Jeanneau's pioneering new design for sailors

The Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 440’s innovative design has made sailing a cinch. Sarah Moore reports.

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It's not often that a mainstream boat builder will step out of its comfort zone, but Jeanneau's new Sun Odyssey 440 is "like no other boat [it's] launched", says Katy Stickland in Yachting Monthly.

In fact, it was "obvious right from the moment we stepped aboard" and took in the design innovations that Jeanneau was "moving confidently into the future with some very interesting contributions to cruising boat design", says George Day on Blue Water Sailing. What makes the 440 special is that it has separated the mast compression post from the cabin's main bulkhead and moved it forward, trading more interior volume in the main saloon for less volume in the master cabin. The decks then slope downward as they flow aft, and join with the cockpit behind each helm, so you don't have to climb over the coamings to get in and out of the cockpit you just walk around.

This is a "pioneering, groundbreaking design", says Cruising World. The Boat of the Year judges do not award a "Most Innovative" prize every year, but the deck design of the Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 440 was apparently worthy of the title.

It's not a case of style over substance either, says Strickland. Jeanneau aimed to make sailing more comfortable, and it has succeeded. Even when the wind picked up to 12 knots, this was not enough to really test her just enough for her to show she was comfortable and easily sailed. She could be easily handled by a couple, or with family and friends. And down below, she's light, spacious and well laid out. "Who could want more from this style of boat?"

Price of model tested by Yachting Monthly: £301,856. Length overall: 43ft 11in. Hull length: 41ft 5in. Length waterline: 39ft 4in. Engine: 57hp.

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