Search Yachts View Wishlist
29 July 2021
Understanding different types of boat            


The sheer variety in sizes and shape of boats for sale is extraordinary. From small yachts, motorboats, powerboats and sports cruisers to luxury yachts, motor cruisers and superyachts, it can be bewildering to the uninitiated. Of course, using a professional yacht broker like Argo Yachting can help you break the market down into workable subsections, but if you want to get a straightforward sense of the pros and cons of each core boat type, then this is a great place to start.


Tenders: for ship to shore duties


At its most basic, a tender is a compact inflatable boat with a portable outboard engine, used to ferry people and equipment from ship to shore and back again. Highly buoyant and very affordable, they are designed to be easy to stow, deploy and recover from the aft deck of a relatively compact cruiser. Whether you opt for an inflatable floor for low weight, a rigid (usually slatted) floor for higher performance, PVC construction for lower prices or Hypalon for extra durability, the modern tender market fantastically varied. In addition to a range of stylish jet RIBs with excellent pace, manoeuvrability and shallow-water performance, those with larger yachts can also now explore any number of exotic 30-foot plus offshore craft with ocean-munching 50-knot performance.


RIBs: stoic sea boats


In its most traditional form, a RIB (Rigid Inflatable Boat) is a very simple thing to understand. It is a heavily built, soft-riding, rigid-hulled powerboat with an inflatable collar to add extra buoyancy and absorb any minor knocks. Originally designed as a serious sea boat for commercial applications and heavyweight load carrying duties, the modern, style-conscious leisure RIB, tends to use lower diameter tubes, alongside greater power and plenty of extra versatility in terms of the layout. While RIBs remain in widespread use as patrol vessels, safety boats, support craft and powerboat tuition platforms, they are also used as race craft, chase boats, tenders, day boats and even motor cruisers, with a level of fit-out and luxury that elevates them way beyond their traditional role as the humble workhorse. Internal space does tend to be limited in relation to hard powerboats of a similar length but they retain a very committed following among open boating fans. 


Bow riders: sunny day boats


What most of us bring to mind when we consider the classic bow rider is the traditional American style of craft. Built for family day boaters by the likes of Bayliner, Sea Ray and Chaparral, it tends to employ wraparound cockpit seating, alongside additional V-shaped loungers in the tapered bow. This sociable arrangement also tends to be used on specialist watersports tow boats, where the standard bow-rider layout is supplemented with generous inboard power to optimise the pull, directional fins to retain directional stability and ballasting features to control the wake shape.

Argo Yachting is the official distributor for Chris-Craft in the UK and Balearic Islands, presenting a stunning range of bow riders and more. 


Sports fishers: space, speed and seakeeping


The modern sports fisher market is extremely diverse. It encompasses everything from 16-foot runabouts to premium 80-foot multi-deck offshore platforms with fighting chairs, observation towers and luxurious cruising accommodation. However, a good sports fisher will generally feature a broad beam for extra internal space and stability at rest, as well as a generous bow flare to help protect the occupants from spray. The cockpit tends to have deep, secure gunwales, a wide-open deck and a central helm to provide shelter from the elements without inhibiting passenger movement. Those who enjoy fishing often choose to maximise that trait with a Centre Console (CC) or Walkaround (WA) layout but, in either case, the space, pace and flexibility of a well sorted fisher make it a great choice for a family user in search of a do-it-all open sports boat.


Motor cruisers: boats with beds


Any yacht with an engine and a bed could reasonably be described as a motor cruiser – but there are of course plenty of variants. While the terms are fluid and open to interpretation, a cuddy (or a weekender) is a small, sporting cruise boat with compact forward accommodation for two. By contrast, a true sports cruiser is a larger cruising boat with a bed for a guest as well as the owner, alongside dedicated heads and galley facilities down below. That said, the ‘open-cockpit-closed-bow’ layout generally employed by these craft is by no means the only option. Those who need an increased variety of entertaining zones will often favour a three-deck flybridge cruiser. Those who want to enjoy offshore sport and year-round adventure will gravitate toward Scandinavian-style pilothouse cruisers from the likes of Targa and Sargo. Mediterranean boaters in search of ‘la dolce vita’ tend to relish a combination of open-deck sunbathing space and closed-saloon climate control. Here at Argo Yachting, our brokerage teams in the UK and Europe have access to some of the best motor cruisers around.


Superyachts: pioneering custom craft


As the size, complexity and price of a motor yacht increases, the standard factory-fit vessel gives way to the bespoke one-off custom creation. Whether you opt for a tough, beamy expedition vessel with a variety of on board toys or for something conceived for the catwalk pontoons of Monaco, you can now embrace everything from helipads and submarine launching bays to cinema rooms, swimming pools and spas.


To find your perfect yacht, contact our team today on +44 (0)1489 885656 or email [email protected]