Delphia Yachts, which was purchased by the Beneteau Group in 2018, has launched its first all-electric yacht along with the promise that the company will build only electric vessels by 2024.
At the Cannes Yachting Festival last September, Martin Schemkes, the recently appointed General Director of Delphia, said “Our vision is that 100% electric propulsion will usher in a new phase in boating and our mission will be to create the leadership in electric boating on inland waters. This new chapter is defined by a mindful approach to cruising.”
The Delphia 11 is the first page in that new chapter, a 35 foot yacht designed by Tony Castro of Britain for silent, relaxed cruising of inland lakes and rivers. There is a Sedan and a FlyLounge version, both showcasing what Delphia describes as “distinctive style meets advanced simplicity”.
Both have spacious living areas (the beam is 12’6”) and can be configured with either a two-person bedroom suite with on-board office or as a three-cabin layout that can host up to ten people.
Both models are powered by a single 56kW (≈ 80hp) Torqeedo Deep Blue 50i 1400 electric motor and accompanying lithium battery system, but there are slightly different versions of the battery system – Life Cruise and Rapid – tailored to different usages.
The Life version of the Delphia 11 is intended for cruising on lakes and has a single 38 kiloWatt hour battery pack. Cruise is for longer excursions on rivers and canals and has two battery packs totalling 76 kWh, and the Rapid version has the same double battery pack with the addition of a 22kW fast charger.
Whatever the system, the idea is for everyone on board to experience ‘mindful cruising’ with time to enjoy the scenery and each other’s company. A full displacement hull and an upright stem is what allows the large interior spaces, and it also means the Delphia 11 is made for stability and efficiency rather than speed.
With the larger battery packs, the Cruise and Rapid versions claim a range of 80km (43nm) or 10 hours at 4.3 knots, and can be charged overnight with a standard 16A shore power connection. The charger on the Rapid version enables batteries to go from 40-80% in three hours.
All of the models and versions have integrated solar panels and smart inverters to supply power for the onboard electric system, navigation, galley appliances and other amenities.
While Delphia is the builder that will focus on electric propulsion for Groupe Beneteau, it is not the Group’s only venture into non fossil fuel propulsion. The Excess 15 sailing catamaran with Torqeedo system was launched late last year and the company displayed a Beneteau Oceanis 30.1 sailboat with electric auxiliary propulsion at the Cannes show.
Jérôme de Metz, Groupe Beneteau Chairman and CEO, says “There are new expectations and user habits, new ways of travelling and latest technologies: a new world of pleasure boating and marine leisure is coming into view on the horizon, and all of us throughout Groupe Beneteau are positioning ourselves to be the leading players in this new world.”