A concept nearly nine years in the making, hull one of Horizon Yachts’ latest model – the new Horizon V68 – will soon make her debut. Created in collaboration with world-renowned designer Jonathan Quinn Barnett (JQB), the Horizon V68 is the third model in the V series, which includes the V72 and V80 motoryachts, and was developed in response to one question: “What is the largest vessel two people, or perhaps a small family, could use to comfortably and safely discover the world of yachting?”
The Horizon/JQB team combined input from international yacht brokers and their clients’ specifications to tailor the V68 to three specific objectives: safety, solid architecture, and customization to an owner’s lifestyle normally found with superyacht projects.
“We are very proud of the new V68 model,” says Horizon CEO John Lu. “This motor yacht retains Horizon’s signature quality inside and out. There are not many true yachts available in the 60 to 70-foot range for clients looking to upgrade from 40 or 50 feet; most of the offerings in this size range are for weekend or day boats not meant for long-term cruising. The V68 takes advantage of the trickle-down effect from Horizon’s superyacht projects into our smaller sized yachts.”
Immediately striking in appearance thanks to a plumb bow design – and only the second Horizon model apart from the FD series to feature such – the V68 has been planned throughout with large open spaces, wide side decks and a voluminous interior that takes advantage of large windows in the main deck and cabins and a 19’6” beam. Excellent visibility and sizable 2” stainless steel handrails underscore the attention given to safety that is of particular importance to owner/operators.
The adoption of the plumb bow was the critical element that formed the basis of the V68’s design, notes Christian Stimson of Stimson Yachts of New Zealand who is responsible for the hull design and naval architecture. The vertical bow allowed for a longer waterline, which in turn affords a generous beam and reduces drag at lower, displacement speeds. The larger hull beam not only makes for greater stability and increased interior spaces, but also allowed the team to increase headroom without affecting the yacht’s low profile. “As a result, the V68 is not your average plumb bow vessel, but a carefully considered combination of all the hull features that work seamlessly with a well laid out interior to result in a ‘best in class’ experience,” says Stimson.
This “solid architecture” is testament to what JQB calls “honesty in design,” meaning that there are no visual tricks employed to make the boat appear larger than it is. Instead, the V68 boasts copious large yacht features ingeniously fitted within a manageable owner/operator framework.
Unique to an entry-level motor yacht such as the V68 is the option for customization, and owners are given the choice of at least two major layout options for each deck. The V68 offers a three or four-cabin layout with a private and spacious master suite located midship with a walk-in closet and vanity. Optional quarters for crew are situated aft. JQB focused here on opening any narrow passages into foyers and making the stairs larger with less rise to optimize the flow throughout the vessel.
On the main deck, the design emphasizes unobstructed views to enhance the feeling of spaciousness with an open salon that flows into a large joined galley and country kitchen; the main deck can also be configured with a country kitchen or lower helm forward. The open flybridge, which is the standard configuration for this model, features a bar with dinette seating under the hard top while a spacious sunbathing and dining area is found further forward on the bow. The flybridge can be enclosed with a dayhead added if desired, and removable seating with table and chairs can be added to the boat deck.
Advanced systems, safety in design, luxurious finishes and options for customization – qualities of a custom superyacht – are the cornerstones of the V68 model. Ideal for first or second-time buyers, families and owner/operators, the V68 has a shallow draft less than 4’-6” and offers extended cruising capabilities via twin Caterpillar C18 ACERTs of 1136bhp each. Hull One of the new V68, destined for U.S. inventory, features the galley/country kitchen, three-stateroom, and open flybridge configuration suitable for the global market; she is expected to launch in February 2018.