Over the last 120 years, Beneteau has produced a staggering 42,000 yachts. Today, Beneteau is the largest production yacht manufacturer in the world. Although Beneteau is best known for its sailing range, in recent years it has diversified into motor yachts, notably the Swift Trawler series. The ethos of the company has always been to provide state-of-the-art yachts that offer safety and performance, and the Swift Trawler 44 is very much in keeping with those traditions.
“The Swift Trawler 44 appeals to families and couples who are looking for a highly functional boat that also delivers performance and value for the money,” said Nigel Hoggett, sales manager of Dickies International, Southampton. “The Swift Trawler is ideal as a yacht for the high seas and long-distance cruising, and for families and couples who want the freedom to cast off and explore. This is a boat that can give them that independence.”
The Swift Trawler design has evolved over the past six years. The 44-footer is relatively light and makes excellent use of space compared to other models. One of the most ingenious features of the boat is the asymmetric deck layout. The port side has an elevated deck forward, which yields a significant increase in belowdecks volume to port. As a result, the saloon is significantly larger than on the previous model, and now provides a good-sized galley and seating area, which can be converted to a useful second double bunk, ideal for children or occasional guests. Belowdecks, the master cabin benefits from increased volume and headroom, and has a vast amount of storage space, including a very clever under-berth storage system.
The helm position in the saloon is on the starboard side opposite the galley, and has total protection afforded by a tinted glass wrap-around windscreen, which has been well designed to avoid the dreaded blind spot. Clever ideas abound in the helm position, the dashboard is ergonomically laid out, and there is a fold-down helm platform for shorter members of the crew. A well-crafted foldaway bench seat offers comfort for long stints at the wheel, but plans are in the works to modify this onto sliders, so that the distance from the wheel can be adjusted. A mooring cleat is within easy reach of the helm, affording easy shorthanded docking.
The Swift Trawler 44 is a tri-deck, and the top deck provides elevated views from the secondary helm position. Besides the co-pilot swivel seat, there is ample seating accommodation for a boat of this size, including a wrap-around sofa and additional bench seat. The area can comfortably seat 10, and the refrigerator and sink unit make this an ideal spot to entertain at rest or underway. Aft on the top deck there’s space to stow a tender, and the purpose-built boom is a simple and easy way to launch the landing craft. With the tender away, this area can be ideally used as a secure children’s play area. Besides excellent al fresco accommodation on the top deck, the Swift Trawler 44 has a generous swim platform—the same size as on the 52-foot version —and a substantial sunbathing pad forward.
Power is supplied by twin D4 300-hp engines, and the lighter construction and efficient hull form combine to give a top speed of 18 knots. The Swift Trawler is an excellent ocean-going yacht with a Group B, European CE classification with 10 on board, which means that it is designed for winds up to Force 8 and wave height of up to four meters.
The Swift Trawler 44 is an extremely well thought-out cruising yacht. There are several option packages offered, including electronics, leather upholstery, air-conditioning and heating. A well fitted out Swift Trawler 44 would be priced at about $544,000, but refreshingly the Swift Trawler 44 comes with most essentials as standard.
For more information, visit the Beneteau Swift Trawler 44 page.
Louay Habib is a freelance journalist and broadcaster based in the UK who writes for some of the most prestigious magazines and clubs all over the world, including the Royal Ocean Racing Club and the Volvo Ocean Race.