Oyster Yachts’ popularity lies with its bluewater cruisers up to 60ft and, more recently its unrivalled success with 80 footers. Yet this season sees the British yard launch two new models in the ‘midsize’ range, the 675 and 745. Toby Hodges has been aboard both and trialled this Oyster 675 directly after her Southampton Boatshow debut.
When it comes to series-building large cruising yachts, Oyster Yachts is the undisputed world leader. In the 60ft size range alone it has, over its 40-year heritage, produced a 61, 62, 625, 655, 665, 66, 675 and a 68 – and has built 73 of these size yachts during its current 15-year partnership with designer Rob Humphreys alone.
The company considers this new Oyster 675 to be about the limit in size an owner can still operate a yacht without crew, yet concedes that a temporary paid hand may still be advised to keep the yacht suitably maintained. But it has simultaneously launched another new design, the 745 for those who will sail with crew. And it’s given this new ‘midsize’ range its own ‘coupe’ style.
These yachts herald a new modern look and era for Oyster. The hull shapes, drawn by Humphreys Yacht Design, are more powerful than their predecessors, more beamy with greater form stability. They sport twin rudders, flush foredecks and blade jibs and have more power in their rigs and keels.
They are still bluewater cruisers but they have been given a very purposeful, current look. A stretched coachroof window line marks the style of this new range.
Over and above the contemporary shapes and styles, however, it is the flexibility of choice that comes with the Oyster 675 and 745 which sets them apart. This 675 is the first Oyster to offer a forward master cabin from design stage and there are a wide variety of internal layouts available.
All models from the Oyster 675 and above are now offered with conventional sloping transoms or extended vertical transoms as standard. The extended version doubles the size of the lazarette stowage and creates the option for a tender garage – another first for Oyster.
It is rare for an owner to know exactly what they want in a yacht of this size. So having all these options designed-in is a useful solution for owner and yard to create a personalised yacht.
See our full report in the December 2016 issue of Yachting World