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Test Sails on the Jeanneau 440 and 490

“Every 10 years or so, a new wrinkle in boat design or layout comes along that alters the way in which we perceive cruising boats. Way back when (OK, more than a decade ago), it was the not-so-subtle shift from full-keel yachts to those with fin blades and skeg-hung rudders. More recently, raised deck saloons changed the way we looked at interior ­spaces, opening up the main living area with wraparound windows, more light and headroom, and panoramic views. Then came chines, once the purview of metal boats but ­suddenly ubiquitous in fiberglass production craft, with claims of better ­performance (maybe) and voluminous accommodations (definitely). And let’s not forget the explosion of cruising catamarans, which are a separate discussion altogether.

Now, with the introduction of Jeanneau’s Sun Odyssey 440 and 490 — the first models launched in the eighth generation of the company’s Sun Odyssey line (time flies!) — we may be witnessing yet ­another shift in the evolution of mass-­produced cruisers. It’s too early to tell, of course, but this latest design wrinkle totally impressed our judging panel in last fall’s Boat of the Year contest, so much so that they unanimously dubbed the 440 the Most ­Innovative yacht for 2018 (see “A Most Unusual Year,” January 2018).”

Read the full review here…

The new Sun Odyssey 440 and Sun Odyssey 490 will be on display at the 2018 Sydney International Boat Show.