Twin 370hp engines powered hull one to 23 knots in sea trials

On a breezy day at this year’s Palm Beach International Boat Show in March, Leopard’s booth was packed with chic, pastel-clad visitors eager to tour the yachts on display. As the newest of the brand’s three power catamarans, the Leopard 40 Powercat was again in the spotlight.

The model had its world premiere at the Miami International Boat Show the previous month, while hull two was allocated for the model’s European debut at the International Multihull Show on France’s south coast in April.

At the Palm Beach show, the 40-footer attracted families and couples, who took turns to explore the features of the exciting new catamaran designed to make exciting travel dreams come true.

The 40 Powercat can be fitted with solar panels

A family in pale pink, floral outfits hopped onto the yacht to inspect the airy, light-filled saloon. With a myriad storage spaces tucked neatly in multiple locations, within the cosy cabins and underneath the captain’s seat, the model ensures those on board travel in style and comfort.

More Than Just a Cat

Designed by Alexander Simonis of Simonis Voogd Design, the 40PC is surprisingly roomy, notable for an almost 22ft beam and a spacious flybridge that Leopard describes as “the largest ever seen on a 40ft vessel”.

However, each of its social areas — aft cockpit, flybridge, saloon, foredeck — essentially offers an intimate setting for a group of six, in comparison to the 46PC and flagship 53PC models in the powercat series, which both cater to larger groups of eight or so.

Alexander Simonis has created a notably sharp exterior

Like its big sisters, the 40PC features sharp lines and a modern design, where excellent features include making the engine rooms easily accessible.

From a distance, the cat looks ready to deliver a sleek, efficient and high-performance experience, and it delivers on expectations. Equipped with twin 250hp engines as standard, it offers the option to upgrade to 320hp or 370hp engines, which enable the powercat to reach over 20 knots and cruise at about 17 knots.

The hulls encase large cabins

To get aboard, guests can use either of the symmetrical staircases on both sides of the aft platform, flanked by two shore powerlines. The cockpit has a fixed, forward-facing sofa and a table, with foldable director’s chairs offering extra seating.

Side decks offer access around the boat, with grabrails on both sides of the superstructure increasing guest safety along with the wraparound double railings. The foredeck can also be reached via the forward saloon door, a special feature of Leopard models since 2010.

Wide side decks and grabrails offer foredeck access

The bow area is centrally fitted with sunpads, including a single to starboard and a double to port, both with fitted headrests. The sunbathing area extends to the bow, where at least two people can lie horizontally.

In a clever piece of design, there’s ample space underneath the soft sunpads for storage. This is ideal for modern travellers who would like to entertain guests while keeping the appearance of the yacht minimal, sophisticated and tidy.

A forward saloon door leads to the foredeck

Arguably the best outdoor area is the flybridge, which is accessed from the cockpit by port-side stairs. The steps lead up to the forward end of the flybridge, where the upper helm is to starboard and has a double bench seat with a moveable backrest.

The helm features a control panel fitted with Raymarine and Yanmar displays, while there’s a low-set windscreen in front and on both sides of the flybridge.

The large flybridge has a C-shaped sofa facing a wet bar and bench seat

To starboard is the main social area, a C-shaped sofa with a table, which is available in teak or fibreglass and is fitted with multiple cup holders, allowing guests to safely stow cold drinks on a hot day.

To port is a wet bar and a double sofa forward, allowing for four sides of seating, ideal for conversation and cocktails. There’s also a large, clear area aft that can be used how the owner sees fit. Overall, the flybridge provides a comfortable environment for relaxing and enjoying the sea breeze, offering 360-degree visibility to make it the yacht’s prime location for panoramic views.

The aft cockpit features a long sofa and a table offering alfresco dining

Another key feature is the model’s emphasis on safety, and the red label with the word ‘Fire’ is present on many storage space surfaces to indicate where safety equipment is located. Moreover, some surfaces on the foredeck are hollow to allow the swift drainage of water if a wave or spray lands on the bow.

Stylish Interior

The saloon can be accessed from the aft cockpit by a sliding door or from the foredeck through a forward door. Starting aft, the saloon includes full-height refrigeration to starboard and an L-shaped galley to port, where equipment includes a stove, oven, sink, dishwasher, dish-drying rack and lots of storage.

L-shaped galley to port and refrigeration to starboard

When necessary, the dish-drying rack area can be converted to make a double sink. Nearby is a hidden counter that can be extended, with electrical sockets ideal for plugging in a coffee machine. The cream-coloured countertop is refined and sophisticated.

When preparing food or drinks, the galley provides a spacious area for entertaining guests. The designers thoughtfully ensured easy access to the power controls near the galley, so people can keep an eye on the indicators while in the area.

The lounge has an L-shaped sofa facing a single chair, aft of the helm

The forward lounging area includes an L-shaped sofa to port plus a facing chair to the starboard, aft of the lower helm, which has an adjustable backrest. Finished in elegant grey and cream tones, the interior features many large windows, providing a panoramic view of the ocean from the saloon and accentuating the airy feeling of the light-filled space.

The angle of the TV screen, mounted on an extension arm fixed to the bulkhead, can be adjusted for those seated at the L-shaped sofa or facing chair. The soft carpet and the comfortable fabric of the pillows create a relaxed atmosphere and a nice hub for conversation.

In the starboard hull, the master suite has a desk underneath the TV

To starboard, the helm seat is equipped with storage space underneath. Moreover, the Raymarine screens, joystick and monitoring system ensure the skipper is aware of everything that’s going on. The control panel allows the skipper to monitor data including tank levels, speed and much more.

Starboard stairs lead to the full-length master stateroom, which starts aft with a forward-facing double bed. The cabin also has a central desk below a large, adjustable TV, while forward is a full-height cupboard, drawers on both sides and more storage before an en-suite bathroom with a large shower in the forepeak.

Forward is lots of storage and the en-suite bathroom

The stairs on the port side descend to the two guest cabins, which each have an island bed and a full length mirror, and share a bathroom. In all the cabins, the soft, warm glow from the dimmable lights along the edges of the ceilings provides a cosy feeling, while there are blinds on the windows. Each cabin is also equipped with fire-safety equipment.

All Leopard models, including charter-specified versions branded for The Moorings and Sunsail, are built in Cape Town by Robertson & Caine, one of South Africa’s leading yacht builders.

The forward guest cabin shares a bathroom

Like its sister models, the 40PC is available for charter and private owners under a management programme through The Moorings, while also offering the most affordable entry into Leopard’s renowned powercat family.

This article first appeared on Yacht Style.

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