Skip to main content

VIDEO: Hunton Powerboats unveils first model for U.S. market

GREENWICH, Conn. — A new boat entered the U.S. market on Thursday with the introduction of the custom British performance powerboat brand Hunton Powerboats.

hunton1018

The Hunton XRS37 was unveiled at a media event in Greenwich that was hosted by Total Marine, a high-end dealer, broker and service agent based in nearby Norwalk, Conn. The brand will be introduced on a larger scale at a private event to be held during the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show.

Although Hunton Powerboats was established in 1979 by champion powerboat racer Jeff Hunton, whose vision was to combine to combine the best in engineering and performance with fine-finish luxury, “the business was run more as a hobby,” CEO Fiona Pool says.

Pool is one of four partners who purchased the company in 2010 and spent two years restructuring the operation with an eye for bringing what had become an iconic high-end boat brand in Britain to an international market.

Chris Kelly, vice president of digital media for the AIM Marine Group, interviewed Hunton CEO Fiona Pool about the introduction of the Hunton brand to the U.S. market. Click play to watch.

Huntons are built for a discriminating buyer, Pool says. The builder’s base 37- and 43-footers start at $610,000 and $799,000, respectively. The company proudly promotes a comparison to another iconic British luxury brand, automobile manufacturer Aston Martin.

“Our typical client base has a high net worth and they understand and appreciate premium quality and expect the best,” Pool says.

Hunton has historically built about 10 custom boats a year, but with new ownership driving international marketing, Pool says the business plan is to eventually build 30 to 40 a year and retain Hunton’s niche market position.

“We will never mass-produce Huntons,” Pool says. “As soon as you do, you compromise quality and we won’t do anything to compromise that.”

Two high-end rigid hull inflatable tenders have been added to the line under new ownership. A scale model of a 52-foot boat will be introduced at the Düsseldorf Boat Show in January and there are plans to launch a smaller “entry-level” boat in 2015.

The principals of privately owned Hunton Powerboats are exploring outside investors to fuel the international business plan, which includes expanding the builder’s distribution base in the United States.

“My vision is to make Hunton the next great British brand,” Pool says.

— Rich Armstrong

Related

Dockmate Launches New Technology

The SoftDocking wireless remote control system eliminates the delay between engaging the throttle and the boat beginning to move.

Minneapolis Innovation Award Winners Announced

NMMA and Boating Writers International handed out the awards in four categories during the Minneapolis Boat Show preview yesterday.

MRAA kicks off Dealer Certification

Becoming a Certified Dealer opens the door to valuable education that will strengthen your dealership operations.

ReconCraft Names Executive Vice President

Josh Pruzek brings two decades of operational leadership in specialized marine manufacturing to the tactical-vessel builder.

Minneapolis Boat Show Opens Tomorrow

Canceled last year, the show runs through Sunday at the Minneapolis Convention Center.

ASA Appoints Public Affairs Manager

John Chambers will help strengthen communications efforts and increase engagement in the newly created position with the American Sportfishing Association.

Soundings Trade Only Names Editor-in-Chief

Gary Reich takes the helm from Jeff Moser, who becomes editor-in-chief of sister magazine PassageMaker.

St. Petersburg Show Opens Thursday

The 44th edition combines with the Tampa Boat Show to create what organizers say is the largest show on the Florida Gulf Coast.