Blink and you might miss it – or, at the very least, mistake it for a high-speed interceptor craft or professional sports boat.However, the concept vessel developed under the banner of ‘Project Italia’ is very much a beast of leisure – albeit one that, with a forecast, military-grade top speed of 55-60knots, looks likely to leave its marina rivals floundering in its wake.
The hyper yacht has been conceptualised jointly by Italian naval architects Mattia Piro and Matteo Cappellazzo of PC Design. Cappellazzo, formerly of E.T Yacht Design, tells Ship & Boat International: “The design references for Project Italia were numerous: luxury yachts, patrol craft, supercars, sports motorbikes, fighter jets...”. Rather than swiping key design features wholesale, the architects identified main concepts and ideas which could be further modified and applied to Italia. “For example, the superstructure moved to the bow comes from imaginary fighter jet design - and probably recalls military vehicle design,” says Cappellazzo.
Another aesthetic consideration borrowed from the world of supercars is the decision to incorporate a glass setting into the teak decking aft, which would enable the yacht’s owner, crew and guests to clearly see the engines. “This provides an outstanding aesthetic peculiarity and allows the crew to maintain control over the situation in the engine room,” Piro adds.
To balance high speed with seakeeping stability in rough seas, the duo opted for a stepped deep-vee hull, fashioned from a mixture of glass fibre and epoxy. The same materials would be used for the yacht’s deck and stiffeners, while a carbon fibre-epoxy mix would be used to construct the superstructure.“The yacht can also be equipped with dynamic positioning systems or similar control devices, as well as gyrostabilisers and active water ballasts," Piro says.
The yacht would offer overnight accommodation for four guests and two crew members. The owner’s cabin is set to feature a king-size bed and a large bathroom equipped with the means to deliver emotional showers (featuring lighting, sounds, scents such as mint and eucalyptus and varying water temperatures and pressure to effect a ‘massaging’ sensation). This cabin would also include a hammam cabin (or steam room), double sink, toilet and bidet.The guest cabins, meanwhile, would be equipped with queen-size beds, showers, sinks, toilets and bidets.
The main deck spans some 40m2 of space, bolstered by a stern platform covering approximately 10m2, providing room for up to 16 day guests. Piro and Cappellazzo explain: “Additionally, opening the superstructure doors, the inner space of approximately 17m2 provides continuity with the outer deck."
Italia’s notable features include two sets of gull wing doors, which, when opened, reveal jet skis on the sides and a chic lounging area at the lower deck. The stern platform is equipped with a transformer platform and hydraulic gangway.“The gull wing doors will be controllable by remote or from the helm position, and also using domotics via iPad,” Piro reveals. Each of the two garages will be capable of hosting a jet ski or small dinghy, along with a dedicated, 1tonne-capacity Besenzoni crane. Piro says: “In addition to this, a bigger tender could be placed on the stern platform using the hydraulic transformer for launching and hauling the craft.”
Of course, one of the vessel’s main attractions is its proposed power arrangement, which is intended to comprise: twin CAT C32 ACERT engines, rated 1,417bkW apiece; two ZF 3055 gearbox units; and a pair of Twin Disc Arneson ASD 14 surface drives with two Vulkan couplings and two Twin Disc Rolla five-bladed surface propellers – each propeller featuring a diameter of 800mm.Cappellazzo claims: “This configuration was chosen after a survey of potential owners, powerboat enthusiasts and industry professionals, who indicated surface drives as a ‘must have’ in a sports-inspired craft.”
The next step, then, is to transfer the hyper yacht from a 3D concept to a physical prototype. Speaking in May, the vessel’s architects commented: “We are already in contact with shipyards and potential owners…and are in advanced talks with four parties. Even if we are still in a preliminary phase, we hope to close a deal as soon as possible, to definitively start production.” The finalised yacht would be classed by Italian society RINa. Once a contract is signed – and, as befits a vessel as fast as this– the architects expect a relatively quick delivery time of 20-22 months.