It’s sporty both in its lines and in the feeling at the helm, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have good seafaring qualities. The boat is safe and comfortable
by Niccolò Volpati – photo by Andrea Muscatello and Sunseeker archive
“Wow, it feels like being in a sports car”, said the captain. For him too, it was the first time he had been on board because he was in charge of delivering the boat. He was to take the new 65 Sport Yacht from the Genoa Boat Show, which had just finished, to the Italian dealer based in Lavagna. And that ‘wow’ feeling was certainly the reaction that the yard was looking for. From wherever you are on board, even below decks, the boat is disorientating. Because of the rounded displays on the dashboard, the helm and the steering position. As on the flybridge, this confusion is even more intense, because as well as the car-style dashboard, the seats for the captain and assistant look just like those in a sports car. They are very low, just above floor level and are reminiscent of seats in a car that is glued to the asphalt going at 300 kilometres an hour. But going beyond the “augmented reality” effect that the yard has masterfully achieved, you find substance in a yacht with excellent seafaring qualities.
Inside and outside areas blend since the main deck, with its windows and sliding doors, is an area with perfect continuity.
What surprised me was how the spaces had been taken full advantage of in setting up the furniture. The entrance to the master cabin, for example, is through a long corridor. You could think that was a waste, but actually, it isn’t because on the outside of the passage, the one that fits along the outside of the boat, there is a long shelf under which are the fitted washing machine, wine storage and a fridge. The shelf can also be used as a vanity table or a work desk. Nothing has been wasted, and actually, this solution means the double bed of the master cabin can be located at the point where the beam is greatest. The long corridor, just to be clear, covers a considerable area. So much that it could become a fourth cabin.
What has been made of the interiors is surprising, not least because on a twenty-metre hull, this area is made up of three cabins and a full four bathrooms. While three of them are attached to cabins, the fourth is a day head, for example for guests who come on board for the day but don’t spend the night. Finally, we have to add to these three cabins and four bathrooms the sailor’s room and the garage for the tender. The yard’s design department was skilful enough to get all of that without distorting the boat’s lines. And indeed the 65 Sport Yacht is still long, streamlined and sporty, as its name suggests.
In the engine room, there are two Volvo D13s each developing 1,000 hp, with the IPS 1350 system. It is superbly manoeuvrable, both in tight spaces at low rev levels, and also when turning as hard as possible at high speed. It is a yacht that is easy to manoeuvre in port and to helm when underway.
Visibility from the dinette is good, as it is from the flybridge. The sea that I came across between Genoa and Lavagna was calm, but as I went across the wakes left by other boats, I felt that the V-shaped bow does its work exceptionally well.
It didn’t seem at all to be a hull, which suffers from moderate wave motion. And also outside the English Channel, waters are rarely flat. The performance is balanced. There is a range of about 15 knots between planning minimum and top speed, which is wide enough to be able to find your preferred cruising speed. At top speed, I did just over thirty knots, while to start planning sixteen were enough. It didn’t use much fuel, thanks to the IPS system and also to the very efficient water lines. The hull comes out of the water when 160 litres per hour are being used by both engines, and 390 litres are needed to get to top speed. If you stay at around 25 knots, the amount of fuel used by both engines remains under 300 litres per hour. Not bad, given that we are talking about a boat that is twenty metres long and has a flybridge.
And it was precisely on the flybridge where I enjoyed the last few miles at sea. It is an exciting feeling, although it is not going so fast. The flybridge, which is designed in the style of a sports car, doesn’t have a T-Top and even the windscreen is minimal, creating a great feeling of speed, not least because of getting the wind in your face when you are doing thirty knots. Of course, the sun can be punishing in the Mediterranean over the summer, but if you want protection when doing long trips, you just have to use the steering position in the dinette. Visibility is excellent because there are glass surfaces everywhere which help to run the boat and to enjoy the landscape around you when at anchor in a roadstead. And then, if you want a burst of adrenaline, you just have to climb up the ladder and back onto the flybridge.
The best word to describe it underway is EASY. The 65 Sport Yacht is easy to handle in any situation: whether in port or the middle of the sea.
Two Volvo Penta D13s developing 735 kW with IPS 1350 transmission ensure that fuel consumption is limited and that there is excellent manoeuvrability. It has everything that you could hope for, even from a sports yacht.
SUNSEEKER INTERNATIONAL LTD
Poole, Gran Bretagna
Sunseeker International Ltd
LOA 20.50m • Beam 5.10m • Draft 1.60m • Displacement 37,810 kg • Fuel tank volume 3,500 l • Water tank volume 800 l
2x Volvo Penta D13-IPS 1350 • Outlet mechanical power 735 kW (1,000 hp) • 6 cylinders in line • Swept volume 12.8 l • Bore&Stroke 131mm x158mm • Maximal rotational speed 2400/min
CAT B – 12 people
2.065.000 £, Excl.VAT with Twin Volvo IPS 1350 (April 2022)
(Sunseeker 65 Sport Yacht, Being and Appearing – Barchemagazine.com – April 2022)