First Look: Hinckley Bermuda 50

Hinckley Yachts has always built boats with graceful lines and exquisite craftsmanship that have come to define what classic American cruising boats should look like. But as you’d expect, that look has changed over the course of the nearly 90 years this American company has been building boats.

Back in 1960, the Hinckley Bermuda 40 was one of the first sailing yachts to take advantage of fiberglass construction. And later, Hinckley created a whole new genre of classically styled, jet-propelled powerboats that are as elegant as they are practical. In fact, Hinckley jet boats (ranging from 29- to 55-feet) have been so successful that the company hasn’t focused on building a new sailboat model for years. Until now.

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I caught a first glimpse of Hinckley’s new Bermuda 50 only a few days ago at the start of Block Island Race Week’s Round the Island Race. And my first impressions (from another boat a short distance away as we maneuvered at the start of the race) was that Hinckley’s first new sailboat model to be launched in over 10 years seems to strike the delicate balance of being respectful of tradition while embracing modern design.

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