De Antonio made a splash across the industry in 2021 when they unveiled the D50 -- the smallest cruiser with a hot tub on the market.
The unorthodox and forward-thinking Spanish boatbuilder is the antithesis to the conventional wisdom with respect to design and functionality, and their latest offering may prove to be a pivotal brick in the path towards viable electric power in the marine industry.
De Antonio has partnered with electric auto manufacturer CUPRA to create the all-new D28 Formentor e-hybrid- a gas/electric hybrid cruiser that offers one of the better technological platforms thus far in the emerging electric movement.
The D28 combines two 15kw retractable electric motors within the drivetrain with a concealed 400 hp Mercury outboard engine, creating a boat that can run in both full combustion or full electric mode.
A six battery power bank creates a range in electric mode of up to 12 miles, or the rough equivalent of two hours of drive time at 6-8 knots (7-9 mph). The Mercury outboard offers the bulk of the power, obviously, with a range of about 200 miles consistent with a 400 hp outboard when paired with a 28-foot (8.5 m) boat weighing 5000 lbs (dry weight). De Antonio employs clever design templates to disguise both the battery banks and the outboard within the layout of the boat. The lithium-ion batteries are stashed beneath the centre console, while the electric motors are hidden within the sidewalls near midships. The Mercury outboard lays hidden beneath a stern sunpad.
CUPRA, for its part, is also based in Spain and is owned by the Volkwagen Group. The interplay between the automotive and marine industries has been accelerating quickly, and it appears the first partnerships that began in North America are influencing similar relationships abroad. General Motors purchased a stake in Seattle-based electric boat manufacturer Pure Watercraft in 2021, and there have been several developments among automakers to collaborate with marine manufacturers on new propulsion systems. Yamaha and Toyota are developing a hydrogen engine, and upstart US companies are co-developing turbine engines in the auto industry with the intention to crossover into marine use.
This mentality is at the forefront of the partnership between De Antonio and CUPRA, with the boatbuilder stating outright the D28 marks "a commitment to the future that lays the foundations of a synergistic relationship in which the best talent of their creative teams is united."
The full specs for the D28 are:
Length- 8.5 m (27'10")
Beam- 2.99 m (9'10")
Draft- 0.5 m (19")
Weight- 2.5 tons (5000 lbs)
Fuel Tank- 420 L (111 gal)
Cruising Speed Electric- 6 knots (7 mph)
Cruising Speed Gas-Power- 25 knots (28.5 mph)
Top Speed Electric- 8 knots (9 mph)
Top Speed Gas-Power- 40 knots (46 mph)
You can watch the first iteration non-hybrid D28 Formentor in action below: