“The new Hallberg-Rassy 400 “aft cockpit”: Swedish excellence in navigation”
The new Hallberg-Rassy 400 from the Swedish shipyard Harry Hallberg, designed by Germán Frers, has been ranked among the top 10 sailboats built in the classic style by the historic American trade magazine SAIL for 2023. This nautical magazine presents each year the beginning a ranking of the best boats designed and built, based on market picks and experts in the United States.
Hallberg-Rassy is a renowned shipyard specializing in the construction of high quality and prestigious sailboats, while Germán Frers is one of the most celebrated sailboat designers in the world. Germán Frers is known for his ability to combine functionality and elegance in his designs.
This new yacht, characterized by a modern hull, manages to perfectly express the great design work of one of the most talented designers of our time, without however losing the classic setting of the Swedish shipyard. A masterful and beautiful integration of all the boat’s components has been done, including the straight bow to raise the waterline and a carefully inserted bowsprit.
The boat overall is 13.06 m (42.10 ft) long; Hull length is 12.30 (40.4 ft); Waterline length is 11.74 m (38.6 ft); Maximum width is 4.18 m (13.7 ft); Draft 1.92 m (6.4 ft); Displacement 11,000 kg (24,250 lb); Keel weight 8,050 lbs (3,650 kg); Water 520 liters (137 US gallons); Fuel 400 liters (106 US gallons); Sail area with standard genoa 90.1 m²/970 ft²; Sail area with optimized genoa 96.6 m²/ 1,040 ft²; Volvo Penta D2-60 engine;
The main feature of this boat, compared to other models designed by the same designer for the same shipyard, is the large cockpit developed completely aft, equipped with a double rudder wheel and a double paddle. In the cockpit, the twin drive wheels are mounted on two columns, together with the navigation control instrumentation. There are also containers for excess lines, ensuring a clean and tidy cockpit. The cockpit relaxation area develops entirely near the companionway that leads below deck. On each side there are two comfortable benches that hide useful lockers and as an option it is possible to install a large fixed central folding table in glossy lacquered teak.
There is a lot of passage space to ensure a perfect view of the sails and navigation instruments at sea, both during maneuvers in port, with all the maneuvering organs converging near the twin wheels of the wheelhouse where the winches are located visible automatics to make all the adjustment maneuvers on the entire sail plan.
The cockpit follows the typical Hallberg-Rassy configuration, with high walls and good distribution thanks to the presence of a bimini and a sprayhood, which ensure perfect shading and protection during navigation.
These solutions make it possible to lengthen the life of the on-board instrumentation and make the cockpit area an open area that is always usable. Although they may in part be unsightly and disturb the lines of the boat, these accessories significantly increase on-board comfort and many can no longer do without them. The sprayhood are now also being used on yachts sailing in the calm, sunny waters of the Mediterranean or the Caribbean, particularly those featuring tempered glass with an opening center section and side handles, an ideal solution for the cockpit in both hot and cold areas.
The transom terminates in a fold-down swim platform, which not only facilitates access to the water for guests, but also provides spacious stowage space for a tender.
The length of the cockpit and the locker on the deck are greater than the 412, the older sister in the Swedish shipyard’s range.
The passage from the cockpit to the side deck is very easy and without any obstacles it is possible to walk to get to the bow, making use of the help of a long handrail if necessary.
The bow consists of a large triangular space with manholes and portholes flush with the floor which create no problems when walking. All this area can be used and equipped as desired.
As for the engine, the Hallberg-Rassy 400 is equipped with a 2.2-litre, 4-cylinder Volvo Penta D2-60 type diesel engine which is used when not sailing.
The engine can vary according to the owner’s preference, but is generally a powerful and reliable marine engine that offers good cruising speed. This allows the boat to navigate effectively even in the absence of wind or when maneuvering in port. The engine installation has been designed to minimize vibrations and noise on board, ensuring comfortable cruising even when using the engine.
As for the interior design, the Hallberg-Rassy 400 has been designed to create a spacious interior, well lit and with an efficient distribution of spaces, which guarantees comfort and practicality during navigation. The materials used are of the highest quality and the craftsmanship is evident in each item with great attention to detail. Furthermore, the layout includes three types of possible configurations, but all of them include a large owner’s cabin forward.
The first configuration foresees that the owner’s cabin is located in the bow of the boat and is equipped with a double bed, large wardrobes and shelves for storing personal effects with private bathroom. This layout also includes two guest cabins aft which can be fitted out as a double or twin cabin, sharing a head. The galley is located in the center of the boat, and further forward are two sofas, one of which is L-shaped.
In the second configuration, we only find an aft cabin with a large bathroom equipped with a separate shower. The salon houses an L-shaped sofa, while the starboard sofa is replaced by two armchairs.
The third is similar to the second, but with a different arrangement of the furniture in the living room, where the armchairs are replaced by a long sofa.
As for the interior fittings, you can choose between two types of wood: classic mahogany or a bright European oak.
The rig is modern and easy to handle. The headsail is slightly overlapped and easy to tack, and there is also an option for auto tacking. The bowsprit is elegantly integrated with the hull and deck, without being an after-design element, it also offers an excellent anchor point for a gennaker and supports a bow ladder with platform, as well as providing extra stowage space for a bow anchor.
Several comfort options are also available, such as bow and stern thrusters, which can be combined with a generator. There are further options for comfort, such as a washing machine, dishwasher or extra fridge and freezer. It is also possible to install an air conditioner and a water maker.
In conclusion, the new Hallberg-Rassy 400 “aft cockpit” represents an excellence in the 2023 nautical panorama. With its modern design that preserves the classic setting of the Swedish shipyard, this boat embodies the perfect combination of style, functionality and comfort . The spacious aft cockpit with twin steering wheels and a twin paddle offers an optimal sailing control environment, while the configurable interior and attention to detail are testament to the shipyard’s craftsmanship. Hallberg-Rassy, with its long family history in the industry, continues to maintain its reputation for excellence in producing high quality boats. With customizable comfort options and innovative features, the new Hallberg-Rassy 400 “aft cockpit” offers a superior sailing experience for sea enthusiasts. Without a doubt, this boat will be a benchmark in the sailing world for years to come.