An owner asking for full customisation is quite a challenge for a shipyard, if they pass it, they are ready to face any market: and thus, after the 58 and the Rio Granturismo 60, it will be the turn of the 62
by Niccolò Volpati, photo by Andrea Muscatello
The Granturismo 60 was quite a challenge for Rio Yachts, and it won it thanks to the experience it has accrued over its 57 years in the business. It is a Limited Edition requested by an American owner, measuring 19.30 metres by 4.80, and weighing about 31 tonnes fully laden. Compared to the 58 footer it is based on, the engineers decided to install two Cat engines of 1,000 hp each.
It needed a bit of extra power because there is a bit of everything on board: tender, jet tender, a gyroscopic stabiliser, a countless number of mirrors, and lots of marble. As weight increases, it’s good to increase the horsepower. So with two 1,000 hp Caterpillar engines, Rio GT60 reaches an impressive speed of 36 knots. It took eight months between the contract being signed and nearly an entire department at Rio working on the project, but in the end the client was entirely happy. The added value of this experience was to offer a level of customisation that is truly unusual.
Mega and giga yachts are obviously highly customised, but they are considerably longer than a 60-footer. Many shipyards that build hulls of this size claim they offer custom options, but in practice these are limited to the choice of materials for flooring, fabrics, and maybe engines that are more or less powerful than the standard option. GT60on the other hand, is more customised than ever. It’s noticeable with just a quick look at the interiors and the deck. «I think the owner chose us precisely because we allowed him to ‘play’ like no other shipyard did», says Paola Barcella of Rio Yachts.
And it is not only the technical department that made itself available, but also Marino Alfani who designed the deck and interiors of the 58. It is probably Alfani’s design that lit the spark, seeing as the owner had used the 58 for an entire season between California and Mexico. The happy ending is not only due to the client’s satisfaction, but also the experience that has enabled Rio Yachts to make a successful launch into the American market.
They are doing so on tiptoes. «One step at a time», as Barcella says, but in the meantime in a single year another three boats have been sold in the States and a dealer has been appointed to manage after sales services and exhibit at the main American boat shows.«This is an investment we measured carefully», Paola Barcella continues, «given that we manage each new client individually, to avoid the risk of missing anything, including what could seem minor details».
It is a tough market that can bring great rewards, but also one that punishes mistakes brutally. Indeed, not all Italian shipyards that have broached America have managed to reap success. It takes great care, from product guarantees to respecting different safety regulations from the European ones. But Rio Yacht can guarantee construction quality based on more than 50 years’ experience and a level of design that other parts of the world can’t achieve.«Our work on the Rio Granturismo 60 has made me realise that the Made in Italy label is a strong selling point», Paola Barcella continues.
The shipyard is already working on another ambitious project. It is the 62 Sport Bridge, a fly that should be ready in 2019. One step at a time, without running, and without tripping.
RIO GRANTURISMO 60
Project: Marino Alfani and Rio Yachts technical department
Hull: LOA 19.30m • Beam 4.80m • Draft 0.78m • Ligh mass dispalcement 26.000 kg • Fuel tank volume 3000 l • Water tank volume 700 l
Main propulsion: 2 Caterpillar C12.9 • Outlet mechanical power 735 kW (1000 hp) • 6 cylinders – Swept volume 12.9 l – Bore&Stroke 135 mm X 150 mm • Maximal rotational speed 2300/min • Dry weight 1672 kg
EC Certification: CAT B – 16 people
Price:1.300.000 €, Excl.VAT
(RIO GRANTURISMO 60 – Barchemagazine.com – Ottobre 2018)