Preview: J/45 – the J/boat with cruising in mind

The latest yacht to be announced from J/Boats is firmly aimed at the cruising market – though it should maintain the performance for which this marque is so highly regarded

J/Boats are known predominantly for their cruiser-racers, which usually lean rather more towards the racing side of the name than the cruising.

The all new performance cruiser from J/Boats, however, the J/45 is intended as a long-distance yacht that’ll be fun to sail, as well as being civilised when spending extended periods of time on board.

Though the J/Boat brand is seen by many as the preserve of those with an interest in racing as well as a boat that is able to be cruise in relative comfort, the manufacturer says more than half the 15,000 J/Boats built to date are used solely for cruising.

Of the cruising owners, many report that they would like a larger yacht with a greater level of comfort, over and above outright performance considerations. 

As such, the J/45 is the the result of a three-year collaboration between the north American and French arms of the company. In addition, Isabelle Racoupeau brought her interior design expertise to the project.

Much of the focus, then has been on maximising interior volume and comfort, while maintaining an elegant profile. Minimal wetted surface area and light displacement should promote good performance in light airs and minimise the need to use the engine for propulsion while on passage.

This associated weight saving from these decisions has allowed for a smaller, more easily handled rig. A 42% ballast ratio allied to a choice of 2.1m, 2.3m or 2.6m draught bulbed keels promises an ability to ride out heavy weather.

Much thought and analysis has also gone into the systems and equipment, which are optimised for efficient sail handling and manoeuvring, along with comfortable living. As a result the standard specification is unusually high, including the carbon bowsprit, oversize winches and gennaker deck hardware, that manufacturers typically list as expensive extras.

The first boat is currently in build and is scheduled for delivery early summer.


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Source: Yachting Monthly

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