Leopard is currently the worldwide market leader in a rapidly developing field of activity, and this is all due to its solid experience and capacity to innovate. After the shows in Cannes and Miami, and on the eve of the European premiere of the Leopard 46 PC at the Multihull show in La Grande Motte, we explain below the in-depth reasons behind the rising demand for Power Cats.
As with many success stories, the appeal of the Leopard power range is based on its outstanding pedigree. At the outset, more than twenty years ago, the Leopard was in fact a lion. Already the brainchild of Alexander Simonis, a 46-footer named « Lion 464 », a forerunner of things to come, was launched. The South African shipbuilders and Power Cat pioneers Robertson and Caine initially designed this specific model with a midsized beam, measuring only 5.3m. However, the next generation adopted not only the now well-known brand name but, perhaps more importantly, the basic specifications of their wind-powered counterparts. Their larger hull beams – 7.57m for the Leopard 47 PC – enabled them to make die-hard single-hull buffs marvel at such hitherto unheard-of amounts of space. As for the third generation, namely the Leopard 51 PC and 43 PC, although their hulls and decks remained identical to those of the wind-powered models, their specially-designed quick works enabled a virtuous circle to improve performance and lower power consumption. And what, may you ask, has the latest, completely redesigned generation got to offer?
A new dimension
Onboard the Leopard 53 PC and 46 PC, it is first and foremost the living space that catches the eye. For many newcomers to the world of multihulls, this first impression can come as a total revelation. Many of them frequently believe the boat to be 10 or 20 feet longer than it is. Indeed, all the reference points and standards of those used to sailing on single hulls must be rejigged when surrounded by so much space. On discovering the bridge deck, the flybridge, the fore and aft cockpits, the owners’ privatized hull, the luxury suite fittings…, the first visit never fails to be a source of amazement. The feeling is compounded when the newcomer realises that the price of this twin-hull is lower than that of a mono-hull. And that’s not all: the larger living space contained within a boat of shorter length opens up completely new perspectives. For instance, being equipped with two motors makes docking without a crew, even in a relatively small and crowded marina, a reasonably straightforward maneuver for almost any skipper. Employing a professional skipper may well be the most reassuring option. Still, it is one that nevertheless entails the presence of someone who is neither friend nor family and is likely to alter the atmosphere on board.
With general cruising speeds of 15 or 16 knots (though 20 knots or more remain possible if required), the performance of these state-of-the-art hulls is designed to meet the needs and expectations of modern-day amateur sailors. Striving to attain the highest speeds, which inevitably leads to less comfort, more stress, and higher consumption, is a thing of the past. Nowadays, and for the foreseeable future, the trend is for greener, more environmentally-friendly cruises on a catamaran designed to allow you to relax and get away from it all. From bow to stern, the distinctive cut of the chine sharpens the hull curve, thereby easing the boat’s passage through waves and reducing consumption. Above the waterline, the hull line bulges out, thereby creating extra space inside.
Two hulls and a thousand possibilities
A few years ago, a famous car designer asked himself the question: “And what if real luxury was, in fact, space ?” Leopard Power Cats’ answer to this question is: “Exactly”. Indeed, they provide up to 30% more space than other units of the same size, but they have also increased the number of living areas, notably with their roomy, comfy flybridges. Discovering bridge deck, where most of the daytime activity occurs, never fails to amaze those recently converted to sailing. But once they manage to get used to the panoramic views of their surroundings, the spacious kitchen, the saloon, or the dining area, they will begin to notice some of the more subtle improvements. The amount of light, of course, and the way the front door provides natural airing and allows easy access to the fore cockpit, a feature unimaginable on a single hull boat. Whether at sea or in port, making the most of this facility is a new, excellent habit to get into. Down below in the hulls, owners and guests alike will enjoy a level of privacy and comfort usually only found when staying somewhere on land. The cabins are far enough apart, and all are equipped with en-suite bathrooms and separate showers. The owners can enjoy the complete run of one entire hull containing a sofa, a desk, a spacious bathroom, and extensive storage space in their private, genuinely five-star suite. And of course, all the cabins boast a fabulous view of the sea.
Enhanced experience of living at sea
Whether your guests aim to relax, chat, read or dine… a Leopard Power Catamaran can provide them with a host of facilities. Inside, outside, upstairs, downstairs, upfront, aft, in the sun, in the shade… they will be simply spoilt for choice. Whatever activity they choose to undertake, rest assured it will be done in the most comfortable way possible. Moving around the boat is easy, even for those who don’t yet have their sea legs. The wide stern and aft swim platform and the fact that there is practically no rocking motion when at anchor make it safer for guests to practice water sports. Indeed, given its high level of stability, the Leopard is the ideal solution for enjoying a dream holiday and, should you feel inclined to get away from it all, for embarking on a long-haul expedition.