It looks like something James Bond would chase villains across the Mediterranean Sea in, with a cruising speed of 56 knots (104kmh), even in rough seas, and you can bet this wild-looking new $1.2 million British luxury yacht, the Glider Super Sports 18, will be the boat every bloke who loves a fast car will want next summer.
The boat’s chief designer, and MD of the UK startup Glider Yachts, Robert McCall, is currently building a prototype in a Southhampton shipyard for debut at the Cannes Boat Show in early September. He says the SS18 will be the most luxurious high performance sports boat in the world.
“Gliders will deliver a paradigm shift in high speed comfort for those fortunate few, able to own what is unquestionably the epitome of marine luxury,” he said. “Every one of our unique yachts will be the quintessential British combination of power, beauty and soul.”
The company has spent seven years in design, development, analysis and testing, even enlisting F1 and aerospace engineers for the task.
The 18-metre SS18 is 5.3 metres wide and crucially, draws just 30cm in the water. And while high-speed, wave-piercing catamarans are not new — Tasmanian boat builders Incat have been producing them for military and commercial use for three decades — Glider’s distinctive design is a first for the luxury boating market, combined with the company’s proprietary stability control system, which tunes to the sea conditions to ensure the boat “glides” in all seas at full throttle.
The boat is designed to fit and will make its way to Sydney in mid-2016, with orders delivered from early 2017. The UK price is £600,000 – about $AU1,185,000 for the SS18. Driving it are two 260bhp diesel engines generating 1040hp for the water jet propulsion system, but if you really want to crank it, it might be worth waiting for the HS18, with an astonishing cruising speed of 96 knots (178kmh) from two turbine-boosted engines generating 3240hp. The company believes that along with delivering faster speeds, the fuel efficiency is 60% less than conventional boats.
After that, the Glider Yachts dream gets seriously ambitious, with a 12 passenger 24-metre “limousine” version, followed by 35-80-metre superyachts cruising at 30-40 knots.
Find out more about them here.
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