FLIBS 2014: British builder debuts 15-foot jet tender

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The 15-foot Sportjet 460 is designed to be a standalone boat and a high-end yacht tender.

The 15-foot Sportjet 460 is designed to be a standalone boat and a high-end yacht tender.

FORT LAUDERDALE — British builder Williams Performance Tenders is making its first foray into the worldwide standalone boat market with the introduction of the new Sportjet 460, a 15-foot jet tender powered by the Austrian-made Rotax 4-TEC 150 jet propulsion engine.

The Sportjet 460 is designed to serve as both a standalone boat and a high-end yacht tender. The 6.3-foot wide, diesel-powered center drive Sportjet comes standard priced at $52,950 and is highly customizable with options such as a chart plotter, LED deck light and a Fusion music system that can send the price tag up to $56,632. The Sportjet is available in four colors.

“This is a departure from our core business of high-end yacht tenders,” Williams co-founder Mathew Hornsby said. “It’s also an exciting start of a new collaboration with Bombardier, a leader in global engine manufacturing.”

All of the Williams tenders are hand-built in the company’s base in Oxfordshire, England; the U.S. distributor is in Pompano Beach, Florida. Williams sells about 700 customized tenders a year, including 250 to 280 of its most popular model, the 325 Turbojet, a German-made Weber 850MPE-powered boat designed as a tender for the 60-foot-yacht market. The 325 is engineered to reach 25 miles an hour in four seconds and can maintain speeds above 40 mph; it is fitted with a 42-liter fuel tank.

The Williams family includes gasoline turbojet models ranging in length from 2.9 meters to 4.54 meters and Yanmar engine diesel jet models ranging in size from 4.54 to 6.25 meters.

All accessories on the new Sportjet 460 can be customized, including navigation systems, stereo systems and Bluetooth, Williams president Chris Rimmer said.

The tender can be customized with a water sports pole for skiing and wakeboarding or with a bimini top. Custom-ordered tenders take about 12 weeks to deliver.