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Best Luxury Flybridge Manufacturer 50’-70’

Discussion in 'General Yachting Discussion' started by tader2112, Jul 5, 2021.

  1. dcwjd

    dcwjd New Member

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    I'm Great South Bay otherwise known as a giant sandbox. We make the trip once a year to Montauk and Block which like you stated the beam wouldn't matter. I just want to increase to a 3 stateroom boat so I can have an occasional guest sleep aboard ala grandma and want the increased space of a fly over an express. I would have no use for a 4 stateroom yacht plus crew quarters.
  2. olderboater

    olderboater Senior Member

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    I think you'd like the Sunseeker Manhattan 55. Do keep in mind it's really a relabeled and redesigned 52 as both are 56'6" LOA. It's actually narrower as the beam of the 52 was 16'10" and the 55 is 16'0". A very nice 3 Cabin boat. I did register a humorous and rather mild complaint last Monday in person in Poole about their labeling.

    A brief comparison of the Manhattan 55 to the Hatteras 60.

    Hatteras 60 is more seaworthy although the 55 is very good for it's size. However, the 55 will outperform it. Hatteras has far greater range due to more than double the fuel capacity. Fuel capacity is a limitation on the 55. Sleeping arrangements are basically equal. Flybridges are equal although the Hatteras is much more easily enclosed. Main level, the Sunseeker has a lower helm and the Hatteras uses the lack of one and the beam to have more inside space but I detest not having the lower helm. Bow seating, the Sunseeker wins by default and that's a great benefit when anchored or docked. Quality of workmanship, Hatteras wins but that by no means says Sunseeker is poor. It's like comparing Oldsmobile to Chevrolet. Note, I intentionally chose a discontinued brand as the Hatteras 60 is your grandfather's boat and very outdated. It does not fit with their other motoryachts at all and I believe will be replaced, just no idea when.
  3. dcwjd

    dcwjd New Member

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    Should I look at the Princess f55 or an Azimut 54, 55 or new 53? I kind of have my heart set on the new Manhattan 55/52 as I love the look of it.
  4. olderboater

    olderboater Senior Member

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    I'm prejudiced so take my recommendation in that vein. I prefer the Sunseeker. Now, all three offer rather comparable boats so let me comment on what I see as the differences to a Long Island buyer. I'm going to talk delivery condition and warranty service.

    Sunseeker's are generally delivered with the fewest issues. Now, Onewater is the current distributor and the NY location was a Grande Yachts location. I don't know what their level of service will be but I was very careful when buying a Sunseeker to get it addressed before delivery. Their reputation on warranty service is slow and they are Grande and Onewater are new to the northeast.

    Princess is typically delivered with more issues than Sunseeker but you'd get service at the Viking location in NJ and the level of service is excellent.

    Azimut is delivered with issues and frequently they are either slowly resolved or never resolved by Marine Max. However, the NY locations are better than the FL locations and if you could get to the old Russo Marine locations, you might get good service.

    As to ride and performance, I haven't been on the Princess or Azimut sizes you mention. However, Sunseeker's ride and performance and ability to handle rough water is very good. On other models, I rate Princess slightly below. Azimut is generally about the same as Princess.

    I personally dismiss Azimut and it's not because they're a bad boat. It's because it means having to deal with Marine Max. If I was in the NE I might feel a little different.

    I would suggest you look at all three.
  5. mapism

    mapism Senior Member

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    Did you actually try the latter? And if yes, was she pods or shafts powered?
    As with any other boat offering both types of transmission, the hull is bound to be either a mediocre compromise, or good with just one of the alternatives and poor with the other.

    Any reason for not including the Ferretti 550?
    Imho, she would be a better choice overall compared to all others.
    And pretty sure with a better and more reliable powerplant, anyway.
  6. dcwjd

    dcwjd New Member

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    In Long Island we have Staten Island Island Yacht sales which sells Princess, Strong's Marine which sells Sunseeker and of course multiple Marinemax which sells the Azimut.
  7. dcwjd

    dcwjd New Member

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    Ferretti isn't sold where I live in Long Island which is why I haven't included it. Sunseeker and Princess both have d-13 volvo shafts. I wouldn't buy an IPS
    boat in my sandbox.
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2021
  8. olderboater

    olderboater Senior Member

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    I'm tried the Manhattan 52 with shafts and have a friend who has run it with pods. I've previously run the 63's and 65's in both shafts and pods. Sunseekers are designed for shafts and then accommodate pods. My findings on the pods is that they work fine in the Sunseekers, perform well, but don't have the advantages pods might have in other boats. The speed gain and efficiency gains are limited and they don't get the interior space gains because they don't change things. That, combined with other reasons, gives me a reason I'd only buy the Sunseeker models with shafts. As to the question, however, of seaworthiness, I'd rate them good in either configuration. In my extensive running of Sunseeker's with shafts I've been pleased. In my limited running and that others have of pods, nothing to dissuade me regarding handling seas.

    Princess has actually designed models for the pods.

    As to your mention of the Ferretti 550, definitely worthy of consideration. Ferretti America does have NY locations in Huntington and Sag Harbor although their emphasis is South Florida. We have been very pleased with them over the years, owning Riva's. My first thoughts on the 550 are disappointment in the size of the flybridge as it's further back than on the other boats mentioned. Other than that, a very nice boat.
  9. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    Beam is important. The more the better. A foot of extra beam is worth 6 to 8’ of loa.

    over then years I ve been at many marina in Long Island sound and Eastern Long Island and a 20’ beam has never been an issue. Never been to the south side which I understand is really for small boats anyway.
  10. mapism

    mapism Senior Member

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    I know, that's why I said that the Ferretti powerplant is better and more reliable.
    Chalk and cheese springs to mind, when comparing the VP D13 to the MAN R6.
    Though a D13 on shafts is definitely MUCH better than a D13 on IPS...
  11. dcwjd

    dcwjd New Member

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    I would never buy a Man powered boat. We have absolutely zero service where I live where CAT Cummins and Volvo are everywhere.
  12. olderboater

    olderboater Senior Member

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    Then you would miss the best of the modern day engines. MAN has many advantages over CAT. As to service in your area, while the places you normally frequent may not service MAN's, there are a few MAN service centers in the Long Island area. Admittedly not as many as CAT and Cummins.
  13. mapism

    mapism Senior Member

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    In principle, I see your point, and I always maintained that the best marine diesels are the ones which are regularly and properly serviced, regardless of brand.
    But I must say that if forced to pick either VP or MAN, I'd be tempted to go for the latter with "absolutely zero service", rather than the former with the best service on the planet... :D

    Anyway, on a more serious note, if that's your situation, in your boots I would include the powerplant type in my boat selection criteria, in this order:
    1) Cummins
    2) Cat
    3) Anything else but VP with a half decent service
    4) VP
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2021
  14. dcwjd

    dcwjd New Member

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    Man service costs are astronomical in the northeast of the US where I boat. Aftercooler service every 24 months from what I understand to the tune of ~20k. No thanks I’ll take a hard pass.
  15. mapism

    mapism Senior Member

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    That does sound astronomical also for a full CAC removal and cleaning, but I know nothing about service costs in your area.
    Besides, I've yet to come across anyone, official dealers included, who suggest to do anything at all to the aftercoolers every 24 months - regardless of the manufacturer's maintenance echelon.
    FWIW, mine are 17 years old, and aside from pulling and cleaning them when I bought the boat, they were only serviced another time during the previous ownership.
    Anyway, if you don't like them, who am I to argue?

    On the other hand, if you hope to spend less and have a more trouble-free experience with any VP powerplant (even if in fairness the D13 is one of their more decent products), I can only think of two words: good luck. :)
  16. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    I love my cummins but I don’t think they have anything above 700hp, do they?
  17. mapism

    mapism Senior Member

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    I'm not up to speed on their current range, but I guess you are right.
    The brand new Ferretti 500 is QSB 6.7 powered though, and while I haven't seen her, a very knowledgeable boating mate of mine told me that he was really impressed.
    Now, THAT would be a sound alternative for anyone concerned about maintenance costs.
    But the OP would rather prefer something larger, as far as I understood.
  18. olderboater

    olderboater Senior Member

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    Another rumor that is just untrue. Here is the two year service. Changing both valve caps. Cleaning intercooler/charge-air pipes/turbocooler and heat exchanger. Cost a few thousand but far less than 10 and definitely not in the range of 20k. You're listening to numbers tossed freely about by competitors who don't work on them. Why don't you ask the CAT people about all the intercoolers they've had to replace or the engines lost due to the failure of intercoolers?

    It's fine to have an engine preference. We all do. Mapism has had bad Volvo experiences, but others recently have been very pleased with them. Just don't allow the rumor mill to influence you. Also, be sure even valid information is applicable to the vintage you're buying, whether decades old or new. The best choice 20 years ago may not be today, but the person you're talking to may only be knowledgeable on 20 year old models.

    Since Cummins was mentioned a couple of times, while I've never owned one, the owners I have known have been very pleased and I've seen them provide a warranty replacement that I'm not sure any other manufacturer would have. They've definitely earned my respect. As an aside, I've also seen Volvo step up to the plate after their dealer repeatedly said "no.". On the other hand, I grew up on a lake with lots of Volvo Stern Drives and because of the quality of their dealers there, they were considered equal to Mercruiser.

    Then there is the dilemma that the boat you want, whether used or new, is available only with certain engines. I don't know any major engine brand I would absolutely reject if in my perfect boat and either new or perfect survey.
  19. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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  20. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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