Saturday, September 18

Fjord 40: A Less-Is-More Success Story

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About half a dozen years ago, I cruised on a then-new Fjord 40 from Key West to Miami. There were four of us on board, and we stopped along the way at the over-the-top Little Palm Island Resort, where the dockmaster was more than happy to have us stay for a while because the boat was so stunning.

The Fjord, with its post-modern, straight-line, minimalist Bauhaus-on-the-water design, was just about the polar opposite from my own much-beloved Grand Banks 36. But I guess opposites attract, because I also loved the Fjord. It performed, it had style, it was unique.

With its Volvo IPS fingertip control, the Fjord 40 also was fun to drive. It was solid, dry and with its less-is-more philosophy, it turned heads; it was a work of art, exuding high-end luxury and comfort.

As it turned out, I was not alone in my appreciation of the Fjord 40. The company is now producing hull number 500, a remarkable achievement. And, much like the Hinckley Picnic Boat, the style of the Fjord 40 has been reinterpreted and reinvented by other yacht builders around the world.

The Fjord 40, built by the HanseYachts AG in Germany, has an almost vertical bow, a flat sheerline, and a simple, clean deck. The transom is open on both sides and the passenger flow is smooth and straight all around the boat. The swim platform and decks are all teak.

The helm console and galley are protected by a rigid T-top and a tall windshield. Two seats face the helm; a mate’s seat is across the way to port. A cocktail table aft seats eight; the aft seat converts to a large sun pad at the touch of a button.

Below, there’s a large V-berth in the bow, and an L-shaped sofa converts to a second berth. The head, and shower, are large enough for standing headroom.

Standard power is twin 370-hp Volvo IPS500 pod drives, delivering a cruising speed of 26 knots and a top end of 35 knots. Optional 435-hp IPS600s top out at 40 knots.

Specs.: LOA: 39’3”; Beam: 13’1”; Draft: 3’2”; Disp.: 9,800 lbs.; Fuel: 264 gals.; Water: 79 gals.; Power: 2×370-hp Volvo Penta IPS500 pod drives. Read more:





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