After the all-out craziness of the Covid 2021 year, 2022 was much less hectic. Of course, the availability of good listings was certainly an issue, as pretty much everything was sold in 2021. The completion of new boats had various supply chain issues, resulting in slight delays, but we managed to deliver the first two new Moody DS41’s into the American market, and a new Moody 54DS to extremely happy owners. We had on display at the Newport Boat Show, a Moody 41DS and a 54DS, and a 41DS on display at the Annapolis Sailboat Show.
The Moody 41DS won Cruising World’s ‘Best Large Cruiser’ award’ for 2023, after sailing trials in the Chesapeake after the Annapolis show. Each day of both the Newport and Annapolis shows had lines of people wanting to see the Moody 41DS.
Solaris continues to do well and make inroads into our market with a 50, 44 and 40 in build for Americans. Look for one of these to be on display at the Annapolis Show in the fall. The very sexy Solaris 50, with its electric blue hull color, was on display at the Düsseldorf show in late January. Her owners have spec’ed a beautiful boat with Eshtec faux teak decks and white caulking, and white accented winches. Synthetic teak decks such as Eshtec and Flexiteek are not only very convincing teak substitutes, but you can have many different color combinations. Long life and durability make these a very compelling teak alternative.
Rustler interest has been good, especially this fall, and we are pleased to say that new orders have been incoming, with 2 Rustlers currently in build – a high spec electric drive 24, and a 37 with a carbon mast. We are looking forward to the new Rustler 41 power boat, already the first few hulls are sold. This Castro design is available with inboards, pod drives or outboards.
Having been selling both new and used boats out of the EU since 1981, we have watched the exchange rate swing several times, and each time the dollar gains in strength, the Americans flock to Europe for the currency deals. One thing about Americans – they love a deal and can sniff one out pretty quickly! Thankfully, our clients realize that Berthon USA is well versed in the process of an overseas transaction and continue to spread the word to other potentials about our services. There is also the issue of a reluctance to have deposit funds outside of the US plus dealing with an unknown broker internationally – we are able to hold deposits in any currency. Our clients are very comfortable dealing with a broker in their time zone as well, one less issue to cause concerns.
We also welcomed a new broker in 2022, Peter Houghton. Our first acquaintance with Peter was on board a Swan 60 and then a Swan 68 and 77 where he not only was a superb captain, but also ran the owner’s race boat programme. His technical skills are invaluable to our clients, both from the brokerage side as well as the specification of new boats.
Looking ahead for 2023, although there is a looming threat of a recession in the US especially, although our job market seems to be strong. Lack of good product is still an issue and we are hoping to see more on the market with the spring approaching. With a continued strong dollar, we think our market should continue to be robust this year.