Teslas of the water: Electric boats come of age
August 28 2018
This year’s Cannes Boat Show will feature more battery-powered boats than ever before
Think electric mobility – the industry buzz words for a new generation of electron-fuelled cars – and Tesla springs to mind.
The boutique Californian electric car-maker vehicles have become the environmental poster cars of the modern age, displacing the former enviro-warrior of the 2000s, the petrol-electric hybrid Toyota Prius.
But while the electric revolution is well and truly taking shape on land, on the water it’s still pushing new frontiers as boatbuilders start to dip a toe in the water. And some are even tapping car-based tech to help them lead the charge.
Strict European vehicle emissions standards, and some US by-laws banning conventionally engined boats from some waterways, are forcing a rethink of the way we motivate boats.
Nowhere is that more apparent than at the upcoming 2018 Yachting Festival of Cannes, where electromobility on the water will have a significant presence through a number of global reveals.
And just like for cars, the high-tech, potentially high cost, line-up at Cannes shows battery-fed boat technology is not yet quite mainstream.
XShore eElectric 8000
XShore is a Swedish boat builder who also aims to find some space in the emerging electric boat world.
The 8.0m tender-style, deep freeboard XShore eElectric 8000 is all Scandinavian minimalist chic in an environmentally friendly package.
It stands out as the only craft here to feature dual inboard motors, with each of the Torqeedo Deep Blue 80i 1800 engines delivering 80hp to push the eElectric 8000 along at more than 25kt.
Rather than reinvent the battery technology needed for its motors, XShore has tapped BMW to supply its energy store using the same units developed for the i3 electric hatchback.
No details have yet been released on recharging times or range.