The trend for rather wide sterns has various reasons, advantages and effects that come with it. The low, tapering aft design of these yachts is borrowed from the ocean racers, facilitating high performance levels particularly on downwind courses. The planning potential is significantly increased. At the same time, the hydrostatical stability of the yachts is strengthened, which is further enhanced by the lowered freeboard at the sides.
Below decks, this design opens up new spaces, which are utilized by most modern designs for generous cabin layouts. Thus, yachts of all sizes are turned into real space wonders, well-equipped to cruise comfortably with family and friends. This philosophy is supported by an ever-growing flexibility of shipyards in the interior design and layout of cabins. Different layout versions of yachts and even more interior design options offer owners the opportunity to model serial yachts according to their individual needs and preferences.
The twin rudders and helm already mentioned earlier may also be seen as an outcome of the broader sterns as two rudder blades help to keep the boats easily under control even when heeling in stronger breezes. Otherwise longer rudder blades would be required to reach the same manoeuverability, as to be seen in the new Hanse Yachts and Najad models.
The large amount of space available below decks on these new boats is not limited to the stern section, though, but continues midships and in the bow. With a width-to-length ratio of 1:3 or 1:3.5, there is plenty of space for the lounge, pantry and navigation areas. Natural light enters through numerous, large hull windows over the whole length of the cabin. The generous use of space can also be continued in the front cabins as the design features borrowed from racing yachts have positive effects for cruisers in this respect, too.
The straight, almost vertical bow has primarily functional reasons as it has proven to sail yachts through the waves rather than over them, thus keeping the yacht more stable on its course course. By now, some argue, even our aesthetic sense has adapted to the functional design that has become so common. The straight lines at the bow also appeal to our eyes. And interior designers are grateful for these changes as they leave more space to utilize for long bunks and storage in the front cabin.
Flexible regarding crew sizePerformance yacht & cruiser at once
In addition to the symbiosis of performance sailing, cruising and bluewater qualities, these new yacht designs are also very adaptible to different crew sizes. The straight lines of the hull and deck are not disturbed by any sheets on deck. All sheets and halyards are concealed inside the deck, which makes it almost inevitable that all lines lead directly to the helm station. Manoeuvers can thus be executed without leaving the helm or the cockpit. Self- Damit sind die Yachten direkt aus dem Cockpit zu manövrieren. Self-tacking jibs and furling mainsails as well as jibs and genoas make large yachts suitable for short- or even one-handed sailing.
In terms of the sail plan the new yacht models also follow the lead of the racing yachts: gennaker and code zero are the standard choices in current yacht design. Mounted on a solid bowsprit or a powerful fitting on the bow, these large kites are easily hoisted and controlled.
A new yacht which takes the issues of performance and single-handed sailing on a serial yacht to extremes is the Figaro Bénéteau 3. The 11-meter performance yacht was designed for the single-handed „Solitaire le Figaro“ race. The intention is to have 50 of these racers ready for the 2019 edition of this race. And indeed, the Figaro 3 will take this race to a new level. Because this monohull is a foiler with foils attached to the hull at the sides and bed downwards. Thus, the leeward foils and the deep keel produce a very strong righting moment – as well as uplift at the same time. The reduced displacement will take the yacht to new speed levels and make it a highly interesting option for regatta sailors.
Another eye-catcher at boot Düsseldorf 2018 will be the LA 35. Its smaller sister, the LA 28, already managed to get a lot of attention last year. Her rounded lines built in moulded wood delighted fans of classic boat-building. But the LA also proved convincing in terms of her sailing characteristics. The LA 35 continues this story in terms of design as well as standards. Extended in length by 7 ft., the new model can offer more space and features four bunks and a pantry below decks. This makes her a bit more than just a daysailer, but the boat remains easy to handle and always read for a quick sail.
The same may be said about the Saffier SE37 Lounge. Easy handling, good sailing characteristics and a large lounge area in the cockpit aft of the two steering wheels are the hallmarks of this Dutch yacht. Four bunks below decks widen the scope of this racer for weekend cruising.
Nautor Swan even extends this concept into the luxury class of sailing yachts. With their ClubSwan 50 the Finnish yacht builders present a 17-meter yacht completely geared towards performance. Yacht designer Juan Kouyoumdjian transfers experiences and know-how gained from the Volvo Ocean Race and other maxi racers to the Swan, with its wide, chined hull and concave shape at the stern designed completely with a view to highest speed potential, stability of course and easy handling at the helm.