Monday, July 13

New Boat Review | Beneteau 30

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Beneteau’s New Pocket-Sized Swift Trawler

I’ve got to say right off the bat that I have a soft spot in my heart for Beneteau Swift Trawlers. That’s because I cruised on a Swift Trawler 34 from upper Lake Michigan down to St. Louis on the Mississippi River as part of Beneteau’s Great Loop expedition two summers ago, and my partner on board, the photojournalist George Sass Sr., and I both fell in love with the boat. So now I can’t wait to climb on the newest entry in the Swift Trawler line, a 30, after it’s introduced to the North American market in February at the Yacht & Brokerage Show in Miami Beach.

Beneteau30intIn appearance, the new 30 seems like a slightly downsized version of the popular 34, with the same contemporary lines, same livable interior, and same single-diesel performance and efficiency. What I liked most about the 34 was the way it handled in four-foot seas in the middle of Lake Michigan; the boat was stable (as stable as could possibly be expected), dry and seakindly. When conditions got snarly, we simply dialed back from the 18-knot cruising speed and settled in, as the Swift Trawler ate up the miles.

Like the 34, the new 30 also has a master stateroom in the bow and a second smaller stateroom to port, opposite a generous head and shower; a bright, open salon with a convertible sofa, and a large cockpit, which we found particularly inviting for al fresco breakfast or evening cocktails on the 34. Perhaps the feature we found most appealing on the 34, a side door opening from the helm to the starboard deck, is reproduced on the 30. Believe me, this makes docking and line handling much easier all around.

The cruising speed on the new 30, which was first introduced at the Paris boat show in December, is said to be about 15 knots. And the base price of under $300,000 should make this pocket trawler a favorite for people entering that market or others moving down from large boats. Beneteau has been making boats in France for the past 130 years or so; for the North American market, the new Swift Trawler 30 will be made in Marion, S.C.

LOA: 32’ 9”
Beam: 11’ 7”
Draft:  3’ 5”
Disp.: 13,224 lbs.
Fuel: 190 U.S. gals.
Water: 80 U.S. gals.
Power: 1x 300- to 370-hp diesel
Base Price: Under $300,000
Contact: beneteauamerica.com
T (410) 990-0270

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