A new designer and new construction processes kicked off a big year of change for the German Bavaria yard, says Toby Hodges.

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In January 2016 Bavaria stole the show at the world’s largest boat show in Düsseldorf. By choosing to combine its sail and power stands, Bavaria bucked the trend and took over a large section of what was previously one of the sailing yacht halls.

It certainly cost the German company a tidy sum (thought to be around €1.3m) – but it reportedly sold 130 boats at the show, so the financial risk appears to have paid off.

Bavaria had another trick up its sleeve for the 2017 Düsseldorf show: the debut of the first C57 – the largest yacht the company has ever built (see my video first look taken at the show).

Of equal surprise is that it has moved from using Farr Yacht Design to the Italian firm Cossutti Yacht Design for this new C57. Maurizio Cossutti is perhaps best known as an ORC specialist and his influence is immediately evident in the C57’s more performance-oriented design when compared to past Bavarias.

Twin rudders are used to provide control to a generous sailplan, one that can fly 136sq m of upwind sail area and a 232sq m gennaker.

The C57, like many of its competitors today, has a largely flat deck design that maximises comfort at rest. There is a tender garage built into the transom, which is large enough to house a fully inflated Williams Jet tender.

Down below there is a choice of three, four or five cabins plus there is a potential crew cabin in the forepeak.

Modern day Bavaria

Bavaria has had to adjust its production line method to allow it to introduce larger models. This is a highly necessary response to its competition, all of which are building yachts of 60ft or longer.

Bavaria has changed the set-up of one its four production lines to build this C57 plus its E-Series of powerboats.

The yard now uses an innovative new modular system, in which the interiors, hulls and decks are built on three parallel tracks. Only once they reach the end of this 125m long track are the yachts then assembled and finished.

“The two cabins and their bathrooms are constructed outside the hull, including all cables, hoses and installations,” said Bavaria’s marketing manager, Marcus Schlichting. “The shipyard therefore guarantees higher quality.”

In another step-change for the yard, the hull and deck of all Bavarias are now built using vacuum infusion to produce lighter more stable hulls in a more environmentally-friendly manner. This is the start of what could very well be a revolutionary year for one the world’s largest yacht builders.

Price €374,900 ex VAT www.bavaria-yachtbau.com

Bavaria C57: Specifications

LOA: 16.73m (54ft 10in)
LWL: 15.50m (50ft 10in)
Beam: 5.25m (17ft 2in)
Draught: 2.52m (8ft 2in)
Displacement: 17,130kg (37,765lb)
Ballast: 5,785kg (12,753lb)