Announcing the Infiniti 53 Canting Keelboat
Published July 20, 2015.
Farr Yacht Design has partnered with Dynamic Stability Systems (DSS) and Infiniti Yachts to develop the Infiniti 53, a new 53 foot canting keelboat suited for exceptional performance both offshore and inshore. Design work and preparation of builder quote packages and pricing for the yacht is proceeding quickly to be ready for a construction start this fall.
The new yacht will feature a canting keel, gybing centerline daggerboard and leverages the dramatic performance advantages available through the DSS system. The design intends to revolutionize the performance of yachts in the mid-50 foot range. It will be the first Farr-designed boat featuring DSS foils.
The underlying concept behind the Infiniti 53 is to improve upon the highly successful canting keel Cookson 50 (design № 541). Since its introduction in 2003, the Cookson 50 has been an unbeatable combination of value and performance. It has won or podium placed at every major offshore event worldwide.
Performance improvements over the past 12 years, along with advances in structural engineering and composite construction techniques, have inspired this design. A very low drag hull form has been developed for the Infiniti 53. It can be driven efficiently by a reasonable sailplan even in light air but has the right balance of static stability from the hullform and deep center of gravity canting keel, combined with dynamic stability from the foil to give the boat unmatched performance in moderate to strong breezes. As a light, high speed boat the hull has a relatively high beam-to-draft and features a full length chine positioned to maximize high speed handling and form stability. The structure is engineered primarily using carbon and foam cores and is optimized to consider the efficient use of materials.
One of the modern features on the Infiniti 53 will be DSS — a retractable foil that is deployed to leeward on the yacht. This foil creates lift to leeward, thereby increasing righting moment in a similar fashion to adding lead to the keel bulb or crew on the rail. The technology was created by British yacht designer Hugh Welbourn and has been in development for more than a decade.
DSS improves the yacht’s all-round performance by being “dynamic,” varying its effect depending on the boat’s speed. The stronger the wind, the faster the yacht and its DSS foil travel through the water, the more lift and stability the foil generates. Conversely, in light conditions, the foil is simply retracted, leaving an easily-driven hull shape. DSS delivers a yacht that has an exceptionally balanced performance profile across the entire wind range.
Britton Ward, vice president and senior naval architect at Farr Yacht Design, says that initial performance estimates show that fitting a DSS foil, particularly at reaching angles, can provide a performance increase on the order of 15 to 20 percent and at reduced heel angles.
“We share a common belief with Infiniti that there is a demand for high performance solutions that are affordable,” said Ward. “We are excited about our collaboration with Infiniti and I think both sides bring a lot to the table. We can offer our clients DSS technology whether it’s for retrofit or new builds while, at the same time, making our own contributions to DSS.”
Monaco-based Infiniti Yachts, part of the partnership between Farr Yacht Design and DSS, has already built two designs equipped with DSS. Two Infiniti 36 GTs are launched and sailing. The Infiniti 46R, an offshore/coastal racer, is currently being built and is expected to launch in time for the RORC Transatlantic Race in November.
Gordon Kay, CEO of Infiniti Yachts is excited about the new Infiniti 53: “We are delighted to be partnered with the team at Farr Yacht Design; our interests are completely aligned and we have been very impressed by their vision and passion for this partnership. The Infiniti 53 will herald a step change in performance sailing in the mid-50 foot range and with the Infiniti 46 due to launch at the end of the year, our clients now have an even wider choice in the next generation of yacht design.”
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IRC Crew Number Max
16.15 m / 53’
15.00 m / 49’2”
4.40 m / 14’5”
7450 kg / 16424 lbs
3390 kg / 7473 lbs
3.65 m / 12’
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