you can drive 55

Big Pimpin'

A brand new model VPLP design from Outremer is a major event in the multihull world due to the French ocean cruising cat brand’s well-earned reputation for all-round excellence. And it’s been a very long time since the last one. An elongated, performance-optimised version of the stalwart Outremer 45 was launched five years ago as the 4X, and promptly won a clutch of awards, but the Outremer 55 is the first totally new boat added to the range in almost 10 years.

Hull number one was launched and seatrialed in the Mediterranean shortly before Christmas and first impressions quite strongly suggest that once again, they’ve nailed it.

The design brief for the 55, which plugs a rather large hole in the range between the well-proven 51 and the racy 5X (which is actually 60ft long with her new reverse bows), was given to VPLP and their frequent collaborator, the former automotive design guru Patrick Le Quément, who is responsible for the cockpit and exterior design, ergonomics and styling.

VPLP and le Quément designed the 5X back in 2011 but the new 55’s closest relative in terms of naval architecture, structural engineering and design is arguably the Gunboat 68, which relaunched that brand as a sister to Outremer a couple of years ago. Both companies are part of Grand Large Yachting. Read on.