The Yacht Insider: Feadship Predator Preview

Is "speed" the new "size" in megayachts? Could be-if Feadship's new 239-footer is anything to go by.

29th January 2008.
By Kim Kavin

Predator, a 239-footer from Feadship, reportedly tops out at 25 knots.

Predator, a 239-footer from Feadship, reportedly tops out at 25 knots.

Shipyards continue to tout the ever-increasing lengths of their custom builds. Magazine after magazine compiles lists of the largest yachts afloat, with each of the Top 10 easily surpassing the 300-foot mark. As long as yachts have had owners, men have taken great pride in saying, “Mine is bigger than yours.” Even if by a matter of inches.

So it’s interesting that when Feadship launched the custom motoryacht Predator on January 5, it ratcheted up international media chatter not about the boat’s nearly 239-foot length, but instead about its top speed.

The spec sheet lists the boat’s engines as, count ‘em, four 5,793-bhp MTU 16V 595 TE90s. The accompanying marketing copy from the Dutch builder highlights the yacht’s “sensational reverse bow. “¦ Its unconventional shape is designed to slice through the waves and help Predator attain a top speed over 25 knots, an astonishing feat for a yacht of this magnitude.”

Very cool and fast, indeed, but an astonishing feat? Paging the late, great Jon Bannenberg for a ruling”¦

That’s no small claim in the world of custom yacht construction, and it’s certainly one intended to make Predator stand out even if, when stood on her stern, she couldn’t touch what are so often regaled as the world’s top yachts based on length alone. A 239-foot custom motoryacht is no small shakes, of course. Especially a brand like Feadship. But given the number of ever-larger yachts under construction, Predator would be just the latest if not for an enticing detail or two.

Speed, then, becomes the new size. Yours may be bigger than mine, but mine can get there faster than yours.

At least that’s the tack this builder is taking as it promotes its newest launch. It’s interesting to see Feadship making big news out of this intriguing yacht, knowing full well that it will never be as big as the next yachts coming off the line and onto Top 10 lists around the globe.


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About the author:

Kim Kavin

Kim Kavin is an award-winning writer, editor and photographer who specializes in marine travel. She is the author of six books including Dream Cruises: The Insider’s Guide to Private Yacht Vacations, and is editor of the online yacht vacation magazine

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