Contents of Report
In its design partnership with Nuvolari-Lenard, Beneteau introduces a new sport cruiser in the Gran Turismo 40 that encompasses a balanced combination of performance and function in a 40’ (12 m), twin cabin boat. The Gran Turismo 40 provides the practicality of being able to experience and enjoy the day on the water, with the maneuverability, performance and draft one would find in a smaller boat. Along with the added convenience and flexibility of accommodating a night at anchor or in a visiting marina, the climate controlled comfort of a cabin is suitable for two couples. Whether kept in dry storage, in a marina slip, or at the dock, or lift at home, the Gran Turismo 40 is an all-weather cruiser.
Air Step 2 Hull Design Technology. Air Step 2 technology is the incorporation of a hydrodynamic forward and aft hull design that allows the Gran Turismo 40 to operate at planing speeds on a "cushion" of air. Air is sucked under the boat from forward vents on the chines and exits at the transom. By reducing water adhesion to the hull and reducing friction, the boat becomes easier to push. The result is reduced fuel consumption, increased maximum speed, and more nimble handling at planing speeds.
Retractable Sunroof. The electrically operated sunroof allows air to flow freely though the cockpit of the Gran Turismo 40 while both at anchor and underway.
Optional Electric Swim Platform. Whether utilizing the platform for a small tender, or simply for its namesake's use, departing the Gran Turismo 40 at anchor either way is ergonomic and functional. The platform has electric lowering capability, allowing the boat's operator ease and flexibility in tender launch and retrieval, as well as convenient access for swimmers into and out of the water. This is an expensive but important piece of optional equipment. It solves the problem of where to store the tender as well as to provide a place that everyone aboard will enjoy when it is partially submerged. As an option, the platform is offered in teak.
Outdoor Galley. Conveniently located on the transom is the outdoor galley, for preparing and making steaks, burgers and other fare without the need to go below. Stationed facing the swim platform aft, standing at and accessing the cooking area does not impede movement about the boat by other members of the party on board and is an efficient use of space that would otherwise go unused. Once the meals are prepared, service can be provided in the cockpit settee.
Inspection and Walkthrough
Approaching the Gran Turismo 40 from the dock, it can be seen that many of her characteristics underline the balance between a strong sporting character and function due to its openness. The boat is easily accessible from the dock when tied stern to simply by stepping onto the swim platform.
The Cockpit and Foredeck. Once on board the Gran Turismo 40, the companionway from the platform into the cockpit is to port, as seen above, past the aforementioned outdoor galley on the transom. The transom gate is accommodating and large.
From the transom forward to starboard is an L-shaped settee with a folding table which opens out. There is easily enough room for entertaining eight to ten people in the cockpit area, which also has a separate drink and glass storage area to port adjoining a small refrigerator and ice box. The Beige Crème Luxe outside upholstery colors compliment the teak slatted deck.
The cockpit table also lowers to provide a sun bathing lounge seat and the removable side glazing frees up the cockpit completely. In addition to the sunroof, this creates an open air experience while still maintaining the integrity of the GRP hardtop, combining the protection of passengers and the sensation of an open craft.
Forward of the settee is the helm station, with a twin helm bench seat and an additional passenger bucket seat to its right. The helm of the Gran Turismo 40 is positioned on the centerline, providing a full field of view to both the left and right.
The wheel is two tone leather and chrome, and positioned just below the instrumentation. Compass, speed, log, depth sounder and a Simrad NSS 12" multifunction screen GPS chartplotter, 4G radar, and autopilot are symmetrically incorporated into the console. Throttles and joystick are appropriately positioned to the right and in close proximity to the wheel.
The Volvo Penta sterndrive system is a standard feature, with a joystick docking system, providing unencumbered ease during maneuvering and docking evolutions in conjunction with the optional bow thruster.
The helm station of the Gran Turismo 40 appears to be a very inviting place from which to operate a boat. With its centerline location, exceptional visibility and "all components within reach" design, the experience for the operator could easily equate to that of operating a sporty center console. Looking out onto the foredeck, there are twin sun pads for enjoying some fun in the sun at anchor, which is lowered and hoisted by an electric Lewmar motorized winch controlled remotely from the helm.
The Cabin, Galley and Berth. Entering the cabin by proceeding down the companionway from the cockpit to the left of the helm, the steps are wide and comfortable to negotiate. The salon features an L-settee, with a table, to port and the galley to starboard. The upholstery is finished in a Courchevel shell fabric and the table is finished in a mat walnut wood.
The woodwork is finished in Alpi Walnut and a host of color and palette options are available. There are four storage cupboards, two storage lockers, and two opening portholes. The salon flooring is Ivory carpet and direct and indirect lighting is incorporated throughout the space. A 24" TV and DVD player can be mounted to the galley front cupboard panel to be viewed from the settee. This interior cabin can be climate controlled with a 16,000 BTU marine air conditioning system.
The galley consists of a 21 gallon (79 L) refrigerator with freezer, two-burner stove, stainless steel sink, microwave, waste bin locker and drawers incorporated into the carpentry with a solid surface countertop.The Gran Turismo 40’s galley (above) and microwave in the overhead cupboard (below).
The forward master cabin has an island double berth with a marine mattress, padded headboard, two LED reading lights, two overhead lights, two shelves, two hanging lockers, two 110-volt electrical sockets, two panorama windows with opening ports and shutters, opening deck hatches with mosquito blind, three drawer storage area beneath the bed and indirect lighting under the bed.
The aft guest cabin has two single berths which can be converted into a double, with marine mattresses, two panorama windows with opening portholes and shutters, one opening hatch with a blind, two hanging lockers, two storage lockers, one bed head with a drawer and two LED reading lights.
Engines. The Gran Turismo 40 is powered by two Volvo Penta 300 horsepower diesel engines, and D6 370 horsepower plants are a special order option, but with the air step hull design, the 600 horses of the standard engine option is sufficient for this sport cruiser, weighing in at just under 17,000 lbs. (7,711 kg).
Let’s move to her performance. The test boat had the special-order D6 Volvo Penta engines in it. With those 370-hp D6s we got up to 38.4 knots at 3620 rpm, and did so with a fuel burn of 42 gph that produced a range of 141.7 nm. Best cruise came in at 2500 rpm and 23.6 knots. That speed dropped the fuel consumption down to 17.5 gph and increased the range to 208.8 nm. All while still holding back a 10% reserve of fuel in the bank. We reached planing speed in 5.3 seconds, accelerated to 20 mph in 5.7 seconds and continued through 30 mph in 10 seconds flat.
We’ve already talked about Air Step in this report, and now we’re starting to see how it translates into respectable performance numbers. But more so, is it beneficial to the boat’s handling?
Gran Turismo boats consistently impress us with their handling characteristics and gentle demeanor and the Gran Turismo 40 is no exception. Every time we approached a wave we braced for an impact that never came. She handles rough water and chop with grace and style that guests will find comfortable. She’s responsive to the helm and produces a dry ride, at least during our tests. And with only a 5-degree bow high attitude, visibility remains excellent throughout the cruise envelope.
Upon returning to the dock, we were tasked with bringing her into what was probably the tightest docking we’ve done. She was to be positioned at a boat show with only inches to spare both fore and aft, and frankly, it gave us a perfect opportunity to test the responsiveness of the sterndrive joystick. Not surprisingly, it was dialed into the Gran Turismo 40 perfectly and we used just tiny pulses of the stick to ease her into this extraordinarily tight position. This bodes well for those considering a move up from a smaller boat in that there should be no concern about being able to handle it at the dock.
Returning to the location and function of the helm, it's apparent that the Beneteau Gran Turismo 40 is an "operator's" sport cruiser. While providing the creature comforts for a full weekend, or more of cruising, it's the thrill of operating this boat that might be her true testament.
Her docile handling characteristics combined with the fit-and-finish that seemed to be borrowed from Beneteau’s larger MCY Series make for a pleasing combination both at the dock and on the water. We found her to be consistent with the good handling characteristics of the Gran Turismo line with a touch more flair to her comfort level that one would expect being a newer model.
Test Result Highlights
- Top speed for the Beneteau Gran Turismo 40 (2016-) is 44.2 mph (71.1 kph), burning 42.0 gallons per hour (gph) or 158.97 liters per hour (lph).
- Best cruise for the Beneteau Gran Turismo 40 (2016-) is 27.2 mph (43.8 kph), and the boat gets 1.6 miles per gallon (mpg) or 0.68 kilometers per liter (kpl), giving the boat a cruising range of 240 miles (386.24 kilometers).
- Tested power is 2 x 370-hp Volvo Penta D6 DP.
Standard and Optional Features
Full Warranty Information on this brand coming soon!
(It's quick and FREE!)