200 3400 3500 3626 SPeed 4.2kts 6.4kts 9kts 11.2kts 14.5kts 17.1kts 19.5kts 21.7kts 24.4kts 26.6kts 27.8kts 29.5kts Twin 435hp Volvo Penta IPS600 Fuel buRn 3.8lt h 4.2lt h 19.6lt h 43lt h 64.8lt h 82lt h 94lt h 107lt h 124lt h 140lt h 152lt h 169lt h Range 1437nm 1981nm 597nm 339nm 291nm 271nm 270nm 264nm 256nm 247nm 238nm 227nm FULL CONTROL Occasional Trade-a-Boat writer Tony Mackay summed up the European position on the boating lifestyle laconically when visiting the Cannes Boat Show last year. He said The best fish are on the menu. God forbid one should fight with one s dinner. So while it s not a fishing boat the Prestige has acres of outdoor living space. If sunning swimming alfresco dining and just generally soaking up the glorious Australian coastlands in particular those incredible evenings is your idea of heaven then this is the boat for you. A comfortable cockpit is vastly augmented by several additional outdoor spaces including a sunbed on the bow complete with a pop-up sunshade a good-sized swimplatform and a simply massive open flybridge. It s the flybridge that is most worthy of valuable column inches. Obviously the flybridge is where this boat most significantly differs from her sister ship the 500 S. It features a helm station that is a virtual twin of the downstairs version only with 360 degrees of unobstructed visibility. It also has a dining table and yet another sunbed. All of this lives under an open sunshade so with the balmy evening EN PLEIN AIR Regular readers of these pages will be well aware of the benefits IPS pod drives deliver on the helm. In short you have effortless acceleration industry leading fuel consumption and PlayStation-like multidirectional control literally in the palm of your hand. Chris has gone all-in with the helm station options on Sublime adding in a bowthruster and the very best Simrad navigation system with NSE 12 units on the bridge and in the saloon station. Just to make sure he has all bases covered there is an extra joystick and thruster control in the cockpit to make a total of three stations. If ever there was a boat that could be parked on a dime this is it. Under power albeit in particularly benign conditions the twin IPS600 pods (powered by 435hp Volvo Pentas) delivered that characteristically smooth pod-driven ride and it s as quiet as you will experience on a production boat. The cruising speed of 25kts will eat up the miles in a hurry without devouring your wallet in the process. As an untested observation of poddriven boats in general they are not the nimblest in a turn at high speed but that is probably of no real consequence. As a weekender rather than a long-range cruiser the Prestige 500 is a little light on fuel for those with grand plans of adventure over the horizon. Sea-trial data supplied by Jeanneau. Fuel burn is for both engines combined. GENERAL MaTeRIal GRP lOa 15.2m Hull lengTH 14.92m WeIgHT 14 100kg (dry) beaM 4.5m dRaFT 1.05m CAPACITIES Fuel 1300lt WaTeR 636lt CabInS 3 PeOPle (nIgHT) 6 ENGINE MaKe MOdel 2 x Volvo Penta IPS600 TYPe Six-cylinder turbo-diesel RaTed HP 435 (each) dISPlaCeMenT 5.5lt (each) SUPPLIED BY EN R SUM The Jeanneau Prestige 500 flybridge has many more features of note not covered in detail today such as the vast storage locker aft that can be optioned in as an extra cabin and the hydraulic passerelle to facilitate more genteel disembarking procedures outside the restaurant. It s a sun-lover s boat and an entertainer s boat. It s a boat to look for opportunities to use. It s a boat that will never embarrass the host and in that indefinable way the French have will add a touch of Je ne sais quoi to every occasion. Matthew Willett Marine d Albora Marinas The Spit Mosman NSW 2088 Phone (02) 9960 1112 Fax (02) 8456 6035 Email boats Website LAYOUT 63 30 Big Boat Review A boat for all seasons The Prestige 500S combines European design with universal practicality to offer a great boat for the Aussie boating lifestyle. By Graham Lloyd 164 31 I t takes some intestinal fortitude to buy a boat sight-unseen and even more so when it will be the first of its kind in the country. Add some extra courage when it s a 15m luxury sports cruiser nearing seven digits for the investment and you have the start of this happy-ending story. It all began when work associates Brett and Darren entertained thoughts of upgrading from the 40ft sports cruiser they had been ownersharing along with Brett s wife Niki and sons Harrison and Tylor. The objective was to have some extra room on board and for a boat that could be enjoyed equally well in all seasons the 40-footer being more suited to warmer weather. That boat had been acquired through broker Matt Willett who had done a superb job to the point of earning total trust from Darren and Brett. When a new boat was being considered Darren approached Matt to advise them and first thoughts were for a 47ft sport yacht. But Matt believed that this Prestige 500S would perfectly suit Darren and Brett s family and he knew it could be shipped from the factory in time for the 2011 Sydney International Boat Show. After much examination of brochures and website information and with some tempting negotiations by Matt an enthusiastic consensus resulted in a contract being signed before the boat left the factory. 165 32 It was a bit of a leap of faith buying the first Prestige 500S in Australia sight-unseen Darren commented If it hadn t been for our knowing Matt I wouldn t have done it. We had to have trust in him he believed in the boat he d been there (to the factory) and seen it. Brett added It was a bit of a leap of faith buying the first Prestige 500S in Australia sightunseen but we were relying on Matt s advice and expertise. There was an added advantage of the Volvo pod drives for docking and with the engines further aft it allows the full-length stateroom in the middle which gives the best accommodation package for our budget. P160-161 The Prestige 500S makes an imposing sight as it powers along. The large windows portholes in the hull sides allow more than usual natural light into the staterooms. Page 161 inset Pleasingly upholstered lounges are on both sides of the saloon and the whole crew can relax to port with those super-sized windows giving wonderful views of the surrounding waters. Above Darren cruised the 500S from Sydney Harbour to its berth in Pittwater. The helm has seating for two with a full range of navigation and engine displays. practical concepts of all living spaces being on one level 360-degree panoramic views from the saloon and the provision of a separate owner s suite. Indicative of the reputation that has been achieved in 2010 the Prestige 60 was crowned European Boat of the Year by a panel of marine professionals. Based in France as is its parent Jeanneau Prestige is as international as its boats owners. French designers and engineers combine with the highly regarded Italian naval design team of Vittorio and Camillo Garroni plus American and Swedish engine manufacturers and an American naval architect to craft each vessel. The company uses advanced Dassault Syst mes software in the design and development process whilst digitallycontrolled machinery and varnishing robots are amongst the advanced tools employed with skilled artisans to build every boat. Infusion-mouldings for hulls and other structures give significant weight savings without sacrificing strength. Prestige boats are built in the same facility as Jeanneau power boats in the village of Les Herbiers. This 500S arrived in Australia in early July and was unloaded from the ship in Wollongong. Darren related I was lucky enough to go down with Matt to see the boat. It was off the ship on stands and we removed the protective plastic wrap watched as the boat was craned into the water put some fuel in the tanks and then I was on board for the delivery cruise up to Sydney. After the boat had been officially launched at the Sydney show and subsequently demonstrated to other potential clients (another 500S and a 500 Flybridge have already been ordered) it was delivered to Brett and Darren at the beginning of September. Darren then cruised it further north to its berth on Pittwater. HIGHLY REGARDED Adding to their trust in Matt was an awareness of the boat s heritage. Prestige might not yet be a well-known brand in Australia but the name is part of the Jeanneau group which has been highly regarded in this country for many years particularly amongst the sailing fraternity. And it is especially well regarded amongst the 2500 or so owners who enjoy the company s boats around the world. With designs ranging from 30 to 65 feet the brand s success has been based around the simple PANORAMIC VIEWS A light and very spacious saloon dominates the 500S and emphatically demonstrates the Prestige design goals of the living space being on one level and with all-round panoramic views. Huge windows run down each side with an artistically raked and curved windscreen forward. U-shaped lounges to port frame a convertible coffee dining table and a 26in TV emerges from its cabinet at the front to catch up on your favourite show. There s another settee opposite so the saloon has loads of seating in which to relax and socialise. 166 33 The helm station is to starboard at the front of the saloon beneath a full-width sunroof that electrically retracts to open up the entire front half of the cabin. When closed the sunroof has two large skylights with slide-out blinds (more of those on the side windows too) so there is total control of the amount of sunlight and fresh air that the crew can enjoy or equally be protected from in adverse conditions. It delivers indooroutdoor flexibility and was an important aspect The aft cockpit has a for Brett and Darren in choosing the 500S as it U-shaped lounge and a table that converts with an extra does indeed give the opportunity to enjoy the cushion to a sunlounge. boat all year round. Overhead a sun shade extends on powered rams to Niki mentioned I love the indoor-outdoor provide as much shelter as 2 6 - 6 - s i r o c c o - m a r i feel of the interioraas iteallows us to have0a lot 1 ne . pdf P g 1 2 1 1 1 required. more family time together it works well. I m really happy with our decision to buy the Prestige. The helm has a double seat with traditional dual throttle shift controls to the side on a shelf that makes a welcome arm rest and in front of those are the joystick and rocker-switches for the trim tabs. Brett noted We use the tabs to adjust the hull trim a bit but it s pretty much set and forget. There s a leather-rimmed tilt-adjustable wheel with brushed stainless spokes surrounded by extensive electronics on the dash. As well as an autopilot screen and controls dual Raymarine E120W display panels can be set for multiple uses such as a GPS plotter radar display or depth sounder. A feed from a camera can also be displayed. We installed a camera at the back of the boat to more precisely watch the clearance when docking Brett explained. There is a small blind spot when backing into a berth caused by the full-height fridge and storage cabinet in the galley the camera overcomes that. Additionally on the dash there s a display for 4 the Volvo engine functions. Ahead of the wheel 0 4 PM Are you ready for a BRIG summer Summer s coming the days are getting longer and the BRIG range has grown stronger. BRIG can make it the perfect summer because BRIG Inflatables are light to tow and easy to launch getting you to the good times faster. With the stability of a rigid fibreglass hull and soft riding inflatable tubes you ll be more comfortably off this summer. So for a tender that can take you from ship to shore or a runabout that runs rings round fibreglass or aluminium boats think BRIG. DEALERS NSW Sirocco Marine South 02 8061 6475 QLD Sirocco Marine North 07 5519 9653 VIC New World Honda Marine 03 9709 8444 WA Prestige Marine Boat Sales 08 9364 4244 are twin analogue tachometers (with inset readouts for engine hours) an rpm-synchronisation gauge and a Plastimo ship s compass. Low glare materials and finishes make the whole helm area attractive and prevent any reflections in the windows. The galley is one step down at the aft rear of the saloon with an L-shaped arrangement of the three-burner electric cooktop above a microwave oven on the side with a twin-sink work-bench companionably facing forward into the saloon seating. In the back port corner is a large fridge freezer. Removable panels over the cooktop and sinks increase bench workspace when needed. Huge windows run down each side with an artistically raked and curved windscreen forward space for a work desk on the port side that has facing seats beside a monster window featuring an inset porthole (matched to starboard) for keeping the area naturally lit. The ensuite is forward with a basin toilet and generous shower compartment. Darren commented I like the amidships cabin which is much quieter at night without the sounds of slapping water on the hull that you get in a forward cabin. The other sleeping areas are quite separate and entered down a staircase at the centre front of the saloon. Toward the bow is a second stateroom with island queen bed whilst to port is a cabin with twin side-by-side berths. To starboard is a bathroom with entrance doors from both the small vestibule at the foot of the stairs and directly from the forward stateroom. Everywhere aboard the materials blend fabrics and woodwork in welcoming shades with excellent workmanship and attention to detail. STORAGE-PLUS There s plenty of storage in the galley and indeed throughout the entire boat with lots of clever space utilisation and fitted storage where appropriate for items such as glasses and china. We found that probably one of the greatest things about this boat is the excess of storage. We actually haven t filled it all yet said Darren. An unobtrusive staircase opposite the galley leads down to the amidships owner s stateroom which employs the full beam of the boat to be as roomy as possible. An island queen bed still leaves When closed the large sunroof can keep the helm position and the entire saloon snugly enclosed against heat cold or rain but opening it in favourable conditions can make the 500S feel like an open dayboat. 169 36 Access to the engines is through twin hatches in the sole of the cockpit the engineering is worldclass with good space for maintenance. The 500S has a bow thruster but that s barely used as the computerised joystick control of the pods with their counter-rotating forward-facing props gives easy and masterful control of the boat. If you re used to operating throttles gearshifts and the wheel with sterndrives or shaft drives it takes a little while to adjust to a joystick explained Brett. Once you re used to it it s fantastic. I think this is the way of the future people new to boating will find the joystick easier. The Volvo pod drives are known for their efficiency over more conventional drive systems. This is double the weight of our previous boat which had much the same engines although with slightly less horsepower but this is virtually as quick and uses only slightly more fuel said Darren. So the pods must be more efficient. At 22 knots (41km h) in this boat we re using about POWER PODS 110lt an hour and in the old boat at the same revs Concealed beneath the cockpit we were doing 24 knots (44.5km h) and using Power is from dual Volvo IPS 600 straight-six 5.5lt in its own dedicated space is the n t e r n a t i o n a turbo- d f super-charged diesels 1 1 at 435hp 5 0 about 90lt an hour. So it s not that much different outboard-powered 2 6 - 6 - i l . p and P a g e 1 8 rated 1 1 8 PM inflatable dinghy ready for fast and we re in a much bigger boat. each and coupled to Volvo pods with jackshafts. launching. Separate air conditioning units service different areas of the boat. Aft of the saloon is an open cockpit with a U-shaped lounge and high low table that converts with extra cushions to be a sunlounge. Overhead a powered shade extends out from under the saloon roof overhang to provide as much or as little shelter from the sun as required another good example of the all-seasons flexibility of the 500S design. A couple of steps with a security gate to port lead down to the wide boarding platform in front of which a large panel lifts on hydraulic rams to reveal the garage with outboard-powered inflatable dinghy on launch rollers and with an electric retrieval arrangement. If We Made Our Formula Any Finer We d Be Bottling Champagne. Our World is Water Whilst a bottle of bubbly certainly has very different attributes the level of quality and precision that goes into producing each can of Micron is similar. The Micron range of products is the pinnacle of today s antifouling technology -- formulated to deliver maximum antifouling performance in even the harshest fouling environments. And because Micron products are polishing paints they actually become smoother over time reducing drag and fuel consumption leading to a significant reduction in carbon dioxide and sulphur dioxide emissions. It gets better. Because the polishing action reduces build-up when the time does come for you to re-apply you ll spend less time sanding. You just can t buy a better antifouling. And that s certainly worth raising a glass to. Visit for more information. Technical Helpline Australia 1800 251 431 New Zealand 0800 808 807 Asia 65 6862 2928 Use antifouling paints safely always read the label and product information before use. International and the AkzoNobel logo are registered trademarks of Akzo Nobel. Akzo Nobel 2008. The 500S comes with a healthy standard inventory but Darren and Brett have Australianised their boat including fitting an inverter cleats and rollers to the dinghy garage a stern rail on the boarding platform and an electric barbecue. PEACEFUL CRUISING During a run aboard the Prestige 500S the benefit of good engineering and the positioning of the engines further aft to suit the pod drives resulted in a very quiet onboard ambience with easy conversation possible right through to full speed. The ride was soft and smooth with a noticeable lack of vibration or harshness. The Volvo diesels spooled up without strain and the hull was soon slipping along at an easy cruise of 17 knots (31km h) with 2200rpm on the tachos and the Volvo display recording fuel consumption at 86lt an hour. A faster cruise was achieved at 3000rpm for 23.5 knots (44km h) and 118lt an hour whilst top speed on the day of 28.9 knots (53.5km h) came at 3500rpm and 166lt an hour. It s a very good boat to drive very quiet even at full rpm we can hold a normal conversation Brett said. Niki summed it all up very aptly Overnighting is very comfortable the boat is very stable and excellent for sleeping both for us and the children. We share with Darren across alternate weekends but given that we re friends we also have occasions when we all go out together such as on Australia Day and New Year s Eve when we celebrate and make it a bit festive. It s a holiday house on the water. It s a holiday house on the water SPECIFICATIONS PRESTIGE 500S Hull length 14.92m Overall length 15.20m Beam 4.50m Draft 1.02m Weight 18 200kg Sleeping capacity 3 cabins 6 persons Fuel capacity 1 300lt Water capacity 636lt Power Twin Volvo IPS 600 (325kw 435hp each) Transmission Twin Volvo pod drives Generator 11kw Base price from 850 000 Performance RPM KNOTS 2200 17.0 3000 23.5 3500 28.9 More information tel (02) 9960 1112. Above left The main stateroom is amidships for peaceful sleeping or for Niki to make the most of a quiet time with a magazine. Above The galley is in the aft port area of the saloon where Niki can prepare a snack without missing out on the conversation. 171 38 feature test JEANNEAU PRESTIGE 500 S 92 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 39 NOU VE AU JOHN ZAMMIT finds innovation and relative affordability in Jeanneau s NeW Prestige 500 s sportsyacht PHOTOS ELLEN DE WAR RICHE 93 40 T here s never been a better time to buy a boat and the choices just keep on coming. The strength of the AUD has seen new models arriving from overseas at prices that were unheard of a couple of years ago. But when a new concept craft arrives from a respected European manufacturer we really sit up and take notice. So it is with the Prestige 500 S one of the latest offerings from respected French manufacturer Jeanneau. Known here mostly as a builder of sailing yachts Jeanneau has been making powerboats since 1961 and the Prestige range for the last 20 years. Today there are more than 2500 Prestiges from 35 to 60 feet on the water and around the world. The Prestige range is Jeanneau s answer to those buyers looking for a higher level of luxury and refinement and specification in terms of fit and finish sort of what Lexus is to Toyota. Launched more than 20 years ago the range is based on a few simple concepts good performance and sea-keeping qualities all of the living spaces situated on one level 360-degree panoramic views out of all the living areas and each boat with an independent owner s suite. The Prestige 500 S features three cabins and two heads. She is powered by twin 435hp Volvo Penta D6 engines coupled to IPS 600 pod drives. But what s unique about the boat is that instead of locating the main stateroom among all of To keep things cool in the cockpit just activate the optional electric retractable awning (top) meanwhile the skipper has great vision from the helm (above) and there s a pop-up TV (opposite inset) in the adjoining bulkhead. Opposite top down Sunroof brings the outside in Saloon table folds over neatly to make a coffee table Galley is aft and down a step to cockpit level. the other accommodation they ve provided completely separate access via an aft staircase. The full-beam owner s suite is most unusual on a boat this size. Add to that a dinghy garage a huge electric sunroof an aft galley and the result is a practical roomy and comfy boat that s put together well. She will be easily handled by a couple and at under 1m represents top value. EURO CHIC The 500 S is a well-proportioned boat very European in styling -- a series of large hull windows give the first hint that the interior is just a little different. Stepping onboard via the aft swimplatform you range up a couple of steps to the cockpit. It s not overly big but nicely set-up and very social. A large U-shaped lounge along the transom faces a high-low table which drops to convert the setting to a comfortable sunlounge. A four-panel sliding door separates the cockpit from the indoors. Fully retracted the cockpit galley and saloon become one large combined 94 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 41 B OAT t e s t indoor outdoor living area. Fulllength side windows and a huge one-piece windscreen provide a sense of light and space. It s here that you start to get an appreciation of the concept of 360-degree panoramic views. An almost fullbeam retractable sunroof which we opened on a bright sunny day adds a further dimension. The aft galley to port is relatively compact and features an island bench with cupboards underneath and a full domestic-size fridge-freezer opposite. Adjacent is an L-shaped counter incorporating a three-burner ceramic cooktop an icebin recessed into the bench and beside that the sink. The icebin is a good idea for chilling drinks quickly but I m not sure about the location taking up valuable space in what is an already limited amount of bench top. Covers are provided so that anything not in use converts to bench space -- if you were preparing a meal here using the cook top and sink you wouldn t have too much room left otherwise. There s storage under-bench as well as a microwave and overhead cupboards incorporate an extractor fan. I liked the way the side window continues between the bench top and the overhead cupboards so even the galley is a room with a view. Forward of the galley there s comfortable seating around a foldup table and a lounge opposite to starboard and forward the helm. The layout is open-plan. The flooring and cabinetry throughout is Alpi a man-made reconstituted timber with plenty of advantages. It s hard wearing moisture resistant and ecofriendly with a consistent grain. But to my eye it looks a tad synthetic. Having said that the high-gloss cherry finish with contrasting light leather seating and darker leather fascia is quite elegant. The starboard helm is comfortable with good vision forward and to the sides but it s a bit hard to judge where the stern ends from here -- so I d be inclined to add the optional cockpit controls. There s a dual helm seat inbuilt footrest adjustable sports wheel and a nice wide dash. Consequently there s plenty of room to accommodate the factory-fitted electronics pack including two Raymarine E120W touchscreens GPS-plotter fishfinder 48nm digital radar and autopilot plus an array of Volvo Penta gauges and the latter s EVC (Electronic Vessel Control). The engine controls and joystick fall easily to hand and interestingly 95 42 this boat is also fitted with a bowthruster. Now many will tell you that you don t need a bowthruster with joystick docking and that s true but let me assure you it does makes life easier when you want to give the nose a bit of a nudge without affecting the stern. CABIN CAPERS ViP guest cabin in the bow (top) has a double island berth that parts to form two singles (above middle). A separate entrance leads to the luxurious full-beam owner s stateroom (above) the en suite (top right) with separate shower and electric head. The second guest cabin (middle right) has side-byside single berths that can slide together forming a double. 96 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 43 Going forward and down four steps the roomy accommodation has good head-height and a light and airy feel courtesy of large hull windows in all cabins. The VIP guest cabin in the bow features a large island bed that splits to form two separate berths and with inbuilt benches either side and ample storage and hanging space there s room aplenty to stow all your gear for those trips away. There s even a pop-up vanity unit. A second guest cabin to port features side-by-side berths that slide together to form a large double and here too are good storage and hanging spaces. Across the companionway to starboard is a contemporary bathroom with a separate door providing en suite access to the VIP cabin. While not overly large the bathroom is quite refined with a stylish mirrored vanity electric Tecma head and a clever fold-back shower screen that allows this wet area to become a B OAT t e s t ThE PRESTiGE RANGE iS JEANNEAU S ANSWER TO ThOSE bUyERS LOOkiNG fOR A hiGhER LEVEL Of LUxURy AND REfiNEmENT AND SPEcificATiON iN TERmS Of fiT AND fiNiSh SORT Of WhAT LExUS iS TO TOyOTA [HIGHS] Stylish looks Performance and handling Fit and finish Very social layout Owner s suite Large hull windows Top value [LOWS] No fuel tank sight gauges Fuel capacity Swimplatform set a bit too high Limited galley bench space 97 44 B OAT t e s t ThE fULL-bEAm OWNER S SUiTE A hiGhLiGhT Of ThiS bOAT iS... ROOmy LiGhT-fiLLED AND cOmES WiTh OcEAN ViEWS useable part of the bathroom when not in use. Overhead hatches and opening portholes within the hull windows provide plenty of natural ventilation with independent air-conditioning controls in each cabin. The full-beam owner s suite a highlight is accessed via a separate staircase situated aft in the saloon. It s roomy light-filled and comes with ocean views -- large hull windows either side provide a sensational outlook over the water. The designers at Jeanneau have done a good job creating an open feel to a cabin that incorporates a large island bed lots of storage and hanging space an inbuilt vanity and a comfortable lounge reading area. In fact it s a luxurious retreat with a unique outlook and as such is a pleasant place to kick back and relax. The en suite has separate shower electric head and mirrored vanity -- another sizeable hull window adds light and sense of space. BALANCING ACT Engine access is through two hatches in the cockpit. There s a ladder and Jeanneau has made use of every nook and cranny. The engines are set farther forward than you would normally expect with a one-metre jackshaft back to the pods. There is reasonable access around both engines although getting to the top of them such as to add oil is not that straightforward. The floor of the garage is directly above and you need to remove the tender to expose hatches in the garage sole to reach the top of the engines. Everything though else is easy to get to. Batteries are housed in boxes outboard of each engine there s an 11kVa Onan generator and an 1800W inverter drives all the entertainment 98 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 45 systems and the galley power points. Fuel tanks (both 650lt each and with a balance pipe) are forward of the engines and although there s no visual fuel-level indicator there is a gauge at the helm. But I thought that fuel capacity was a bit light on. The Jeanneau Prestige 500 S uses around 102lt h cruising at 20kts so leaving a bit in reserve she has a comfortable cruising range of around 220nm. Water capacity is 636lt and in two 318lt tanks located well forward beneath the companionway with a water gauge in the saloon. Back in the cockpit are controls for the tender garage which lifts to reveal a 3.1m dinghy and outboard foldout rollers and a winch making for effortless launch and retrieval. Moving along the sidedecks is safe and easy courtesy of raised bulwarks high siderails and a handrail running atop the cabin s side windows. Fuel fillers (one for each tank) are located under a lift-up lid so any spillage during bunkering can be contained. When you reach the foredeck a nice large sunpad with adjustable backrest beckons. There s also an optional awning that fits to the sunpad allowing you to relax in the warmth with adequate protection overhead from too much of a good thing. (ED The protected foredeck sunpad is a concept I have been championing for years. Very exciting to see its final execution at production-boat level.) A large anchor on the bow is connected to a Lewmar winch housed in a well so that anything coming up with the chain doesn t finish up on deck and there s a remote anchor control and a seawater washdown. Large cleats are in all the right places and substantial fairleads with rollers are strategically placed. Twin Volvo Penta iPS 600s (top) dominate the engineroom where beneteau has made use of all available space. Tender garage features foldout rollers and a winch for effortless launch and retrieval. PERFORMANCE & HANDLING I thought these engines were a good match to the hull there s ample power to get you up on the plane quickly and effortlessly she s soft riding and runs quite flat. I found that I hardly needed to use the trim tabs and I d imagine you d probably only use them if you were fully loaded to keep the boat on an even keel in cross winds for example. The sea was fairly calm on the day of our test and I found her a joy to drive -- light and responsive off the wheel and very quiet underway. I found her so easy to drive in fact that I had to constantly remind myself that this was a 50ft boat. My only criticism of her handling is she didn t come around at speed as tightly as I would expect from a poddriven boat but I suspect that says more about the settings rather than either the hull or the pods. Fa ct s & fi g u re s BEHIND THE WHEEL JEANNEAU PRESTIGE 500 S CAPACITIES PEOPLE (NIGHT) 6 FUEL 1300lt WATER 636lt HOLDING TANK 120lt The Volvo Pentas are high revving engines that max out at 3500rpm where we got the Jeanneau Prestige 500 S to 29kts. Normal cruise would be in the order of 2800rpm for around 20kts and a fuel-burn just above 100lt h -- very economical for a boat this size. PRICE AS TESTED 992 000 ENGINE SEA TRIALS RPM Twin 435hp Volvo Penta IPS 600 2000 2200 2400 2600 2800 3000 3200 3400 3500 12kts 13kts 15kts 17kts 20kts 22kts 25kts 27kts 29 kts MAKE MODEL 2 x Volvo Penta D6-435D IPS 600 TYPE Turbo-diesel RATED HP 435 (each) DISPLACEMENT 5.5lt (each) WEIGHT 594kg (each) SPEED TOTAL FUEL BURN 44lt h 58lt h 67lt h 84lt h 102lt h 118lt h 129lt h 165lt h 167lt h SUPPLIED BY Mathew Willett Marine Shop 4 Fergusons Boat Shed 83 Parriwi Road Mosman NSW 2088 Phone (02) 9960 1112 Email matthew Website I guess it depends on your style of boating but anyone looking for a smart sportsyacht a nice entertainer with good performance and a fair bit of wow factor should have a serious look at the Prestige 500 S. She represents a lot of bang for your buck and while she s still a production boat rather than a bespoke offering the styling attention to detail and fit and finish are very smart. Interestingingly Jeanneau in Australia has dealers in each state who buy direct from the factory in France thereby cutting out the middle man and additional distributor costs. These savings are passed onto the customer. Of course the Jeanneau Prestige 500 S doesn t pretend to be a passagemaker or a long-range cruiser. She doesn t come loaded with extra freezers long-range fuel tanks etc. However she s an impressive luxury getaway with fantastic accommodation and a price that won t break the bank. Finally the 500 S comes loaded with so much good gear it s hard to relate it all here but one thing I can almost guarantee if this were your boat your friends would be impressed. SAYS... Official sea-trial data supplied by Jeanneau. OPTIONS FITTED Electronics pack bowthruster foredeck sunpad with bimini covers for rear cockpit sofa saloon LCD TV and DVD TVs in forward and aft cabins Bose audio system with MP3 11kVa generator portside aft mooring windlass upgraded anchoring kit electric retractable cockpit sun awning seawater deckwash launch rollers and electric tender winch tender and outboard deck floodlight 52 000 BTU reverse cycle airconditioning electric trim tabs Foxtel and bedspread d cor set PRICED FROM 851 286 GENERAL MATERIAL GRP TYPE Planing monohull LENGTH OVERALL 15.2m HULL LENGTH 14.92m BEAM 4.5m WEIGHT 13 500kg DRAFT 1.02m if the sun is getting a bit hot this foredeck sunbed (below left) has the answer with the foldout bimini option. Aiding sidedeck travel (below) are raised bulwarks tall siderails and cabin-side handrails. 99 46 JEANNEAU FACTORY VISIT FEATURE French builder Jeanneau is steadily encroaching on the 50- to 60-foot turf dominated by a raft of bigname Euro brands. Our man PATRICK TENPIN BOLLEN heads to France for a first look at the new Prestige 550 flybridge model 134 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 47 dREssINg FRENCh PHOTOS PATRICK BOLLEN hen word gets out that something refreshing new and exciting is about to hit the marketplace everyone wonders with bated breath just what it could be. A thrilling new powerboat had been developed by the French employing the design talents of the Italians. I was intrigued to learn just what could possibly match the likes of established UK brands such as Princess and Fairline. I had to see for myself. When erstwhile Trade-a-Boat editor David Lockwood phoned asking if I would be interested in going to France to attend the launch of the new Prestige range well what do you think I said. It was a no brainer. I started asking questions about what the French were up to. I got some sketchy information a few brochures some dialogue and a website. Could there really be a bright new brand joining the competitive 50- to 60-foot powerboat market A boat to take on the likes of the British models Fairline Princess and Sunseeker not to mention the Italian designs Ferretti and Azimut. Apparently there is and the French are very pleased with what they ve produced and are now delivering to customers around the world. The product the result of years of research and development is a very stylish motoryacht that is eyecatching elegant and distinctive. Three new models were on display at the sprawling 37-acre Jeanneau factory in Les Herbiers capital of the northern Vendee-Bocage (name given to the rolling countryside of fields and hedgerows characteristic of the region) province. Les Herbiers is one of the most dynamic areas in France largely due to the enterprising spirit and solidarity of the Vendee. W RAISING THE TRICOLOR Opposite A model of the new Jeanneau Prestige 550. Top Toasting the new flybridge motoryacht are Jeanneau s director general Jean-Paul Chapeleau (third from right). Above (L-R) Our man Patrick Bollen with Jeanneau sales directer Asia-Pacific Paul Blanc and Australian agent Matt Willett. ENTER JEANNEAU In 1957 Henri Jeanneau a man who passionate about motor cars and airplanes soon discovered a new fervour that of the powerboat. Henri built a wooden hull and competed in a six-hour race to Paris which he won. A couple of years later he employed the services of canoe builders and started building powerboats -- so began the Jeanneau shipbuilding company. Today nearly 60 years later what was once a fledgling boatbuilding hobby has become one of the biggest production-boat facilities in the world. The Jeanneau boatbuilding operation now employs almost 2500 people building and selling yachts powerboats and the new Prestige range of luxury motorcraft. Jeanneau also has 300 agents in France and around the world. Jeanneau dealers customers and a select media representation recently attended a gala presentation hosted by Jean-Paul Chapeleau director general of the company and senior staff who put on a spectacular occasion over three days to usher in the stunning new Prestige range of 50- 55- and 60-foot powerboats. On display under brilliant spotlights in a massive showroom at Les Herbier and in full glory was build No.2 a gleaming white flybridge 55-footer. Hull One had already been sold to a Chinese buyer. ADD PRESTIGE The first Prestige boat was built 20 years ago. The then new brand setting a benchmark in pleasure cruising. It is a brand with vision creating a line of motoryachts combining exceptional seaworthiness and contemporary design while preserving traditional maritime values says Chapeleau. In short the new Prestige range simply delivers a beautiful boat. The name alone guarantees a quality exclusive to the world of luxury yachts. When I first laid eyes on the Jeanneau Prestige 550 I was knocked out by her sleek lines and lovely sheer. Everything just seems to come together. The Prestige design comes from the drawing boards of the Italian Garroni Design Group in Genoa. Design is something that is very personal. I take my inspiration from cars. It s about the line says Camillo Garroni the son of naval architect and Garroni Group founder Vittorio. I believe that when you are on the water you must always be able to see the sea hence the big windows in the topsides he adds. OZ FACTOR The panorama window is something Australian designers Phil Curran and Jon Bannenberg introduced to yacht design back in 1986 with the 135 48 spectacular superyacht Parts VI now Madiblue. The Prestige 550 is a voluminous boat. It is the best boat for life inside Garroni says. The new Prestige truly is a magnificent craft. From stem to stern this stunning motoryacht exudes style her lines are a pleasure to behold. Follow the sheer and the whole boat draws your eyes aft giving the impression of speed even when she is lying alongside or sitting quietly on a mooring. The foredeck is long incorporating a sun lounge that includes a folding bench seat and a sun awning that can be erected in a moment providing good shelter from the hot summer UVs all the time allowing for a draft breeze to cool guests stretching out on the soft and comfortable sunbed. The flybridge is exceptional for a boat this size and has twin seating at the helm located on the port side a huge sunbed a galley and seating for six on a surround lounge around a beautiful raw teak dining table. By the way another characteristic of this boat is the 12mm teak decking from stem to stern. Off the transom is a huge hydraulic swimplatform and pivoting passerelle while the aft deck offers a terrific entertaining area with comfortable lounge across the transom and a beautiful teak table. The main saloon is where Prestige have excelled creating an immense open living space on a single level incorporating the pilothouse and cockpit plus a brilliant galley centrally located to serve both the interior and the exterior. The chef is no longer separated from the entertainment and his her guests. BEST BELOW Down below is the piece de resistance. The owner s stateroom is the best there is in this range of boats. The cabin features a large lateral window in the hull flooding the room in natural light while affording a fabulous view of the sea outside. It is to say the least enormous light sumptuous and bright featuring a king-size double berth a lavish en suite and walk-in robe plus all the mod cons to make life aboard a very special experience. The guest quarters comprise a double cabin midships that allows Top left The saloon on the Prestige 550 features an aft galley. Left The 550 s owner s cabin. Opposite Jeanneau staged a gala presentation for its new Prestige models. 136 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 49 FEATURE T h E J E A N N E A u B O AT B u I L d I N g O P E R AT I O N N O W E M P L O y s ALMOsT 2500 PEOPLE BuILdINg A N d s E L L I N g yA C h T s P O W E R B O AT s A N d T h E N E W PREsTIgE RANgE Of LuxuRy M O T O R C R A f T. J E A N N E A u A L s O hAs 300 AgENTs IN fRANCE ANd AROuNd ThE WORLd 137 50 FEATURE the berths to be converted to singles and a big luxurious double bed in the forward section of the boat that can also be converted into two singles. The forward guest cabin also boasts a splendid en suite. All cabins are air-conditioned. As a commercial skipper I am impressed with the business end of the Jeanneau Prestige 550. The pilothouse is exceptional providing the helm with a 360-degree panoramic view at all times when underway at anchor or in port. It features a twoperson helm station two large multifunctional navigation displays all the best nav aids and instruments. These facilitate good control and maintain an excellent watch with engine throttle controls and joystick well located and within easy reach. operation is supported with a superior electronic engine-control system through the innovative Digital Throttle and Shift (DTS) function. This ensures the operator a simpler easier and enjoyable boating experience. The advantages of DTS are clear offering gearshift protection in smoother faster engagement and acceleration eliminating the more abrupt shifts so common with mechanical systems plus it stops the boat quicker. The shaftdriven boat is a thing of the past on the new Prestige range. The boatbuilding team has incorporated the new Zeus pod-drive system which gives the owner operator better protection from flotsam improved manoeuvrability and incredible performance. Each pod turns independently resulting in greater turning efficiency. Hydraulic power steers the pods and actuates integrated trim tabs delivering responsive acceleration and performance and best of all improved fuel economy. The best feature of the pod s counter-rotating propellers is that the worry of docking is now also a thing of the past. Using the joystick control a boater can now pull-up at a dock align his new Prestige to the berth rotate the props port or starboard and simply manoeuvre the boat sideways or aft until safely alongside or stern-to the mooring. Jeanneau s Prestige range of boats is impressive and I am sure will be a big asset to the boating community right around the world. There are plans on the board to build 70- and 80-foot models. NEW SAILS ENGINEROOM TICKS Again from a skipper s point of view I was very impressed with the space and full headroom in the well laidout engine bay. Here are housed two generators accessible battery banks fuel tanks electrical systems and a pair of powerful and highly efficient Cummins QSC 8.3-600 diesel motors capable of delivering a top speed of 30kts at 238lt h or a cruising speed of 24kts at 193lt h. The Cummins MerCruiser diesel While the Jeanneau management team spent the afternoon chatting with agents and potential buyers I took a sneak peek at the yacht factory and the new Sun Odyssey 44 DS keelboat. What an incredible operation it is from moulding to finished product and like the Prestige range the Sun Odyssey sailboat models are just as fantastic. Before I left France on the long long flight back to the land of Oz via the UAE I was privileged to take the new 44 DS on a test sail out of Les Sables on the Bay of Biscay. This was a thrill and aboard another exciting Jeanneau pleasureboat. (I will bring you that story in a forthcoming issue of Trade-a-Boat). Until then remember one hand for you and one hand for the boat. Happy and safe boating everyone. Below flybridge helm on the Prestige 500. Right The boat includes this nifty pull-out sunshade for the fordeck sunpad. Q ui ck Sp ec s JEANNEAU PRESTIGE 550 MATERIAL gRP TYPE Planing monohull LENGTH OVERALL 17.92m HULL LENGTH 16.06m BEAM 4.79m DRAFT 1.17m WEIGHT 17 700kg (dry) FUEL 1930lt WATER 800lt CABINS 3 ENGINE 2 x Cummins QsC 8.3 REC. MAX SPEED 30kts REC. CRUISING SPEED 24kts 138 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 51 FEATURE TEsT PRESTIGE 550 46 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 53 to Pittwater From Paris STORY JeFF straNG PHOTOS JaCK mUrPHY sometimes it only takes a boat show and an approving partner to upgrade to the luxur y of a Prestige 550 flybridge as one sydney owner found The boat you want is now easier to find 47 54 Matt Willett himself at the helm -- and looking slightly startled. N othing pleases me more than conducting a candid interview with a genuinely delighted new-boat owner -- delighted with the boat delighted with the agent delighted with the supplier just delighted all-round really. Pittwater local Tom has owned several boats most recently a Sea Ray 48 so he knew what to expect. To be honest I doubt even Tom expected the experience to be quite as good as it was. Keen to move on to something new Tom spent the best part of a Friday at the 2011 Sydney International Boat Show on his own looking at all the latest offerings hopeful he would find something which would tick a majority of his boxes and all of his wife s. A big ask perhaps but little did he know just how successful this quest would work out in the end. At some stage Tom stepped onto the Prestige 500 a quality boat-build under the umbrella of the Jeanneau group (look for our 2012 review of this model at being presented at the Sydney show by MW Marine. Impressed with the layout including the boat s upstairs galley and private-entry 48 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 55 master cabin and with an initially good impression of local dealer Matt Willett Tom headed home convinced his wife would look upon the Prestige 500 favourably. She was impressed in fact he couldn t get her off the boat. Except for one factor -- she would have liked a bigger galley. A good outcome but not a great one. At that stage the Prestige 550 was still on the company s drawing board and would be at least a year away. A whole year without a boat was a tough pill to swallow. Still Tom was convinced that with Matt Willett he was dealing with the right person and with Jeanneau s vastly-scaled economics and the strength of the Aussie dollar a Prestige 550 even one that was still not much more than a concept looked like one hell of a good-value proposition. A Euro-chic ladder to access the flybridge. INVITED GUESTS Okay so maybe I m using a little poetic license describing the Prestige 550 at only being in the concept stage. In fact the prototype was due to roll off the production line that November and Tom and his wife would join Matt in Nantes France as VIP guests at its unveiling. VIP is right there was a chateau and plenty of champagne but what is important was Tom s lingering impression of the new Prestige 550 and the factory that built it. Some companies can build good products without paying much homage to its internal culture. Great companies build great products by leveraging f E aT u R E T E s T The open air bridge (photos left) was one of two or three features that clinched the deal. The Cummins Zeus system comes with multiple-station options -- see the flybridge helm (top right) and the docking-only station (above right). I was stuck by the volume of this vessel. Even without an enclosed hardtop this is an imposing boat. Where the recent American trends have been for decreasing profiles it seems the Europeans have been moving in the other direction. It s simple mathematics if you want volume inside you have to have volume on the outside and the Prestige 550 carries its volume all the way aft ensuring every cabin gets generous headroom and a sense of space. Boarding via the hydraulicallyoperated swimplatform even with all our bulky equipment was easy. Despite a good-sized inflatable tender being in residence there was still plenty of room to negotiate our way to the starboard stairwell which leads to a gorgeous aft deck. Fully decked out in teak to my eye the aft deck has more of a patio feel to it than a cockpit. This is a space designed for ambience a great culture and Jeanneau s Prestige was clearly a great company. A month later and the group were back at the Paris boat show for a test sail in typically wintery weather. Even rugged-up like they were with visions of an Australian summer in their mind s eye both Tom and his wife loved the boat -- especially the concept of the openair top deck and bridge. The deal was done and there was nothing left to do except wait. Although the usual lead time for The boat you want is now easier to find a vessel from Europe is around six months the order list for the Prestige 550 was long and would be a year (December 3 2012) before this boat would roll off the ship in Sydney for its handover on the 23rd. I m not sure if Matt Willett s team managed to get a Christmas bow around the whole boat but at least it was under the metaphorical tree. NO SUBSTITUTE FOR SIZE Standing at the dock watching Mon Amie cruise in to pick our team up 49 56 A giant sunbed drapes the forward cabin top cupholders and handrails either side adding to the already luxurious comfort factor. 50 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 57 f E aT u R E T E s T ...a PrestiGe 550 eveN oNe tHat was still Not mUCH more tHaN a CoNCePt looKed liKe oNe Hell oF a Good-valUe ProPositioN soaking and social mingling not fishing -- the Europeans would never consider engaging in an activity as base as catching their own dinner. A good-sized settee faces forward behind a solid timber table which with the addition of a few extra chairs would easily cope with a dining party of six. If your instant reaction is Where am I going to store those extra deck chairs look no farther than the crew cabin the entry to which is cleverly concealed under the settee. On this boat and in Australia this crew cabin is not that likely to be utilised by an epaulette-wearing captain but even if it did there is still plenty of storage space. The waterfront apartment feel continues and strengthens as you pass through an interestingly configured set of double sliding doors. It s a style that grows on you -- galley to port with passage to the saloon proper to starboard a little serving bar dividing the passageway in the middle. The advantage is the ability to enjoy an unfettered thoroughfare from either the galley or the saloon simultaneously without the inconvenience of open hinged doors intruding into the patio deck. The galley itself is bigger than the one in the smaller Prestige 500 so Tom s wife made an excellent [HIGHS] Private master cabin Increased internal volume Comprehensive galley Open-air bridge Clean styling Standout buying experience Excellent aftersales service [LOWS] Entry to master cabin needs looking at The boat you want is now easier to find 51 58 Featuring a larger galley and saloon area (left) the 550 is a big step-up from the already very good 500. The en suite options (below right) justify some research to exactly tailor your requirements. The much vaunted master cabin and its custom-made Rockdale mattress (below left). decision there. What pleased me the most was the abundant and easily-accessed refrigeration and the full-sized under-bench oven. I suspect with use the ability of the chef to work in isolation yet within easy conversational reach of the rest of the party and with unobstructed walking access to the alfresco dining table outside could prove to be the coup de grace of the setup. ROYALLY ACCOMMODATED Walk straight ahead from the starboardside thoroughfare and you enter the saloon proper. However turn to your right and you ll find an inviting stairwell beckoning investigation. It is the private entry point to the much vaunted and completely secluded master cabin. I have to be honest and say the design of the stairwell entry needs further development as it is 52 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 59 a potential stumbling hazard for those who haven t realised it is there. It is the only fault I could find in my notes and could be at least partially addressed with an extra handhold or two. A short descent brings you to the oasis of seclusion and privacy that first caught Tom s eye on the Prestige 500 at the Sydney show. Naturally the 550 s extra beam translates fluidly into extra space and indeed extra head height. The smaller model s cabin was lavish enough but the full-beam of this boat has really allowed this master suite to breathe. Panoramic tinted windows flood the space with cooling water-reflected light watery patterns illuminating the ceiling above. A quick test of the bed reveals there is something extra special about the mattress. Turns out it is a locally-made product custom-built for this boat by the Sydney-based Rockdale Mattress Factory. How on earth one is expected to build the motivation and leave this bed to work diligently at the twin writing desk adjacent I have no idea. Switch on the artificial lighting and the feeling of added warmth is immediate. With all the switches on a full walk-in wardrobe is revealed. It has that fresh smell of cedar which I suspect is what the shelving is made of. A clean and inviting walkthrough shower and generous bathroom completes this almost self-contained retreat. SOCIALLY STYLISED Back up with the guests in the main saloon the contemporary Euro-chic styling continues. For me it is the clean straight lines and the well-defined angles of the upholstery all tastefully highlighted with classic-patterned accessories that define the look as French. As I write those words I picture f E aT u R E T E s T owNers oF tHe PrestiGe 550 wHo woUld UNderstaNdablY be deliGHted witH tHe qUalitY oF tHeir owN Private aCCommodatioN sHoUldN t Have aNY CoNCerNs tHeir GUests woN t be as well Catered For urban designers choking on their espressos at my lack of education. A pair of these precisely-cut couches face each other across the full-beam of the saloon -- one U-shaped around a solid timber extendable table the other a straight two- or three-seater -- providing an intimate environment to wile away an evening in pleasant conversation a pop-up satellite-fed TV on hand should the game be on. with independent en suites or a single-shared bathroom. Sensibly it would appear from the specifications I found online all the bed options up forward can either be separated as singles or pushed together to form a double. I may have this wrong but a quick enquiry with your dealer will ensure the facts are clear. benefits of the Zeus system on numerous occasions and will cover it again in detail next month so all that is needed today is a reminder of the extreme user-friendliness of the technology particularly for novices. On this day we did most of our driving from upstairs making the most of a balmy summer s day. In a boat that seems deliberately styled to make time for smelling-the-roses as they say it doesn t mince words when it comes to some throttledown high-speed travelling. Like most modern common rail engines the Cummins QSCs have a little lag in their initial acceleration due to the carefully controlled fuel management system but the transition is absolutely minimal and soon enough we were throwing her around like a sportsboat. The vessel s cruising speed of 24kts is reached seemingly effortlessly and at this pace you will cover the AND IGNITION HONOURED GUESTS TO FORWARD Owners of the Prestige 550 who would understandably be delighted with the quality of their own private accommodation shouldn t have any concerns their guests won t be as well catered for. Prestige offers a range of forward accommodation options revolving more or less around a VIP cabin and a twin-single cabin and either The boat you want is now easier to find In keeping with its indoor outdoor brief the Prestige 550 offers two dedicated helm stations a full helm in the saloon with a slightly abbreviated version on the openair bridge supported by a third docking-only station in the cockpit. Featuring twin 600hp Cummins QSC engines driven through joystick-controlled Zeus pod drives this boat sits at the current leadingedge of fuel efficiency and ease of manoeuvrability. Trade-a-Boat has talked about the features and 53 60 f E aT u R E T E s T fa ct s & fig ur es PRESTIGE 550 PRICE AS TESTED 1 420 000 PRICED FROM 1 325 000 GENERAL LENGTH 17.92m (overall) 16.06m (hull) WEIGHT 17700kg (light ship) BEAM 4.79m DRAFT 1.17m CAPACITIES The hydraulically-lowered swimplatform (right) makes accessing the water almost too easy. Just press a buttom and launch the tender. CABINS 3 PEOPLE (NIGHT) 6 1 FUEL 2200lt WATER 800lt PERFORMANCE REC. MAX SPEED 30kts CRUISING SPEED 24kts FUEL BURN 193lt h (cruising speed) RANGE 280nm (cruising speed) ENGINE [ The French certainly have a way of presenting a different perspective on the classic Australian boating lifestyle in a highly palatable way. It is apartment-style living by the water without losing touch with its essential ingredients -- the smell the touch and the taste of this perfect marine environment we are blessed with. The boat s volume allows for a highly-useable layout and the total seclusion of the master cabin is priceless. SAYS... ] MAKE MODEL 2 x Cummins QSC8.3 w Zeus pods TYPE Electronic six-cylinder turbodiesel w common rail injection and aftercooling RATED HP 600 (each) DISPLACEMENT 8.3lt (each) REC. MAX REV RANGE 2500 to 3000 SUPPLIED BY sea miles quickly and relatively cost effective. It is worth noting the actual figures we recorded are significantly lower than those Prestige publish. Another interesting observation was the relative lack of wake the boat throws even when hard in a turn. We were shooting this story from the small Brig inflatable (pictured hereabouts) and I had some concerns about the expensive camera gear we were using. I needn t have worried. THE VERDICT The French certainly have a way of presenting a different perspective on the classic Australian boating lifestyle in a highly palatable way. It is apartment-style living by the water without losing touch with its essential ingredients -- the smell the touch and the taste of this perfect marine environment 54 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 61 we are blessed with. The boat s volume allows for a highly-useable layout and the total seclusion of the master cabin is priceless. From an engineering point of view it is important to remember that this is the total luxury end of a very large business so it will be good and backed-up by excellent customer service. In summary yet again I find myself thoroughly impressed by the whole Prestige package. This is a company that understands a quality experience is about much more than a few feet of fibreglass coloured cushions and an engine. To listen to new owner Tom s genuine enthusiasm and delight with the buying process the level of customer service he has experienced thus far and of course his beautiful boat Mon Amie was absolute gold. This is one happy man -- and wife. MW Marine d Albora Marinas The Spit Mosman NSW 2088 Contact Matthew Willett Phone (02) 9930 0000 0488 821 112 Email boats Web FOR MORE INFORMATION Visit LAYOUT Test day weather information supplied by boat test JEANNEAU NC9 72 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 63 weekend PHOTOS ke VIn GReen SupplIed the beauty of sportscruisers like Jeanneau s NC9 is versatility -- you can take the family away overnight tow some water toys and yet have enough of a hull for that offshore fishing trip reports KEVIN GREEN wAyfArEr 73 64 F Helm is nice and high set a couple of steps above the saloon sole. A sidedoor is great for the skipper and extra ventilation. The forward seat of the dinette (below right) flips two ways allowing two passengers to enjoy the views ahead underway. rench builder Jeanneau has created an extensive power range over the years including centre consoles sportsfishers higher-end cruisers and more recently the New Concept (NC) range. A relatively new approach for Jeanneau the NC range is less than two years-old but has already been successful with the 35-foot NC11 voted European Powerboat of the Year 2011. The launch of the 30-foot NC9 sportscruiser at Cannes this year caused quite a stir among visiting boating journalists because the general consensus was this boat epitomised the modern utility cruiser. The key word is versatility -- ranging from the adjustable stern deck space adjustable seating in the saloon and generally maximising space throughout including a guest cabin while the centre wheelhouse allows all-round low-level decking a good offshore safety feature. Definitely not flashy with only a single diesel so less oomph than her twin-screw big sister the NC9 is produced in enough numbers to give fantastic economies of scale. These traits plus our strong Aussie dollar allow at least two Australian distributors MW Marine in Sydney and Pacific 74 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 65 Motor Yachts on the Gold Coast to sell the NC9 for only 289 000. Our first buyer was looking for a 30ft enclosed powerboat and didn t want to worry about canvas and other weather protection explained Matt Willet of MW Marine. They are coming out of a trailerboat so we think that is the market for the NC9 either entry level or trailerboat upgrade for people looking to overnight and cruise a bit more. FIRST IMPRESSIONS Boarding the NC9 is easy thanks to the low-slung transom with doors either side of the moveable stern locker that can slide out onto the teak swimplatform or move in to enlarge the swimming area. A stern anchor is another useful feature -- for holding off on a beach and bow-on in the marina -- which is neatly recessed into the hull and its Quick remote control hidden in a locker. Alongside are shorepower B OAT t e s t A hinged lid reveals the galley (left) a splashback protecting the timber from the two-burner gimballed stove. The owner s cabin is forward (below left) boasting good headroom and a berth that extends by a foot with an infill. Also spacious is the bathroom (below right). [HIGHS] design deck Functional overall Versatile saloon and Good build quality [LOwS] is limited Spartan guest cabin Standard power option The nC9 Can Sleep fouR adulTS pluS kIdS In The Saloon wITh The foRepeak deVoTed To The owneR S SuITe and double GueST CabIn poRTSIde -- whICh IS pReTTy Good foR a 30-fooTeR inlets and water all conveniently placed and protected from the elements. The stern deck has plenty of space for a table to slot under the optional extendable canvas awning (another essential for Oz) which slides out from the hard part of the flybridge and is fixed by alloy poles in the topsides. SALOON VIEWS Opening the triple sliding glass door reveals a light-filled interior thanks to enormous windows all around. Demonstrating versatility again these doors can be adjusted in three ways allowing access from the portside galley only the starboardside dinette or centralising them for dual access. Combine these features with the high ceiling and vertical sides creates a very pleasant saloon though with all those acres of glass the optional air-conditioner might be a worthwhile buy for summertime. The dinette comfortably seats four on its cream leather seats which flip two ways so the skipper can be joined on the bridge by two others while the rear seat also flips to create a social area on the stern deck. Showing yet more good design the table slides down to create a double berth ideal for the littlies I d say to view the flatscreen television that s fixed to 75 66 the portside galley work surface. A two-burner gimballed Eno stove-oven with stainless steel splashback is neatly hidden under a lid alongside a stainless steel sink. Chilled food is stored in the front-opening 80lt fridge and several cupboards including a cutlery drawer offer adequate storage. Yet further locker space hides below the floor where plastic drawers can hold small gear and there s plenty of space for eight lifejackets to comply with its CE-B8 rating. PORT STEERING An elevated high-backed chair gives a comfy seat at the port helm station and the base flips up for standing. Usefully the wheelhouse door slides back to reveal an ideally placed midships cleat good for shorthanded mooring. Looking at the helm console the skipper is clearly informed with easily-read analogue gauges for Volts fuel RPM while the Lenco trim tab controls are to hand as well in front of the electronic 76 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 67 The single 260hp Volvo Penta D4 (above) engine is easy to get to under a large cockpit hatch and powered the Jeanneau NC9 (top) to a top speed of 24.5kts on test day. B OAT t e s t fuel uSaGe dRopped dRamaTICally aT The boaT S CRuISInG Speed (20.7kTS) To a ReaSonable 40lT h GIVInG neaRly an eIGhT-houR CRuISInG RanGe on The STandaRd fuel Tank head is optional with manual standard. Ventilation is via a small opening portlight above the shallow sink the showerhead nestling in the corner. Across the small corridor space the guest cabin looks like a bit of an afterthought with a low ceiling receding to about two-foot at the back but the double berth is adequate and there s standing space by the door. The NC9 is about two-foot narrower than the NC11 so space has to go from somewhere. The area is rather spartan lacking any shelf space but a small wardrobe will take an overnight change of clothing and those large portlight windows cheer up this otherwise gloomy berth. Fixtures and fittings throughout are good though some older buyers may complain that the overall feel is rather manufactured CNC precision machining replacing that old nautical lustre. Personally function tends to win over style for me but you can be the judge when you see one at the Sydney boat show. Elsewhere onboard the NC9 are plenty of other functional designs including bulwarks and deep sidedecks surrounding the wheelhouse with chest-high handrails for going forward. At the bow it s definitely party time thanks to a large sunpad dominating the spacious area and this is enhanced by the extended wooden pulpit with a useful ladder -- handy for quick boarding as well. The hard-chined solid GRP hull has a powerful vee with tunnel thruster sufficiently deep to grip the water while the topsides flair out enough to maintain dry decks in most conditions. The tall topsides are punctuated by elongated windows enhancing the aesthetics of what could be construed as a rather chunky looking boat. The build generally felt good - as highlighted by a wellfaired inside hull devoid of any raw GRP matting or many protruding bolt ends. Looking at the business end of this boat there are two power options - either a 300hp or the standard 260hp Volvo Penta D4. Some traditionalists may baulk at the idea of only a single engine as boats this size often have twin screws. But the utility concept of this model dictates that an economical four-cylinder diesel does the job. The sterndrive Volvo Penta D4-260 is easily accessed by lifting the large stern cockpit hatch revealing a fairly spacious engineroom with standing room either side. Service points including water and diesel filters are at hand while the batteries sit either side of the engine but wisely just above bilge level. Tankage is sensibly positioned the 300lt fuel tank and the 160lt water tank both sit low and centralised. AT SEA throttle. Navigation equipment is Raymarine with ST70 autopilot and a large C90 multifunction plotter that also shows imagery from the radar located on a strut to the rear of the wheelhouse roof. A Max Power thruster joystick completes the functional console sensibly placed near the door so the skipper can operate it from the sidedeck. SAFE SIDES OVERNIGHTING The NC9 can sleep four adults plus kids in the saloon with the forepeak devoted to the owner s suite and double guest cabin portside -- which is pretty good for a 30-footer. The owner s suite has plenty of headroom giving it an airy feel while the practicalities are well taken care of with cupboards and a wardrobe. Cleverly the island bed is extendable with an infill cushion stored below increasing its length by about a foot. The bathroom is spacious again with ample headroom and floor space. The area is moulded to prevent bacteria and the electric Casting off from the Cannes dock went without a hitch as a few nudges on the Max Power thruster negated the need for a crewman for ard while the sterndrive spun the hull round quickly once clear of the berth. The NC9 idled quietly along sheltered waters inside the ancient stone pier dodged past the lighthouse at the entrance before I pointed it towards the open sea. The mild spring sunshine persuaded me to open the electric roof before I accelerated watching the revs rise on the analogue dials. A light breeze meant flat calm seas so seeking some bumps I threw the NC9 into a series of figure-eight turns rotating the light helm easily as we banked into tighter and tighter angles which eventually caused the hull to dig in and slightly slow. Hitting our wake at a cruising speed of 20kts brought little complaint from the boat with no sound of loose fittings or doors banging open the flared topsides keeping the decks largely dry. The only niggle was limited visibility forward. My 180cm frame meant my eyes were staring at the top 77 68 B OAT t e s t fa ct s & fig ur es JEANNEAU NC9 PRICE AS TESTED 289 000 OPTIONS FITTED Antifouling commissioning bowthruster electric winch teak cockpit electric toilet and entertainment system 249 000 w single 260hp Volvo Penta diesel sterndrive MATERIAL GRP TYPE Hard-chined vee monohull OVERALL LENGTH 9.43m HULL LENGTH 9.1m BEAM 3.15m DRAFT 0.91m WEIGHT 4830kg PRICED FROM GENERAL CAPACITIES PEOPLE (NIGHT) 4 2 FUEL 300lt WATER 160lt [ SAyS... ] The NC9 is a compact sportscruiser that succeeds in being a versatile craft suitable for comfortable family weekends away while having the ability to enjoy occasional offshore forays as well albeit not at massive speeds. If the budget allows the larger 300hp engine will increase options but along with more fuel consumption of course. ENGINE MAKE MODEL Volvo Penta D4 (300hp optional) TYPE Four-cylinder turbo-diesel RATED HP 260 DISPLACEMENT 3.7lt WEIGHT 656kg PROPS Sterndrive with duoprops FOR MORE INFORMATION bulkhead of the wheelhouse when standing however sitting was fine and I was supported well on the comfy leather-clad chair with flip-up front for standing at the helm. Cab sound levels were fine allowing us to talk freely with the rear sliding doors open (my sound meter showed 89dB by the way). In terms of performance the numbers weren t startling and not a surprise given we had six beefy blokes aboard. The 260hp Volvo Penta took its time (56 seconds) accelerating us to a top speed of 24.5kts with 3400revs showing and fuel burning at 51lt h. At this speed our trim showed nine degrees but a few clicks on the Lenco tabs levelled the NC9 nicely. Fuel usage dropped dramatically at the boat s cruising speed (20.7kts) to a reasonable 40lt h giving nearly 78 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 69 Matthew Willett Marine d Albora Marinas The Spit Mosman NSW Phone (02) 9930 000 Website OR Brett Thurley at Pacific Motor Yachts Gold Coast City Marina Coomera QLD Phone 07 5519 4019 Website LAyOUT an eight-hour cruising range on the standard fuel tank. Overall the NC9 proves that affordable sportscruising is not a contradiction in terms thanks to the no fuss no frills approach that Jeanneau has successfully launched with this range. boat test CAP CAMARAT 8.5CC JEANNEAU 50 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 71 one for the Jeanneau Cap Camarat 8.5CC is a centre console that melds fishing family and luxur y boating in the one escape package. KEVIN SMITH is smitten and predicts a big future for the competitively priced and good-looking boat on australian waters All PHOTOS Ke VIn SMITH 51 72 f there is going to be an imported boat range that will turn heads in Australia and one in turn become a very common sight on our waters it s definitely the latest Cap Camarat line-up from Jeanneau. One of the newest models showcased in Australia is the Cap Camarat 8.5m Centre Console. It spun my head around on the first glance. It s an impressive sexy beautiful design but what also blew me away was just how a standard centre console could be transformed from a dedicated fishing boat into something more like a luxury runabout. When it comes to luxury centre consoles this boat puts the W in wow especially so if your relying on a lady s final blessing. It not only looks super flashy but has all the necessary creature comforts to suit mom and the family alike. Oh and don t worry dad it will also delight your serious fisho mates as an offshore machine whether it be for chasing pelagics or the lurkers of the deep. Now before getting into the bling I would like to point out where these craft originate from and that is from the Jeanneau factory in Les Herbiers France. While this boatbuilder is a common name and brand among the sailing fraternity in Australia it is not so among powerboaters. To give you an idea in the last 30 years these guys have sold in excess of 20 000 powerboats. That equates to around 667 boats per year or 55 boats per month. To be able to manufacture that kind of volume a company has to be an extremely proficient and well established production plant. In the forthcoming year there is apparently 16 or so new models being added to the range with a select few likely to appear in Australia so I ll reiterate my prediction of us seeing more of this brand out on local waters. So it seems quite clear that not only can the French cook and play rugby (they nearly took the Kiwis to the cleaners in the last Rugby World Cup -- yet again) they can manufacture boats. I Internally the Cap Camarat 8.5CC is a striking vessel. A range of features like the hot-plate and fridge (right) the bimini (opposite top) and the bow seating and table (opposite middle) give it excellent versatility while the walkaround clearance (below) and rodholders ensure most fishos will see the potential. CLASSIC LINES AND DESIGN As previously mentioned the 8.5m Cap Camarat is one hell of a head spinner and automatically comes across as a very sophisticated and stylish boat especially for a centre console. Due to its sheer size there is plenty 52 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 73 B OAT t e s t [HIGHS] All-round entertainer Value for money Ergonomics Overnighting Classic lines and finish Performance [lOWS] Need a permit to tow on offer when it comes to the layout of this boat and rather than listing each and every item in the general specs list I d rather highlight the main standout features that magically drew me in. As you board the 8.5CC the sheer beauty of the interior design captivates with teak decking quality mouldings beautifully polished stainless steel and colour coded trims that are all aesthetically pleasing. The stern is setup as a comfortable seating area as well as the main fishing platform. When it comes to reclining there is a three-quarter rear lounger and something that really appealed to me flush-mounted seating built into the cockpit sides. These simply pull out and basically triple the amount of seating in the cockpit. This becomes a great area for entertainment the helm seat tilting forward and revealing the seat base as an entertainment module servicing the cockpit with an inbuilt fridge below and above and a plumbed sink prep-area with provisions for a small cooker. For the ladies I can visualise the champagne and smoked salmon here and for the blokes a spot to fillet a good-sized tuna. ...THe 8.5M Cap CaMaraT IS one Hell of a Head SpInner and auToMaTICally CoMeS aCroSS aS a Very SopHISTICaTed and STylISH boaT eSpeCIally for a CenTre ConSole FISHABILITY Now all that might sound a bit girly but when the seating is stowed away you regain all the extra space needed for fishing days plus padded coamings to lean against courtesy of the seats backrests. Also for the serious fisherman are a number of rodholders in the transom moulded storage space in the port cockpit side with recessed rod racks on the starboard side and more than enough deck hatches for gear and large fish as well as other storage spaces for tackle and the like. If it Naturally with its European heritage a little waterskiing is always on the agenda comfortably facilitated by a purpose tow pole and 300 horses (left). 53 74 B OAT t e s t The Cap Camarat 8.5CC iis likely to be one of the largest-volume examples of this class on the market -- and it boasts on-the-water performance in keeping with that size. was going to serve primarily as a fishing vessel then it would just be a matter of customising to suit. Now when it comes to centre consoles this boat has one of the most interesting designs that I have ever come across. Firstly it s colossal in size and has a massive windscreen that does a good job of protecting the seating area consisting of a triple bench seat lean post. Secondly the dash angle is good with ample space to flushmount large electronics and gauges and thirdly the main highlight for me being the drop-down section into the cabin. Due to the big dimensions of this boat and high deckline Jeanneau has managed to create the two-berth cabin with toilet and sink quite comfortably. It s spacious for a centre console and adequate enough for an overnighter and just perfect for the family to take shelter in on rough days -- especially the kids. Moving forward the Cap Camarat 8.5CC features a typical bowrider design with wraparound three-way seating up front and a settee up against the console. As the main social area for the good-weather days there is a drop-in table and a few drinkholders next to the seats. To finish off is a tapered bowrail and electric anchor winch. Overall the layout might look pretty simple but far from it there are more to these centre consoles than what you find on standard ones. I just love the fact that everything is so neat and precise with beautiful quality finishes. And there s always more to the general layout on boats of this calibre like the full rear bimini extra stainless steel bollards grabrails and more. But the few main features that I have gone into more detail on are by far the ones that stood out and appealed to me most. [ I think it s a fair call to say we will see an influx of these boats on the water in the near future and especially so in the trailerboat market SAYS... ] OUTBOARD PERFORMANCE To add to the already impressive layout characteristics of the 8.5CC is good performance. For a change we had 25-knot winds and a 2m swell prevailing for the test. If that s not going to give you a good idea on handling and output then I don t know what will as you generally get battered on any centre console in these conditions. I must admit that A dayboat becomes a genuine overnighter by virtue of some surprisingly spacious accommodation below decks (left). 54 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 75 Fa ct s & fig ur es JEANNEAU CAP CAMARAT 8.5CC PRICE AS TESTED 149 500 OPTIONS FITTED Sunbrella bimini with stainless steel frame marine toilet with holding tank two berths sink in cabin sink in cockpit cockpit fridge teak cockpit sole and 300hp Suzuki four-stroke PRICED FROM 103 450 GENERAL I was pleasantly surprised with the ride on this machine. As tested the Cap Camarat s gumption was a 300hp Suzuki fourstroke outboard and the max rating for a single installation is 350hp or 225hp each for twin setups. The big Suzuki is a nice match and did the job with ease when it came to powering out of the hole in tight turns and at speed. As previously mentioned the conditions were not great and once offshore I took it like a man and smashed my way directly into the southeasterly wind and swell. Like any boat you haven t driven before it takes a bit of time to get the feel for it and once I had it riding at a comfortable speed to suit the conditions I have to admit I was a little disappointed -- it felt like I was travelling at a standard trailerboat s 15- to 18-knot cruise speed in the rough seas. Well that was shortlived because after turning on the GPS I found we were doing a constant 27 to 32kts without being battered around -- and that s motoring considering the conditions. Changing the heading to side on and running with the following sea the speed could then be increased all the while the boat maintaining a comfortable dry and very stable ride indeed. One thing that was interesting was the 8.5CC had no trim-tabs which is probably due to it having such good stability. Regardless if it were mine I would fit some just to be able to manipulate the ride to suit the sea state. I am one of those believers that any monohull can benefit from trim-tabs. Now although it s a big boat it is actually really easy to drive thanks to the electronically assisted control and hydraulic steering. It rides well handles nicely in the rough and is very responsive on the water -- so-much-so that you think you are driving a smaller craft. If I had the choice and the finances I would definitely opt for a twin-motor setup particularly for long-range hauls offshore which the Cap Camarat can easily handle. Not only will it give you better power but also that extra peace of mind when it comes to safety. MATERIAL GRP TYPE Planing monohull LENGTH 8.37m (overall) 7.95m (hull) BEAM 2.98m DRAFT 0.62m WEIGHT Approx 2400kg (sans engine) CAPACITIES PEOPLE (NIGHT) 2 FUEL 400lt WATER 95lt MAkE MODEL Suzuki 300DF TYPE Four-stroke petrol V6 outboard DISPLACEMENT 4028cc RATED HP 300 REC. MAx HP 350 (single) 225 (twin engines) ENGINE FOR MORE INFORMATION For Australian dealers visit LAYOUT THE WRAP With an overall length of 8.37m and serious beam of 2.98m the Jeanneau Cap Camarat is not going to be something that you see being towed around on the roads too often but rather moored in a marina or against a property pontoon. Besides being pleasing to the eye the 8.5CC shines in all areas and is a classic family entertaining and fishing boat that everybody can enjoy on the water. In conclusion a decision on whether you pick the Cap Camarat will hinge on price point and value for money. Well I ve seen a few other similar imports in Australia that come in at a far higher price than the 149 500 price tag on this one. Considering the versatility on this boat classic finishes lines and good all-round ergonomics it s definitely not overpriced. Test day weather information supplied by 55 76 boat test JEANNEAU LEADER 10 74 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 77 EXECUTIVE STORY & PHOTOS KE VIN SMITH sportscruisers can carr y a hot price tag so it s hard to beat Jeanneau s Leader 10 in the value-for-money stakes. this two-cabin 36-foot weekend escape machine delivers on luxur y looks fitout and sporty pizazz WEEKEND 75 78 The hardtop will provide muchneeded shade for summer without compromising the light and airy ambience of the interior. Moulded dash (below right) is comprehensively equipped in a wide-format layout. A few issues back we put the latest Cap Camarat 8.5 Centre Console through its paces. These boats are manufactured by Jeanneau in France and are quite something. The builder s powerboat range is new to Australia and judging by what they have on offer it s no doubt the brand is going to become a common sight on our waters. Not only does it manufacture trailerable powerboats but also some very classy larger vessels up to 36ft in length. The latest model being showcased and up for test was its Leader 10 -- an absolute headspinner and a top performer. A combination of sharp and soft lines with elegant finer touches an open summery layout and all the creature comforts of a luxury boat make the Leader 10 the perfect manageably-sized entertainer for both young and old. Now whether you are just window shopping or in the market for a boat in this category I think we all tend do the same thing -- we find something that looks appealing (read - appeals to the wife) then go straight to the price. If money is no issue then that s great and you can shop around until you find the perfect boat but if it is as in many 76 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 79 cases you have to get the best out of what you can afford. Looking at the new Leader 10 well at a first glance it appeared it would to irrepearable damage to the bank account but I was pleasantly surprised when I popped the price question. I was expecting an answer between 500K and a million considering the package and with it being a French import. Well my judgement was way off -- this executive machine comes in at 379 000 as tested with all the bells and whistles which personally seems more like a pre-owned kind of price rather than new. MORE FOR LESS So what do you get for your money Well it s definitely not a substandard boat if thats what you are thinking rather something quiet elegant and classy. It s a boat that is automatically pleasing to the eye and especially to the ladies and entertainers. It s a craft manufactured by world-renowned motor and sail boatbuilder Jeanneau. When I climbed aboard the openplan cockpit and entertaining area that flows through to the helm my imagination was automatically taken to sitting back and relaxing off an island somewhere. The Leader 10 has a huge windscreen and full wraparound side-glass allowing in plenty of light and b oAT t e s t THIS IS oNE of THoSE boaTS THaT you HaVE To SEE for yourSElf SIMply bEcauSE THErE arE juST Way Too MaNy fEaTurES To MENTIoN keeping it nice and airy. As tested this boat had the electronic sliding sunroof a really good feature as you can adjust it to suit the conditions. Another thing that appealed was the social aspect of the cockpit layout the ample lounge and dining area are under cover while the transom lounge is only partly covered by the roofline for those wanting to catch a bit of a tan. What Jeanneau has also done is to double-up on galley accessories. Instead of having to go below to prepare food and drinks you have a mini galley on the top-deck including small fridge and prepsink. The sunroof (top) is electronically operated allowing for fine adjustment. Transom is pushed forward within the pared-back hull sides creating a deep swimstep. TWO TO TANGO The helm has a very comfortable seating arrangement that s spacious enough for two -- so the wife might allow you to sit next her while she s driving. The dash layout is modern and sporty looking and has all the controls and electronics positioned correctly making driving comfortable and viewing of electronics unobstructed. Again the large screen and side windows provide good 360-degree vision for the skipper. One part of the design that caught my attention was the glass-topped wraparound dash that follows from the screen along the portside windows to provide natural light down below which is accessed by an adequately-sized sliding door. Here space is abundant and it s a nice social spot where a full galley and lounge dining area 77 80 [HIGHS] Value for money Luxury accommodation and trim Excellent handling Sporty looks and performance [LoWS] Will need add-ons for fishing are combined. Once again more light and ventilation than usual stem from the dash-glass above and multitude of full-length side windows. There are two cabins fore and aft of the saloon however the single bathroom is not an en suite and functions as a dayhead which can only be accessed from the saloon. As per usual though this is an important room for the ladies and it s a decent enough size. Up front the master suite features a queen-sized bed plenty of light and ventilation and is spacious with loads of storage space. The second suite doorway is next to the galley and is situated directly below the helm and cockpit area. It s also roomy and like the master cabin has a queen bed and plenty of stowage. The trimmings and finishes are beautiful throughout the interior and exterior layout with a combination of teak and classy upholstery. There is no lack of storage throughout the boat and as mentioned heaps of light and ventilation too. Another nice touch is the clip-in carpets if you want a softer touch and feel you can have them in or simply take them out for the teak-floor look. Overall the Leader 10 has an ergonomic layout indeed and despite having plenty packed into it Jeanneau has managed to maintain spaciousness throughout. PERKY PERFORMER Fitted with twin 260hp Volvo Penta D4s and a joystick there was most certainly no shortage of power. You can opt for 300hp but I really don t think it s necessary. When knocking down the hammers the hull planes fast and when the turbos kick in the Leader 10 accelerates up to highspeed instantaneously. The controls are comfortable to drive and very smooth. Having the joystick option fitted is not necessary but I would definitely go for it -- it makes driving that much more pleasant and even better when it comes to docking in tricky areas or conditions. Within the Gold Coast Broadwater which was flat for our test you can cruise at any speed but we did take the boat outside for a spin too and the conditions to say the least were Opening ports within the elongated hull windows bathe the interior in the light and ventilation from the dinette (top left) to the galley (middle left) and the forward master cabin (left) to the dayhead (below). 78 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 81 b oAT t e s t a coMbINaTIoN of SHarp aND SofT lINES WITH ElEgaNT fINEr ToucHES aN opEN SuMMEry layouT aND all THE crEaTurE coMforTS of a luxury boaT MaKE THE lEaDEr 10 THE pErfEcT MaNagEably-SIzED ENTErTaINEr for boTH youNg aND olD 79 82 b oAT t e s t Fa ct s & fi gu re s JEANNEAU LEADER 10 PRICE AS TEST 379 000 OPTIONS FITTED Diesel engine with joystick option air-conditioning cockpit cover and rear canvas electronics pack and Premier package (removable saloon carpet teak cockpit floor and swimplatform cockpit fridge and additional battery) PRICED FROM 296 023 GENERAL [ SAYS... ] I was expecting a typical and hefty tag between 500K and a million considering the package and with it being a French import. Well my judgement was way off -- this executive machine comes in at 379 0 00 as tested with all the bells and whistles... MATERIAL GRP TYPE Planing monohull LENGTH 10.85m (overall) 10.55m (hull) BEAM 3.73m DRAFT 0.9m WEIGHT Approx 5415kg not the norm for an offshore cruise. The ocean had a fair swell on it with a gusty 25knot southeaster puffing and turning the sea upside down -- quite angry to say the least. Offshore the Leader 10 sat quite comfortably at around 20kts which considering the conditions was good. Speeds above that were achievable and even when pushing above 30kts the boat still maintained a good ride. In fact the Leader 10 sort of had a combination between a decent trailerboat s ride and a cruiser. Let s not forget she is quite a big boat and shouldn t really be driven like it s been stolen offshore. Regardless it handled well and was impressive. Even low-down cranking it out of the hole on a relatively tight turning circle the Leader 10 basically does what you would normally do in a smaller trailerboat. If anything you do lose a bit of side vision hard into turns but that s really not the norm for this style of boat. In my opinion it s the kind of boat that you sit back at 20 to 25kts and just cruise with. The motors run quiet and economical at average cruise speeds and if needs be you have the extra grunt to get you there faster or out of trouble. 80 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 83 THE WRAP CAPACITIES The Jeanneau Leader 10 is definitely a pleasant-size boat to operate not too small and not too large. The overall finishes and decor are classy and to top it off you have sporty look and sporty performance combined. With all the above mentioned features onboard there is no need to stress about not having the creature comforts of home it has the majority of them to keep you happy and contented. Besides being comfortable to spend a weekend on I would be quite happy to stay longer aboard. For the dedicated fisherman it may not be the perfect fishing boat but with a few add-ons you can adapt the Leader 10 to suit -- and you would be fishing in style. This is one of those boats that you have to see for yourself simply because there are just way too many features to mention. Once again I m certain that we are going to see the Leader models -- like the sister Cap Camarat range -- more and more on our waters in the near future. The boats are classy and pretty good value for money in my opinion. By the way within the next year around another 16 models are to be added to the Cap Camarat range so if this is anything to go by then we are definitely in for a few treats from Jeanneau. PEOPLE (NIGHT) 4 2 FUEL 700lt WATER 250lt ENGINE MAKE MODEL 2 x Volvo Penta D4 TYPE Four-cylinder turbo-diesel DISPLACEMENT 3.7lt (each) RATED HP 260 at 3500rpm (each) WEIGHT 482kg (each) FOR MORE INFORMATION For Australian dealers visit LAYOUT Test day weather information supplied by boat test MeRRY FIsHeR 755 everything words & PHoTos JACK MUrPhy Lit t Le bit of JaCK MURPHY hits the glassy waters of sydney s Middle Harbour in a Jeanneau that really is a Jack-of-all-trades the Merry Fisher 755 82 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 85 t is 4pm on Friday afternoon and the weekend is so close I can almost taste it. My anticipation of the imagined fun and frivolity is heightened by the promise of cold beers upon our return to the marina. With little warning the Merry Fisher 755 starts cutting laps back and forth in front of me tearing up the now frantic white water like some sort of boating ballet performer. I m up to my knees in photography equipment and struggling for balance in the inflatable camera boat. Instantly wishful thoughts of the weekend vanish as the sum of the situation a beautifully sunny spring day a hot boat and a bikiniclad model screaming in hysterical fits of laughter dawns on me and I realise what a great job this is I PLaNe to see snapped back to reality I get back to the task of shooting Jeanneau s latest powerboat offering the subject of the day the Merry Fisher 755. the giant French boatbuilder is famous for having one of the broadest ranges of product in the industry with multiple new-releases every year. the Merry Fisher 755 is at the small end of the scale and is squarely aimed at small families who want to cruise entertain fish or simply lounge around and have fun. It s a modern and more versatile rendition of the classic euro-styled luxury dayboat. When you first take the wheel you feel a sense of familiarity come over you. It s comfortable with everything in the right place. the large helm station presents no blind spots meaning there is no need to move your head back and the Merry fisher 755... is sqUAreLy AiMed At sMALL fAMiLies who wAnt to CrUise entertAin fish or siMPLy LoUnge AroUnd And hAve fUn the boat you want is now easier to find 83 86 The sporty helm setup (above) works well and demonstrates plenty of ergonomic thinking while the small kitchenette is sufficient for overnighters. [HIGHs] safe for the entire family with high gunwales easy boarding and clear access throughout Great visibility from the helm station and comfortable driving position whether sitting or standing amazing handling at speed extra versatile [LoWs] Rear seating needs to be lifted when the outboard is tilted completely out of the water standard features are basic forth like a meerkat when steering into a tight corner or docking. Just like a decent modern car you just sit down and drive. and when you do kick that big grumbling 200hp evinrude e-teC in the proverbial and shoot off onto the plane any initial sense of calm quickly dissipates and turns into adrenalin. as the train-spotters would say the hull gets out of the hole quickly with no noticeable lag from the extra-responsive two-stroke outboard. once you re on the plane she handles smoothly softly and quietly deflecting short sharp chop with ease. the boat banks into tight corners quite easily with only a little cavitation at the extreme ends of the turning circle. to be critical I did notice a lack of punch at the top end finding myself pushing the throttle down harder in attempt to find another thousand RPM or at least a nitrous oxide boost. In fairness I m a rev-head fisherman and the Merry Fisher 755 isn t designed to break the sound barrier. Instead it ll motor the family at a pretty decent clip in comfort safety and with style. with the smoother lines of a Maserati maybe there s a touch of spaceship to boot. If that sounds like quite a weird combination it works and for a family cruiser it is quite a looker. one of the biggest selling points of this boat has to be its ease of use. as mentioned earlier everything feels immediately familiar just like jumping into your own car. Your hands fall naturally into position over the throttle and wheel and with only a small amount of boating knowledge I d be confident that anyone could hop into the driver s seat and feel comfortable and safe. When it comes to versatility this setup has it in spades. You could do a different boating activity every day and the Merry Fisher would gladly oblige. If fishing is your game the boat will be happy shooting out to the shelf although in truth the fishing setup is very basic. but hey at least it has rodholders. sIMPLY VeRsatILe WIDe beRtH aestHetIC aPPeaL Is the Merry Fisher 755 sexy I think so. It has the tough stature of an escalade sUV combined 84 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 87 For a sub-eight-metre hull the Merry Fisher s interior certainly surprises. With ample space and small but smart innovations you can tell it s a Jeanneau. Ideas from the company s more Large windows and the overhead sunroof contribute to the summery feel of the Merry Fisher (above). Infill mattresses quickly convert the front cabin from day mode to an adequate sleeping cabin (below). prestigious models improve the usability of this boat. out on the deck an extra-long forward-facing lounge in cool caramel tones extends across the full width of the stern. It offers plenty of comfortable seating with grabrails each side of the gunwale. a press-studded mesh storage bag hangs from each handrail perfect for sunscreen kid s toys and all sorts of other odds and ends. For the extra sun-safe a retractable bimini which covers the aft cockpit in complete shade is available as an option. From there access to the wheelhouse is via a sliding door. a cosy multitasking dining area that can be converted to a flat lounge or children s bed greets you on the port side and a sink and stovetop sit on a bench behind the driver s position to starboard. It is not a boat built for significant catering but a galley is available should it be needed. Next is the previously mentioned helm station. It looks an ergonomically designed dash fitted with 9in Raymarine C97 plottersounder combo (also an option). a real highlight (or skylight in this case) is the jumbo sunroof giving the boat a sporty edge while retaining important practicality. Pushing forward into the cabin there s a small head with a toilet sink and storage cabinet. Next to which is the first-class V-berth bedding with great depth for extra head-height and reasonable privacy. aND It s saFe the Jeanneau Merry Fisher 755 is a boat which puts family-safety first. It has high gunwales clear walkways plenty of padded seating and a wide beam for extra stability. the aft lounge also acts as a barrier to the transom keeping curious hands away from the engine. this does come at a cost however. the centrepiece of the lounge does need to be lifted when the outboard is tilted clear of the water which may be annoying after a few beach landings. the rear-boarding ladder makes life easier for dipping a toe into the water during winter or wetting your gills completely in summer so bombs away tHe VeRDICt as a whole I felt as if the engine and boat combination were like a good and bad conscience on each shoulder they somewhat juxtapose each other. the classy elegant Merry Fisher hull is the good conscience the boat you want is now easier to find 85 88 b o at t e s t The author say s Bombs away We suggest a more considered approach until winter has waved goodbye. Fa c ts & fig ur es J e a N N e aU M e R R Y F I s H e R 755 PRICeD as testeD 129 900 114 000 PRICeD FRoM GeNeRaL MATErIAL GRP LENGTH 7.4m (overall) BEAM 2.78m drAFT 0.46m wEIGHT 1750kg (w o engine) CaPaCItIes FUEL 285lt wATEr 100lt eNGINe MAKE ModEL Evinrude E-TEC 200-HO TYPE Two-stroke petrol outboard rATEd HP 200 rEC. MAX HP 200 sUPPLIeD bY [ the Merry Fisher 755 is a modern versatile rendition of a luxury euro-style dayboat. It ll be ideal for weekend overnighters and suit small families perfectly. she looks great on the water and is a true Jack-of-all-trades. saYs... ] Matthew Willett Marine D Albora Marinas The Spit Mosman NSW 2088 Phone (02) 9930 0000 0488 821 112 Email boats Website FoR MoRe INFoRMatIoN Visit suggesting day cruising entertaining and champagne breakfasts. While on the other shoulder the 200hp evinrude e-teC two-stroke is the bad conscience spurring you on to go wave jumping dragging inflatable tubes and pushing the hull into some naughty turns. some may think it odd to have an outboard fitted to a mid-sized cruising boat like the Merry Fisher but I love it. It essentially means cheaper maintenance (especially with an evinrude e-teC as its first service is in three years or 300 hours) no reduced performance due to overdue antifouling because the package is easily trailerable and for customers who are upgrading from smaller outboard-driven boats it s 86 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 89 a win win win. I have to say I thoroughly enjoyed our afternoon on the Merry Fisher 755. even with that tasty promise of icy cold beers awaiting us at the marina we carved up Middle Harbour until the sun dropped below the horizon and pitch-black darkness ensued. eventually we cruised back to the marina and I met the proud new owner of the boat and his family. We had a beer together and that s when it dawned on me what s the best thing about the Merry Fisher Well it s a serious dad toy but the missus will let you buy one because it s something the whole family can enjoy just try to not look too excited the first time you take it out for a spin... Test day weather information supplied by boaT TesT JeaNNeaU NC 14 62 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 91 with A ViEw PHOTOS suppliEd VRooM The beauty of sportscruisers like this Jeanneau NC 14 is their versatility take the family away overnight tow some watertoys and all on a seakindly hull that s ideal for an offshore blast. KeVIN GReeN reports... The boat you want is now easier to find 63 92 uring recent years French builder Jeanneau has created an extensive power range that includes centre consoles sportsfishers luxury cruisers and the utility NC range. The New Concept sportscruiser brand has sold more than 300 since its inception three years ago with the NC 11 winning european Yacht of the Year in 2011 and the NC 9 which I test-drove in 2012 also selling in numbers. The NC 14 is the new flagship to this range and aims to offer an apartment on the water with terrace to quote the French builder. It does this by maximising the internal volumes throughout the 45-foot Tony Castro hull featuring elongated portlights and topside windows. The overall shape has snubbed hull lines fore and aft and similarly abrupt topsides lending the NC 14 a utilitarian look that certainly stood out even among the exotic fleet in the Cannes Marina when I boarded it. More recently the first australian NC 14 was brought to the sydney International boat show by NsW dealer Matthew Willett who said he had high hopes for this boat. The NC 14 will appeal here due to its ability to suit a wide range of boaters including ex-yachties who want single-level easy boating in a well-priced package he told me. While being very similar to the single-engined NC 9 that I enjoyed driving last year the NC 14 does earn its flagship status by having its own unique characteristics including being the first of the range to use Volvo Penta IPs the first hull design from british superyacht guru Tony Castro and plenty of versatility for your onboard lifestyle. D The wide electrically operated sunroof transforms the NC 14 experience at the touch of a button. stEpping up to thE stEEring consolE giVEs you commAnding ViEws forwArd And All Around in fAct A good sAfEty fEAturE whEn thErE s no lookout to guidE you VeRsaTILe CabIN This useful versatility kicks-off as you step aboard via the electric passerelle which guides you safely onto the wide teak swimplatform. The swimplatform is extendible thanks to the movable transom couch so there s plenty of space when all those watertoys are deployed or at sea for safely stowing the rubber ducky especially if you take the hydraulic lifting option. The U-shaped seating also converts to a sunpad with dining table. The aft deck is well protected with a GRP roof and the high surrounding bulwarks ensure safe passage to the wheelhouse doors. 64 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 93 Bench seat helm stations are popular as they encourage family involvement. b o aT T e s T Natural light and easy tones are a highlight in the saloon (top) and throughout the boat. Portside twin settees and table (above) convert to a daybed (right). A functional galley (below) is fully concealed when not in use. aft the single-level entry via the triple sliding doors should allow easy serving of alfresco lunches from the portside galley or indoors to the starboardside dinette and yet another dining setup forward where opposing bench seats divided by a table sit alongside the helm. The longitudinal galley has all the necessities for the weekend escape or longer thanks to the twin-burner eNo stove-oven stainless steel sink 130lt fridge and mini electrolux dishwasher all neatly covered in a streamlined dark wooden worktop with smoothly rounded edges to prevent bruising at sea. The only blemishes on this earlyproduction model was some rough welds around the window supports. Meanwhile the adjustable dinette table becomes a daybed while the booth seating up front converts to an aft-facing lounger or perhaps a child s berth. but underfoot is the biggest surprise a large lazarette with space for plenty of heavy items that can also enhance stability when fully loaded with holiday gear. With no shafts the Volvo Penta engines are positioned towards the back freeing-up space here. our test boat was fitted with a washing machine freezer and of course being a French boat wine racks while leaving plenty of floor space for extra jerry cans of water folding bicycles and so on. There s also good access here to all the main electrics hotwater system and refrigeration components. 65 94 The double in the master cabin (this photo) cleverly splits to offer twin singles and is serviced by an en suite (right). The twin-single cabin boasts clean styling and offers surprising space. and there s plenty of headroom around the foot of the queen-sized bed too. Cleverly it also separates to become two singles while revealing a hidden drawer. Two sizeable hanging lockers give plenty of additional storage along with side shelves and a laptop recess. Natural light comes from those rectangular hull windows and an unusual curved top hatch that offers views forward while opening that way as well to catch the breeze at anchor. The bathroom shower is at the back and nicely separated from the head with bi-folding doors an opening porthole gives ventilation and sensibly there are two sets of handrails. Guest cabin space is fairly limited by the saloon bulkhead so queasy sailors should choose the outboard bunk with sea views rather than the more claustrophobic inside berth on which you should be able to sit up to read in bed with LeD spotlights and there s a large wardrobe. as the first NC to utilise the forward-facing propellers used by the Volvo Penta IPs system it gives this 45-footer plenty of versatility when it comes to manoeuvring in tight spots and with the Maxpower bowthruster fitted your topsides should remain unscathed. simrad s excellent 4G radar was also fitted and ideal for night-time port entries due to its broadband detailing. a pair of 300hp Volvo Penta IPs400 D4s come as standard but I found that the larger 370hp D6s fitted to our test boat ensured sportscruiser performance touching 30kts at full throttle but more importantly stepping up to the steering console gives you commanding views forward and all around in fact a good safety feature when there s no lookout to guide you. also handy for single sailors are doors either side allowing you to dart out and secure a warp to the midships cleats on both gunwales. The console is a busy spot controls and analogue engine dials dominated by a simrad Nss 12in plotter nicely angled to allow the sitting or standing steerer to read it even with the sunroof open. The starboard end of the console houses the electronic throttles beside the optional IPs joystick which is near the door so you can operate it from outside. a few ergos that could be better are the 66 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 95 VIeWs oN HIGH awkwardly placed trim tabs above (rather than below) the throttles and a grab bar that obscures the system buttons. Generally though everything is well planned and finished throughout the leatherclad wheel plus similar handrails enhancing this stylish Garronidesigned interior. sMaRT sYsTeMs FaMILY-FRIeNDLY LaYoUT The two-cabin layout should suit a family of four or a couple with guests. buyers can choose the twohead version (as on the test model) or opt for an inbuilt desk vanity in the owner s cabin and the extra storage of a walk-in closet. The owner s en suite cabin is in the bow and uses those upright topsides to utilise the space well b o aT T e s T thE two-cAbin lAyout should suit A fAmily of four or A couplE with guEsts [HIGHs] aft deck Flexible seating and Useable topsides with versatile Good performance and economy accommodation layout [LoWs] Cramped guest cabin Console trim tab positioning some rough welds on saloon metalwork The boat you want is now easier to find 67 96 b o aT T e s T Fa c ts & fig ur es PRICeD FRoM 649 000 J e a N N e aU N C 14 oPTIoNs FITTeD Upgraded engines bowthruster 11kW generator air-conditioning Simrad NSS12 MFD and 4G radar VHF second bathroom washing machine dishwasher 22in LED TV Sonic Hub Fusion hi-fi passerelle and removable saloon carpet GeNeRaL [ Jeanneau s NC 14 really does live up to its model name New Concept as it brings plenty innovation to the sportscruiser market with a versatile interior packaged in a stylish hull that can take you wherever you want to go. saYs... ] MATERIAL GRP TYPE Planing monohull LENGTH OVERALL 13.73m BEAM 4.1m DRAFT 1.07m WEIGHT10 500kg CaPaCITIes gave a comfortable cruising speed of 22kts without too much effort or cab noise. engine access is via the aft deck hatch which takes you down via a ladder to a fairly busy space dominated by the Volvo D4s with 11kW generator located midships but leaving just enough space for servicing the essentials filters water and oil. The twin 450lt fuel tanks are forward as well to help balance the trim from the aftmounted engines. on deck all the essentials are wellappointed with midships cleats handrails and high guard rails to guide you safely forward to the bow for anchoring where a vertical Lewmar windlass with remote control sits in the chain locker. Here twin sunpads slope down to the teak deck to finish things off nicely. aT sea Gliding out of Cannes Marina I aimed the NC 14 bow east towards antibes and once clear of the harbour speed limit opened the throttles to bring us onto the plane. The large windows all round gave me plenty of confidence on the wheel and only a rain shower spoilt things causing me to click the electric roof closed. The hull s flatter aft sections (compared to the NC 9 and 11) had us planing quickly and I reached for the trim tabs to bring the bow down (50 per cent trim). This caused me to inadvertently bump the throttle 68 t r a d e a b o a t . c o m . a u 97 before sitting back on the comfy double seat to enjoy the ride with a light touch on the leather clad wheel and minimum noise in the cab. searching for some added chop in the light swell I followed the old wake of the interisland ferry and set the NC 14 along its line which caused a few groans from the saloon cabinetry before I banked the hardchined hull into a series of turns. The 10-ton hull s good manners inspired ever tighter turns then figure-eights with both handling and visibility remaining good as we banked over hard. In a straight line I noted 3600rpm at 29kts with fuel consumed at 157lt h. Throttling back to a more sedate cruising speed of 15kts gave an economical 62lt consumption allowing a cruising range of 174nm which would easily cover the offshore trip over the horizon to the world heritage island of Corsica with plenty to spare. back inside the busy confines of the harbour the IPs proved itself an option worth having as I held station outside our berth despite the Mistral wind and wake from the passing superyachts before edging astern into the tight berth aided by the forward-facing propellers which work efficiently in both directions. This was neatly done as with everything about this boat. The NC 14 performs well giving comfort with speed so does everything you could ask for in a sportscruiser. PEOPLE (NIGHT) 4 FUEL 900lt WATER 414lt eNGINe MAKE MODEL 2 x Volvo Penta IPS400 D6 (as tested) 2 x 400hp IPS400 D4 (standard) TYPE Six-cylinder turbo-diesel RATED HP 370 (each) DISPLACEMENT 5.5lt (each) FoR MoRe INFoRMaTIoN Visit LaYoUT Test day weather information supplied by IMP.NC14 febb2014EN 13-02-2014 15 49 Pagina 102 tested for you Jeanneau NC 14 102 BARCHE february 2014 103 No fly zone The NC series designed by Vittorio and Camillo Garroni s studio rounds up with a flagship almost 14 meters long. She has no fly because she doesn t need one by Niccol Volpati IMP.NC14 febb2014EN 13-02-2014 15 49 Pagina 104 tested for you Jeanneau NC 14 The wide living area can be turned when necessary into a third sleeping space which is added to a forward double cabin and an amidship one with twin bed. only slightly when changing direction. All in all it s a good compromise that should satisfy everyone and makes sailing safe and easy. The problem is the limited visibility from the only pilot station which is situated in the dinette. The would be a particularly big one. NC 14 is boat is rather stern heavy so we need to work the trim the latest model in Jeanneau s NC series. tabs to achieve a horizontal attitude. The imbalance is offShe is a bit different from her predecessors set however by the number of people on board. We are essentially because of her transmission in Cannes during a press conference held by the Jeansystem. The 9 and the 11 both have sternneau company and many journalists have come from all drive E while the Volvo pod with forward over Europe to try out the boats. After a first go round as propellers was chosen for the NC 14. The boat people we drop off three passenIPS 400 is standard or you It is ideal for family gers at the docks so only six of us are left can opt for a 370 hp IPS 500. The one we cruises. The large on board. That s still a pretty big number are testing today is the version with the more powerful motor. You can really feel windows and the opening but the difference in performance can be felt anyway. With only six on board visithe power of her thrust. She begins plaof the top make the interior bility is no longer a problem neither in ning at only 11 knots at 2150 rpm and top the displacement phase nor when accespeed registered on the GPS was 31 bright which is fitted with lerating up to planing speed. We don t knots at 3600 rpm. Compared to her lit- furniture with alternating need the tabs anymore to adjust the trim tle sisters her performance levels are light and dark colors. on a day like today with calm seas and really high. Her fuel consumption is higher no wind to speak of. During the trials the too although still relatively contained. She NC 14 attracted plenty of attention since consumes 52 liters per hour at minimum her predecessors the NC 9 and 11 have been very popuplaning speed increasing to 160 at full throttle. Her IPS lar in the States in northern Europe in France and even in system and Volvo joystick contribute to the NC 14 s agility. Italy. It was this success that led Jeanneau to complete the Her deep V-shaped prow guarantees stability even in range with this latest model which is nearly 14 meters long. rough seas but takes away from her ease of handling. In Once again the interior design was assigned to an Italian high speed turns she does 360 in less than 300 meters firm Garroni Design. The layout philosophy is the same as of water. Her deadrise angle is pronounced and she tilts T There are nine of us on board. They had told us that this was a Family Boat but nine-member family 104 BARCHE february 2014 105 IMP.NC14 febb2014EN 13-02-2014 15 49 Pagina 106 tested for you Jeanneau NC 14 Performance and detail Maximum speed max people on Displacement kg board Ratio L H Weight power ratio kg hp Shipbuilder Jeanneau France Italian dealer Jeanneau Italia Via Giacomo Trevis 88 00147 Roma tel. 39 06.83087711 service.client Project Garroni Design (interior) Shipyard Technical Department Tony Castro Yacht Design (hull) Hull Overall length 13.73 m Length 11.96 m Max beam 4.10 m Draft 1.07 m Dry displacement 10 500 kg Berths 6 Fuel tank capacity 900 L Water tank capacity 412 L Engine Volvo Penta D6 Power 370 Hp (272 kW) 4 stoke 6 cylinders in line bore x stroke 103x110 mm Compression ratio 17 5 1 displacement 5.5 L rated speed 3 500 rpm Weught 887 kg IPS 500 Homologation CE B Category 12 people or C 14 people Price 464 356 Euro Excl.VAT Tested hull equipped with 2 IPS 500 (370Hp) 319 900 Euro Excl.VAT Standard hull equipped with 2 IPS 400 (300 Hp) 31 Test condition Country Wind Sea 14 10 500 3.35 14.2 Cannes (Francia) absent calm People on board Fuel 9 560 l From 0 it plans in 6 sec From 0 to the top speed it takes 25 sec Speed in knots Rpm 7.5 12.5 17.5 22.5 27.5 32.5 Knots 1 500 2 000 2 150 2 500 2 750 3 000 3 250 3 600 8.4 9.9 11 14.9 17.8 21.5 26.4 31 minimo di planata Despite having a high power to weight ratio the boat has very good speed performance and it can reach a top speed of soundproofing is good by noting 77 dBA in the dashboard at the full speed. RPM 1500 2000 2150 2500 2750 3000 3250 3600 Knots 8.4 9.9 11.0 14.9 17.8 21.5 26.4 31.0 L h 18 44 52 72 94 107 121 160 L nm 2.3 4.4 3.9 4.8 5.3 5.1 4.7 5.3 dBA 65 68 70 71 73 74 75 77 dBA 67 70 73 75 75 77 78 79 dashboard owner cab more than 30 knots. Also the max Engine consuption Rpm 25 75 18 44 52 72 94 107 121 125 175 lt h 1 500 2 000 2 150 2 500 2 750 3 000 3 250 3 600 160 106 BARCHE february 2014 that of the earlier models. The 14 has everything the 11 has plus more room. Versatility and transformability have always been the hallmark of cleverly designed spaces. The backrest of the cockpit sofa for example can be used either forward or aft facing. This means that the same sofa can serve either as a sun bed or a couch in an outdoor lounge. In practice it give you the choice of whether you prefer that the stern platform or the cockpit be more ample. The same is true near the control console next to the dinette. Starboard of the command post there is another lounge area with a small table two linear sofas and two poufs. The poufs and sofas provide additional seating around the table when docked in the roadway or the marina. When sailing however the poufs slip under the sofas and the whole area can even be 107 Hull technical comment The hull designed by Tony Castro has tested in tank many times.To give the boat stability during navigation it has a deep V bow and forward it has a sort of integrated redan to optimize the performance between 21 and 24 knots. Unlike the predecessors NC 9 and NC11 which are equipped with stern drive E this model has the IPS by Volvo. The hull and water line have been designed to be fitted with Pod Ips by Volvo Penta. It is made of infusion fibreglass fully laminated hull and sandwich for the deck and superstructure. IMP.NC14 febb2014EN 13-02-2014 15 49 Pagina 108 tested for you Jeanneau NC 14 108 BARCHE february 2014 converted into a double berth for the night. That means that she potentially sleeps six by adding this berth to the four places already guaranteed by the two cabins. We also were impressed by some of the NC 14 s details fruit of the French yard s many years of experience fortified by the vast number of types and models of boats they have produced. We appreciated that the floor of the dinette and the cockpit was all on the same level. This gives the feeling of being in a single spacious area. This is also a plus for the versatility of the areas and of the furnishings. It makes more sense to have a movable backrest on the cockpit sofa if those of the dinette are on the same level. Next to the control panel is a hatch that accesses the starboard side deck. This makes moving around on board easy even when there are a lot of people seated around the dining table. We also liked the asymmetrical side decks one wider than the other facilitating safe access to and from the prow. Finally below the dinette floor is an enormous hold big enough for a washer dryer and a small wine cellar. Who says you need a fly overhead to have plenty of room tempered profile hull It is a well designed yacht ensuring safety both at anchor and during navigation. The length-width of 3 3 is the one of a with a slender and at the same time compact line. 109 Review Prestige 500S Express Line T Prestige Yacht s Express Line 500S is a surprise package that offers Euro-styling brisk performance and big boat features in a manageable and well-priced production launch. he first Prestige 500S in New Zealand will call Kerikeri home and owners Klaus Ohlendorf and Zhixian Zhang are enthusiastic about their new boat. The couple is looking forward to relaxed Bay of Islands cruises enjoying good food and fine wine. design and great flow while I love its modernity and cutting edge technology. The Prestige 500S is an Express Line sedan model (the company also offers a flybridge version) and with its huge cushioned sunbed on the foredeck and super-lounger in the cockpit it s very Mediterranean in inspiration. There s even an electric sun awning that extends out over the cockpit for shade just one of the many electrical gadgets aboard this boat. Zeng He named after a famous 14th century Ming Dynasty Chinese seafarer and explorer has an overall length of 15.2m and a beam of 4.5m so it s a big volume design especially since the bow and stern overhangs are short (waterline length is 14.92m). It s stylish in a typically European way right down to the gelcoat colours. Inside not a single square millimetre of space goes to waste. Every aspect of this boat inside and out has been carefully designed to maximise its utility without compromising on style. The result is it feels remarkably spacious and uncluttered inside but in reality it s packed with features and equipment. And when the wine runs out we ll go home jokes Klaus for whom the Prestige is something of a step up from the 36-foot Riviera he used to own. This is a boat we have bought for the two of us he explains. Zhixian loves the chic interior styling clever 74 Boating New Zealand October 2012 New Boats French ige st re P Words John Eichelsheim Photos Will Calver and Bryce Taylor BUY DIRECT HONWAVE INFLATABLES 2.0m Slatted 845 2.5m Slatted 945 2.4m Air V 1195 2.7m Air V 1445 3.2m Air V 1595 2.7m Fibreglass Bottom RIB 1595 2.5m Alloy Floor 1245 3.0m Alloy Floor 1445 2.4 Alloy Bottom RIB 1795 2.7 Alloy Bottom RIB 2295 3.1 Alloy Bottom RIB 2645 3.5m Centre Console Coach Boat Stand Up Paddleboards 2995 895 Contact 09 273 1700 boats Manufactured under licence and distributed worldwide by Honda Marine subscribe online at boating-nz 75 Spacious stylish and bright the saloon has a very European vibe Walking into the saloon through the three-way sliding rear doors is like walking into an ultra-modern apartment all whites creams and browns flooded with light through large windows and with lots of air especially with the huge electric sunroof rolled back. The main deck is over three levels with the aft-positioned galley being slightly lower than the cockpit. A sort-of landing where you enter the saloon is flush with the cockpit but slightly lower than the main part of the saloon with the helm station to starboard. Off the landing to the right steps lead down to the master suite a full-width cabin amidships that is large private and very quiet. The cabin d cor like the rest of the boat s interior design is modern and very stylish but not ostentatiously luxurious. The same can be said for the bright and breezy ensuite bathroom which is well-equipped with electric toilet separate shower and designer basin. It s tastefully decorated but thankfully lacks lashings of marble and the mirrors on the ceiling. This design philosophy is evident throughout the boat there s vinyl and fabric upholstery rather than leather (macro-suede for the desk chairs in the master cabin s study nook) fabric wall coverings stainless steel splashbacks and Corian counter tops in the all-electric fully-integrated galley timber veneer trim and textured moulded ceilings. Curtains and blinds including in the saloon allow the owners to completely darken the ship handy if a sleep-in is planned and there s a diesel heating system including Raymarine Hybrid Touc h GPS RPM Sp eed (kno ts) Fue 600 l (lph) 4.1 1000 4.0 7.4 1500 5.8 10.0 2000 20.0 11.6 2500 42.0 16.5 3000 71.0 21.8 100.0 3630 30 .0 (31 max ) Against tid 168.0 e Both engin es PERFORM ANCE a screen de-mister but no air-conditioning (a factory option). The choice of fabrics optional carpets cabinetry and trim is based first on utility but it must also tie-in with the overall styling of the boat and there s no A huge lounger with drop-down table and infill squab is the salient feature of the cockpit The feature-packed galley is well equipped with the latest appliances 76 Boating New Zealand October 2012 The full-width master suite amidships incorporates a study nook Single beds push together to make a double berth. Guest cabins share a bathroom (left) denying the Prestige 500S shows plenty of designer chic. While both the saloon and the master en suite feel large they are only part of the story. Down the companionway are two more cabins and another bathroom that comprise the boat s guest accommodation. A large guest cabin in the bow features an island-style double berth that can separate to create two singles adding versatility. The cabin is well-endowed with storage including drawers revealed only when the beds are separated. A semi-ensuite bathroom serves the forward cabin and a second guest cabin to port which also has a versatile bed arrangement of two singles that convert to a double with the addition of infill cushions. Fit and finish is very good but it s clear that the Prestige is a factory-produced product. Interiors are manufactured outside the boat and dropped in piece by piece. This modular approach works well allowing a uniformity of design and style throughout the boat s interior. Prestige Yachts Jeanneau have plenty of experience with this style of boatbuilding and its motor launch and yacht interiors are both manufactured this way. Not surprisingly they share many design and styling cues. LATEST TECHNOLOGY Zheng He is optioned with the latest Raymarine electronics (see sidebar) to accompany the boat s pair of IPS600 pod-drives. Volvo s IPS system utilises swivelling pods with forward-facing propellers that pull the boat along rather than pushing it. The system offers superior manoeuvrability and better fuel economy compared to conventional drive systems. Coupled to the IPS drives are the latest Volvo digital instrument displays and Volvo s new Dynamic Positioning System. The DPS wasn t hooked up when we were aboard but the joystick docking Snashall Prestige Yacht s New Zealand dealer used to ease Zheng He out of her temporary dock at Orakei Marina. The joystick takes a bit of getting used to. I tried it out in open water and did succeed in making the boat travel sideways and slowly swivel on its own axis but without really getting it to subscribe online at boating-nz 1012218 control was and it was this that Jason 77 go exactly where I wanted it to. In comparison Jason managed to manoeuvre the boat out of the marina with relative ease. Zheng He is also fitted with a bowthruster. Once you master it the joystick does allow remarkable precision and control in confined spaces once clear of the tight stuff engaging the boat s digital throttle and shift automatically disengages docking mode. The Prestige 500 s helm is as stylish as the rest of the boat and its comfortable bench-style helm seat upholstered in shiny space-age fabric is easily wide enough for two. The dash console has ample space for a pair of 12-inch displays plus all the usual switches and controls. The boat has leather-covered handrails including one on the dash for helm seat occupants. Anchoring is normally undertaken from the helm a Lewmar capstan managing the Manson Supreme anchor and an all-chain warp. MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE The engines and drives are located aft under the cockpit sole with access via a cockpit hatch and ladder the pod-drive units are aft through sound-insulated doors while the engines and other machinery are reasonably accessible by crawling around the u-shaped space necessitated by the provision of a dinghy garage between the engines. The engine room is well lit and everything can be reached without 78 1012311 Boating New Zealand October 2012 1012312 ELECTRONICS INTEGRATION Owner Klaus Ohlendorf is an IT technical wizard so he took particular interest in his new boat s electronics package. He was especially concerned to ensure seamless PC laptop integration with his boat s electronics using wireless technology to also encompass smartphones and tablets. In consultation with Orakei Yacht Sales Klaus specified a suite of electronics to best suit his requirements. Prestige Yacht s factory-fitted packages were all 2012 models but Orakei Yacht Sales were able to supply and install the exact 2013 product mix Klaus was after. As a bonus the boat left the factory with most of the necessary cabling already installed making the local supply and installation job much easier and avoiding the need to dismantle portions of a brand-new boat to retrofit electronics. The package aboard Zheng He includes dual third generation Raymarine E-Series displays with WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity allowing complete integration with Apple and Android smartphones and tablets. Klaus can plot a course on his chart-equipped laptop PC at home sync it to his iPad or phone and then wirelessly transfer it to his Raymarine chart-plotter when he steps aboard the boat. In addition either E-Series display at the helm can be wirelessly repeated and controlled from his iPad anywhere onboard. In addition to seamless wireless connectivity the latest touch-screen displays also feature LED backlighting which uses 40 percent less power than conventional backlighting. Raymarine i70 instruments automatically take up display duties once the main E-Series displays are turned off for further power savings and the security of wind and depth alarms at all times. A new Raymarine SPX P70 autopilot integrates seamlessly with the Volvo IPS drives and a Raymarine Satellite TV antenna provides crystal-clear reception whether the vessel is stationary or underway. The E-series touch-screens take care of chart and fishfinder duties and also display the vessel s Raymarine High Definition Colour Radar pictures. Klaus did his homework on radar before opting for this system explains Cameron Burch Lusty and Blundell s Electronic Products Manager. He compared our latest radar with the much touted broadband radars offered by our competitors and concluded that while broadband radars offer good definition at close range performance drops off markedly as the range to a radar target increases. Raymarine s High Definition Colour Radar provides excellent definition that is remarkably consistent across all ranges and given the speed and performance of modern motor launches Klaus felt it was an advantage to be able to positively identify a target at a safe distance whether it s at close or long range. Raymarine s High Definition Colour Radar antenna rotates at twice the speed of conventional radars 48rpm as against 24rpm has Bird Mode (great for locating workups) dual range and many other functions. There seems to be something of a trend for boat importers to specify and fit electronics packages here in New Zealand. Orakei Yacht Sales and Jeanneau Prestige are good examples and the benefits of local installation are manifold explains Cameron. It allows more customisation improved flexibility and ensures that our customers get the latest technology. We can bring our superior expertise and ongoing service and support. If something goes wrong people have someone to call and since we installed the gear we re in a better position to provide solutions and future upgrades. 1012204 subscribe online at boating-nz 79 difficulty but it s fairly tight down there. The dinghy garage is very much a big boat feature and it s a lesson in design to fit one in a boat of this size especially since the engines are aft. However Volvo s IPS drives are very compact allowing Prestige Yachts to squeeze the moulded garage compartment between the two engines. The garage contains a 2.7m Honwave RIB with outboard that is launched and retrieved through the gas strut-supported transom door and winched aboard electrically. It s a clever design that incorporates a set of submersible flip-out rollers and a moulded channel in the garage floor to guide the RIB s keel when the garage is opened the middle section of the teak-covered swim platform lifts up as well. The teak-soled cockpit isn t vast especially since the lounger and table take up a lot of space but there s a wide swim platform cockpit shower and a retractable boarding ladder. Under-cockpit stowage is minimal but there s plenty in the transom island with access front and back. Along with a pair of Volvo D6 435hp six-cylinder engines the machinery space houses battery banks one each side an 11kVA Onan genset with its own battery and two 650-litre stainless steel fuel tanks. DC electrical systems are located on the engine room s starboard side primarily 24 volt but 12V for the boat s electronics and 240V AC systems on the port side. Plastic ducting exhausts warm air from the machinery space which is also equipped with an automatic fire extinguisher. around 12-13 knots but it was almost imperceptible and there was virtually no squatting when the power was applied. With both turbo-charging and supercharging the Volvos horses come on strongly and acceleration is brisk for a big boat. On returning to the dock Jason uncovered the cockpit controls using the joystick to successfully park the boat in a stiff crosswind. 30-KNOTS PLUS The Prestige 500S is an easy boat to drive. Visibility over the bow is good and its large side windows are helpful when turning the boat which does heel over a bit in sharp turns. The digital controls and power steering are both fingertip-light while the IPS system means the boat is very responsive to helm inputs. The hull is soft riding and feels capable. Prestige Yachts uses a full hull liner bonded to the outer hull via an egg-crate style honeycomb structure. It s light and strong and contributes to quiet running. There are a few squeaks and rattles when the boat is underway possibly because the modular interior is dropped into the hull rather than being an integral part of it but it s a very minor irritation. We saw a top speed of 31 knots at 3900rpm on our run down the harbour but you would expect slightly less in heavy trim. At 25 knots she was comfortable but 18-20 knots gave rather better fuel consumption figures. The transition onto the plane appeared to be PROS z Chic modern interior CONS z European styling will not suit everyone z Modest-sized cockpit configured for sunlounging rather than the more usual fishing diving z Engine room access somewhat tight stylish exterior z Full width master cabin z Comprehensive electronics package z Dinghy locker z Smooth dry ride good performance and handling Boating S vERdICT The stylish Prestige 500S is the largest Prestige motoryacht imported into New Zealand so far. It s a smart modern design that s a little different from the usual run of both Kiwi-built and imported launches. Its fashionable but functional interior will appeal to boaties who like modern European d cor while the separate owner s accommodation amidships and dinghy garage offer big boat features in a relatively compact package. It s a popular model in Europe and is well-equipped and well-priced so it should be equally attractive to New Zealand boaties. CONT E NT BO N U S w w .BO a Ti N gN Prestige 500S Express Line loa 15.2m beam 4.5m draft approx 1.02m weight approx 18 200kg (heavy) deadrise at transom 17 engine Volvo IPS 600 x 2 (2 x 435hp) propeller IPS pod-drives fuel 2 x 650 litres cruising speed 25 knots max speed approx 30 knots (heavy) price as tested 1.2 million design J & J Garroni Design JP Concepts Prestige Engineering builder Jeanneau Prestige Luxury Motor Yachts France info boat supplied by Orakei Yacht Sales 09 524 8444 021 92 95 92 80 Boating New Zealand October 2012 z. CO .Nz w New Power Cruising chic French marque Jeanneau brings Euro-cool to the Australian cruising scene. By Geoff Middleton 102 Jeanneau says the concept from the start was to produce an apartment on the water with a terrace and a sea view. eanneau has changed direction with its new range of powerboats. Called the NC (New Concept) range the design brings to market a stylish one-level sportscruiser that offers all the comforts of home. The NC 14 is the largest boat in the NC range and Jeanneau says the concept from the start was to produce an apartment on the water with a terrace and a sea view. Based on my own time on the boat I d say they ticked all the boxes. The NC 14 s distinctive blend of sharp lines and large flat surfaces is pure European in design and reflects the contemporary Euro-chic cruiser look. Base price is set at 649 000 although as tested with numerous options the price is 790 000. Among the options on our test boat were larger D6 Volvo pod drives a genset and airconditioning upgraded electronics a hydraulic swim platform and an extra joystick control in the cockpit. The NC 14 s basic layout includes two cabins and an en suite head although owners can have an additional head if preferred as on our test craft. J VERSATILITY-PLUS The NC 14 is a study in versatility an example being the U-shaped cockpit lounge and table which can be reconfigured either forward or aft via a set of tracks on which the lounge is mounted. Another example is the four-piece sliding saloon doors which can be slid to either side of the door frame. When locked in the port side the backrest of the saloon lounge can be repositioned to make it an aft-facing seat which creates a The portside dinette is adjacent to the helm and can transform into a daybed. 103 feeling of one large continuous space between the saloon and cockpit. The galley has a compact and efficient layout with plenty of stylish timber surfaces. It includes a fridge and two-burner electric cooktop plus sink. Beneath is a large convection microwave oven. A flat-screen TV is hidden in the cabinet next to the cooktop. The options list on our test craft also included a satellite receiver and Foxtel connection. COMMANDING HELM Skippers and first mates will really appreciate the helm layout which includes a large double Beneath decks the Jeanneau continues to impress seat with a flip-up bolster. Access to the forward deck is a breeze courtesy of a door directly to starboard of the helm. There is a compact portside dinette adjacent to the helm. While it s ideal for dining couples it can transform into a daybed that can be enhanced by opening up the large overhead sunroof. Beneath decks the Jeanneau continues to impress. The aft guest cabin is a twin which with the inclusion of the infill transforms into a large double. There s hanging space and drawers for belongings and a pair of opening ports for ventilation. Added comfort comes in the form of optional air-conditioning on the test craft. Access to the starboard side dayhead is off a small companionway leading from the saloon. It offers an electric toilet shower and vanity. Located forward the owner s cabin boasts a large island bed that can transform effortlessly into two singles. It s flanked by a parcel shelf for convenience and also offers his and hers wardrobes and plenty of other storage options. Occupants enjoy access to a large en suite with natural light provided courtesy of an elongated window. One thing owners will not find lacking on the NC 14 is storage. With the compact pod drives positioned well aft there is plenty of space beneath the saloon which Jeanneau has turned into a utility room accessed via a hatch in the Top The helm layout is userfriendly. Right Chic European styling is evident throughout the NC 14. 104 saloon floor. Inside owners have the option of installing a washer dryer along with a second fridge or freezer. The NC 14 embodies the modern European trend of a plumb bow and shallow draft. The combination of the shallow .75m draft and the NC 14 s relatively light weight results in a boat that is easily driven and responsive to helm input. Transition to plane is easy enhanced no doubt by the optional larger engines. According to Jeanneau it conducted extensive hydrodynamic testing on the hull to deliver maximum performance while still producing a comfortable ride. Based on my time aboard I think they achieved both objectives. The NC 14 is the first of the New Concept range to get Volvo s IPS pod drive system. Standard it comes with the 300hp IPS 400 D4 arrangement but our test craft boasted the upgraded 370hp D6 configuration. I wouldn t be surprised if we see more of this chic style of boat TIGHT SPACES While the pod drives allow more space in other areas of the boat I found the engine room which is accessed via a hatch in the cockpit to be a little tight. While checking oil levels is relatively easy more extensive maintenance could be challenging. Running headlong into a choppy Port Phillip Bay we found the best speed to be around 13 knots (24km h) for the conditions. At this rate it was slurping around 60lt per hour with the engines spinning at 2300rpm. The ride was comfortable without too much slamming. With the sea on our stern we gave it more throttle resulting in a respectable 24 knots (44.5km h) with fuel consumption at 100lt hr. Top speed on the day was around 30 knots (55.5km h). Down-sea behaviour was exceptional staying on track and comfortable under the trying conditions. The NC 14 comes with Volvo s fly-by-wire control system which provided instantaneous and smooth throttle input. It worked well with the light and fairly direct steering. This craft is very user-friendly easy to drive and manoeuvre and is a comfortable boat that works well for overnighting and weekends aboard. It s also a boat for all seasons able to withstand the rigors of a hot summer with its large sunroof sliding cockpit door and hydraulic swim platform encouraging the crew to embrace the great outdoors while winters can be spent inside enjoying the warmth of the reverse-cycle air-conditioning. Based on my time aboard I wouldn t be surprised if we see more of this chic style of boat tied up outside trendy restaurants or anchored in secluded bays in the future. SPECIFICATIONS JEANNEAU NC 14 Overall length Hull length Beam Maximum draft Dry displacement Fuel capacity Water capacity Holding tank capacity Berths Engines (as tested) 13.93m 11.96m 4.10m 0.75m 10 327kg 900lt 412lt 120lt 4 plus 2 2 x Volvo IPS 500 D6 370hp Standard 2 x Volvo IPS 400 D4 300hp Test craft supplied by 38 South Boat Sales in Melbourne tel (03) 9397 3855. Web or Large sliding cockpit doors help transform the cockpit and saloon into one large living space while the cockpit lounge can be repositioned if required. 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