Smaller sibling has big shoes to fill
The award-winning C46 was always going to be a hard act to follow but the new C43 makes a pretty good job of it.
It still has two good-sized ensuite double cabins, it’s still got a sociable cockpit complete with sunbeds, wet-bar and a tender garage and it’s still got a great looking hardtop with a big sunroof and a first-class helm.
So why the hesitation? Because, when you view the two boats side by side it just doesn’t seem quite as special as its big sister. You notice it most in the owner’s cabin where the narrower beam and offset berth make it feel tighter than the C46’s opulent suite. It’s still a very fine cabin for a 43ft sportscruiser complete with striking over-sized hull windows but it doesn’t have quite the same wow-factor. Elsewhere it’s not just the extra inches that you miss, it’s the neat little touches.
Take the forecabin – both the C46 and the C43 share the same clever scissor-action berths that can be pushed together to make a big double bed or pulled apart to make two singles. In both cases there is also storage under the berths but only on the C46 do you get locker doors on both sides so that you can access your clothes however the beds are configured. Nor do you get the separate walk-in shower in the guest/day heads or the electrically powered garage floor which lifts the tender up to give access to the engine bay. Even the IPS Joystick is optional on the C43 but standard on the C46.
Other anomalies include teak planks that run across the cockpit rather than bow to stern and a rather austere black on brown interior (lighter alternatives are available). This doesn’t mean the C43 isn’t a desirable boat – viewed against its direct competitors it is a hugely appealing 43ft sportscruiser. Nor should you overlook the fact that it will fit into a smaller berth, burn less fuel, go slightly faster and cost around ?110,000 less than a C46. We can’t wait to find out how it measures up to the C46 out on the water.
Contact: Bates Wharf Marine
Tel: 01932 571141
At a glance
Length: 43ft 4in (13.21m)
Beam: 13ft 1in (3.99m)
Top speed: 36 knots (est)
Engines: Twin IPS 500 or 370hp D6 sterndrives
Price: from ?440,000 ex tax (IPS500) (approx £410,000 inc UK VAT)