NEWPORT, R.I. — Bertram Yachts debuted its first boat under new ownership, the new Bertram 35, at the Newport International Boat Show on Thursday.
The new boat was built to be reminiscent of the popular Bertram 31 while implementing modern technology, comforts and styling.
The company, headed by CEO Peter Truslow, held a press conference at the show Thursday evening, inviting Bertram enthusiasts and members of the boating press.
The boat at the Newport show, built specifically for a European buyer, was designed to be a picnic-style boat rather than a hardcore fishing boat, Truslow said.
“Next time we will make it more of the offshore fishing boat people are used to seeing, but I think this is really appropriate for a New England debut,” Truslow said. “It’s the perfect day boat.”
“It’s the first new boat relaunch for us,” Truslow told Trade Only Today before the press event. “The brand truly has a cult following. It’s really been a mob scene here today. People love this boat.”
In a brief period of time, no fewer than a dozen people — both exhibitors in other booths and attendees — stopped to examine the boat.
“I love these boats,” said one exhibitor who had come from a distant booth to see the new Bertram. “That 31 was my favorite boat of all time.”
Although she couldn’t climb aboard because of a bad knee, she shouted questions to her colleague about the boat, such as the location of the berth in the cabin, and questions about the galley.
Hulls No. 1 and 2 were built in Maine, through a partnership with the boatyard Lyman-Morse, but hull No. 3 is being built at the company’s new Tampa, Fla., facility, the former Lazzara Yachts facility, which Bertram recently acquired, Truslow told the crowd of about 40 that gathered for the event.
Founder Richard “Dick” Bertram’s son, Morgan, came back to the company shortly before the Italian Gavio Group agreed to buy it from the Ferretti Group. Bertram, who showed several enthusiasts around the boat, spending large chunks of time with each one, candidly asked opinions about features and stylings on the boat.
After the press event, Bertram said it felt good to return to the brand’s DNA.
“I’m really happy with this boat so far,” Bertram said. “The response has been over the top.”
Read more about the Bertram 35’s debut and the Newport International Boat Show in the November issue of Soundings Trade Only.