Gussies Electric Boat Awards 2023

The Gustave Trouvé Awards for Excellence in Electric Boats and Boating awards were created in 2020 to recognize the inventors, designers, manufacturers, entrepreneurs and visionaries who are making advances every day to develop clean, quiet, zero emission technologies and innovations to reduce reliance on fossil fuel for marine propulsion.

Click here to see the 2023 Gussies Winners

Click here to see all 2023 Finalists

Click here for more information about all boats nominated

woodcut of Gustave Trouvé boat 'Le Telephone' ‘The Gussies’ are named to honour Gustave Trouvé, a prolific French inventor with over 75 patents – among them the world’s first outboard boat motor, which he devised so that he could detach the motor from his prototype electric boat ‘Le Teléphone’ and take it home for further work in his Paris apartment.

In 2020 there were 50 boats nominated from 19 countries…in 2021 there were 105 boats entered from 24 countries, in 2022 there were 126 boats from 26 countries and every continent except Antarctica. There is every reason to believe even more will be entered this year.

The 20 Gussies Winners thus far represent 15 different countries: Austria, Bangladesh, Brazil, France, India, Italy, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UK and USA.

See the 2020 Gussies Winners   See the 2021 Gussies Winners  See the 2022 Gussies Winners

Categories

There were 3 categories in the first awards, 2020: Electric Boats Under 8 metres, Electric Boats Over 8 metres and Electric Boats for Paying Passengers.

In 2021 sub categories for boats ‘In Development’ were added to those original categories. Also added were the Electric Sailboats and  DIY/Customized e-Boats categories. In 2022 Electric Workboats were added.

The full category list:

Electric Boats Up To 8 metres/26 feet:
•  Two categories: Boats in Serial Production and Boats In Development
Electric Boats Over 8m/26 ft:
•  Two categories: Boats in Serial Production and Boats In Development
Electric Sailboats
Retrofitted / Customized / DIY Electric Boats
Electric Work Boats
Commercial Passenger Electric Boats
•  Two categories: Boats in Operation and Boats In Development

Criteria

The spirit of the Gustave Trouvé Awards is to recognize achievement and excellence in electric boats – boats with non fossil-fuel propulsion – and to promote zero emission motor technology.

While the Awards are conducted annually, it is not restricted to boats launched in that year. Any boat that qualifies under the following criteria can be nominated, including past Gussies Finalists. The only non-eligible boats are Gussies winners.

Criteria for Production Boats Categories:

Electric Boats Under 8 metres / 26 feet 3 inches
Electric Boats Over 8 metres / 26 feet 3 inches
Commercial Passenger Electric Boats
Electric Workboats

  • Main propulsion must be electric
  • Can include other non fossil fuel propulsion methods as secondary propulsion (i.e. sail)
  • Fossil fuel propulsion as secondary propulsion does not meet criteria:
    a hybrid boat that uses fossil fuel for propulsion does not meet the criteria
    UNLESS it is offered for sale to the public in an all-electric version
  • At least one production model sold by July 26, 2023
  • Commercial Passenger Electric Boats must have at least one vessel in operation
  • Only one model per Category per Manufacturer
  • Previous Gussies Winners of the category not eligible for 2023 Awards

Criteria for In Development Boats Categories:

Can be in any stage of development, but must meet propulsion requirements of Production Boats Categories above.

Clarification of Commercial Passenger Electric Boats

This category is to award electric boats that have been designed specifically to take paying passengers from one location to another such as ferries and water taxis. Boats designed for recreational use that may be used as tenders should be nominated in the appropriate length category above, as should boats that are designed for recreational use but are in use for rental or charter purposes.

The general criteria for Production Boats apply to this category.

Criteria for Retrofitted / Customized / DIY Electric Boat

  • ‘One-off’ boats that have been specifically built or re/retrofitted for electric propulsion. Production boats customized, altered or fitted to the purchasing client’s desires are Production Boats.
  • Main propulsion must be electric
  • No fossil fuel propulsion or generation
  • Previous Gussies Winners of the category not eligible for 2023 Awards

Criteria for Electric Sailboats

  • Main propulsion wind/sail
  • Secondary propulsion all electric
  • Sailing boats with an all-electric drive train that use fossil fuel to generate electricity but not to propel the boat are eligible
  • Previous Gussies Winners of the category not eligible for 2023 Awards

Voting

Because of the pandemic, the first Gussies were decided totally on public voting. In 2021 an International Judging Panel was introduced, with experts from national electric boat associations and other e-boat organizations. The weighting of the votes was 80% public vote, 20% panel.

In 2022, all past Gussies Winners were added to the Judging Panel to increase the members of the panel to 19. These 19 jurists selected the Finalists, which were voted on by the public and by the Panel with a ratio of 60% panel vote, 40% public.

For 2023 the number of past Gussies winners has increased and we have added other electric and general boating experts to increase the panel size to 26. These experts will again choose the Finalists, which the public and panel will vote on.  The weighting of voting for the winners will be 75% panel and 25% public vote.

The voting criteria for both Panellists and public is ‘what boat best exemplifies ‘excellence”. For some voters this may be excellence in hull design, for others, excellence in propulsion efficiency, or finishing details or sustainability of materials or something else – it is up to each individual how they decide.

Finalists Selection

The Panel decide Finalists by selecting 3 boats in each category – excepting the Retrofitted / Customized/ DIY category, in which all entries are automatically Finalists. The Finalists in the other categories will be the boats receiving the most Panellist votes. Depending on the number of entries in the category, the Finalists will be the top 6, 9 or 12 top vote-getting boats (plus ties). In the Finals, each Panellist will select one boat in each category, with the 75/25 weighting applied.

For the mathematically inclined, here is the analysis of how that works:

Assumption: 1,000 public votes in the category. Those 1000 votes represent 25% of the total ‘points’, so the total number of points for the category works out to 4,000. The total Panellist votes will account for 3,000 points ( 75% of 4,000)  and the public points for 1,000. There are 26 Panellists, so in this example, each vote from a Panellist represents 115 points.

Panellists cannot vote for their own boat. If a Panellist has a boat entered in a category, they have the choice of voting for another boat in the category or of recusing themselves from voting, in which case the weighting points of each other Panellist will increase accordingly.

The past winners on the Panel are: Candela, Cantiere Ernesto Riva, ecomarine, Freepower Solar Boat, Lamarca Engenharia, Faroboats, Kochi Metro water Taxi, Maid of the Mist, ABB, MobyFly, Navalt, Silent-Yachts, Swiss Sustainable Yachts, Sunreef Yachts, Wildtech, ZEN Yachts and Zodiac Nautic.

The electric boat associations of the UK, France, USA, Greece, Switzerland and Canada are joined by the Venice 2028 organization, Germany’s Friends of the Finow Canal and The International Foiling Awards.

One of the refreshing things about The Gussies is that it reflects the competitive camaraderie in the electric boat industry. The Judging Panellists appreciate the role of rewarding excellence as everyone pushes themselves and others to promote zero emission boating and literally help change the world.

A big thank you and shout out to all the Judges.

Schedule

Nominations are accepted until Midnight EST, Monday, September 4, 2023.
Finalists Judging will take place the week of September 11.
Finalists will be announced and Public Voting begins September 18.
Voting ends Midnight EST, Sunday, October 15, 2023.
Winners will be announced the following week.


The International Judging Panel

Electric Boats Association - UK logoThe Electric Boat Association (UK)
The EBA was established in London, England, in 1982, and is the largest organization in the world dedicated to electric boats and boating. The EBA champions the interests of electric boat owners. We’re here to help with issues such as waterway access, charging points, slipway facilities, reduced licence fees and the Boat Safety Scheme. Members also enjoy meeting up and talking kilo watts.

The Electric Boat Association of America
The Electric Boat Association of America was formed in 1992 to gather those dedicated to the enjoyment and promotion of clean and quiet electric boating. Goals include being an educational arm and information source for electric powered boating issues, representing electric boaters in matters of environmental protections and regulations and providing a forum for sharing experience and advice on electric boat related projects.

Frnech Association for Electric Boats logo - AFBE

L’Association Française pour le Bateau Electrique / The Electric Boat Association of France
The AFBE was created in 1994 in Bordeaux by partners from different professional backgrounds – academics, researchers, engineers and industrialists – to promote and develop the domestic and international marketing and awareness of France’s electric boat industry.

The Electric Boat Organization of Greece – EBA Greece
The Electric Boat Organization of Greece – EBA Greece was founded in Greece in 2016 to promote the development of electric boats and to serve the needs of all those who have an interest in the field of electric boats and ships, such as boat owners or members and business owners dealing with the specific construction sector.

Swiss Association for Zero Emission Boats
The objectives of the Association, among others, are to promote the design, construction and use of zero emission boats. They encourage individuals to shift to sustainable boating and professional to equip their marinas with electric and / or hydrogen infrastructures. The association works also with the public authorities to increase the shift to zero emission boats. Once a year, the association organize a Swiss Tour to showcase developments in the field of zero emission boats. The public and guests can discover the latest innovations in electric and hydrogen boats, test them and enjoy the pleasure of sailing without any noise or pollutant emission.

Electric Boat Association of Canada
The Electric Boat Association of Canada was formed in 2018 by a group of boating enthusiasts who are concerned about the use of fossil fuels for transportation and are excited about the possibilities of boats and ships powered by electricity. It advocates for policies, incentives and programs that will encourage use of electric propulsion in the country with the world’s longest coastline.

Unser Finowkanal: Friends of the Finow Canal
Germany’s Finow Canal contains twelve historic locks that capture the region’s technological and cultural heritage. The Friends of The Finow Canal Initiative lobby for the survival and preservation of this important waterway and its so future generations will be able to travel down the thundering water of one-thousand tons of Finow Canal water at each stage.

Venice Agenda 2028
VeniceAgenda2028 is an N.G.O. working with Venetians to transform the city’s  motorized waterborne traffic, particularly its public transport, from diesel/petrol engines to zero emission electric propulsion. The goal is to ensure that by the year 2028, all motor boats including water-buses, taxis, work and private boats are all zero-emission, low wash electric boats. The third Venice e-Regatta of electric boats will take place May 31 to June 4, 2023 at the Salone Nautica Venezia (Venice Boat Show).

Foiling Awards
Established in 2016, the Foiling Awards have become the international benchmark for the foiling industry and a coveted accolade for those who win them. The awards are presented each year in March at a gala event, with the winners decided by public votes and a jury of previous winners.

 

Monaco Energy Boat Challenge logo - GussiesMonaco Energy Boat Challenge
The Monaco Energy Boat Challenge is an international event that welcomes students and professionals from all over the world to race in three different classes of alternative propulsion boats: Energy, Solar and Open Sea Class. Charlotte Mille is the Department Manager – Sport Events at the host Yacht Club de Monaco, which just celebrated the 10th anniversary of the MEBC.


Past Gussies Winners on International Judging Panel

Candela electric boat logoCandela – Sweden
Candela was founded in 2014 to speed up the transition to fossil fuel-free lakes and oceans by designing and building electric boats with both range and speed. Sensors and computers combine to continually adjust the retractable hydrofoils of the boat, creating a smooth ride with dramatically reduced drag and water resistance. At 20 knots, the energy usage per nautical mile for the Candela C-8  is 0.8 kWh – the energy content of 1.10 of a liter of gasoline.

Cantiere Riva logoCantiere Ernesto Riva – Italy
Daniele Riva is the seventh generation of the Ernesto Riva shipyard, started in 1771 on the shores of Lake Como in Italy. Their elegant wooden e-Commuter ‘Ernesto’ took home the 2021 Gussies Award for Excellence in Electric Boats Under 8 metres – In Production. A master shipwright himself, Daniele maintains the shipyard’s historic reputation for being the epitome of hand craftsmanship while also marrying the cantiere’s classic design philosophy to the latest electric propulsion technologies.

Echandia – SwedenEchandia maritime battery logo
Echandia is a world leader in the development of advanced battery and fuel-cell systems for maritime and industrial applications. Echandia’s solutions are designed to meet the highest quality and life-time requirements and endure the toughest demands and operational profiles. CEO Fredrik Hellström is a PhD, fluid dynamics and MSc, Naval architect with extensive experience in naval design.

ecomarine logoecomarine: Bangladesh
ecomarine was formed by Capt. Abdullah Al Mahmud and associates to help conserve nature through the use of renewable energy for water transports. The company’s refitted sightseeing boat in Dhaka, ‘IRON’, was winner of the 2021 Gussies in the newly introduced Customized/DIY category. Abdullah is a Master Mariner with more than 30 years experience both in shipbuilding and in commanding ocean going vessels.

Faroboats electric boats logo

Faroboats – Portugal

Faroboats is a Portuguese company that designs and produces sustainable solutions for exploration and leisure boating. Its boats and solar docks are designed by Tomás Costa in Lima, built in several European locations, and sold everywhere in the world. Their mission is to harness their Portuguese passion for the sea to pursue constant innovation and build boats and boating solutions that reduce or nullify environmental impact.

Freepower Solar Boats logoFreepower Solar Boat – Norway
Martin Bjurmalm is the founder of Freepower Solar Boats in Norway, winner of the 2021 Gussie for Electric Boats Under 8m – In Development. A specialist in mechanics and electronics, Martin was working in the oil and gas industry in 2012 when he became a father for the first time and began to think of the consequences of fossil fuel consumption. After watching a documentary about Steve Jobs he was inspired to pursue his dream of a fossil-fuel-free autonomous boat and started the company and development of the electric Freepower Solar Boat.

Kochi Water Metro logoKochi Water Metro – India
The Kochi Water Metro is an innovative and sustainable mode of transportation that connects various parts of the city through its intricate network of waterways and 23 battery-powered electric boats manufactured by Cochin Shipyard Limited. The project aims to reduce traffic congestion and improve the connectivity of the city while promoting eco-friendly means of transportation.

Lamarca Engenharia logoLamarca Engenharia -Brazil
Sérgio Lamarca is the Technical Director of Brazil’s Lamarca Engineering, which won the 2022 Gussie for ‘Commercial Passenger Electric Boat – In Development’ with their Zero Emission Double Ended Ferry. Lamarca collaborates with the Brazilian Society of Naval Engineering in the committees for the decarbonization of maritime transport and the production of renewable energy, with a focus on new electric and hybrid propulsion solutions that include batteries, photovoltaics and hydrogen fuel cells.

logos of Maid of the Mist and ABBMaid of the Mist  /  ABB: USA
In 2020 the world famous Maid of the Mist ferries that take visitors to the base of Niagara Falls worked with ABB to ‘go electric’ and won the 2021 Gussie for Commercial Passenger Boats – In Production. ABB Marine and Ports Vice President Ed Schwarz has over 20 years of experience in the maritime industry and received the United States Merchant Marine Academy’s Admiral McCready Award in 2020 for his work employing new technologies including all-electric zero-emissions vessel propulsion.


MobyFly – Switzerland
MobyFly designs and delivers zero-emission performance marine hydrofoil boats that can transport passengers comfortably at speeds over 70km/h while using 95% less energy than existing diesel ferries — without creating any waves or pollution. MobyFly has been selected by the World Economic Forum as a 2023 Technology Pioneer to work with society’s foremost political, business and cultural leaders to address issues facing people and the planet.

Navalt logo

Navalt – India
Sandith Thandasherry is the founder of Navalt, an eco-marine technology company that is a one-stop shop for everything “Green Marine’ and a driving force behind the Indian maritime industry’s transition to solar and zero-emission propulsion. The Aditya solar commuter ferry, winner ofthe 2020 Gussies for Commercial Passenger Boats, was introduced in 2017, and its success prompted the State Water Transport Department of Kerala to replace all 48 diesel ferries with solar-powered vessels. Navalt also manufactures solar-powered fishing boats and general workboats and has a data science division providing performance analytics services to some of the world’s largest shipping companies.

Silent-Yachts logoSilent-Yachts – Austria
Solar-pioneers Heike und Michael Köhler founded Silent-Yachts in 2004 and built their first pure solar powered boat in 2009 with their findings from over 15,000 nautical miles of sailing research and experimentation. The company now offers a full range of customizable solar electric catamarans ranging from 60 feet to 120 feet with more than 50 boats sold thus far. Their iconic Silent 60 was the 2021 Gussie Award winner for Electric Boats Over 8m/26 ft – In Production.

Aquon/Swiss Sustainable Yachts logoSwiss Sustainable Yachts: Switzerland
Swiss Sustainable Yachts was founded in 2018 and is working with a team of top international experts from various fields who shared the vision of a modern and smart power catamaran with superior performance, design and comfort, in tune with its environment and free from vibrations and fumes. The realization of that vision was the AQUON One, which incorporates solar, battery and hydrogen fuel cell technology. It was awarded the 2021 Gussie for Excellence in Electric Boats Over 8 metres / 26 feet: In Development and is now ready for production.

Sunreef Yachts - ECO logoSunreef Yachts: Poland
Sunreef Yachts was founded in Gdansk in 2002 by electrical equipment magnate Francis Lapp and is now the world leader in the design and construction of large, customized luxury catamarans. The company launched its Eco line of electric and hybrid power yachts in 2019 with brand ambassador Nico Rosberg and the 60E won the 2021 Gussie for Electric Sailboats. There is now a full range of both sailing and power boats in the Eco line, including the Sunreef 80 with its innovative solar skin.

Wildtech electric boats logo

Wildtech – Sweden
Rikard Wildare is an R&D Engineer – Battery Systems, who has been an innovator and entrepreneur in the world of electric boating since 2010. He studied data and electronics and spent more than 20 years as an IT consultant for major corporations. In his free time he has channelled his lifelong interest in technology and electronics to building, refitting and creating electric boats and hydrofoil boards.

ZEN Yachts logoZEN Yachts: Spain
Julien Mélot is the CEO of ZEN Yachts and the winner of the 2020 Gussies Electric Boat Over 8 metres category for his solar-electric catamaran ‘Aquanima’. He holds a Master’s Degree in Naval Architecture from the University of Lisbon and is passionate about using clean energy technologies, sustainable high resistance materials and innovative nautical design to build a world where humans can sail on zero-emission boats, yachts, and ships, leaving no polluting trace of their passage in their wake.

Zodiac-Nautic logoZodiac Nautic: France
Zodiac Nautic was originally the Zodiac airships and aviation French company, which was founded in 1896 and specialized in the production of airships. In the 1930s one of its engineers developed a prototype for an inflatable boat and the company is now the world leader in inflatable products and services with millions of Zodiac owners in 90 countries. The inaugural 2020 Gussie Award for Excellence in Electric Boats Under 8m / 26 ft was awarded to the Zodiac Nautic eJet 450 Tender.

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