Ducati is making a serious effort to move its motorcycle brand upwards and leverage the visibility its MotoGP and World Superbike success has given it. The recently announced marketing alliances with automotive brand AMG and apparel company Diesel have now been extended to the luxury go-fast Cigarette boat company. Some of the world's wealthiest and most influential people have owned cigarette boats including George Bush Snr, King Hussein of Jordan and King Juan Carlos of Spain. This week a Cigarette Racing 42X Ducati Edition was launched at the Miami Boat Show with staggered 1,100hp Mercury Racing engines, a special sound system, a top speed in excess of 120 mph (on water no less), and a price tag of US$700,000.
It's hard to delineate between the brand "Cigarette" and the legend of the cigarette boat as a generic term. Extremely fast planing boats have been used for three quarters of a century in the waters off the American coast to smuggle high value contraband. Originally, they were called "rum runners" during the prohibition, then the term cigarette boat came into vogue when cigarettes were being smuggled from Canada to avoid duties. The term stuck, although for the last half century the most highly valued contraband carried by such boats was cocaine.
Cigarette Racing was founded in 1969 by designer, builder and racer, Don Aronow, the notorious "Godfather of Powerboat Racing" who won numerous World Championship titles, claiming the "cigarette" name in the process. A colourful identity of world renown, Aronow raised the profile of the company through racing and his association with celebrities, presidents and kings who were both customers and friends. In 2002, the company was bought by Skip Braver, who focused on building Cigarettes with top-quality, safety and style. His efforts and a renewed international dealer network have restored Cigarette to its original status as the brand leader in luxury and performance.
The official Cigarette press release:
Ducati and Cigarette Racing Team unveiled today the new Cigarette Racing 42X Ducati Edition at the Miami International Boat Show; launching a collaboration between two legends of marine and motorcycle performance.
The two performance icons have chosen to unveil the new model on Cigarette Racing Team's home turf in Florida; and the 42X Ducati Edition delivers everything aficionados have come to expect from the performance brands. With literally dozens of championships between the two companies, the 42X Ducati Edition comes from an unmatched performance heritage.
"We are delighted to team up with Cigarette Racing Team, the Ducati of the sea. This new 42X Ducati Edition brings together the two legends of performance, design and racing heritage. I am very excited to announce this exciting boat, and feel we have found an excellent new partner in the team at Cigarette Racing." said Gabriele Del Torchio, President and CEO of Ducati Motor Holding S.p.A.
"We are very proud to announce our partnership with one of the world's greatest high performance, design and lifestyle brands: Ducati. The relationship between Ducati and Cigarette Racing allows two incredible high performance brands to showcase our passions together in complimentary ways. Ducati is the only motorcycle brand that fits the performance and lifestyle expectations of Cigarette's customers." Said Skip Braver, CEO of Cigarette Racing Team.
The 42X Ducati Edition will feature a massive 2,200 horsepower rating from a pair of staggered 1,100hp Mercury Racing engines. The livery of the model is pure Ducati, in white with a Ducati Red racing stripe. A white interior boasting red accents features a specially designed stereo from JL Audio. The 42 foot hull boasts an eight foot beam; completing this astonishing 120+mph package.
The Cigarette Racing Team's "Ménage of Motorsports" display will feature the 42X Ducati Edition throughout the five days of the Miami International Boat Show.
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