I really love boats with deckhouses, like Jeanneau’s new coupe, the NC 1095 model. They are so quiet, even when clipping right along. I’ve also found that there’s a special satisfaction one gets from simply sitting at the dinette in the morning and reading the paper or checking some emails. With the big windows, hatches and skylights you are “right there” on the water. Yet you are in your own little world, protected from the heat, rain, chill, and not to mention the inane banter of the chatty guy from down the dock. You don’t even need to be cruising to net this benefit. Stopping by on the way home from work or before the crew shows up for a Saturday outing works the same transformative magic. Bliss!
Of course, that boats such as the NC 1095 are quiet underway is even more true aboard those powered by outboards. Outboards are the quietest marine propulsion, and when coupled with operation from within the bright, airy deckhouse, engine noise is further hushed. So is the noise of wind and water, both of which comprise a large percentage of the overall sound level experienced while underway. Aboard the NC 1095, my decibel meter displayed lower sound levels than those recorded aboard open or express boats with twin outboard power.
As for performance, we hit 44 mph at wide-open throttle and noted the admirable range of cruising speeds at which the NC 1095 nets better than 1 mile per gallon. As the performance chart shows, you can achieve this efficiency whether motoring as slow as 12 mph or cruising along at 30 mph. This means you can adjust your speed to suit sea conditions with less fuel-burn penalty.
During trials, the NC 1095 planed with little inclination, so visibility forward remained excellent. Cutting a series of sharp turns at high speed proved this boat’s ability to deliver a sporty ride. The hull displayed no negative handling characteristics. A bow thruster makes docking less challenging, though we found the NC 1095 quite maneuverable in a crowded marina while using the outboards alone.
In addition to efficiency and quiet, climate-controlled operation, access around the boat is impressive. Naturally, one can leave the helm and head aft into the cockpit. But the NC 1095 also offers a sliding hatch at the helm that provides the skipper with direct access to the side deck. This is enormously helpful while docking, coming alongside another boat, or pulling up for fuel. This feature is rarely seen aboard boats under 40 feet in length.
Shopping? Check out Cutwater’s C-302 Coupe. Powered by twin 300 hp F300 Yamaha outboards, this two-stateroom coupe with a convertible dinette in its deckhouse sleeps six and retails for about $310,000. With its outboards on a bolt-on bracket and its double-step hull form, the C-302 hits 53-plus mph with stated power.
As for accommodations, the NC 1095 is unique among boats that we’ve tested in that it provides sleeping for as many as eight crew in comfort. The standard layout includes two staterooms, an enclosed head and a storage room belowdecks in addition to the convertible dinette up under the deckhouse. (Curtains provide privacy at the dock.) For more sleeping capacity, you can order the utility room fitted as a stateroom that will sleep two adults snugly, or two kids. The forward master stateroom and the portside guest stateroom offer roomy, luxurious accommodations for weekending.
Aft, in the cockpit, the L lounge, a hallmark of Jeanneau cruisers, provides seating for a crowd around a removable table. The long, athwartships section of this lounge slides forward, allowing the engines to tilt completely out of the water and providing even greater access to the engines for checking the oil, flushing, and other routine maintenance.
Open the huge hatch in the cockpit sole to discover stowage massive enough for numerous folding bicycles, inflatable paddleboards, beach chairs and more. Use the transom door on the starboard-side and enjoy the dual swim platforms to both sides of the outboards. Head forward on the side decks from steps on both sides.
The side decks are asymmetrical, or maybe it’s the cabin that is offset. In any case, the starboard-side deck is much wider than the port side. In addition to making the sliding hatch at the helm more useful, this provides very secure access to the bow along the starboard-side, more so than we have come to expect aboard a boat of this size. Access along the port side is narrower, though walkable, and secured by a hip-high railing and a grab rail along the cabin top.
Once on the bow, you’ll find anchoring duties made easy by the broad flat area and high rails. We found the ground tackle and its accouterments such as cleats and windlass installed in sturdy, seamanlike fashion. The bow rail is split and fitted with a cable, allowing ease of egress should you need to tie up bow-to. The dual reclining, chaise-style bow lounges reside atop the cabin trunk, separated from and higher than the side decks and anchor area. Crew handling lines won’t interfere with crew handling sunscreen.
For its size, Jeanneau’s NC 1095 offers several unique qualities. Is it your perfect cruiser? Arrange a sea trial and find out.
- Sleeps up to eight thanks to third stateroom and convertible dinette.
- Asymmetric side decks and sliding door at the helm give this boat’s skipper unparalleled deck access for docking and anchoring.
- Outboards provide smooth, quiet, efficient and veritably smoke-free cruising power.
- The 6-foot-long cabin-top grab rail, fastened at each end, flexes more than we’d like when weight is applied. An intermediate stanchion would stiffen it.
- Plastic antenna mounts and through-hull fittings, though entirely adequate, make aesthetic bruises on this luxury cruiser’s skin.
- Keeper rail or “fiddle” would be a nice addition to the galley counter.
Price: $265,000 (with test power)
Available Power: Outboard
How We Tested
Engines: Twin 300 hp Yamaha F300 outboards
Drive/Prop: Outboard/15″ x 153/4″ 3-blade stainless steel
Gear Ratio: 1.75:1
Fuel Load: 100 gal.
Water on Board: 20 gal.
Crew Weight: 1,050 lb.
Jeanneau – Annapolis, Maryland; 410-280-9400; jeanneau.com