The performance cruising catamaran market is pretty hot right now with all sorts of rocket ships on the shelves and the South African-built Kinetic KC62 fits snugly into this market segment – a sleek boat that is a real looker and which boasts an infused carbon build and powerful sail-plan.
Forward Cockpit with Aft Tiller Option
The helms on this catamaran remind us of another high performance catamaran with three stations: 2 tillers for maximum sailing feel aft, and an interior helm forward for protection from the weather. She has slender hulls with wave-piercing bows, centerboards, and one of the best 360-degree views we have seen on a cat this size. Although those tall saloon windows can look a bit “toppy” from some angles. But she´s no ugly duck, let´s be honest. More of a swan.
Down below there is plenty of wow factor too: choose between three or four cabins with 3 or 4 bathrooms. The emphasis is on producing the highest quality finish optimised for weight. They are semi custom boats, so this could be a good time to fire up your spreadsheet and draw out your story board.
Kinetic is a partnership between Bob Hayward, a successful entrepreneur and keen long distance sailor, and Leon Scheepers who has years of experience in multihull production, both on cruising and performance models. Leon was the general manager at Harvey Yachts (in 2001 Morrelli & Melvin designed a pair of 62′ performance-oriented catamarans for clients Clint Clemens and Peter Johnstone. These two Morrelli & Melvin 62’s were the first Gunboats and they were built by this Cape Town shipyard). Leon Scheepers also worked at St Francis Marine (builder of the well regarded St Francis 50).
Plenty of Fast Cat Experience
To cut a long story short, Bob Hayward bought the assets of Harvey Yachts from Phil Harvey in 2019 including molds of the flagship 62ft model. He had previously had a custom 60 built by the shipyard. Phil wanted to call it a day, but Bob Hayward wanted to continue the line and so the batton was passed…..
Simon Voogd Design
Kinetic might be a new brand but the shipyard is packed full of performance expertise and speed freaks. Phil Harvey, the founder, built the early 62 Gunboats Tribe and Safari and went on to build some of the world’s finest custom multihulls at Knysna along with Scheepers. Kinetic is now all about semi-custom production rather than full custom. Dutch- South African designers Simonis Voogd are the brains behind the design and they have subsequently gone on to expand the range with a 54-footer. More on that one later.
The brief? A fast cruising catamaran that can eat up the miles, is fun to sail and can be handled by a couple. And one that can win the odd regatta in the Caribbean.
An interesting feature of the Kinetic KC62 is that owners can choose between fully retractable centre-boards and C-foil dagger-boards. Cruisers will want the centre-boards which are designed to shear in the event of an impact. Racers will go for the C-foil daggerboards, which can give up to two tons of lift.
The hulls are slender and slip through the water, but with the chime there is plenty of space down below and the K62 can soak up weight and is designed for cruising couples who are looking for all the mod cons and plenty of toys.
To ensure top quality, pretty much all of these boats are built in the yard apart from the rig, glazing and soft furnishings. There are standard molds for the hulls, bridgedeck, window surrounds and coachroof – after that, it´s up to the client what they want.
The laminate is 100 per cent carbon fibre infused with epoxy resin. The furniture is foam cored with carbon backing and wood veneer to save weight. Even porcelain ceramic countertops are milled thin and carbon backed.
Kinetic are swimming in the same pond as Swan, Ocean Explorer, Gunboat and HH Catamarans with these boats :an uncompromising approach to quality and performance is the order of the day. Building a fast, safe ocean crosser is the ultimate goal.
Following the Atlantic cats and other luxury performance multihulls, all controls and halyards lead to the forward cockpit, just in front of the main helm at the front of the saloon, where all the navigation happens with push-button control of the sails and lots of visibility in the coach-roof to trim the sails. The saloon spills onto the aft cockpit making one big open living space with secondary helms – (tillers or twin wheels) – out on the aft of the hulls.
You can choose between a fixed or rotating mast and customise your sail plan to meet your needs. There are standard or “turbo” sail packages that have been developed in conjunction with North Sails, Southern Spars and Rigging Projects.
A Powerful Sail Plan
The mainsheet traveller is safely tucked onto the coachroof, and the mainsheet is hydraulic. The solent jib sheets are led back via the coachroof as well (there is also a built in feature on the coach roof for an overlapping jib) , and there is a self-tacking track in front of the mast step.
Then there are the electric furler options for both the solent and reacher and a low profile martingale which allows a lower foot and more optimal shape on the forward sails.
The KC62 is powered by twin Yanmar 80 HP engines with SD80 sail drivers and 3 blade Gori props: plenty of oomph to keep you moving if the wind dies.
Th KC62 is swimming with some pretty big fish in the luxury performance market and it´s more than holding its own. You can see the influence from those early Gunboat days and the Kinetic team seem to be successfully carving themselves a substantial piece of the luxury pie.