Fer­retti’s 670 is mak­ing waves for its con­tem­po­rary styling—but it’s what you don’t see that’s bound to im­press


Power & Motor Yacht - - IN THIS ISSUE -

Fer­retti has earned a rep­u­ta­tion for sta­bil­ity. I’m not talk­ing about the boats’ abil­ity to re­main on an even keel—al­though there are no com­plaints there—but about the ship­yard’s brand im­age. A Fer­retti looks like a Fer­retti. Re­sale val­ues are main­tained not just through the qual­ity with which the boats are put to­gether, but through the mar­que’s in­stant fa­mil­iar­ity. You can tell it’s a Fer­retti from across the ma­rina. They don’t seem to age. In de­sign terms, that’s not an easy thing to ac­com­plish.

This doesn’t mean the ship­yard doesn’t em­brace change. Like Mercedes-Benz, Fer­retti seems to pre­fer to in­tro­duce its changes in­cre­men­tally, so you can usu­ally be con­fi­dent that in any new yacht you’ll find all the fa­mil­iar de­sign char­ac­ter­is­tics of the brand. If you want to see how the de­sign has evolved, you have to go back two or three gen­er­a­tions.

This quiet evo­lu­tion­ary process has been fo­cused on re­new­ing Fer­retti’s mid-range yachts over the last few model years, and with the un­veil­ing of the all-new 670 at the Cannes Fes­ti­val of Yacht­ing, that ex­er­cise—for the mo­ment, any­way—is now com­plete. Some­what longer, a lit­tle wider and con­sid­er­ably heav­ier, the 670 re­places the 650.

It fell to de­signer Filippo Sal­vetti to cre­ate some­thing new while re­spect­ing the old, to re­fresh the look with­out de­tract­ing from its fa­mil­iar­ity. Fright­en­ing the horses was not an op­tion. Com­pare the two yachts in pro­file, and ev­ery­thing is dif­fer­ent. But by pay­ing at­ten­tion to cer­tain an­gles—in the tran­som and hull win­dows, for ex­am­ple—and to the pro­por­tions and vis­ual weight of the su­per­struc­ture and fly­bridge, Sal­vetti has ful­filled the brief. The new yacht is clearly a mem­ber of the same fam­ily.

“It is not a rev­o­lu­tion,” Sal­vetti agreed of his first pro­ject for Fer­retti. “I stud­ied the brand de­sign his­tory, and added some sharper edges and a more ag­gres­sive fly­bridge pro­file.” He is per­haps be­ing a lit­tle mod­est.

Suit­ably in­spired, Fer­retti’s in-house de­sign team has made some sig­nif­i­cant changes to the main deck lay­out, plac­ing the gal­ley amid­ships on the star­board side, just be­hind the twoseat helm sta­tion. This re­turn to tra­di­tion makes the best of the 670’s im­pres­sive win­dows, and on fine days cre­ates one large and lux­u­ri­ous liv­ing space out of the cock­pit and sa­lon. The ef­fect is not nec­es­sar­ily nos­tal­gic, how­ever. The gal­ley, up two steps on the cen­tral helm deck, is hid­den by a half-height bulk­head but com­mands the same broad views as those com­fort­ably seated at the at­trac­tive dinette on the port side. Its

rig­or­ous right an­gles and dra­matic con­trast­ing stripes of wal­nut ve­neer hark back not to an ear­lier Fer­retti, but to an ear­lier de­sign era—the Modernism of the fifties, per­haps.

Else­where, the in­te­rior is fit­ted out with the ship­yard’s cus­tom­ary at­ten­tion to name-check­able brands. There are fab­rics by Zim­mer + Ro­hde, Peren­ni­als and Casamance, mar­ble-like sur­faces in Florim’s “Cala­catta Gold” porce­lain, leathers from Lealpell, and fur­nish­ings by De­don and Dise­nia. Two dif­fer­ent dec­o­ra­tive schemes are avail­able, de­scribed a lit­tle disin­gen­u­ously by Fer­retti as light and dark, which ad­dress the per­ceived dif­fer­ences in taste be­tween East­ern and West­ern mar­kets.

Down on the lower deck you can choose be­tween three-and four-cabin lay­outs, al­though if you go for the small fourth sin­gle cabin you’ll lose the ex­cel­lent raised of­fice at the en­trance to the mid­ships mas­ter suite, which with a desk, a chair, some shelves and a sim­ple handrail along its aft edge, makes a very ap­peal­ing study area.

With just the three cab­ins, the spa­ces down be­low are pretty gen­er­ous. Along with this mini-mez­za­nine, the full-beam mas­ter also boasts a big walk-in closet and a full-length sofa and side­board, not to men­tion a 6 foot, 5 inch by 5 foot bed. Set far for­ward in the bow, the VIP’s dou­ble berth is nec­es­sar­ily raised well above what any­one who lives on land would re­gard as nor­mal, but it will be easy enough to ac­cess even for those whose knees are not what they were; draw­ers here add use­ful stowage vol­ume.

The third cabin, a twin-berth on the star­board side, is small but per­fectly ad­e­quate, with 6 foot, 3 inch beds, en suite ac­cess to the third head com­part­ment and ex­cel­lent head­room vir­tu­ally through­out, in com­mon with the rest of the lower deck, of 6 foot, 7 inches.

Choos­ing a lower deck lay­out is one of three big de­ci­sions on the 670’s op­tions list. An­other is whether or not you select the fixed hard­top or a roll-bar with a bi­mini, or nei­ther. And the third is whether to just have the 1,000-hp en­gines, or go the whole nine yards.

The owner of our test boat had made all the right choices, in my opin­ion. The 1,200-hp MANs pro­vide plenty of power for this quite sub­stan­tial mo­to­ry­acht, which tops out at nearly 50 tons with full tanks and could eas­ily ac­com­mo­date sev­eral tons more of gear and equip­ment. We didn’t have a ten­der on board dur­ing our test, but we were car­ry­ing the weight equiv­a­lent of a 4-door SUV in the tanks, and yet the sheer grunt avail­able from the 1,200s—max­i­mum torque kicks in at 1200 rpm and it doesn’t let up—made the driv­ing ex­pe­ri­ence ef­fort­less and en­joy­able. The slight­est touch of the throt­tles pro­duced a will­ing re­sponse at all speeds. Elec­tro-hy­draulic steer­ing can be op­ti­mized for feel and feed­back, and seemed per­fectly set up on our test boat—al­though some own­ers might want a tighter turn­ing cir­cle.

It’s not just power that cre­ates this kind of sports­boat han­dling and re­spon­sive­ness, of course, but also hull shape. The 670’s mod­er­ate vee sec­tions and full bow, while pro­vid­ing plenty of lift and lively ac­cel­er­a­tion, did of course thump through the wakes of other yachts—the only real waves we could find that day—in a man­ner that was suf­fi­ciently hu­mor­less to sug­gest that in head seas you’d be slow­ing down to find a com­fort­able cruis­ing speed. Down­wind, the yacht be­haved im­pec­ca­bly.

The op­tional Xenta joy­stick con­trol takes a lit­tle get­ting used to, but works well. Al­though it can be used at speeds of up to about 28 knots—you steer by mov­ing it side to side, in­put throt­tle com­mands by tip­ping it for­ward and back and over­ride it by scream­ing and grab­bing the man­ual con­trols—it is of most use in “Dock­ing” mode, at a max­i­mum en­gine speed of 800 rpm. Call­ing up the Xenta dis­play, you can see in clear graph­ics ex­actly how much helm, throt­tle and thruster are be­ing ap­plied by your tiny twists and prods of the joy­stick. It’s quite ed­u­ca­tional.

The high-tech cre­den­tials aboard the 670 don’t end there: The three big in­te­grated screens at the lower helm sta­tion (two up­stairs) are in­tended to dis­play propul­sion info, nav­i­ga­tion and ves­sel mon­i­tor­ing. Taken to­gether, these of­fer a com­plete view of the big­ger pic­ture, while al­low­ing for ev­ery nu­ance of the yacht’s safe op­er­a­tion to be eas­ily ac­cessed, with just a sin­gle new Naviop in­ter­face for the owner to learn.

This per­haps en­cap­su­lates how Fer­retti likes to do things. It is not just with re­fine­ments in de­sign, but with new tech­nolo­gies like these that the yacht steps fur­ther along its evo­lu­tion­ary line, keep­ing up with the de­mands of the mod­ern world. And in their turn, these de­vel­op­ments make their de­mands on us. We have to keep up with the yacht. But we can be sure it’ll be worth the ef­fort.

With Fer­retti, it's as much about the hull's ag­gres­sive styling as it is the ship­yard's cus­tom­ary at­ten­tion to luxe, dec­o­ra­tive in­te­ri­ors.

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