Review: Grand Banks 43 Heritage EU
Life in the slow lane is looking better than ever. That is, if your definition of slow means a leisurely, long-range cruise aboard an exquisitely crafted boat that couples state-of-the art construction and propulsion technology with lines that, while modern, are steeped in a classic nautical tradition. If you’re searching for a boat that offers a more relaxed stride on the water in a premium build equipped to go the distance in luxury and comfort, the new Grand Banks 43 Heritage EU will stop you in your tracks.
Unless you’ve been living under a barnacle-encrusted rock for the past 50 years, you’ve no doubt heard about, even admired, the Grand Banks Heritage series. One of the most popular trawler lines in the world, even sailors have been known to nod in approval when one of these salty and stately craft motors by. Perceived among the best of the best cruising platforms around, Heritage models are built for people who take their boating very seriously. Thus, when a new model is added to the line, people pay attention. On the 43 Heritage EU, there are a number of great features of which to take notice.
The 43 is the successor to the builder’s 41 Heritage EU, only the 43 offers more in the way of space, accommodations and performance. The cockpit, for instance, is much larger: a full 30 percent bigger than the cockpit on the 41. We like the way the door to the salon can be opened to create one large living and entertaining area. The flybridge deck has also been expanded. Because it’s longer, there’s room for a tender and optional davit with 800-pound capacity. Forward is the helm, where there’s room for the centerline Pompanette seat, plus optional seats to port and starboard.
The 43 can be driven from the bridge or from a lower command station in the salon, where there’s good visibility thanks to a raised helm platform. A starboard side door makes it easy for the captain to communicate with crew when casting off lines or tying up for the night. Docking, by the way, will be relatively effortless, as the boat is equipped with a joystick. The joystick controls a pair of Zeus pod drives coupled to twin 480-horsepower Cummins Quantum Series diesels, which go a long way towards enhancing the performance of this cruiser. The power package produces a top speed in excess of 25 knots and a high cruising speed of 20 knots. At the same time, the 43 provides a comfortable ride at slower, displacement speeds. Solid performance across a wide range of speeds comes courtesy of the same modified-V hull design that made the 41 so popular.
The propulsion system also makes for both a quiet ride (gear noise and vibration are significantly reduced) and a cleaner one, as engine exhaust is nearly eliminated by venting the emission through the propeller hubs, where the water flow takes it far back into the wake. Cruising range is enhanced on the 43, too, since it features larger fuel tanks with 20 percent more capacity.
While performance is a big draw here, so too is cruising comfort. The 43 has two private cabins, and each comes with its own en suite head — a notable feature for a boat this size. We also like the oversized hull windows to port and starboard, which serve to brighten the accommodations and create lovely water views. That’s a feature you’ll appreciate on short and long trips, on the hook or under way. Another nice addition is the separate utility room that can function as a stowage space, tool room, pantry or laundry area.
Yet with all of the improvements on board the 43 Heritage EU, it still looks the part of a classic Grand Banks. And that is one of the nicest assets of all. www.grandbanks.com
GRAND BANKS 43 HERITAGE EU
Length Overall: 43 feet, 4 inches
Beam: 15 feet, 8 inches
Draft: 3 feet, 9 inches
Fuel Capacity: 600 gals.
Water Capacity: 200 gals.
Power: (2) 480-hp Cummins QSB6.7 diesels
Base Price: $850,500