U-Boat Worx takes plunge with superyacht-friendly submersible
Tired of being told that the recreational submersible you want is too tall to fit into your superyacht? Dutch submersible manufacturer U-Boat Worx knows how you feel and is launching the Super Yacht Sub 3, a vehicle specifically tailored to fit into a standard superyacht garage area, if indeed there is such a thing.
It's comforting to know that no matter how much money you amass, the superyacht industry will always be there, providing ever larger and more lavish holes in the water into which to pour your cash. They are the domain of the 0.001% – a net worth of $100 million would barely afford you the spare resources to keep one of these things seaworthy, berthed, crewed and full of marine diesel, let alone stocked with decent grade toilet paper and the kind of champagne your guests are going to expect.
So when it comes time to fit a superyacht out with entertainment and experience options, this is one segment where the buyers are so fabulously wealthy that price is genuinely no issue. And thus a base-model starting price of €1.75 million (US$2.35 million) for the extraordinary gadget below will barely register a raised eyebrow.
The Super Yacht Sub 3, from U-Boat Worx in the Netherlands, is a recreational submersible specifically designed to live on board a superyacht, giving guests the ability to explore the sea floor, shipwrecks, reefs and marine life down to a depth of 100 or 300 meters (330 or 1,000 feet), depending on the configuration.
The cabin is fitted out with three comfy seats, a large circular window at the front and a short, cylindrical glassed-in section to allow passengers good visibility above, below and around themselves. Air in the cabin is conditioned and maintained at a pressure of one atmosphere for comfort.
Electrically-operated horizontal, lateral and vertical thrusters move and steer the submersible, operated by a dual-joystick gamepad style Manta controller that can be handed back and forth if you want to give your passenger a crack at driving. When Gizmag's James Holloway took the same manufacturer's C-Explorer 2 out for an unforgettable test drive in 2013, he was surprised at its agility and speed.
Total propulsive battery capacity for the sub is 15.6 kWh as standard, although you can double that as an option, while the house and survival systems are powered by an additional 6 or 12 kWh battery pack, with a further emergency battery capable of keeping critical survival systems going for up to 96 hours if everything goes pear-shaped. With the fully optioned-up battery system, the sub can run for up to 12 hours between charges.
Entering and exiting the Super Yacht Sub 3 is simple enough – step onto the grippy anti-skid deck and climb down the freeboard tube, which can extend up to 76 cm (30 in) above the deck to keep the interior dry when the waves are up.
In order to make the sub as attractive as possible to superyacht owners, U-Boat Worx has been careful to keep it as compact and lightweight as possible, at just 171 cm (67 in) high and 3,490 kg (7,694 lb) in weight. The sub can be lifted in and out of the water using just about any crane arrangement, and should fit in most superyacht "garage" areas more easily than the 207 cm (81 in) high C-Explorer 2.
Production models will be available for delivery from 2015.
Source: U-Boat Worx