The Lucia 40, designed by Berret-Raccoupeau Yacht Design, is the entry level catamaran of the current Fountaine Pajot range, an easy to handle catamaran for a couple that represents great value for money. She has many of the features that have been developed on her larger sisters: a tidy multihull package that will suit many budgets.
This boat replaced the very popular Lipari 41 (that competes against another top seller in this size- read our Lagoon 400 review for more information) and, despite her length, still has the feel of a bigger boat at anchor. When you are in the marina, however, you’ll love the manoeuvrability of this yacht.
A Spacious 40 Footer
The hulls are well shaped to slip through the water while retaining more than enough width for living space in the hulls. And with fixed keels and that hard top bimini, she’s easy to manage and comfortable to sail on. The Lucia 40 is bigger than the Lipari 41 with a bigger cockpit, more living space and larger windows. But she is still a compact package.
In July 2020, Fountaine Pajot announced that the Lucia would be replaced by the Isla 40. That´s not surprising considering the hot competition in this sector of the market, including the Lagoon 40 and the Nautitech 40 Open.
This catamaran is built with PVC foam-core sandwich with vacuum-laminated outer skins. The deck and saloon area are made using resin transfer moulding (RTM), finished off with gelcoat for a slick look.
- A good compromise between comfort and speed, especially if you are leaning more towards time at anchor.
- Fountaine Pajot have evolved this design over the years. This continuous improvement makes for a reliable, well thought out catamaran.
- All lines come back to the helm- she´s easy to sail short-handed
- Lots of living space, particularly in the hulls compared to the competition. They have done away with the forepeaks and replaced them with smaller storage spaces- the foreward accommodation is further forward, and the saloon is also further forward than other cats to give you a larger saloon.
- This is the only 40 footer with the option of 4 bathrooms. If you go for the Maestro version, the shower is huge – probably the biggest in her class.
- The boom is reasonably low, so access to the mainsail is good.
- Most of the hatches are flush – the decks are pretty safe, although we would have likes to see more handrails.
- The ventilation in the saloon could be better. There are no hatches in the roof, even above the galley, although there is a skylight so that you can see your mainsail from the saloon.
- The flip side to that large saloon, is that the weight is further forward and the nets are pretty small. If you like hanging out on the nets, there is less space to do so on a Lucia 40.
- Visibility to the aft corners of the boat is possible, but you have to duck and dive a bit. Starboard forward is good, port forward is more problematic.
- The single helm station also means it is more difficult to trim your sails from the helm. The mainsail on the starboard tack and the genoa on port is easy. The other way round is not so easy.
- There are no steps to get up from the foredeck to the coachroof. Most of the time you will be heading up there from the helm, but you´ll need to watch your footing getting up to the mainsail from the foredeck.
- From some angles, that coachroof looks flimsy compared to some of the competition. It doesn´t feel as sturdy under your hand.
- The standard engines are underpowered at 20HP. We would recommend the upgrade to 30HP to power you through the chop.
Fountaine Pajot yachts are known for their comfort but the designers have kept an eye on the performance and the Lucia 40 is no slouch with 95 m² (1,023 ft²) of sail area (genoa plus mainsail), powering a light weight of around 9.5 tonnes. She won’t sail as fast as an Outremer 45, but that’s lighter than the equivalent Lagoon and heavier than a Nautitech which will give you a good idea of where this boat is positioned in the market.
Well Organised For Short Handed Crews
Both main and genoa are trimmed with the helm set of three winches (one is electric). Trimming visibility is pretty good (easy to see the mainsail on the starboard tack and the headsail on port). This is no different to any offset helm station configuration. 3 steps down from the helm and you are in the aft cockpit, and two steps up the other way leads you to the top deck for access to your sails.
The mainsail is trimmed with a traveler that runs across the entire beam of the coach roof, so there are ample options for tweaking your sails.
Nippy Off the Wind
Like most production cruising catamarans, she performs best off the wind, especially if you have ordered the bowsprit and gennaker option for lighter winds. You should see speeds in the low teens in the right conditions.
Going up wind, the Lucia will start to slip sideways under 50 degrees to true. If you need to get upwind fast, you mind need to stick the leeward engine on to point higher, or just drop down to 55 and she sails nicely.
The standard power pack is twin 20HPs but we’d recommend an upgrade to the 30s. There’s not much weight penalty. The engine rooms are spacious with easy access to the machinery all around. The 30hp engines will go full steam ahead at 7.8 knots (3000 rpm), or throttle down to 2400 and you’ll see 6.7 knots in a calm sea. If you just run one engine, you should be able to get 6 knots out of her for the maximum range.
Now here is where Fountaine Pajot Excel, and with the Lucia 40 you will sweat every Euro you spend and deliver on comfort. As you step on board up the sugar scoops, you’ll arrive in the spacious aft cockpit with a bench across the transom, and dining area and a day bed that flows into the bulkhead helm station. The helm seats 2 and peeps over the coachroof protected by a soft bimini. All the lines run back to the helm, so whether you are raising your main, reefing or furling your headsail, you can handle it all from this space.
And from here you can see back into the galley and the aft cockpit- it’s a well thought out design that flows nicely. You can just about see all 4 corners of the boat from up here if you duck and dive. Forward to starboard is excellent, but forward port is more of a challenge.
Heading into the saloon you have an aft facing galley on the port side with twin sinks. Forward in the saloon, a big sofa wraps around the starboard side with a dining table (room for 6 around the L-Shaped Sofa) or a coffee table, and a nav station on the port side. We’s say the boat could do with more ventilation though. There are no hatches in the roof (even above the galley). Ventilation comes from the 2 forward windows.
She’s an easy boat to get around with flush hatches (except for the forepeaks), and wide decks although we’s have liked to have seen more hand rails and an easier way of clambering up onto the roof from the foredeck. It’s not far to hop up, but if it’s wet and slippy you’d have to watch your step.
Plenty of Space Forward But More Weight
The foredeck has two lockers under the sun loungers, one with the water tank and the other for your windlass and chain. You’ll notice that the nets are smaller than many of the competition as they have maxed out the living space on this yacht. That does mean you have more weight forward, however. There are no forepeak cabins on the Fountaine Pajot Lucia 40 because the entire living space has been moved forward for the main cabins, but the spaces in the bows can still be used for stowage or used as space for a washing machine in the Owner’s Version.
The Lucia 40 comes in various configurations like many of her competition: choose the Maestro with an owner’s suite plus 2 double cabins in the port hull with either 2 or 3 bathrooms or the Quatuor, or Charter version with 4 double cabins and either 2 or 4 bathrooms. The Lucia 40 is the only 40 footer on the market with the option of having 4 bathrooms.
The aft berths are islands and all of the cabins have plenty of storage space. The head is separate from the shower in the Owner’s hull. In the guest hull, you can go for 2 separate bathrooms or a larger single bathroom.
Lucia 40 Polar Diagram
How much is a Fountaine Pajot Lucia 40? What do they cost?
This is heavily dependent on the options you go for, but €400-450k gets you in the ball park, a bit more if you max out on the options. The base price is around €300k, then you need to add a pack (choose between Grand Large, Oceanic and Comfort versions. If you start adding the bowsprit, gennaker, solar etc you will nudge up the price. Contact us if you need help with this, in some cases it is better to retro fit stuff.
How did the Lucia 40 evolve? Which boats did she replace?
The Lucia 40 replaced the Lipari 41 (another great design, launched 2010) which replaced the Lavezzi 40 (launched 2002) : still popular on the second hand market. Over the years, the designs have become boxier and roomier with a more muscly, angular look.
Is the Lucia 40 still in production?
No. Fountaine Pajot have launched a new entry level boat called the Isla 40 which is the next generation model. The Lucia 40 remains popular on the second hand market.
Why Fountaine Pajot? Where does the name come from?
Fountaine Pajot was founded in 1976 by Jean-François Fountaine, Yves Pajot, Daniel Givon and Rémi Tristan. Givon and Tristam lost out on the brand name discussions!
If you are in the market for a 12m catamaran (38.4 feet to be precise, despite the 40 branding), then the Fountaine Pajot Lucia 40 should be on your shopping list. It’s a design that has evolved and been perfected over the years.