Frank Stephenson, current design boss at McLaren Automotive has gone and built this fantastic 30 ft. Riverbreeze powerboat.
Stephenson is best known for developing cars such as the McLaren P1, modern Mini Cooper and the Ferrari F430. This wood hulled Riverbreeze powerboat is unlike his previous projects, being powered by an electric engine, the electric powertrain provides smooth, silent sailing. To the iconic car designer, fibreglass boats are like Tupperware, convenient and useful but lacking in sex appeal. The eye catching hardwood vessel comprises of rosewoods and mahoganies from Brazil and Africa, adding five coats of lacquer every year on initial fifteen.
“Everyone’s got this white plastic shell, a big boat maybe, but there’s no romance,” explains the 56-year-old. “Wooden boats get better with age, they smell nice, they feel nice; every one has its own character.”
A lot like models from Riva, Stephenson says his boat is an elongated and more dramatic take of the classic powerboats. Powered by a 4.2-kilowatt electric pod motor, with 14.7 kilowatt-hours of storage from eight Varta 12-volt marine batteries that take about eight hours to charge.