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The mission of the Nordic Tugs Nordic Tug 49 is to offer a high level of overall fit and finish in a distance cruising boat that is easily operated by a couple or even single-handed. Further, she is intended to be easy to maneuver around the dock, handle well in open water, and be as comfortable as possible in a seaway. The trawler-type design has a practical layout with plenty of size and space to accommodate as many as 10 people on overnight passages. Designed with the experienced cruising boater in mind, this yacht should appeal to those who are looking to move up and really do some cruising either as a couple or with family and friends.

Key Features

  • Guest cabin with full berth plus washer/dryer
  • Head with stall shower Corian and VacuFlush toilet
  • Center helm with raised dash and overhead electronics
  • Engine room access from salon and lazerette
  • Settee with teak table seats 6 and converts to a berth
  • Chef’s galley with Corian counters and high-end appliances
  • Retractable HD flat panel TV with Bose surround system
  • 8 hull inset colors to choose
  • Full width boarding platform with centerline transom door
  • Stairs to boat deck and optional flybridge
Length Overall 52’ 3''
15.9 m
Beam 16’ 1''
4.9 m
Dry Weight 45,000 lbs.
20,455 kg
Tested Weight N/A
Draft 4’ 2''
1.3 m
- Draft Up N/A
- Draft Down N/A
- Air Draft N/A
Deadrise/Transom N/A
Max Headroom 6’ 7''
2.1 m
Bridge Clearance 17’ 4''
5.3 m (max)
Weight Capacity N/A
Person Capacity N/A
Fuel Capacity 800 gal.
3,028 L
Water Capacity 300 gal.
1,135 L
Length on Trailer N/A
Height on Trailer N/A
Trailer Weight N/A
Total Weight
(Trailer, Boat, & Engine)

Prices, features, designs, and equipment are subject to change. Please see your local dealer or visit the builder's website for the latest information available on this boat model.

Std. Power Volvo Penta 611-625
Tested Power 1 x 610-hp Cummins QSM 11
Opt. Power Not Available

Captain's Report

Nordic Tugs 49 running shot
The Nordic Tugs Nordic Tug 49 has a LOA of 52’3’’ (15.93 m) and a beam of 16’1” (4.90 m).

Distinguishing Features

Ruggedly Constructed.

Like its namesake, the Nordic Tug 49 is built for rugged work. For example, the boat has three rub rails, with the center one integrally molded into the hull. This rail will easily handle those occasional bumps. Owners should not fear letting her lean on the pilings to spring off the dock.

Lots of Teak.

The interior woodwork is teak, with impeccable attention to detail and high quality fit-and-finish on the cabinets, trim and finishes.

Washer and Dryer.

The Nordic Tug 49 we tested had both a washer and dryer unit which were cleverly installed below deck in the forward compartment. And a convenient laundry chute in the starboard side lower cabinet.

Sleeps 10.

The owner of the boat tested configured the boat to sleep 10 people. In the forward cabin the owner specified four full size bunk beds instead of the standard queen berth. The other sleeping accommodations are in the master, the hide-a-bed in the salon and the convertible dinette in the pilothouse.

Household-Spec Stairs.

The access to the flying bridge from the cockpit and from the pilothouse is serviced by staircases with treads and risers more similar to what we might find in a house than on a boat. The result is that they are easier, and safer, to climb for older boaters and for kids.

Nordic Tugs 49 running shot
The Nordic Tug 49 is seen here going 14 knots. She is powered by a single Cummins 610-hp diesel.

2 Thrusters.

Both bow and stern thrusters make for easy maneuvering around the dock. These thrusters should eliminate any concern about the ease of docking with a single-engine boat.

Single Engine.

Most boats this size have twin engines, but traditional trawlers, just like commercial workboats, usually have a single engine for significant fuel economy. By putting a high-horsepower single engine aboard the Nordic Tugs Nordic Tug 49, she can go over 14 knots at WOT.

Deep, Full length Keel.

Again, traditional trawlers had deep, full-length keels and so does the Nordic Tug 49. As a result, her prop is fully protected if grounded, and her barn-door rudder is supported at the bottom with a cast iron shoe.

Large Rudder.

The Nordic Tug 49's rudder is steel, hollow and foil shape. It is protected by the keel and an iron shoe. Because of its size it provides steerage even at relatively low speeds, something that small, twin spade rudders sometimes have difficulty providing.

Tug Design Theme.

Nordic Tugs was the first company to build a production trawler to take its external design cues from working tug boats. As anyone who lives around a commercial harbor knows, tug boats are the hardest working boats on the water, and the Nordic Tug 49 has emulated many of their positive attributes for cruising boaters. On the West Coast it is not unusual to see converted coastal tugs made into live-aboard cruisers.

Wide-Body Salon Design.

By minimizing her side decks to 11.5" (5.17 m) cat walks for hanging fenders when docking or going through locks, the Nordic Tug 49 has picked up at least a foot of valuable space inside.

Nordic Tugs 49 engine room plan
This is a view of the engine room and accommodations in the standard Nordic Tug 49 configuration. Note the remarkable amount of room around the engine. This makes work in the engine room easy and encourages daily checks of sea strainers, thru-hulls and the like.

Propulsion / Engine Room

The Nordic Tug 49 is powered by a single Volvo Penta D-11 engine.

Single Engine Worries?

Most boaters we know have some apprehension when it comes to outfitting a boat with a single engine so that subject needs to be addressed. Since the mission of this vessel is to actually go cruising -- and not just appearNordic Tugs 49 engine room

The boat we tested was equipped with a single turbocharged Cummins 610-hp engines driving a 3" ss shaft. The boat we tested had no redundant propulsion system but instead had a fuel polishing system.

Most large commercial vessels

such as ocean-going tankers, freighters, sea-going tugs, ferries, cruise ships, and many other types of vessels have only one main propulsion engine. Traditional recreational trawlers and long range cruisers -- by definition -- have only a single engine since twin engines could not possibly give them the range or the fuel economy desired to go serious distances on a single load of fuel. In fact, the instances of diesel engine failure in displacement-speed vessels due to a mechanical parts failure in recreational LRCs is exceedingly rare. It is for that reason that we endorse the single-engine concept, so long as there are adequate fuel polishing systems aboard.

Clean Fuel is the Key.

What can go wrong with a diesel, however, is contaminated fuel, something that can shut down a diesel engine. Sediment, bacterial or other organic growth, and water can all clog or starve injectors, thus shutting down one or more cylinders of the engine by clogging or blowing injectors. Older boats, particularly ones in the tropics, are prone to have sediment or organic growth in their fuel tanks. The solution to this potential problem is to make sure that the fuel delivered to it is clean.

Nordic Tugs 49 fuel polishing system
The Nordic Tugs Nordic Tug 49 that we tested was equipped with an ESI fuel polishing system that is used on both commercial and recreational vessels.

Fuel Polisher.

The boat we tested was equipped with an ESI fuel polishing system that was made up of a large Racor filter/water separator, a "De-Bug" magnetic array that removes yeast, algae, fungi and other organisms, and a specially-housed, pleated filter that can stop particles down to 2 microns. (A micron is 1/1,000,000 of a meter or .00004 inches. A normal human hair is 75 microns in diameter. Human blood cells are 5 microns in diameter. Bacteria are from 2 to 3 microns in diameter.)

The Polishing Process.

After fuel is taken aboard, all of the fuel in one tank is run through the polisher and returned to the same tank. Then the same process is repeated with the other tank. Nordic Tug's fuel manifold system permits this procedure. Once the fuel has been polished it is ready for use.

Filtered Again.

Underway the fuel is then sucked through two large Racor fuel filters which typically filter down to 10 microns and separate out any water, before sending this fuel onto the "primary" Cummins fuel filter on the engine which also filters out water and particles down to 2 microns. It is this three-stage filter process that makes the need for engine redundancy far less critical. In fact, our experience is that when there is a serious organism, sediment or water problem both engines in a twin set-up will be shut down, so engine redundancy does not guard against bad fuel.

Nordic Tugs 49 mechanical spaces
The Nordic Tug 49 mechanical spaces were as well organized as we have seen on any recreational boat in class. The fire suppression system is standard and has an automatic engine shut-down feature.

Other Engine Room Equipment

Our test boat was equipped with an 11.5 kW Onan generator. Onan is a sister company of Cummins, so repair techs can handle both units. Onan also has a reputation for being quiet. In fact the whole engine room is covered in 1" sound insulation with a Silver Mylar surface. Batteries were covered, low, secured and easy to get to. Thru-hulls are all over-sized, bronze and strainers are easily accessible, as is virtually everything in this open engine room. The drive shaft is 3" ss, Aquamet 19 grade with drip-less shaft seal. In fact, one of the most noteworthy things we noticed in the Nordic Tug 49's bilge was the absence of water.

Nordic Tugs 49 thru hulls
Thru-hulls are stout and bronze. Note the bonding system is much more than an afterthought. The hose is double layered with steel mesh inside.


The lazarette can be accessed through a water-tight hatch through the aft bulkhead in the engine room or from a hatch in the aft deck. We like this arrangement as it makes it easy for a captain to check on virtually all of the boat's thru-hulls during one inspection below. As can be seen in our video, the lazarette is large and open, everything is easy to access and there is plenty of room for storage for all manner of things. A washer and dryer can be placed here, although in the test boat it was in the bow compartment.

Nordic Tugs 49 stern thruster
The stern thruster is a Side-Power SE 100/185T 12V unit with a dedicated battery which is connected to the dedicated battery in the bow for the thruster there.
Nordic Tugs 49 rudder tiller
The tiller for the rudder is cast iron. Note the stops and the dripless seal on the rudder post.

Features Inspection


The new Nordic Tug 49’s hull features a split chine design which provides a comfortable ride while operating at speed and is stable and quiet while at anchor. The chine is elevated at the bow to help prevent that annoying slapping noise heard when the boat is on the anchor or at the dock as ripples on the water hit the boat. We also like the molded-in faux planks on her hullside. These break up the solid fiberglass surface allowing shadow to make her high freeboard more visually pleasing. The freeboard is 5'6" (1.68 m) amidships and 5'4" (1.63 m) at the stern.

Her Long Suit is Displacement.

The hull is semi-displacement which means she can plane if enough power is applied. But her forte is traveling at displacement speeds and that is what we recommend for most of her work, leaving her WOT speed potential of 14 to 15 knots in reserve for emergency situations. Boaters who want to go faster than 12 knots, should seriously consider if they really want to do long distance cruising or not. If speed in the 20-knot range or higher is wanted this is not the right boat. Those kinds of speeds require large twin engines and small spade rudders. Such boats lose the protection of a deep keel, and, of course, have limited range and fuel economy.

Full Keel.

The aspect of her hull that we like the most is her full keel which not only gives her good tracking ability, slows her rolling, lowers her CG, but it also protects her prop and rudder from grounding. It offers remarkable peace of mind, and in fact eliminates one of the greatest hazards of long distance cruising -- damaged props in out-of-the-way places. There is a cast iron shoe that is affixed to the bottom of the keel aft which bridges the gap from the "deadwood" of the keel to the bottom of the rudder, thus giving it support and protection.

Nordic Tugs 49 hull
A new modification to the Nordic Tug 49’s hull at the shaft area is a tunnel that has been incorporated into the hull design to reduce the draft to 4’2” (1.27 m) and improve performance. Note how effective the dripless shaft log is.
Nordic Tugs 49 rub rails
There are three rub rails, with the center one integrally molded into the hull. This rail will easily handle those occasional bumps or leaning on the pilings to spring off the dock. There is a third one that is low at the stern, just out of this picture, which protects the hull when leaving the dock bow first.
Nordic Tugs 49 standard layout
This is the standard Nordic Tug 49 layout, but not the one employed on our test boat which eliminated the salon dinette and table in favor of a stand-alone sofa and two barrel chairs.

Living Accommodations

The focal point of any trawler is its salon. We would have to search for some time to find a salon more cozy and comfortable than on the Nordic Tug 49 we tested. Because it was an owner's boat, she was fully furnished and decorated. This boat had two comfortable barrel-type chairs plus a moderate-sized sofa that makes into a bed for two. The large windows on three sides make the cabin bright and airy. Headroom is 6'6" (1.98 m).

Nordic Tugs 49 salon
The salon on the NT 49 is wide because of the narrow side decks. The sofa makes into a double bed. The decking in the galley is teak and holly. The cabinet facings, valances and window mullions are all Sapele.

Deciding on Dining.

The owners of the test boat were a couple who were veteran boaters who had owned trawlers in the past and knew what they wanted. They had decided that the large dinette in the pilot house would be their primary dining table, and the standard layout which has a table in the salon. This decision maximized both the comfort and the cozy feel of the salon, in our opinion.All owners of raised pilothouse motoryachts or trawlers smaller than about 70' have to make this decision. By having the dining table/cocktail table in the salon, a built-in L-shaped couch is usually employed which takes up space -- and really obviates a traditional "sitting-only" salon. It also makes sleeping two people here in a pinch more difficult.

Cozy, Functional Salon.

By opting to use the settee in the pilothouse as the dining table, the owners of our test boat left the salon free to be what it should be -- a comfortable sitting area family and friends can gather. The sofa in our test boat was also a hide-a-bed, and from the right manufacturer they can be remarkably comfortable and easy to make up.

Nordic Tugs 49 chairs
On the port side of the salon we find a barrel chair and a directors chair to maximize seating. Note the cabinets behind the chairs which use the area under the side decks for storage.
Nordic Tugs 49 comfortable seating
Captain Steve demonstrates the comfortable seating arrangement in the Nordic Tug 49’s salon. Note the table by his elbow services both his chair and the sofa. The door is Diamond Sea Glaze. The window frames are by the same company and have white, powder-coated frames.
Nordic Tugs 49 galley
Galley storage space is maximized with the overhead drop-down cabinets, as well as cabinets at the far right of the image. Two Nova Kool AC/DC refrigerator/freezers are stacked next to the two pull-out pantry drawers.

Gourmet Galley.

The galley shares the space behind the pilothouse and is located forward, as is traditional in this style of trawler yacht. The U-shaped galley has a wrap-around Corian counter top with a lip that is not quite "fiddle height." It is equipped with a standard dishwasher, optional gas oven, four-burner stove, stainless steel sink with a combination faucet/spray handle and a convection microwave oven. Storage abounds both above, under the counter tops, and adjacent to the galley on the starboard side of the interior.

Nordic Tugs 49 countertops
Corian countertops with a raised edge prevent things from sliding off while at anchor. A dishwasher is standard.
Nordic Tugs 49 galley storage
The advantages of a U-Shaped galley is that there is maximized storage space under the counters, the cook is handy to everything, and in a seaway there are three counters to lean on.
Nordic Tugs 49 teak holly decking
Teak and holly decking is used in the galley area providing an impressive traditional appearance. The hatch is under Captain Steve's foot.

Like Home.

Most important for any true cruising boat, the galley has a stand-up refrigerator/freezer. The owners of this boat decided to apportion the cooler/freezer sections 50/50, but many variations are optional. The important thing is that it is stand-up and not under the counter, which is the flavor of the month in some boats. Further, the refrigerator/freezer units is securely anchored so they will not move in even the most rambunctious seaway.


Nordic Tugs 49 queen size berth
A queen size island berth that measures 6’6” (1.98 m) x 4’ 10” (1.47 m).
Nordic Tugs 49 wood battens
Note the wood battens on the overhead which cover the seams of the vinyl and simulate wooden beams on an old ship. The vanity is the corner opposite the camera.

Full Beam Master Stateroom.

Down a set of stairs and turn to the left is the full-beam master stateroom which has an island berth that measures 6’6” (1.98 m) x 4’ 10” (1.47 m), with plenty of room to walk around. Because the bed measures just 2” short of being a standard size queen bed, queen-size sheets and bedding fits and eliminates the need for custom-made bedding. There is a lot of storage throughout the cabin including storage drawers under the bed. A vanity, flatscreen TV and sound system provide all the features needed in a master suite. Again all cabinet and door facings are Sapele. The master head is what one would expect to find on a boat of this type – it is good-sized and has a separate stall shower.

Nordic Tugs 49 forward cabin
The forward cabin is, perhaps, the most unusual aspect of this boat. We applaud the owners of this vessel for opting for this layout which maximizes the utility of the space. It also means the boat can sleep 10 people.

Forward Stateroom.

The forward stateroom is one of the most practical we have ever seen in this size boat. Since the owner has four grandchildren and plans to bring them all cruising, along with their two sets of parents, the owner asked Nordic Tugs to abandon the standard queen and build in a 4-berth bunk room.The result is a remarkably functional cabin, with more deck space, storage and comfortable single bunks than we have seen on any recreational cruiser under 80’. These four beds are all about standard twin size, allowing off-the-shelf linens to be used. (On each berth is a brass plate with each grandchild’s name. )

Nordic Tugs 49 berths
Matching upper and lower berths in the forward stateroom. Note the cubby and each berth has a reading light. (Yes, that is a TV on the shelf above the light.)

Washer and Dryer.

In the middle of the deck of the forward stateroom is a large hatch with ladder to the ship’s laundry room. There, we find separate washer and dryer units, storage and access to the bow.

Bow Thruster.

Being veteran cruisers, the owners of this vessel know that it is far preferable to have separate washer and dryer units aboard if there is room. Not only is their capacity greater for each chore, but they also do a much better job of drying. They decided to put the units in the bow rather than in the lazarette.

Nordic Tugs 49 ladder
These are the steps down into the deep forefoot of the Nordic Tug 49. Behind the ladder is the Side-Power bow thruster with battery behind in its box.
Nordic Tugs 49 washer and dryer
The washer and dryer were located here instead of in the lazarette to keep the aft space open for other bulky equipment. It is also closer to where dirty sheets and clothes will be. Note the storage to the right.
Nordic Tugs 49 laundry chute
A clever innovation for the laundry is a laundry chute built into the forward cabin which the grandchildren undoubtedly enjoy using.
Nordic Tugs 49 pilot house
This is the business end of the Nordic Tug 49. The standard captain's chair is a Stidd 500N Admiral Slimline. The cabinetry is Sapele. The dining/settee/pilot berth measures 6'6" x 3'7" and easily makes into a berth.
Nordic Tugs 49 instrument console
The instrument console is fairly standard in boats of this type. We like the lowered panel for the toggles as it makes them easier to see when sitting. This boat will be on autopilot most of the time.


Moving forward and up a couple of steps we arrive at the pilothouse which is as well-equipped, as spacious and as luxurious as any in class. Clearly this is the heart of the command and operations center for the vessel. This area has been carefully laid out for the serious captain with comfort and functionality in mind. It is a traditional layout, one that has been tested over the years on many types and sizes of boats and has proven itself. There are no gimmicks or innovations here.

Visibility is Key.

The three large rectangular forward windshields and two side windows maximize visibility forward. To both port and starboard there are sliding Diamond Sea Glaze watertight doors with large windows. Further aft there are two more large windows which all together provide the captain with about 270-degrees of visibility – an amount which is noteworthy for a vessel in this class.

The Con.

There is an impressive array of electronics installed that are easily viewed and controlled from the Stidd helm seat. Overhead, the builder has installed a cabinet for additional electronics. We would limit gear going there to things that are only occasionally referenced, such as an anemometer, barometer, clock and the like. There is a raised navigation screen dash that is not too high and is large enough for two 15” screens plus other, smaller screens and readouts.

Nordic Tugs 49 co-pilot view
This is more or less the view that the co-pilot will have when sitting behind the table at the settee. In fact, the captain may sit here, too, from time to time when the boat is on autopilot.
Nordic Tugs 49 windows
Note the windows behind Captain Steve which do offer some visibility astern. This is one of the most comfortable seats aboard.
Nordic Tugs 49 helm seats
For those couples who like to sit together when cruising, please note that there is room to the left of the centerline for a second Stidd seat, but it may somewhat restrict access to the chart table.

Stairways to Heaven.

There is a stairway to starboard forward that leads to the staterooms and day head below, with well-placed grab rails. Behind the helm is a set of stairs to the flying bridge. Well-crafted wood rails, posts and newel accentuate the staircase.

Nordic Tugs 49 dash screen
A screen on the dash keeps the stern in view. A second camera can be placed in the aft cockpit for backing into a slip from the lower helm.
Nordic Tugs 49 chart table
A large Corian chart table, with light and a full size chart drawer just below.
Nordic Tugs 49 u shaped settee
The U-shaped settee located behind the helm can easily accommodate members of the crew while underway, has lots of storage space below the seats and converts into a bunk.

Flying Bridge

The flying bridge provides excellent visibility for a panoramic view of the boat and has a full complement of controls and electronics for the captain. The full size stainless steel wheel on the test boat required lots of input to move the rock-solid and tight setting of the controls. Response to input was not fast, something we kept in mind when maneuvering, especially around the dock. Steering need not be so stiff and we would make the appropriate changes to improve this detail of handling.

Nordic Tugs 49 helm chairs
His and hers helm chairs means two sets of eyes can help with the piloting. The mast in the background is standard and is hinged so that it can be lowered if passing under a low bridge. Then, its air draft would be about 17'4" (5.28 m).
Nordic Tugs 49 wheel
The wheel is on the centerline and instrument space is somewhat less than what is available below, which is normal for most boats.

The element that we like most about this flying bridge is the high bulwark design that surrounds the bridge space. Acrylic wind deflectors are placed on top of the coaming making the bridge even more secure. Built-in seating to port comfortably handles three people. Abaft the flying bridge is the ship’s mast with the radar antenna mounted above everyone’s heads, just the way we like to see it done.

Nordic Tugs 49 tender
The tender on the test boat is 12' (3.66 m) long which is certainly adequate, but there is room for a 15-footer (4.57 m). The optional Steelhead davit has a 1,000 lb. (454 kg) capacity.

Boat Deck.

Down two steps from the helm is the huge boat deck. One of the positive aspects of the NT 49’s design is the large coach roof that can easily handle a 15’ (4.57 m) tender. Every true cruising boat needs a tender, in fact, we think a tender is actually the second most important item of equipment after the ship’s main engine. In this case, the tender can easily be launched and retrieved by one person thanks to the hydraulic davit. When at anchor or in port the tender is usually launched which then frees up the boat deck for other purposes such as sun bathing, lounging, or making a venue for a cocktail party or even dinner with the addition of folding tables and chairs. The cradle for the tender can be removed, making virtually all of the coach roof square footage useful for entertaining.

Engine Room

A large engine room provides plenty of space to move around the engine and components. Headroom ranges from 4'8" (1.47 m) to 4'11" (1.49 m). An impressive amount of insulation, 1” thick, with a barrier and silver Mylar finish, covers the engine compartment to control the sound levels while underway.

Nordic Tugs 49 engine room movement
With a single engine, there is plenty of room to move all around the engine to get at thru-hulls, strainers and everything else in this well laid-out space.
Nordic Tugs 49 lazarette
The lazarette, accessed by a Diamond Sea Glaze watertight door, is just as roomy with a full 4’1” (1.24 m) of headroom and lots of storage area. It can also be accessed through a hatch in the aft deck.


The Nordic Tugs Nordic Tug 49 has a LOA of 52’3’’ (15.93 m), a beam of 16’1” and a draft of 4’2” (1.27 m). With an empty weight of 45,000 lbs. (40,455 kg), 640 gallons (2,422 L) of fuel and five people on board, we had an estimated test weight of 56, 455 lbs (25,607 kg).

Nordic Tugs 49 running shot
Underway the Nordic Tug 49 slices cleanly through the water with her sharp bow.

Powered by a single 610-hp Cummins QSM11 engine turning a 35 x 29 five bladed prop with a left hand rotation, we reached a top speed at 2280 rpm of 14.2 kts. At that speed we were burning 29.9 gph giving us a range of 342 nautical miles.Best cruise of this semi-displacement hull with an LWL of 48’4” really depends on how fast the owner wants to run the boat. Using her waterline length to determine her theoretical displacement hull speed, we come up with 9.3 kts (using the formula of sq. root of LWL x 1.34) where her bow wave length equals her waterline length. ) At 1500 rpm she did exactly that speed, burning 8.1 gph for a range of that speed, she should have a range of 636 nautical miles with a 10% reserve. That means at that pace she can travel from Newport, R.I to Bermuda with a 10% fuel reserve to spare -- the Gulf Stream notwithstanding.

Nordic Tugs 49 running shot
The NT 49's swim platform is an integral part of the hull thus boosting her theoretical hull speed.

On coastal cruises she will burn just 12.7 gph at 10 knots giving her a 571 nmile range. That means 80 nmiles can be covered in an 8-hour day, which is not bad. And who is in a hurry? We like getting underway at 7 a.m. when conditions are often flat and dropping anchor at 3pm, giving us time to do some fishing before dinner.

Nordic Tugs 49 profile shot
In profile the Nordic Tug 49 is impressive. Her wide colored cove stripe, her bow-to-stern integral rub rail, and her faux planks all make her considerable freeboard look lower than the 5'6" it is amidships.

Long Range Cruising.

We normally don't think of the Nordic Tug 49 as being a long range cruiser (LRC) much less a trans-oceanic cruiser, but the fact of the matter is, because of her LWL, 800-gallon fuel capacity, relatively light weight in this class, and single engine -- she has a range at 1250 RPM and 7.2 knots of 2,402 nmiles. That means she may reach fuel stops crossing both the Atlantic and Pacific. Not only does she have the range, but she also gets 3.3 nmpg. That is the holy grail for boats in her size among LRC vessels. When we compare this performance to a couple of brands famous for their trans-oceanic travel, we find that at about the same speed, the Nordic Tug 49 is 45% more fuel efficient in the 7.2 kts - 7.3 kts range. That means to have 2400 nm range she doesn't have to carry well over a thousand gallons of fuel.

How Can this Be?

Essentially, for two basic reasons: 1) The Nordic Tug with a dry weight of 50,000 lbs. is 30% to 40% lighter than the other pure displacement vessels and take less effort to push because of its weight and lower draft; and, 2) at 1,000 RPM she is developing less than 200-hp but about 67% of its maximum torque, whereas smaller diesel engines must run a higher rpm to push the same load at the same speed, much less push a load that is much heavier.

Nordic Tugs 49 running shot
Slight lean to the outboard of the turn. This is not unusual for the type of vessel.


While underway and making way, maneuvering in a tight serpentine pattern, she produced a noticeable lean to port while a turn to starboard produces half as much lean. The wide flared bow allows her to easily handle relatively high waves and would provide the operator confidence when encountering foul weather offshore. It is important to note that in offshore conditions with 6’ to 8’ seas, virtually no recreational motoryacht can go faster than about 8 knots so the Nordic Tug 49’s single-engine displacement speed is not only more economical, but her low CG and relatively heavy weight make her far more comfortable than a conventional light-weight express-type boats, for example.

Strength in Following Seas.

While we did not test the Nordic Tug 49 in a following sea offshore, her design is made for just that kind of condition. It is on this point of sail in snotty conditions that trawler-type yachts with twin engines and two small spade rudders often become difficult to control for several reasons. One reason is that at slow speeds, small rudders take time to turn the boat. Without a deep, full-length keel to provide directional stability these vessels are more likely to yaw requiring attentive, skillful piloting to stay headed the right direction

The Nordic Tug 49’s design

, on the other hand, with its full-length keel and large, barn-door rudder has much more surface area with which to steer the vessel. Together, the long keel and the big rudder make it easier to keep this boat pointed in the right direction in these conditions.


While some may be concerned about docking a boat this size with only one engine, this boat puts those fears to rest quickly when approaching the dock. She settles down quickly and predictably when power is reduced. Then little nudges with both the main engine and the two thrusters effectively position her. If things get a little out of shape, the bow and stern thrusters provide that little boost that provides smooth and uncomplicated docking.

Nordic Tugs 49 wet bar
The console on the aft deck is a good place to mount a gas grill. Note the air intake for the engine room behind the grill. It is high and facing aft and unlikely to take green water.
Nordic Tugs 49 side decks
Her side decks abaft the sliding helm side doors are 11.5" wide which is just wide enough for Captain Steve to pass by leaning out. Passage here is really only needed to set fenders. We think this is a good trade-off for the interior room picked up.
Nordic Tugs 49 swim platform
Captain Steve notes the good-sized swim platform which makes boarding easy from a floating dock or a tender.

Options to Consider

Fuel Polishing System:

A really good upgrade, strongly recommended for cruising with a single engine. This will provide peace of mind.


They are advisable for those planning long offshore passages with a less than seasoned crew. We don't think they’re necessary for coastal cruising.

Water Maker:

For the serious long range cruisers venturing into foreign waters where water quality may be a concern or availability is restricted we recommend one. Remember that the Nordic Tug 49 carries just 395 gallons of water and a dishwasher, cloths washer, and four grand children can make quick work of that water tank.

Aft Deck Station:

Engine and thruster controls on the aft deck make backing in easy, so why not get them?

Solar Panels.

The owner of this vessel is planning on placing about 15 lbs. of thin solar panel sheets on the top of his canvas Bimini. He says that 4 panels will generate 400 Amps which is enough to keep his 8 AGM batteries topped off and his refrigerators humming while the boat is idle on a mooring.


$1,186,670 base price.

Nordic Tugs 49 running shot


The whole watchword for the Nordic Tugs Nordic Tug 49 is “room”. Because of her tug/trawler-like shape the Nordic Tug 49 carries her 16’1” (4.90 m) beam well forward giving her large staterooms. Her deep keel and high topsides permit her accommodations decks to be wide, avoiding the necessity for “cheating” angles in decks we have sometimes seen in boats pushing living spaces forward. For the nervous nellies who who are concerned about a single engine and get-home power, perhaps a hydraulic arrangement driving the drive shaft from a PTO on the generator can be arranged. While years ago we might have considered such an option, because of the boat’s fuel-polishing equipment and the proven reliability of the Cummins QSM 11 engine, we would simply invest in three sets of stout ground tackle – two at the bow and one in the stern lazarette and leave it at that. Finally, while the Nordic Tugs Nordic Tug 49 can travel in the mid teens, it should be remembered that that she is essentially a displacement cruising yacht, encorporating all of the economics and safety features that are enherent in that type of vessel. And, when it comes to really long distance cruising she is a sleeper. Her fuel efficiency at displacement speeds are noteworthy.

Test Result Highlights

  • Top speed for the Nordic Tugs Nordic Tug 49 (2014-) is 16.4 mph (26.4 kph), burning 29.9 gallons per hour (gph) or 113.17 liters per hour (lph).
  • Best cruise for the Nordic Tugs Nordic Tug 49 (2014-) is 13.0 mph (20.9 kph), and the boat gets 0.7 miles per gallon (mpg) or 0.3 kilometers per liter (kpl), giving the boat a cruising range of 497 miles (799.84 kilometers).
  • Tested power is 1 x 610-hp Cummins QSM 11.


CD Stereo Standard
Head: Fixed Standard
TV/DVD Standard


Microwave Standard
Refrigerator Standard
Stove Standard

Exterior Features

Transom Door Standard

Boats More Than 30 Feet

Bow Thruster Standard
Freezer Standard
Washer/Dryer Standard
Washer/Dryer Standard


Hull Warranty


Pricing Range: $1,186,670.00

Prices, features, designs, and equipment are subject to change. Please see your local dealer or visit the builder's website for the latest information available on this boat model.

Test Results - Change Measurement Unit

RPM MPH Knots GPH MPG NMPG Stat. Mile NM dBa
600 5.4 4.7 1.2 4.7 4.1 3381 2939.9 59
1000 8.3 7.2 2.2 3.8 3.3 2763 2402.4 64
1250 9.8 8.5 4.4 2.3 2.0 1622 1410.5 66
1270 10.2 8.8 4.3 2.4 2.1 1700 1477.9 0
1500 10.8 9.3 8.1 1.3 1.2 961 836.1 69
1750 11.6 10.0 12.7 0.9 0.8 657 571.6 72
2000 13.0 11.3 18.8 0.7 0.6 497 432.4 73
2130 14.6 12.7 22.9 0.6 0.6 460 400.0 0
2250 15.6 13.5 28.4 0.5 0.5 394 342.8 80
2280 16.4 14.2 29.9 0.5 0.5 394 342.9 79
600 2939.9 5441 8.70 4.54 2.00 59
1000 2402.4 4447 13.40 8.33 1.62 64
1250 1410.5 2610 15.80 16.66 0.98 66
1270 1477.9 2736 16.40 16.28 1.02 0
1500 836.1 1547 17.40 30.66 0.55 69
1750 571.6 1057 18.70 48.07 0.38 72
2000 432.4 800 20.90 71.17 0.30 73
2130 400.0 740 23.50 86.69 0.26 0
2250 342.8 634 25.10 107.51 0.21 80
2280 342.9 634 26.40 113.18 0.21 79

All fuel consumption numbers are the total for all engines in the boat. Speeds are measured with Stalker ProSports radar gun or GPS. Fuel consumption (gallons per hour) measured with Floscan digital fuel-flow meter or by on-board factory-installed diagnostic instruments. Range is based on 90% of published fuel capacity. Sound levels determined using Radio Shack digital decibel meter on A scale. 68 dBA is the level of normal conversation. Time to plane is measured from start of acceleration to formation of rooster tail behind boat.