When we heard that the Bavaria Virtess 420 Fly, named the 2013 European Powerboat of the Year, was coming to the United States, we were intrigued to see what had earned the accolades of an entire continent.
On board, the first thing that came to mind was the old car slogan about German engineering. From the swim platform to the bow there are multiple spots at which to marvel at the ingenuity. The platform operates on hydraulic lifts via remote control to lower completely in the water. Capable of supporting 1,300 pounds, it can be used to store a small tender or personal watercraft.
All of the cockpit furniture slides on a stainless-steel track so that it can be rearranged and locked into place for however you want to use it. The faux teak flooring holds up to the sliding so you can practice feng shui without reservation.
Glass sliders separate the cockpit from the salon and can be opened to create an easy flow between the spaces. The dinette table raises and lowers with the push of a button. Here we noticed styling, done by Italian designers, that complements the German engineering. The mahogany interior finish and clean lines accent the entire cabin, which is bathed in natural light. The galley sits to port opposite the standard lower helm.
Belowdecks, the master stateroom features furniture of the same mahogany and an oversize island berth. The side windows provide ample natural light. The en suite head features a full stand-up shower with a teak bench and a glass door. The two guest staterooms to either side sport twin singles that convert to doubles with filler cushions. The guest head also features a full shower.
The real prize of this boat is the bridge, which features 360-degree viewing from the helm and a teak table that anchors a six-person dinette. The starboard seat converts into a sun pad, and, with the entertainment center, the whole crew never needs to leave the bridge. We ran the boat from there and, with the twin 435 hp Volvo Penta engines, the 420 cruised comfortably and felt solid carving through manufactured chop. The Volvo Penta IPS600s proved very nimble in carving S-curves and other maneuvers, especially turning hard-over at speed in a tight channel, and the joystick afforded great handling in close quarters around the bridge and at the marina.
Comparable model: Carver C40