Every decade or so a yacht is designed that is extraordinarily successful by all measures. Lines and proportion are wonderfully pleasing, while at the same time highly functional. Aesthetic attraction is universal, performance is exemplary, and the ideal balance between subjective and objective qualities is achieved. One design having all of these characteristics is rare, and it invariably becomes a classic by which others are measured. In the highly specialized world of oceangoing, recreational power vessels, the Nordhavn 46 has achieved the legendary status of a modern day classic. Born from the driving passion of the founders of Pacific Asian Enterprises, P.A.E., the 46 was from the very beginning a design that broke the marketing and styling rules of the day. Challenging the popular trends of the marine industry for light, go-fast boats, the Nordhavn 46 immediately attracted an ardent following of sailors and power boaters who shared a common desire to travel the oceans of the world. Many had read Robert Beebe's Voyaging Under Power and were searching for their ideal passagemaker. Others had simply become tired of the discomfort of voyaging under sail and the dependence on fair wind and good weather. The P.A.E. team, already developing and marketing the beautiful, oceangoing line of Mason sailboats, saw this opportunity and introduced the Nordhavn 46 to the enthusiastic response of experienced cruisers. What may have seemed like a cult following at first has grown to a worldwide family of boat lovers who enjoy the comfort and simplicity of voyaging under power.
From the very beginning, the Nordhavn 46 has stood out from all other "trawler yachts.'' There was nothing on the market that could compare with its offshore ability, economical operation and luxurious accommodations. In production for over ten years, the Nordhavn 46 has continued its position of prominence, benefiting from hundreds of innovative refinements inspired by owners cruising throughout the world. Interior layout details have been finessed to increase the boat's level of comfort and convenience. Superior systems have been developed and engineered for improved dependability and performance. New materials like fiberglass fuel tanks, vinylester resins and Divinicell cores have been used to increase the life expectancy of components. Engine room sound insulation materials have been upgraded; new, quieter mufflers are being used; and even engine air intakes have been designed to be quieter. The dry exhaust system has been suspended to mechanically isolate it from the rest of the boat, and by extending it to the top of the mast, the exhaust is quieter and cleaner. Fine-tuning the prop specifications has resulted in a more efficient, quieter ride at all speeds. And because today's modern cruising vessel depends more and more on electrical accessories and appliances, the Nordhavn 46's electrical system has undergone a series of upgrades. All wiring is done with fully tinned, marine grade wire and an easy-to-see, custom designed AC/DC distribution panel is installed in the wheelhouse. A heavy-duty inverter system is now standard, as is a foolproof charging system for all
battery banks. Detail after detail, the Nordhavn 46 has enjoyed the benefits of its popularity among cruisers who have collectively helped to make each one a better, more refined version of the original.
Of course, a true characteristic of a classic is its everlasting quality and long term popularity. Jeff Leishman, the 46's naval architect, and the rest of the P.A.E. team, continue to be delighted at the ever-increasing popularity of this vessel. What specifically is the reason for this timeless acceptance? It's really quite simple. The Nordhavn 46 delivers on its promise to safely, comfortably and economically take owners and their families, even those with modest boating skills, anywhere in the world. No other production boat, sail or power, has experienced as many successful circumnavigations or ocean crossings as the Nordhavn 46. And while not all owners plan to take their 46 around the world, they cruise in confidence, knowing their boat has the ability to safely cross oceans. Even if they don't have such ambitious plans, they know their Nordhavn 46 can take them across the bay, down the coast, through the canal and across the stream.