Philippe Briand and Jeanneau announced their latest collaboration, the 44-foot SO 440, a new model in the Sun Odyssey cruising boat range that Briand has been designing for the French builder since 2012.
Briand sought to bring three new ways in which the layout and naval architecture on the SO 440 will make life on board easier.
First, the hull form’s inspiration from scow-hulled working boats, which have squared-off forward sections, offers a large beam toward the bow of the vessel, allowing for a large owner’s cabin.
“Space has become very restricted to the stern of boats as owners expect a lot of features here, so I looked for space in the bow, inspired by the Mini 6.50s with their scow-shaped bows, to bring the maximum beam forward and increase the interior volume without losing performance,” Briand said in a statement.
Second, a lack of barriers between the cockpit and the deck, and a gentle sloping of the deck toward the stern, means movement is unimpeded by steps or obstacles.
Third, in a new and patented feature, a “transformer” cockpit backrest, has been developed for the SO 440, offering protection within the cockpit, as well as an elevated vantage point from the helm. The backrest can be pivoted 90 degrees from a vertical to a horizontal position, so lying flat it offers a full-beam 330 percent extension of the overall cockpit zone to the rear.
“Almost all our clients for large sailing yachts were at one time owners of smaller production boats,” Briand said. “As yacht designers and naval architects we see it as our responsibility to steward the next generation of yacht owners through the process of enjoying life on the water by making ownership of smaller, more affordable boats enticing. This philosophy permeates every detail in the design choices we make to improve every step of the experience onboard, particularly with these new features on the Jeanneau SO 440.”
The builder said additional details about the SO 440 will be available at the Sept. 12-17 Cannes Yachting Festival.