Outremer, the famous French performance catamaran manufacturer, can trace their history back to 1984 in La Grande Motte, the same year that Catana was launched.
And it all started with a guy called Gérard Danson, a young naval architect who was responsible for some of Outremer’s most famous designs.
The Outremer DNA
The brief for the first boat was a fast, light and seaworthy 40 footer, and this brief still fits the Outremer design DNA to this day (apart from the boat length of course). At the time, the best selling multihulls in the world were cruising cats made in the UK by Prout. Gérard wanted to focus on reducing weight and windage, and on maximising hull speed with finely shaped hulls.
Following the success of the first boat (the 40 footer, which was custom made to order to start with), the fledgling company expanded to a 50 footer.
Grand Large Yachting Take Over
In 2005, Gérard Danson sadly passed away, but his catamaran brand continued to grow and was purchased by Grand Large Yachting in 2007 who developed the Outremer 49 with Barreau and Neuman.
This classic design was later extended by 2 feet to the 51, and the company followed with a 59 footer: the 5X designed by VPLP, the new 45 (a smaller sister to the 51) and the 4X. The latest design to come off the drawing board is the new 55 and 52 from VPLP.
Outremer: a Timeline
1984 Outremer founded in La Grande Motte
1984 Outremer 40 – the original
1991 Launch of the 50/55 Series (Gérard Danson)
1998 Outremer 64L
2000 Outremer 45 (Gérard Danson)
2007 Grand Large Yachting buys Outremer
2009 Outremer 49
2012 Outremer 5X launched (59) – VPLP
2013 Outremer 51 launched, wins European Boat of the Year
2014 New Outremer 45 launched (Barreau/Neuman)
2016 Outremer 4X
2020 Outremer 55
2023 Outremer 52
Outremer – all the Boats
Outremer 40 (1984)
The original and Old Skool Rocket! 4.3 Tonne lightship. Many of these boats were custom built for owners and later examples were extended to 43′. You will find them with a variety of coachroof sizes. On the older models, access to the hulls was from the outside.
Outremer 50/55 (1991 – )
The 50/55 range came in 4 main versions. The 50S, 50L, 55S and 55L. These are some of Outremer’s most famous yachts that broke new ground when they were launched.
On the 55S, the beam is 7.8m (25′), which is wider than the 55L (7.5m or 24.5′)
Outremer 45 – Gérard Danson (2000)
One of Danson’s most popular designs is still well sought after on the second hand market. Very quick with low windage. The compromise is the living space down below.
Outremer 64 (1998)
The one time flagship of the Outremer range, the 64 is still the biggest boat to come out of the French yard (the 7X never made it off the drawing board as Grand Large bought Gunboat).
Exceptional performance and a comfortable interior thanks to that length.
Like the 55, she was built in two widths (Standard and Light).
Outremer 49 (2009)
The first of a new wave of designs following the Gérard Danson era. The 49, designed by Barreau/Neuman, was later extended to 51 feet. This boat really set the Outremer philosophy for later boats, a great design.
Outremer 5X (2012)
At 59.9 feet, the 5X is the flagship of the range. Designed by VPLP, this yacht is a no compromise speed machine that displaces just 15 tonnes lightship.
Outremer 51 (2013)
In 2013, Barreau and Neuman updated their popular 49 design. The boat was lengthened to 51 feet and the interior refreshed. Read our Full Outremer 51 Review.
They used to design for Catana, but then Barreau and Nueman decided to jump ship and they came up with the 51 and then this 45 foot masterpiece, the 51’s little sister made famous by Elena and Riley on LaVagabonde (well, we had to mention them at some point didn’t we? Good luck to them we say).
Designed by Barreau/Neuman, this is the supercharged version of the 45 trimmed for maximum speed. Read our full Outremer 4X review.
Outremer 55 (2020)
With twin helms that swivel (flexible helm position) and a new Open concept in the aft cockpit and saloon space thanks to carbon bulkheads (a technology borrowed from sister brand Gunboat), the VPLP designed Outremer 55 is a beauty.
Examples of some of the launches.
Outremer 55-02: Akaroa III
The smaller sister to the 55, the 52 (also designed by VPLP) replaces the 51. With carbon bulkheads like the 55, the whole living space from saloon to cockpit has been opened up. She has a single swing helm on the port side and an option for a tiller starboard. A very seaworthy ocean cruiser.
Read our Outremer 52 Owner’s Review of the options available on this yacht. Thanks to Holly and Stephane from Sailing Awen for helping us out on this one: they bought the #4 hull.
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