The best aluminum boats
The first Buster boat was made by Finnish company Inha Bruk in 1977 and was something of a pioneer in aluminum boat designs. Today, Buster builds around 3,000 boats a year. New for this season is the 5.13m Buster Lx, which is a development of the classic bestselling Buster L. Two separate chairs and a more weatherproof skipper environment should persuade sailors to trade up. With a 60 HP outboard motor, the Lx can reach speeds of around 30 knots with a crew of two.
With a top speed of 40+ knots, the new XO 360 Yacht is no slouch. Following in the footsteps of the 2015 XO 250 day cruiser, the Finnish company has taken a big step up in size with this family boat, which has an 11.28m hull and can sleep four people. And with a fighting weight of just over five tons, it would take a big wave to slow down this vessel.
This resurrected classic is now built in aluminum. The two models, the B16 and B18, have a very simple feel, with a handrail round the steering console that looks sturdy enough to be able to lift the whole boat with. New for 2016 is a more civilized version of the 5.4m B18. The “DC” (Daycruiser) includes two separate chairs, which means skipper and passenger can shelter behind a windshield.
Although a devoted GRP boat builder, Finnmaster has joined the aluminum trend and is introducing three boats under its new Husky brand. The numbering system is simple: the higher the number, the longer the boat. The Husky R6 is 5.86m, the R7 6.45m and the R8 7.55m. However, Finnmaster hasn’t entirely abandoned GRP, which is used for the steering consoles in the Husky range. With a 300 HP outboard motor, the Husky R8 can reach 48 knots.
With a design based on stealth aircraft, more powerful motors and high performance hulls, Anytec is raising the status of aluminum boats to an entirely new level. The company went into receivership in 2014 but has been reborn with a vengeance. For the 2016 season, the entire range has been given a design makeover. The lines are sharper, the level of comfort higher and a reinforced outer shell should keep the boats in handsome and pristine shape.
Norway’s Nordkapp has gained a reputation for making well-designed GRP boats for day cruises but is now complementing its offering with a “tinnie”. The 6.06m 605 Ranger dayboat is available in two designs. The Avant has a family–friendly wind shielded steering console, while the Enduro has more of a working boat oriented open layout. The interior of both models is made from GRP to provide a more comfortable feel.
Text Anders Helgesson
Published: September 20, 2016