Captain's ReportThe 41 Heritage EU looks just like a Grand Banks, and that’s good. It has the extended saloon of all the EU models, meaning lots of living room on the main deck level. Aft, there’s a U-shaped dinette with a settee opposite, a galley forward to port, helm to starboard. All joinery is Grand Banks style, e.g., lots of wood. But the décor is clean and modern, and the large deckhouse windows make the saloon a bright, cheery space during the day and a cozy hideaway at night. Just remember to draw the curtains.
All of this if very much like what one has come to expect on a traditional Grand Banks, so expectations are met. After all, it is a “Heritage.”
Belowdecks, the forward master stateroom has an island queen berth, the guest cabin to port a pair of twins. There’s a single head with access from the master or the passageway; it has a separate stall shower. Aft of the accommodations is a gigantic utility space where the engines ought to be. It’s big enough for a washer/dryer, workbench, spare parts, stores, you name it. You reach this great new space by opening a hatch in the galley sole and climbing down into it.
Essentially the lazarette has been moved to the center of the boat, and that has its advantages. First, it is far handier to do the laundry. Second, our guess is that it will be drier than a conventional lazarette in the stern which tends to be dank and damp on virtually any boat. But where are the engines?
Zeus Makes the Difference
Thanks to GB’s choice of Zeus pod drives instead of conventional inboard engines with shafts and rudders, the Cummins MerCruiser Diesels live all the way aft, almost atop the innovative drives. That has freed up space under the salon for what everyone these days is calling it – “the basement.” Not too nautical. We prefer “hold” or, utility room, or better yet, “storeroom.” Anything except basement, please.
If you haven’t heard of Zeus drives, then simply use BoatTEST.com’s search engine on the home page of the website and type in “Zeus pod drives” and you will be brought up to speed. According to people who have used them, Zeus drives, with the joystick function, take a lot of the angst out of boating in close quarters, while improving efficiency and performance underway.
The drives are counter-rotating twin-prop units that look like the lower units of sterndrives, but are mounted in tunnels and come out of the bottom of the boat. Each one can pivot independently of the other, making it possible for the black box in the Zeus system to optimize both thrust and direction of each pod when docking or performing other delicate maneuvers.You don’t have to have the manual dexterity of Van Cliburn to make this happen – electronics do it for you. You simply move a joystick in the direction you want to go, and the computer takes it from there. (Don’t worry – there’s a conventional wheel, too.) Implement the Zeus Skyhook feature and the computer will keep your boat completely stationary, using input from a GPS, while you rig fenders and dock lines, or wait for a bridge tender, or whatever. To maximize the benefits of Zeus drives, Grand Banks designed a completely new modified-V hull. Before the boat was launched last year, the company predicting significantly improved efficiently across a wide range of speeds. Grand Banks has not yet asked BoatTEST.com to test the new boat, so we have yet to learn how the boat actually performs.
Summary and Price
Zeus drives are available mated to Cummins MerCruiser QSB5.9 diesels from 330 to 480 hp. Taking a hp rating in the middle – 425 – a new Grand Banks Heritage 41 has a bare-bones MSRP price of $744,000 in Singapore. Things like shipping, air conditioning, etc. are extra.With the Heritage 41 EU – the smallest trawler in the GB line -- you get all of the things that Grand Banks is famous for, plus a modern propulsion system. If you are moving up or down from a fast planing boat, then this vessel is probably a good intermediate step before reaching a full displacement-speed boat. Many people are just not ready for 8 knots.
Standard and Optional Features
Full Warranty Information on this brand coming soon!