Continuing to build on the highly successful introductions of the Nordhavn 72, 47 and 43, Pacific Asian Enterprises (P.A.E.) introduced the Nordhavn 55, a long-range, full-displacement passage maker that incorporated the company's newest styling and heightened focus on enhanced interior accommodations.
"The popularity of our new 47 confirmed our belief that our owners want more living space and more conveniences without sacrificing offshore capability, " said Jim Leishman, vice president of P.A.E. "Our N55 offers the interior room of many luxurious 60-footers, and yet she has the ability to cross oceans and take her owners to the far corners of the globe."
Form Follows Function
Thanks to the feedback of the P.A.E. staff as well as Nordhavn owners who have logged hundreds of thousands of miles offshore, the N55 was designed to provide maximum comfort underway and while living aboard during extended cruises. "The generous interior volume is made possible by the relatively high bow and high freeboard of the design," adds Leishman. "We've learned that there is really no downside to adding more freeboard to our designs, and when done right, the advantages are many."
The high bow provides extra buoyancy when punching into large head seas, and the higher deck takes on less blue water during rough conditions. The added height provides significantly more volume below the cabin sole. In relationship to the accommodations, the engine, fuel tanks and water tanks are very low, ensuring superior stability.
"Because of the added height, we can now use our bulletproof 'gravity feed' fuel system," comments Leishman. "We use a similar system on our Nordhavn 40 which we took around the world, and it has proven to be totally reliable and easy to use." The use of fiberglass fuel tanks adds to the trouble free, long-term service of the boat.
Of special note, the tanks have human-sized inspection plates and because the baffles are removable, a service technician can actually enter the tank and thoroughly clean it of contaminated fuel and algae residue.
Long a Nordhavn feature, the main saloon opens directly to the aft cockpit, which is on the same level. This design effectively expands the living area from the inside to the outside, and when fitted with optional side curtains, the cockpit becomes an extension of the saloon, even in foul weather.
The asymmetrical cabin design allows for a wider main saloon and galley and features a wide side deck on the starboard side. A large, L-shaped settee and beautifully finished teak table are adjacent to two comfortable reading chairs. Two bar chairs face the pass-through counter top in the galley, which is two steps down from the saloon.
With full-sized home-style appliances, abundant storage cabinets and generous counter space, the galley will please the most demanding chef. Standard equipment includes a Sub-Zero refrigerator with icemaker, a 4-burner Thermadore stove and oven, a General Electric (G.E.) microwave/convection oven, a Broan trash compactor, G.E. dishwasher and G.E. top-load freezer.
The owner's stateroom is on the same level as the galley, and it is located amidships, where the motion is least objectionable during passages and while at anchor. A queen sized, walk-around berth, two hanging lockers and a spacious head complete with a shower/bath tub rival the space of most home bedrooms. Forward is a spacious guest cabin with double sized berth, huge hanging locker, office area and private head with stall shower.
Pilothouse With A View
The Nordhavn 55 shows her serious side in her commercial-like pilothouse. Located amidships for minimal motion at sea, it provides excellent, 360-degree visibility. A full-sized helm chair puts the captain comfortably in command of his ship, with all electronics and controls within sight and reach. New for Nordhavn is a 45-degree tilted wheel, a position that's not only more comfortable, but easier for making quick turns.
Aft of the helm chair, an L-shaped settee and table, elevated for superior visibility, will seat three to four crewmembers. Beneath the settee are full-sized chart drawers and additional storage. But the most surprising feature of the N55's pilothouse is its private stateroom complete with head and double-sized berth. Perfect for the off-watch crew on long passages, this area will also serve as a private guest stateroom.
The Nordhavn 55 has been designed to incorporate a flying bridge as standard. Located directly over the pilothouse, it provides excellent visibility and is the ideal place to run the vessel in fair weather.
Long Range Capability
With a waterline of slightly more than 50 feet, the Nordhavn 55 has an efficient hull speed of 9.5 knots and under full load conditions, a range of 1500 nautical miles. At 8.25 knots, her range will be 3,000 nautical miles. Its hull form, a refinement of Nordhavn's MFD (Modified Full Displacement) design, features fuller aft sections that reduce "squatting" when running at higher speeds. Added benefits include reduced pitching motion and increased stability.
Main propulsion is provided by a John Deere 325 hp diesel engine that turns a 3 1/2-inch Aquamet shaft via a 4:1 reduction ZF transmission. This amount of reduction allows the 40" prop to turn slowly, greatly reducing noise and vibration. A dry exhaust, a signature design element of most Nordhavns, eliminates the need for a large through-hull and raw water pump, greatly reducing the risk of failure at sea.
All This At A Competitive Price
While each Nordhavn is priced individually due to the significant number of choices of finish details, layout options, custom details and accessory equipment, the base price of the Nordhavn 55 is still a considerable value. "This is a lot of boat for the money," offers Leishman. "We've been able to bring this new design to the market at this attractive price because our labor, while highly skilled, is simply costing us less at our new factory in China." The Nordhavn line of long-range cruisers, of which there are now seventeen models between 40 and 120 feet, are built by a small number of select yards throughout the Far East, all closely supervised by Pacific Asian Enterprises personnel.
Nordhavn's robust construction, timeless designs and quality construction contribute to the high resale value of previously owned Nordhavns. "Buying one of our boats has proven to be one of the best boating investments our owners have ever made," concludes Leishman. This message resonated with serious boat buyers, as P.A.E. took over a dozen orders for the Nordhavn 55 before hull number one was even launched.