When I saw the first designs of the G4 I thought that it looked great but that it was just one of those dream boats that are never built. I was wrong. The first one is already being built and will be delivered on the Caribbean next year. What a boat!!!!
I don't think this boat was possible if the America's cup was not raced on those extreme flying cats. Many thought that a performance cruising boat would never be built according with those principles. Well, they were wrong too :-).
The honors of producing the first flying cruising boat belongs to Gunboat, the American cat brand that this time is not using Morrelli& Melvin as designers but the Dutch DNA design team. The first boat is also being built in Holland by Holland composites, all in carbon.
The boat will weight only 2400kg, a max load of only 600kg, and 12.14m of length for 6.78m of beam. As auxiliary engine it will have a 20hp center line rectratable outboard engine and will only carry 75L of water. Not a great autonomy with that water. It surely will have a maker otherwise it will be strictly a daysailer....and to fly will have foils, on the daggerboards and on the rudder. They say about the boat:
A NEW MULTIPURPOSE COASTAL CRUISER-RACER
1ST TO FINISH: Stomp on maxis, superyachts, and any grand prix race-boat in sight. The GUNBOAT G4 offers Formula 40 speeds in an easy to handle and forgiving weekender. Unless your fleet includes an AC72, an ORMA 60 or a MOD70, your competition will only see your transoms, which is why your G4 comes clearly marked.
LARGE COMFORTABLE COCKPIT & MAIN SALON: Upon return, you will have time to shower, nap, and plan the post-race gathering. Your friends will be drawn to the spacious and comfortable cockpit. The salon offers comfortable seating with ample headroom when seated. The galley island, complete with two burner stove top, 100 litre fridge drawer, and sink, is centrally located to entertain. The slide-out coffee tables atop the galley are provided to display your new trophies.
CRUISE HOME IN COMFORT & SPEED: The GUNBOAT G4 features two queen berths located outboard in the main salon. With panoramic top-deck views, abundant ventilation, and a generous sense of space, these may be the best berths shy of the GUNBOAT 90. With guests aboard, deploy the dual privacy curtains. Kids will love the single berths in their own private hulls. Everyone will appreciate the enclosed head with standing headroom. At GUNBOAT G4 speeds, covering longer distances in daylight is easy.
DAY-SAILING WITH FRIENDS: The GUNBOAT G4 is simple and easy to sail. At only 2.4 tons, the G4 has light loads. Sails can be hoisted by hand with no need for complex powered equipment. Friends will find their perfect space whether on the helm, on the spacious cockpit seats, or in the protected salon with unobstructed views. Ample storage space in the bows allows for easy access to all your toys. With room for kite boarding, surfing, snorkeling, and SUP gear, you'll be able to keep everyone onboard entertained.
Well, no doubt, a cruiser-racer and one that looks like a lot of fun...will not cone cheap though.
I cannot wait for the first test sails. Certainly one of the more interesting boats to touch the water next year.