TEST - BaVaria e40
So what is the Bavaria E40, and what makes it different from other
boats of a similar ilk? Well, it’s all about the “E” in the name, which
stands for ‘efficiency’. It has not been designed to break any speed
records, but is in fact all about having the sort of facilities you may
find on many other 40 footers, but taking more time to enjoy them
by travelling at a gentler pace, with a commensurate reduction in
fuel bills. Bavaria Yachts hasn’t just achieved this by sticking a
small engine where you would expect to find two large ones, it has
also redesigned the hull profile to deliver a slippery and efficient
underwater profile. The tricks don’t end there though, Bavaria
Yachts has also redefined the layout, with some unique and clever
features that ensure the Bavaria E40 delivers superb family
accommodation quite unlike any other 40 foot boat I have seen.
The Bavaria E40 is available in both flybridge and Sedan versions,
and each version is available in a choice of two or three cabin
layouts. Our test boat was the three cabin Sedan model. At the time
of writing I have yet to see the other versions in the flesh, so I will
be concentrating on this model, but pointing out the main differences
in the layouts as we go through the boat.
The forward cabin in this version contains a pair of scissor berths
that allow it to be configured either as two single, or a large double.
It has good headroom, decent floor space, light materials and
plenty of glass make this a welcoming cabin. As well as a fixed
window on either side, there is also an opening port and an overhead
hatch, so getting a good exchange of air on those rare, hot
sticky nights should not be a problem. Aft of the berths there are
a pair of cupboard units, a hanging locker to port and a shelved
unit to starboard. The two-cabin version of the E40 has a large
fixed island double in this cabin, but in all other respects appears
Moving aft into the lower forward companionway, there are doors
off to both port and starboard. To port is the first of the boat’s two
toilet compartments. This looks nicely appointed, with good storage
in a large cupboard underneath the sink, and another under a lifting
section of worktop, excellent headroom and an opening port. The
large panel above the worktop opens to reveal this toilet’s holding
tank, with access hatch. Dealing with a problem here is never nice,
but at least you won’t be crawling around in the bilge at the time.
Opposite the toilet, the second door leads to the starboard side
shower room. This offers one big mass of wipe down white GRP
with an opening port. For its intended use, I am not sure there is
anything you could add to make it better. The only other thing to
mention in here is a small lifting seat, which on our boat revealed
part of the boat’s heating installation. This meant there was a
heating outlet into the shower room which is perfect for keeping
it warm and dry, and also means you can use it as a drying room
for wet clothes or foulies.
To move aft from here you need to ascend a flight of three steps.
These steps hinge upwards to reveal a huge ‘cave type’ storage
space. You can also gain access to two of the boats tanks in here,
which are the fresh water and the black water tanks. Once up these
steps, you find yourself in the boat’s wheelhouse/saloon area.
Here things start to get a little different. You would normally expect
to find the helm in the forward part of this space, with the salon
area behind. Bavaria Yachts have flipped this on its head and
placed the helm aft, in a central position, with a yacht like binnacle.
This might sound weird, and indeed I have to say that on first glance
it looks pretty odd too, but do you know what? It actually really
works. With all the saloon seating forward of the helm, the skipper
is no longer the person up front with his or her back to everyone.
They really do become part of the experience. The saloon is laid
out with the seating in a u-shape along the starboard side of the
wheelhouse, with the skipper, plus two, seated facing forward on
the raised helm seating, three or four seated along the starboard
side, and a further passenger seated on the forward section facing
aft. A dinette table completes this side of the wheelhouse
and creates a fantastically sociable area when underway.