Is this the most fun you can have on a four-berth boat? MBY's Alex Smith takes a test drive of the Windy 34 Alizé, the long-awaited successor to the mighty 34 Khamsin...
Windy’s celebrated sportscruiser range is not really a range of sportscruisers at all. It’s a range of sporting weekenders, with acutely angled hulls, traditional sterndrive propulsion and slick, puckered foredecks that put the emphasis squarely on performance rather than volume.
But what Windy is famous for and what purist Windy fans continue to demand are premium Nordic weekenders that can take you across rough seas at pace with soft-riding agility and then accommodate you for a night or two when you reach your destination.
The much-loved Windy 34 Khamsin was just such a boat until it was cruelly discontinued in 2013, and a decade later, conscious of a physical and financial void between the Windy 32 Grand Zonda (£338,000) and the Windy 37 Shamal (£650,000), Windy has introduced a stepping stone that, in principle at least, has the potential to outdo them both.
On first acquaintance though, the new Windy 34 Alizé looks like a creative hybrid of the two – like a 32 Grand Zonda with modified styling and an extra double berth; or like a 37 Shamal minus the superyacht-style hull windows and the cockpit wet bar.
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Either way, what is not in doubt is the flexibility it introduces beneath the engine hatch. At 2ft longer and 7in wider than the 32, this is the smallest boat in the Windy fleet that enables you to spec a pair of Volvo Penta D6 440s.
You can also spec a single 440, a pair of D4 320s or even twin V8 430s. But it’s exciting to see that today’s test boat is equipped with the full 880hp of big-block diesel grunt.
To read Alex’s full review of the Windy 34 Alizé, pick up the October 2023 issue of MBY, which is out now.
Windy 34 Alizé specifications
LOA: 33ft 10in (10.30m)
Beam: 10ft 4in (3.15m)
Draft: 2ft 2in (0.65m)
Displacement: 5,700 kg
Fuel capacity: 600 litres
Test engines: Twin Volvo Penta D6 440hp diesels
Top speed on test: 51.3 knots
Fuel consumption: 44lph @ 20 knots
Cruising range: 218nm @ 20 knots
Noise: 70 d(B)A @ 20 knots
RCD category: B for 8 people/ C for 10 people
Starting price: £349,000 (ex. VAT)
Price as tested: £512,886 (inc. VAT)