Nova Luxe’s All-Electric Catamaran
By Mike Osenga20 March 2019
Nova Luxe Yachts, Point Lookout, NY is launching an all-electric catamaran an Aquila 44. The inaugural boat is currently being fitted-out at a yard in St. Petersburg, Fla., and will debut on June 1 at the Westshore Yacht Club in Tampa. Nova Luxe Yachts converts new 35 ft. to 50 ft. catamarans to all-electric.
Power for the catamaran combines Torqeedo Deep Blue drives, BMW i3 batteries and a massive rooftop solar array to an ocean-tested hull. The company said the Aquila 44 can cruise for over 1250 miles at 6.5 knots using only its integrated solar panels—vibration-free and quieter than a sailboat.
The difference between what’s been tried in the past and what Nova Luxe is doing is the battery. “The automotive industry has advanced DC technology to where battery-powered marine propulsion doesn’t mean sacrifice, but is in many ways superior,” said Marc Hawxhurst, Nova Luxe Yachts president. He said Torqeedo’s high-voltage BMW i3 lithium-ion battery is completely waterproof, produces 40 kWh of power and comes with a nine-year warranty.
The Aquila 44 was chosen by its owner because it strikes a balance between stability, size, weight and the ability to be captained solo, Nova Luxe Yachts said. With three staterooms, it makes the ideal Great Loop boat. The Nova Luxe build includes a requested 25 kW gen-set to supplement the power generated by the 16, 350W solar panels when cruising long distances in cloudy northern regions.
Even the Aquila’s tender, a ZAR Mini aluminum RIB is electric. With a 50-mile range, it carries a Torqeedo Cruise 10.0 and is charged by a power supply station integrated into the yacht. At the 2019 Miami International Boat Show, Nova Luxe Yachts demonstrated the performance of its electric solution by reaching 20 mph and planing with two adults on the ZAR.
Aside from Aquila, Nova Luxe Yachts offers new pre-fitted electric Aspen Power, Bavaria, Fountaine Pajot, Havana, Leopard and Maine Cat catamarans.