Visit Pensacola

Cruising World Announces 2017 Boat of the Year Winners

Published on December 8th, 2016

Newport, RI (December 8, 2016) – Cruising World magazine has announced winners for its 2017 Boat of the Year awards, an annual selection that recognizes the best of the year’s new sailboat models introduced in North America.

Top prize winners include the Catalina 425, named Domestic Boat of the Year, and the Balance 526, the Import Boat of the Year.

Catalina 425 in Annapolis MD

Catalina 425, Domestic Boat of the Year

Balance 526 Ondine at the Annapolis Sailboat Show, Annapolis MD

Balance 526, the Import Boat of the Year

The 2017 Boat of the Year fleet of nominees was comprised of 24 sailboats ranging from 30 to 62 feet and priced at $215,000 to more than a million dollars, half of which were catamarans—the highest percentage of multihulls ever in the lineup. The new models reflected a truly international mix, with boats from the U.S., France, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Italy, Slovenia, South Africa and Vietnam.

Judging took place during and immediately following the U.S. Sailboat Show in Annapolis, Md., in October. A team of three independent industry experts, whose impartial task was to reward excellence without regard to the bottom line, conducted both dockside inspections and sea trials aboard each boat to determine how well they met their stated design purposes. This year, the sailing tests were conducted in varying wind conditions, from extremely light air to gusts over 20 knots.

The full list of winners is as follows:
• Domestic Boat of the Year: Catalina 425
• Import Boat of the Year: Balance 526
• Best Performance Cruiser: Dehler 34
• Best Full-Size Cruiser Under 50-Feet: X-Yachts X4
• Best Full-Size Cruiser Over 50-Feet: Solaris 50
• Best Full-Size Multihull Under 50-Feet: Lagoon 42
• Best Full-Size Multihull Over 50-Feet: Balance 526
• Best Charter Boat: Leopard 45
• Most Innovative: Xquisite X5
• Judge’s Special Prize: Seawind 1190 Sport

The Judge’s Special Prize was specially created to honor the Seawind 1190 Sport, a sharp performance catamaran built in Vietnam that was hard to categorize but impressed the panel for its innovation and execution.

“This year’s fleet was dominated by catamarans, the best of which was the Balance 526, a superb high-performance cat that was honored as both the Import Boat of the Year and the Best Full-Size Multihull Over 50 Feet,” said Herb McCormick, the director of the competition. “But there were also strong nominees among the monohulls, including the wholesome Catalina 425, a versatile yacht that took home the prize as the year’s Domestic Boat of the Year.”

The 2017 Boat of the Year winners will be featured in the January/February issue of Cruising World, available on newsstands and the iPad on Dec. 27.

For more information, see the full story on Cruising World 2017 Boat of the Year

comment banner

Tags: ,

Back to Top ↑

Get Your Sailing News Fix!

Your download by email.

  • Hidden
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

We’ll keep your information safe.