Is this the helm station of the future? It will be if Peugeot and Beneteau have their way, since the French auto maker and the French boat builder have joined forces to create what they call the Sea Drive Concept, building on each company’s research and design labs to combine the best of automotive and boating technology and ergonomic design.
The basic idea was to take Peugeot’s i-Concept cockpit format and meld it into a boating format. Peugeot’s Design Lab created the i-Concept for its luxury cars five years ago; the third generation i-Concept is in the Peugeot 3008 SUV that was voted European Car of the Year in 2017. For its part, Beneteau used its design lab to create the Advanced Monitoring System to centralize all nav, safety and comfort information in one easy-to-read spot. The new Sea Drive Concept combines the best of those two systems.
The Sea Drive features a compact steering wheel and a large 17-inch Ship Control interface with a head-up display and an array of toggle switches. For an upscale touch, the boat’s interior around the helm is refined with Nappa leather, copper topstitching and satin chrome trim.
If your taste runs to traditional Down East lobster boats, this may not be your cup of tea. But if you want to see what some of the world’s leading designers are thinking about for helm stations in the near-future, the Sea Drive Concept is intriguing. Take a look at the new helm in the video below: