All of these characteristics make power catamarans worth a look, but perhaps the most important advantage they have over similar-length monohull cruising yachts is fuel efficiency, which can be up to 50 percent better. While switching from a single-engine trawler to a twin-engine catamaran does increase the initial investment, and while the wider beams of larger powercats demand special berths, these boats offer livability and accommodations that same-length monohulls simply can’t match.
Here’s a look at what’s new in power catamarans for the upcoming season.
Following the 2019 debut of its smallest vessel, the 32 Sport Power Catamaran, Aquila is preparing to launch its largest--ever vessel, a 70-footer.
The 70’s styling resembles that of the Aquila 44 and 48, both of which have proved popular in the charter market. With a standard open flybridge (an enclosed version is available), a foredeck with twin sun lounges, a protected aft deck, and side decks, the 70 may find a niche among charter clients as well. Aquila expects to outfit the 70 with Gaggenau galley appliances, and Miele and Fisher & Paykel equipment elsewhere.
Standard power will be a pair of 600-hp Volvo Penta D8 engines with a projected top speed of 26 knots and a loaded displacement of 66 tons. Owners also can choose optional 1,000-hp Volvo Penta D13s with straight shaft drives.
The hull is composite, built of E-glass and resin-infused vinylester around closed-cell, high-density foam. Bow bulbs produce increased waterline length and additional buoyancy forward, and dampen pitch for a smoother ride.
Hull No. 1 will have an optional enclosed sky lounge with a dinette that can seat eight, a helm with twin seats flanked by lounges, and a protected stairway to the salon. The partially protected aft deck will have an outdoor kitchen and an optional day head. The galley is indoors to starboard, near the main lounge area that can open to the aft deck.
Standard accommodations are for eight people in four ensuite staterooms belowdecks. The full-beam master is forward on centerline, double guest staterooms are to port and starboard, and a twin-berth “flex room” is to port. An additional starboard space can be configured as a utility cabin, office, gym, stowage or an additional twin-berth stateroom.
Horizon Power Catamarans has updated the PC52 with a new high-low swim platform and extended sterns. The PC52 retains her semi-enclosed flybridge and remains one of the more than 20 models that Horizon builds in four shipyards.
Twin 550-hp Cummins QSB 6.7 diesels can propel the vessel to a top speed of 22 knots, according to the builder, with a range of approximately 340 nautical miles; the best efficiency and range are at 9.2 knots for 1,051 nautical miles. Cruising at 11.5 knots nets a range of more than 500 nautical miles, approximately, which is noteworthy for a 30-ton (light ship) vessel with a 22-foot beam that draws 4 feet, 3 inches at the prop tips.
The hull and main cabin structures are high-density foam sandwiched between SCRIMP resin-infused skins, with solid laminate in the stem and stern. The hull is a one-piece lamination with integral stringers, and the engine mount girders are heavily laminated fiberglass with high-density foam coring.
Command and control takes place at the flybridge helm, the only control station on this model (leaving room for an country kitchen-style galley in the forward portion of the salon below). A single Stidd chair is at the helm for the skipper, and the instrument console is designed for large-screen monitors in addition to controls for other ship’s systems. Seating options for guests include an L-shape lounge to port and a sunpad to starboard. A dinette is abaft the sunpad, and there’s a pass-through to the boat deck, which is rigged for the installation of an optional Steelhead Marine E1000 crane.
The salon layout includes a galley to starboard and a lounge to port. Under the windshield is a dinette with splendid views forward. Starboard-side stairs lead down to the master stateroom, which has an ensuite head and a separate shower compartment aft, and a double berth forward. Guest staterooms are to port with private entrances to a shared head.
At 34 feet length overall, the Aspen C107 falls in the middle of the Burlington, Washington-based builder’s range of high-speed displacement power catamaran designs with an asymmetrical proa configuration. The C107 is based on the twin-hull design that Aspen founder Larry Graf introduced in 2008. Since then, he has shown the design’s mettle in two long-distance journeys: a 10,000-mile trek from Washington state to Annapolis, Maryland, aboard a 40-foot Aspen C120, and a 2,200-mile adventure from Great Slave Lake in the Northwest Territories to the Arctic Ocean aboard a center-console version of the C107.
Twin Yamaha four-stroke outboard engines (a 200-hp unit on the wider and larger starboard hull, and a 70-hp unit on the narrower port hull) reportedly provide a top speed just over 25 knots with a 138-mile range; at about 5.5 knots, range increases to 410 miles. Tracking is not an issue, the builder says, because each motor matches its hull, producing thrust proportional to that hull’s shape and drag.
Having a get-home capability using only the 70-hp engine is a benefit: Wide-open throttle can produce a top speed of 9 knots with a range of 338 miles, while a throttle setting of 7 knots extends the range to about 436 miles. Trolling range is 1,209 miles at about 2.5 knots.
Overall, the design is well suited to distance cruising, with a hardtop providing protection from the elements (there are opening hatches for ventilation) and the ability to carry kayaks and paddleboards. An overhead extension protects the cabin door from rain intrusion. The cockpit is large enough for fishing or sunning, and has two lazarettes as well as a built-in entertainment center.
Sightlines are virtually unobstructed from the portside helm and starboard-side copilot chairs in the salon. A teak-and-holly sole, along with Burmese teak used for many other components, adds warmth to the galley and dinette abaft the helm. A king-size berth forward, a convertible dinette that sleeps two, and a quarter berth beneath the galley comprise the accommodations.
Leopard 53 Powercat
This boat is known by two names: the Leopard 53 Powercat and the Moorings 534 PC. Scheduled to debut at the Miami International Boat Show in February, it is an evolution of the Leopard 51 Powercat, with more than 135 of those sold, according to Leopard Catamarans.
The builder projects a top speed from a pair of 370-hp Yanmar 8LV diesels at 25 knots, with a cruising speed of 17.5 knots. For long-distance cruisers, range is reportedly 342 and 463 nautical miles at 7.9 or 6.8 knots, respectively. The sharp bow entry is designed for easy wave penetration, there’s a modest rocker to minimize pounding, the planing surface aft is well flared, and modest skegs are intended to protect the running gear from grounding.
Available in a three-stateroom (owner) or four-stateroom (charter) layout, with or without crew cabins, the 53 PC has a flybridge with a hardtop, and a cockpit sheltered by the boat deck overhang. Tables are in both areas, as well as in a recessed lounging area on the foredeck.
With a beam of 25 feet, 2 inches, the boat has a roomy salon with panoramic views all around, a galley aft, and seating amidships. The galley has a full-size refrigerator/freezer, four-burner stovetop, microwave oven, sink and stowage. A forward bulkhead door provides access to the foredeck, with room for an optional lower helm.
Fountaine Pajot MY 40
The MY 40 from Fountaine Pajot is built with resin transfer and infusion in the hulls, bulkheads, decks, flybridge and hardtop structures. The construction process delivers strength without unnecessary weight. Naval architecture is by Daniel Andrieu, with interiors by Pierangelo Andreani Studio.
Accommodations are for six people in three staterooms. The master stateroom occupies the entire port hull, and is accessed from a stairwell opposite the galley on the main deck. There’s a cantilevered berth on centerline with an ensuite head in the bow. In the starboard hull are two double-berth staterooms, each with private access to a shared head.
The flybridge is accessed from the aft deck up a quarter-turn spiral staircase to port. Immediately forward on the port side is a grilling station, and then a two-person sun lounge forward. The helm is positioned opposite, in a space that should ease docking alongside to starboard, and has twin helm chairs. Abaft the helm is an L-shape lounge for six people with a table.
One level down, the aft deck is shaded and has twin sliding doors that adjoin the salon. Inside, the starboard-side galley is aft. Views are virtually 360 degrees from the starboard lower helm, and from the port lounging and dinette area.
Standard propulsion is twin 300-hp Volvo Penta IPS400s, with an option of twin 370-hp Volvo Penta IPS500s. Fuel capacity is 372 gallons split between two 186-gallon tanks. Projected range is up to 1,000 nautical miles.
Corona Yachts is part of the Lazzara Yacht Group, and the Corona 85 is the flagship model being offered. According to the builder, this power catamaran has more square footage in 85 feet length overall than what is normally found on a 130-foot monohull. And with a draft of 4 feet, 6 inches, the boat can explore shallow waters like those in the Florida Keys and Bahamas.
Standard fuel capacity is 2,500 gallons, and there are a variety of optional tankage configurations for up to 5,000 gallons. Projected performance with twin 1,000-hp Volvo Penta D13 diesels is a top speed in the 17- to 19-knot range, with a 15-knot cruising speed. Volvo Penta’s IPS drives are available; with twin 873-hp Caterpillar C18 Acert diesels, the builder says the boat will have a top speed of 18 to 20 knots.
The Corona 85 has a full-beam lower deck above the tunnel, allowing for ensuite accommodations for eight guests. The master stateroom spans the beam just abaft amidships. Fold-down balconies on either side allow quick access to the water, as well as private sunning and relaxing.
Two cabins are forward for five crew, and an aft compartment belowdecks (accessed via stairs from the main deck aft) can be configured as a megayacht-style beach club with lounges and large-screen TVs, or as a garage for tenders, PWC and water toys.
The main deck salon is nearly full beam with three sliding glass doors leading to the side decks and aft deck. On the flybridge are alfresco dining and entertaining, a hot tub and sun lounges.
BALI 4.3 MY
Bali Catamarans, a division of France’s Catana Group, is offering a 43-foot power catamaran with a beam a little wider than 23 feet and a draft just under 3 feet. Loaded displacement is approximately 20 tons, with a standard 211-gallon fuel capacity or an optional 422 gallons. Propulsion ranges from a pair of 195-hp Yanmar diesels to an optional pair of 240-hp Yanmars with V-drives.
The hull and decks are a fiberglass sandwich construction of resin-infused polyester resin, with vinylester below the waterline to resist osmosis. The main deck platform and the inner hull sides are molded as a single unit for rigidity. The main hull component is molded as a single unit, as well. Shallow keels are designed to provide good tracking.
The look of this boat is contemporary, with a sunroof-equipped hardtop sheltering the flybridge. The upper helm, protected from spray by a windshield, has electronic engine controls and a dedicated helm seat as well as a chart table with stowage, a light and its own stool. The electrical panel has a touch screen that displays a user guide and owner’s tutorial.
Contemporary styling continues on the aft deck, which has a sliding door to the salon. Forward, lounge seats on the foredeck are accessed by way of side decks with stainless steel safety rails. Inside, the salon sole is covered with skai planking. The lower helm is forward and to starboard, and raised for better views. There’s plenty of room for the optional Raymarine electronics, as well as the electronic engine and systems controls.
Galley accouterments include dual stainless-steel sinks, a combination refrigerator-freezer (21.7-gallons combined) with an ice maker and chilled water dispenser, and a separate 5.3-gallon refrigerator. The range is a three-burner Gaz propane unit with an oven.
The owner’s stateroom occupies the entire port hull with an island berth, a couch and a vanity that doubles as a desk. There are two hanging lockers, shelf stowage and a head compartment with a separate shower. The staterooms in the starboard hull are also ensuite, and each has a hanging locker and other storage. Staterooms in both hulls have skai and laminate soles, and portholes for light and ventilation. A four-stateroom version is available.
LAGOON SIXTY 7
The Lagoon Sixty 7 has a beam of 32 feet, 11 inches, a draft of 3 feet, 9 inches, and a light displacement of 48.3 tons—and yet, at first glance, she looks look lighter, lower and faster than many other power catamarans of similar dimensions. Patrick le Quément is responsible for the exterior design, with naval architecture by VPLP and interiors by Nauta Design.
Power choices are twin 340-hp Volvo Pentas or optional 440-hp Yanmar 6LY diesels with standard shafts. Wide-open throttle speeds can exceed 20 knots, according to Lagoon.
The side decks have flush hatches to bring natural light and ventilation into the staterooms below. The overall layout depends on the owner’s placement of the galley, either aft in the port hull or to port in the main salon. With the galley in the port hull, the Sixty 7 is available in four- or five-stateroom versions. The four-stateroom version has the master to starboard and aft, with a head and a private entrance to the aft deck. If owners put the galley in the main salon, then five- or six-stateroom versions of the boat can be ordered.
No matter which layout owners select, there’s a hydraulic lift aft between the extended hulls, built-in seating facing aft, and a dinette under the boat deck overhang. Forward is a conversation space, and a variety of removable seating options are available on the foredeck. Up top, the flybridge has an upper helm, a table with seating, and a hardtop with a sunroof.
This article originally appeared in the November/December 2019 issue of PassageMaker.