BOAT REVIEW Maritimo X50

October 2019 Launch Reviews
Words by John Eichelsheim. Photography supplied.
OUR RATING
4.5 STARS
Performance
Economy
Handling
Value
Build Quality
Specification
MODEL DETAILS
MODEL Maritimo X50
DESIGNER Maritimo/Tom Barry-Cotter
BUILDER Maritimo
PRICE AS TESTED $1,490,500
SPECIFICATIONS
LOA 16M
LENGTH (Waterline) 15.17M
BEAM 4.55M
DISPLACEMENT 19000kg
ENGINE 2 x Volvo Penta D11 670hp shaft drive
FUEL CAPACITY 2898L
WATER CAPACITY 500L
Maximum Speed 33 knots
Cruise Speed 26 knots
ACCOMMODATION Two cabins, two bathrooms, plus Beach Club
HIGHLIGHTS
  • Large master and spacious saloon
  • Aft cabin or dinghy garage options avaialable
  • Sweet handling
OBSERVATIONS
  • Beach Club offers unmatched access to the ocean
  • Shaft drive

With its combination of size, style and versatility, the X50 sport yacht may have even broader appeal than its larger X60 sibling.


Maritimo’s X60, released to critical acclaim a little over a year ago, has been an outstanding success for the Australian luxury motoryacht manufacturer. Maritimo expects similar success for the new X50, which debuted at Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show earlier this year.
There’s no mistaking the X60 and X50 are closely related, but despite looking almost like twins, they share none of the same mouldings, except for a few deck hatches, explains Tom Barry-Cotter, chief designer for Maritimo. If anything, the X50 improves on its older sibling with subtly refined styling and even better use of space. The black domes on the sedan top give it a stealth-like look.

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Boating NZ travelled to Australia to meet the X50, joining the boat at Pittwater, north of Sydney. Just as the X60 after its release at last year’s Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show, the X50 was nearing the end of a promotional tour of the east coast on its way to star at the Sydney International Boat Show. She stopped for a day or two at several ports on her way down the coast, introducing herself to Maritimo dealers and potential customers.
Pittwater was the X50’s last stop before the Sydney show, but unlike last year, where I joined the then new X60 for the run from Pittwater to The Spit, Sydney (BNZ November 2018), this time I got to explore Pittwater and some of the very scenic Hawkesbury River system instead.
Barry-Cotter met me at the boat, taking time to show me through it before we cast off. Though this is a smaller vessel than the X60, it still feels remarkably spacious and Maritimo has managed to replicate the Beach Club aft accommodation set-up that was such a point of difference in the larger sport yacht.


This is a clever and versatile space, which can be configured in several ways. Actuated electrically, the transom door connects inside and outside in a way that is unique. The hydraulic swim platform, accessed from the beach club or via steps down either side of the cockpit, can be raised and lowered as well, further enhancing the vessel’s versatility.
On this boat the layout is standard Beach Club, which in the X60 has proved very popular, especially in New Zealand, says Barry-Cotter. But this area can also be specified as a more conventional aft cabin or a dinghy garage.
Set up as the Beach Club, the aft cabin of the X50 manages to look and feel airy and spacious, despite being smaller than the X60’s. There can’t be much in it though, as the two spaces have a similar layout, with a separate bathroom on the port side, a bar with a couple of bar stools across the transom and a utility cabinet/servery with a basin and wine cooler across the bulkhead, above which is a large flat-screen TV. There’s a lot of built-in storage, including hanging lockers, as well as a fold-away double berth under the bar area, so it can double as comfortable guest cabin.


In a boat of this size, the Beach Club is very much a bonus space, made possible by Maritimo positioning the engines amidships to ensure the best possible shaft angle. Like all Maritimos, the X50 is shaft drive with careful consideration given to weight distribution to ensure optimum performance.
Maritimo doesn’t use tunnels for the propellers and shafts, because, says Barry-Cotter, they reduce the planing surface area and tend to suck the stern section down into the water. The X50 doesn’t have a keel but tracks perfectly, its underwater components designed and refined to create maximum efficiency from the hull profile by reducing drag.
Access to the engine room is through a fire door off the companionway leading down to the Beach Club. Inside are a pair of 670hp Volvo Penta D11 engines. Headroom inside the well-lit space is good and all the ancillary equipment – 11kVA Cummins Onan genset, air-conditioning pumps, batteries, inverter-charger, fuel system, fire suppression system and tankage – are neatly arranged, labelled and easily accessible.
Above the Beach Club there is a good-sized cockpit completely sheltered by the sedan roof with lots of locker and under-seat storage. It’s laid out for easy entertaining with an outside galley tucked in along the starboard side. Featuring an electric grill, a sink and under-bench refrigerator and icemaker, it addresses L-shaped seating around the teak cockpit table (optional) and across the transom.
There’s storage for fenders and the like under the stairs either side of the cockpit leading down to the swim platform and there’s also a washdown and cockpit shower. New Zealand owners will probably go with Maritimo’s optional clears to fully enclose the cockpit, making it an all-seasons space.
Conviviality continues inside the tastefully decorated saloon, which exudes comfort and style, as well as encouraging excellent communication with outside. Tri-fold glass and alloy doors open the saloon to the cockpit – both spaces are on one level. With the overhanging cabin top providing shelter and plenty of LED lighting inside and out, the two zones merge into one generous entertaining space.


The saloon features a good-sized L-shaped galley aft, with electric appliances and a useful island. There’s good communication between the galley and the cockpit, but also a sense of separate spaces, especially forward of the galley where a comfortable settee wraps around a drop-leaf saloon table.
There’s a second settee along the starboard side behind the helm next to a sideboard/drinks cabinet and pivoting TV. Sightlines from the seats in the saloon are excellent and the vessel’s large sliding windows and huge opening roof panels fill the saloon with light and air.
A stylish helm station on the starboard side encompasses twin helm seats and a sleek, well laid out two-tier console with twin 15-inch Simrad MFDs and a full complement of electronics, Bennet trim tabs, Marinco spotlight, digital gauges and sundry other controls, including for the Volvo Penta EVC system. A JCS Yacht Controller joystick integrates EVC with Vetus stern and bow thrusters for precision low speed control, mirrored by a second joystick in the cockpit for stress-free docking.


Below, the X50 boasts two large cabins and two bathrooms, one an ensuite for the master and the other semi-ensuite since it also serves as the day head. The master stateroom is located amidships under the saloon. It’s a full-beam cabin with its own ensuite luxury bathroom and a fore and aft queen bed (king size is optional), a desk, flat-screen TV and day bed. Hull windows provide panoramic views with opening portlights for fresh air when the air-conditioning is turned off.


The VIP stateroom in the bow also has a queen bed, offset to port for easier access to the bathroom and companionway. Both cabins are well-served with hanging lockers and storage options, there’s provision for a washer or washer-dryer in the companionway and every cabin has independent air-conditioning and ventilation. Satin walnut is used throughout for the cabinets and trim. It looks very classy, but other timber options are available, including gloss finishes.

Let’s go
With its electronic controls and electronic power steering the boat is, of course, effortless to drive. Leaving the marina at Pittwater demonstrated the advantages of the JCS Yacht Controller system and once clear of the marina the D11 Volvos quickly put the boat onto the plane. Bow lift is minimal. The X50 carries 2,900 litres of fuel, but we had around 1,300 litres aboard for our review, plus 200 litres of water.


We spent the morning taking in Pittwater and its immediate environs, including a short open ocean run to Palm Beach, taking care to keep a sharp lookoutfor whales. We didn’t see any, but there were plenty of seals on the rocky promontories of Barrenjoey Head.
Heading up-swell the variable deadrise hull made easy work of the seas, proving quiet and mostly dry. A bit of spray found its way onto the windscreen with 35 knots of westerly wind and the seas on the quarter.
Running down a swell at 23 knots, the ride was smooth with the X50 tracking straight. It responds nicely to the helm at any speed, the power steering taking just a few turns lock to lock. The 19-tonne vessel was unfazed by 27-knot turns, going where it was pointed with only a moderate heel.
Cruising at 23.5 knots (2,030rpm, 79% power) the X50 covers the distance fast, so we got to see quite a bit of the local scenery, including parts of the vast and very scenic Hawkesbury River system. Full power runs saw 2,470rpm showing on the gauges with the GPS reading 32.7 knots down-tide and 31.7 knots up-tide. Without the wind and tide to contend with and on a clean bottom, you can expect to cruise at 26 knots and see a top speed of 33 knots.


Although we had sunny weather, a New South Wales mid-winter’s day is still cool, so we didn’t feel inclined to try the deeply-padded sunbeds on the foredeck. Complete with adjustable seat backs, strategically-placed drink holders, and an optional Euro awning, they are the perfect place to relax in the sun. The pads can be stowed below when not in use.
We didn’t bother anchoring either, but the ground tackle is substantial – an all-chain rode with a Muir capstan and a 35kg Bruce anchor.
The Maritimo X50 is a very attractive package. With its modern styling, versatile layout options, excellent build quality and accomplished performance, she represents good-value boating. Designed to accommodate our boating culture Downunder, the X-Series is proving a hit with customers the world over. New Zealand has been a strong market for Maritimo so we can expect to see more X50s in Kiwi ownership in the near future.

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