Carmakers don’t just make cars. Sometimes they develop other cool things like aircraft, bobsleds, houses and even bat homes (General Motors, we’re looking at you). But of all their attempts to stray from their core business, our favourite non-car creations are of the water-going variety.
Last week Bugatti announced the launch of its water-faring match to the Bugatti Chiron – the Bugatti Niniette 66 – so we decided to take a closer look at this and eight more of the coolest boats made by luxury-carmakers.
1. Bugatti Niniette 66
This is as close to a water-friendly Bugatti as you’re going to get – at least for now, until autonomous cars learn to drive, swim and fly. Teaming with super yacht designer and builder, Palmer Johnson, Bugatti has created what is, essentially, a floating Chiron. Following the same sweeping lines of any Bugatti, tailor made with near-endless materials, colours and finishes options, the Ninette is super-fast (44knots, which is about 81km/h) thanks to the use of carbon fibre and a V8 engine. And just in case you weren’t convinced it was worth its £2.1 million ($3.4 million) price tag, the yacht features a fire pit, Jacuzzi, gallery kitchen, bar, marble bathrooms and more colour combinations than we could count.
2. Lexus Sport Yacht
Lexus get a headstart when it comes to boats, thanks to the marine department run by its parent company, Toyota. Two V8 engines, displayed by a clear compartment cover, manage to push the yacht to 43 knots. At 12.7 metres, it can carry up to eight people, who can enjoy a cabin embellished with leather, wood, and a six-person sofa. The Lexus Sport Yacht is, however, just a concept, so you can put your cheque book away for now.
2. Mercedes-Benz Arrow 460 Granturismo
Pushed by two Yanmar diesel engines, the Granturismoyacht can reach speeds up to 74km/h and accommodates up to 10 people. The modern-looking, silver Arrow 460 includes a high quality audio system, chilled wine cellar, extendable tables and beds, and it even comes with an ice-maker.
4. The Concept Speedboat by Jaguar Cars
Another one for the ‘one day’ books, this concept by Jaguar was revealed at the launch of the Jaguar XF Sportbrake in 2012. Calling upon styling cues from Jaguar cars, its design uses the lines and surfaces customary of the brand, and pulls influences from Jags of old, like the 1950s D-type racer and the Jaguar XJ. Unlike the other boats on this list, this concept is a speedboat, measuring in at 6.1 metres and is a 2+1 seater. No hundred-people parties on this one.
5. Aston Martin Quintessence AM37
The Quintessence AM37 is an autonomous, voice activated powerboat. It can travel up to 60knots (111km/h), and can be controlled via tablet apps for the owners who want to summon it from one side of their island to the other… not really, but it can control functions like heating and cooling or the coffee pot. Design wise, the AM37 is a slick wooden sight to behold, combining luxury and technical materials.
6. Benetti Fisker 50
This superyacht, which looks more like a ship, is the love-child of yacht-maker Benetti and Danish automotive designer Henrik Fisker. Measuring in at 50-metres, the Fisker has three-decks and encompasses sustainability in design through the use of reclaimed wood, solar panels and a hybrid engine. It comes with six bedrooms, floor-to-ceiling windows, a fireplace, minibar, library, walk-in robes, home theatre, spa, Jacuzzi, gym, and even a ceiling that mimics the sky. Its entertainment space can accommodate 100 guests! The yacht, which is designed in California and constructed in Italy, is said to cost a cool US$37 million.
7. Fiat Lancia di Lancia
While the Lancia di Lancia can only fit two people inside its air-conditioned cabin, externally it can carry up to 11 people on its 13.1 metre deck. It is powered by a 6.7-litre common rail turbo diesel Fiat engine that gives the boat a speed of 48 knots and can be customised to customer specifications. At the time of launching in 2009, it was the most powerful Lancia made, and also included retractable windscreens and a small dining area that converts to a bed.
8. Porsche Royal Falcon Fleet 135
Now this is a boat. Actually, it’s a catamaran, and it measures 41.4 metres. Porsche Designs teamed up with Royal Falcon Fleet to create this aluminium catamaran. It size, while large, fits up to 20 people inside (10 passengers, 10 crew) and was designed “in keeping with the functional, timeless and puristic hand” of Porsche. Powered by a V16 turbodiesel engine, it produces 3430kW and can reach top speeds of around 35 knots.
9. Marauder AMG
Mercedes-AMG and Cigarette Racing Team have built many special edition boats, but the one inspired by the GT R is one of our favourites. The 15-metre boat is called the Marauder AMG and uses carbon fibre with two V8 engines from Mercury Racing, which can push the skinny, lightweight boat to 1155kW. It even shares the GT R green and black colour scheme. And as far as price goes, let’s just say you’re more likely to afford the Mercedes-AMG GT R!