A few years back, Outremer was down on its luck a bit. This is a company that has always had performance as first priority, and for a while in the 1990s they built some very innovative (and at the time) highly affordable cats. Their trick was solid construction, not expensive sandwich core construction, and they made 40-foot boats that were 55 feet long. The hulls were really long and fine, and the interiors of the the boats were small and very simple. The 55 Light was, and still is, a really cool boat, with the interior space of a 43-foot cruising cat. However, time and cost conspired to make the boat a little bit dated.
The company re-organized and re-committed in the last few years. Last year, they came out with a sandwich cored, high freeboard, daggerboarded cat at 49 feet. Designed by Christophe Barreau, now ex-Catana, this boat has more similarity to a Catana than an older Outremer. Nice boat that is gaining worldwide momentum.
Well, it seems they have taken it one step further. There is a new 59 (5X) foot boat coming out that appears on many levels to be really spectacular. With all due respect to Barreau, this new boat was designed by the undisputed architectural kings of multihulls, VPLP, with input from some of the best minds in VPLP’s stable of superstar sailors. Just when some companies are opting not to pay the famous designers, Outremer has grabbed the best and let them run with this project. It ought to be noted that VPLP, while equally famous for designing the fastest boats ever built (Groupama, Bancque Populaire, Oracle BMW), also do luxury too — Lagoon, Sunreef, etc. This boat, the 5x, promises to be a comfortable rocket, and will be really exciting to follow as it evolves. I am adding this one to my short list, that’s for sure!