The GB85 is not simply a bigger Grand Banks. True, at 87 feet, this exquisite, long-distance cruiser is the largest yacht we’ve ever built. But her most impressive statistics are not to be found in her dimensions, but in the best-in-class figures we’re recording for her fuel efficiency and range. That’s where you will indeed find a big difference!
Thanks to the hydrodynamics of our proprietary V-Warp technology, the Grand Banks 85 uses half the fuel of other 85 footers as she requires half the horsepower to achieve the same speeds and performance.
Owners and their guests will travel further, faster and spend more time exploring their destination and less time at the fuel dock.
Needless to say, her interiors and amenities are everything you’d expect from a name that is synonymous with luxury and elegance. Her extended length and 22ft beam allow us to offer a wide range of configurations. Hull number 1 has three massive staterooms and separate crew quarters that can be used for children or additional guests.
ROBOT ARMS, CRAFTSMAN’S HANDS
Size was not our primary concern. You could sum up our approach as, ‘Better is Bigger’ and not the other way round. Quality and efficiency have always been our guiding principles.
The GB85 is essentially a man-made boat although robotics is playing an increasingly important role in our manufacturing process. Our 8-axis robots have enabled us to build the moulds for larger and more complex parts with greater accuracy and, in 2019, we won the award for ‘Innovation in a Production Process’ at the Boat Builder Awards.
But ultimately, the craftsmanship that has traditionally defined our brand rests in human hands and in the passion for perfection that motivates our team.
FROM THE BOTTOM UP
The GB85 is built using our proprietary V-Warp technology. Our unique hull form was designed by our CEO Mark Richards in partnership with his team of naval architects and was informed by data from NASA and the US Navy. This elongated version features our characteristically fine entry that flares amidships to roll the seas away from the yacht. In Mark’s words, “With this hull form, the longer the boat, the better she’ll run!”
The science bears him out. In tow tank testing at the Australian Maritime College in Tasmania, the ’85 delivered extraordinary results. At 21 knots there was virtually no wake! To sum up Mark’s reaction, “Mate, most other vessels of this size would be towing a tidal wave!”
LIGHTER YET STRONGER
The hull employs vacuum-infused E-Glass with carbon fibre in the structural areas, cored with Corecell ® and Airex ® foam, stitched multi-axial fabric and 100% Vinylester resins. Everything else, the longitudinals, the transversals, the bulkheads, the entire deck and superstructure are formed from fully infused carbon fibre. As a result, these structures are lighter but stronger with a higher fibre-to-resin ratio and have enabled us to hit our target weight of 40.6 metric tons.
The practical value of this approach is clearly evident in the displacement figures. The GB85 has a half-load displacement of just over 126,000lbs, a remarkable achievement when you consider that rival boats of this size are routinely weighing in at over 150,000lbs!
Rigidity is core to the philosophy of V-Warp technology. We’ve enhanced the stiffness and strength of this semi-monocoque form by fusing all bulkheads and fixed furniture to the hull and superstructure. This means births, locker bases, galley cabinetry even the heads are an integral part of the boat’s structure and create a singular, robust grid or endoskeleton that won’t flex, squeak or groan when the weather turns foul.
PERFORMANCE OVER POWER
The GB85 is driven by two Volvo Penta IPS 1350 diesel engines that put out 1000hp each. Twin, 1300hp, 8-cylinder Mans with straight shafts will be available as an option.
(Unusually, the engines are housed in individual compartments that are separated by a lazarette that provides plenty of space for a dinghy and water toys. This arrangement allows for more elbow room and better access during maintenance and repairs.)
Now, it’s quite likely that you expected a more powerful drive train. But consider this. The power to weight ratio derived from the low-ball displacement combined with the reduced water resistance of the slippery V-Warp hull enables the GB85 to match the speed of her competitors with only slightly more than half the horsepower!
So, factor in the extreme fuel efficiency of that arrangement, add a 2,640 gallon fuel tank and you’ll come to a very simple conclusion. The speed and range figures for the GB85 are quite literally off the chart. At 20 knots, we anticipate she’ll take you 1000 miles. When asked about the range at just 10 knots, Mark limited himself to this one simple prognostication: “Phenomenal! We’re looking in the region of 3000 nautical miles.”