on 14 Mar 2022
Azimut Yachts’ new 68 Flybridge pairs a new, fluid design ethic with its continued drive for fuel efficiency. The result is a family-oriented yacht sure to please buyers the world over. In March, Hong Kong welcomed its first hull, through dealer Marine Italia
The Azimut 68 is the newest model in the Italian builder’s flybridge collection, and it reflects the subtle, ongoing transformation of the Azimut brand.
Older, darker interiors and squarish shapes are going, replaced by lighter interiors with a slightly feminine touch. The exterior lines of previous models are also being evolved under the design pen of Alberto Mancini, recruited by Azimut to bring new life to its looks. Mancini borrows from car design to create a sharper, cleaner look on the exterior, and his work can already be seen in last year’s Azimut 78.
The new 68, launched at the 2021 Cannes boat show, features plenty of carbon fibre construction up top, reducing weight and lowering the centre of gravity, thus adding to fuel efficiency and the stability of the ride. Three interior layouts on the main deck are available, depending on lifestyle inclinations.
Azimut markets its new 68 as a Yacht for the World, implying that European, North American and Asian clients can find specific market preferences met in this model.
Notably, this new model is one of the first yachts to emerge from the yard without any input from legendary designer Stefano Righini, who passed away on October 1, 2021. Righini had provided exterior lines on just about every Azimut yacht for decades – one estimate put the total at over 5,000 yachts. He was also credited with turning lower deck portholes into windows. His passing seemingly marks the end of one era and the beginning of a new one for Azimut. Achille Salvagni was recruited for the interiors and furnishings.
For this new 68, the three main-deck layouts Azimut offers focus on the location of the galley. The first has an elegant lounge at the entrance to the main deck, with a galley off to one side, closed off by plexiglass and a series of wooden “ribs” or vertical slats. This Lanterna configuration gives the galley privacy but allows light to flow throughout the space, creating a large and light-filled ambience.
Azimut markets its new 68 as a Yacht for the World, implying that European, North American and Asian clients can find specific market preferences met
Another version features an open-style galley but in the same position as the Lanterna design; in this configuration, the galley is more open to socialising onboard. The third and most informal layout has the galley in the stern to facilitate direct flow between interior and exterior, while the living area is set apart.
Whatever the configuration, there is a multi-purpose area in the middle of the main saloon that can be used for anything. Instead of trying to jam in a dedicated dining area, Azimut has opted for a lounge area in which two small tables can be converted into a table large enough to seat all eight potential passengers.
Apart from layout configuration possibilities, the Azimut 68 interior is notable for its smooth lines, curves, brightness and light textures. It is a big departure from past models, where a darker interior was seemingly associated with a quality finish. These light colours and curving lines also give a more relaxed atmosphere, one better suited for informal fun.
Down below, there are two double cabins, one of which has the beds arranged bunk-bed-style to save space. The master cabin is amidships and the VIP is in the bow. Both feature great headroom and plenty of space to stretch out, plus a lot of storage.
Throughout the yacht, designers have incorporated plenty of little touches that will be well appreciated when the yacht is at anchor. The aft cockpit has a compact wet bar/service station that is so well packed into the area, you don’t really notice it until it’s in use. The bow area offers a complete lounge area, with sun pads, loungers and a drinks table.
Throughout the yacht, the designers have incorporated plenty of little touches that will be well appreciated when the yacht is at anchor
Up top, the flybridge has plenty of space. The aft portion of the fly can be fitted with a recliner unit or have freestanding furniture. A huge galley and dining table for eight mean that everyone onboard can gather for a leisurely meal while taking in the best view. At the transom, there is a high-low swim platform that can be used to launch the Pirelli J33 tender, and there is storage space for scuba gear or other toys.
Azimut has been working hard in recent years to increase its sustainability and reduce fuel consumption. Azimut executive vice president Giovanna Vitelli has made no secret of her intention to steer Azimut towards an all-electric future. While that future is being developed, Azimut has worked on reducing the impact of its yachts today.
The 68 features extensive use of carbon fibre in the yacht’s hard top, superstructure and upper deck as part of Azimut’s Carbon Tech Generation series, which are lighter and therefore more fuel-efficient. The hull was designed by Pierluigi Ausonio Naval Architects and optimised for efficiency, making the 68 easy on the wallet when you fill up the tank.
The 68 features extensive use of carbon fibre in the yacht’s hard top, superstructure and upper deck as part of Azimut’s Carbon Tech Generation series
Powered on twin Volvo IPS 1350 engines, the 68 gets a top speed of just over 30 knots (depending on load and conditions). But it also offers a safe cruising range of well over 300 nautical miles at a relatively high cruising speed of over 25 knots. That means fewer trips to refuel, which any owner can appreciate.
The 68 also comes with several additions from Azimut Yachts’ Innovation Lab, such as a joystick driving system and Garmin Control Monitoring System, plus active trim control. In short, buyers can expect a comfy ride on a yacht that captures your attention with its curves.
Technical Specifications – Azimut 68
Displacement (full load): 43.7t
Engines: 2 x Volvo IPS 1350 1,000hp
Max Speed: 32kts
Cruise Speed: up to 28kts
Fuel Capacity: 3,700l
Water Capacity: 1,000l
Cabins: 4 plus one crew