Wellcraft 355 first look: US brand looks to conquer Europe with new model

Wellcraft is looking to steal a slice of the lucrative European adventure boat market with its striking new Wellcraft 355…

Unlike the US brand’s previous range of centre console craft, the Wellcraft 355 features a plumb bow, a fully enclosed wheelhouse with a forward-raked windscreen and modern Scandinavian styling.

The sudden change of direction looks like a deliberate attempt to muscle in on the success of brands like Axopar, Saxdor and Nimbus under the auspices of Wellcraft’s French parent company, the Beneteau Group.

Performance has always been a hallmark of Wellcraft and with its stepless, deep-vee hull and triple 350hp outboards, the new Wellcraft 355 should have no trouble exceeding 50 knots.

However, the offset pilothouse is likely to be a Beneteau influence, offering year-round useability and easy movement fore and aft along its wider starboard side deck.

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Inside the wheelhouse, there’s an L-shaped seating area with pedestal table to starboard, three forward-facing helm seats and a basic galley to port.

All-round glazing should offer excellent visibility, while two skylights forward and an opening sunroof aft add extra light and ventilation.

Despite a spacious seating area in the bow, there is still plenty of room below for a full-sized double vee-berth and separate head-shower stall.

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Big windows, slender pillars and multiple skylights make for a bright and breezy wheelhouse

Built in Poland, the Wellcraft 355 is due to make its European debut at the 2022 Cannes Yachting Festival in September ahead of its UK debut at the Southampton Boat Show in the same month.

Prices for the Wellcraft 355 have not yet been released but we’ll keep you up to date as details emerge.

Expect the range to expand in future to include open and T-top variants as well as larger and smaller models.