Yachting World's boat test editor looks at the latest yacht from the Cornwall-based yard


Rustler Yachts in Falmouth don’t churn out new models on an annual basis, so news of the Rustler 37 in build, as well as larger models in the pipeline, was big news.

The Rustler 37 keeps true to the yard’s heritage of building good-looking, pedigree yachts with good manners. Her lines are soft and endearing. She has a counter stern that neatly overhangs and a spoon bow. A skeg-hung rudder and a fully encapsulated lead keel are also features that will also be welcomed by purist cruising sailors. The design of the new Rustler 37 promises a low centre of gravity, a safe looking yacht that will stand up to her easily managed, cutter-rigged sailplan.

“She is slightly different to all the other stuff on the market with flat bottoms and fin keels,” says Rustler’s director Adrian Jones. The Rustler 36 and 42 made a name for the manufacturer as stable, seaworthy designs especially suited for couples. But the original Holman & Pye-designed Rustler 36 is almost 30 years old now. Although Rustler will continue to custom-build her to order, she left a telling gap in their model range.

This Rustler 37 has been designed to fill that gap by the incomparable Stephen Jones. Jones is renowned for conjuring more internal volume than a yacht’s length would seem to allow, let alone one with traditional overhangs. Hence she is large for her size.

“Essentially she is a small iteration of the Rustler 42,” Adrian Jones explains. “The layout for boat number one is focused entirely on comfortable sailing for a couple.” The Rustler 37 has a comparatively large forward cabin for in port use and a roomy heads and shower. The designer has included an option for what he describes as a night heads on both the Rustler 37 and the Southerly 36.

Another design feature shared by the Rustler 37 boat, Southerly 36 and GT35, is a forward sail locker. This not only provides vital cruising deck stowage but brings the forward berth aft. “You could probably even sleep head forward on the 37,” says Jones. The galley, chart table and saloon also seem very generous in size.

The first Rustler 37 is due to launch the end of July, but with designs for a 53ft and 63ft, are the yard scaling up?

“The larger proposed models are born out of brand loyal customers,” says Jones. “This new boat, along with the Rustler 42, is where we think our market is going to be for the next few years.”


Originally published in Yachting World July 2014