Five new powerboats were named the best of the year by the editors of eight European magazines.
When the envelopes were opened Saturday on the first evening of the Düsseldorf boat show the boatbuilders Nordkapp, Elan, Jeanneau, Beneteau and Jetten heard their names read to the sound of applause.
About 400 industry executives attended the “Flagship Night” event hosted by German publisher Delius Klasing to learn the winners of the European Power Boat of the Year Awards. The event also included the presentation of an award chosen by the readers of the Delius Klasing superyacht magazine, boote Exclusiv, for the top superyachts of the past 25 years.
The powerboat awards consisted of four categories that were distinguished by length and one that was open to all displacement boats.
The winner in the class of 25 feet or less was the Nordkapp 605 Enduro. The judges said the Enduro delivers in typical Scandinavian fashion, offering performance, seakindly behavior and very good value. The other nominees were the Boesch Sunski 625, Boston Whaler Vantage 230, Chris-Craft Capri 21 and Karnic Storm 2255.
Useability, practicality and a no-nonsense approach lifted the Elan 30 Power to the top of the category that covered boats as large as 35 feet. It was a strong showing for the Slovenian builder, which has been best known for sailing yachts. Other nominees were the Delta 34, Flipper 880 ST, Smartboat 30 and Windy 29 Coho.
Jeanneau fielded two entries in the category of boats as large as 45 feet. That may have given the company a statistical advantage, but its Tony Castro-designed Velasco 43 won on its own merit, particularly because of an innovative flybridge concept that could usher in a new era in midsize cruising boats. The other nominees were the Austin Parker 42 Sedan, Prestige 450 Fly, Reha Trawler 36 and the North Line 37 Pilot.
The top spot in the largest class — more than 45 feet — went to another French-built design, the innovative Beneteau MC 5, which showcases the results of astute development by the world’s largest builder of recreational boats. The other nominees were the Astondoa 63 Top Deck, Contest 52 MC, Cranchi Eco Trawler 53 and the Princess V 48 Open.
There were no restrictions in size in this year’s displacement class, and the winner was the Dutch-built Jetten 35AC. The judges believed that the boat combined the looks and advantages of traditional steel yachts with the lighter weight of fiberglass. The other nominees: Delphia Escape 1080 and Linssen TNCS 36 AC.
The recipient of the Innovation Award was the Yacht Controller JCS Plus, which can be retrofitted on existing twin-engine boats.
The magazine Boote Exclusiv conducted a reader poll to honor the top superyacht of the past quarter-century. There were 25 nominees, and 1,800 readers voted: The winner, in a close contest, was the 95-meter Palladium, built by Blohm+Voss in Germany.
the 189-foot Maltese Falcon sailing yacht was second and the Alfa Nero was third.