Quick Look: Beneteau First 40

Alvah Simon reviews this speedy cruiser for the Cruising World 2010 Sailboat Show in our January 2010 issue

Beneteau

The Farr Yacht Design team approached the racer/cruiser concept of the First 40 with clear priorities and clever compromises. With its light displacement, large wheel, high-aspect fractional rig, deep bulb keel, and a racing deck layout with removable cockpit lockers/seats, this assassin is sure to be feared at the starting line. And an owner can unwind on an extended coastal cruise with the entire family under safe and comfortable conditions by simply reattaching the cockpit seat and adding the helm bench seat aft.

If true value melds affordability, durability, and usability, it's probably safe to say that the First 40 has all three attributes covered. Durability, even under competitive use, is ensured with a light yet robust vinylester hull and high-quality hardware and systems. With its attractive and practical cruising interior, the First 40's versatility translates into usability. Book your race days early because the entire family will be clamoring to do more than just race this boat.

Specs

LOA 41' 3"
LWL 35' 0"
Beam 12' 9"
Draft 6' 4"/8' 0"
Sail Area 848 sq. ft.
Displacement 16,614/15,895 lb.
Water 52 gal.
Fuel 36 gal.
Engine 40-hp. Yanmar
Designer Farr Yacht Design
Price $273,000
Beneteau USA
(843) 629-5300
www.beneteauusa.com