By: Scott Way
A shift in the industry has manufacturers testing new ways to connect with consumers, making it a great time to be an interested buyer. Both Regal Boats and Boston Whaler used surprise Facebook Live videos to launch their 2021 products, and the new trend of digital unveilings is gaining traction. With public boat shows in limbo (although some are still going ahead), manufacturers are exploring new ways to connect with boaters with several boat builders are already making headway. Groupe Beneteau, the head of other major brands including Four Winns, Jeanneau, and Prestige, dropped their 2021 press release this week with a large-scale plan to launch 18 new models via private online events.
The details of the online events are still forthcoming, but according to Gianguido Girotti, Deputy General Manager in charge of brand and product strategy, “(w)e want to make this crisis an opportunity to rethink our customer relationship and experience, traditionally displayed at boat shows. Since May, we have developed digital tools so you can discover our boats online, take an online detailed presentation on board, or have a live chat with our boat specialists. Our brands are also organizing a series of private events for this fall to welcome customers and prospects in the best and safest possible way."
According to Girotti, the strategy focuses on four major groups in the Groupe Beneteau offering:
Dayboats, weekenders and express cruisers up to 40 feet
Real estate on the water, for large units between 60 and 80 feet
Dayboats will be covered mainly by Four Winns, who will unveil a "new generation of bowriders for the Horizon range." The Horizon series is arguably the most popular series in the Four Winns lineup and offers a variety of packages in the 18-35 ft range. Other new models from the their Delphia brand are TBA. Jeanneau cruisers, including the Cap Camarat and Merry Fisher models, will have 5 new models coming out in 2021. They are as follows:
In terms of "real estate on the water,' meaning the larger yacht certified lineup, Beneteau and Prestige will be responsible for 12 of the 18 new models for 2021. Together with their most popular boat, the Antares 11, of which a new flybridge version is coming out for 2021 and will be premiered at the Cannes Yachting Festival, the remaining models will offer exciting new options in the Gran Turismo, Flyer, and Prestige groups:
Gran Turismo 41
Click below to take the Gran Turismo 40 virtual tour (*double click to zoom*):
One of the most interesting, and perhaps overlooked aspects of the announcement, was the future of other Beneteau-owned brands Monte Carlo Yachts, CNB Yachts, Glastron, and Scarab. At the tail end of the press release, Girotti added the following: "In the future, the Groupe Beneteau's House of Brands will consist of eight brands : Beneteau, Jeanneau, Prestige, Lagoon, Excess, Four Winns, Wellcraft, and Delphia. To date, the four brands Monte Carlo Yachts, CNB yachts, Glastron, and Scarab continue to be active and they attend the various events. We are taking orders and our production sites continue to build these models."
We reached out to Beneteau for clarification on the status of the 4 brands but no word as of yet. We will update you as information becomes available.
You can get the first look at the new Beneteau Antares 11 Fly in the video below: