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Jeanneau Valesco 43

With the VELASCO 43, Jeanneau takes an innovative new direction in the world of flybridge motor yacht design.

Inspired by larger yachts, the VELASCO 43 makes a strong personal statement on the exterior, paired with a contemporary style on the interior.

Aboard the VELASCO 43, the distribution of interior and exterior living spaces results in an unexpected, superior level of comfort, with a layout that is particularly well suited for today’s multi-generational families.

Designed for smooth, safe cruising at high speeds, the highly tapered hull of the VELASCO 43 is comfortable and efficient in all cruising conditions.  Shaft drive transmission and joystick control are the preferred technical solutions for frequent cruising and effortless maneuvering.

Innovative and elegant, powerful and reassuring, the VELASCO 43 unveils an all-new approach to the motor yacht, one conceptualized entirely for family cruising.
Jeanneau conceptualized an all-new family cruiser that blends both the indoors and outdoors in a well-lit open floor plan. The result is this beautiful Velasco 43. We found her to be a sea kindly cruiser with plenty of room for moving about, and accommodations for four, with the availability for two more at the converted dinette.

This Velasco 43 is a new family cruiser from Jeanneau with a LOA of 44’11” (13.7 m) and a beam of 13’6” (4.13 m).

 

 

Mission Statement

The mission of this new Velasco 43 is to serve as a family cruiser with an all-new approach to space and interior styling. The design team at Jeanneau tells us that they were striving to reach “a superior level of comfort through the distribution of interior and exterior living spaces making the boat well-suited for today’s families.”
Narrow Window Mullions. This is important for keeping maximum visibility through the windows, particularly on a boat with a lower helm station. However, sometimes it can become problematic when the boat also has a flying bridge. The mullions need to support not only the weight of the upper deck, but the occupants as well. Somehow, Jeanneau has managed to keep them narrow while also being able to handle the task of load bearing.

Extended Flying Bridge. This adds more useable space on the upper deck while at the same time, provides much needed shade for the aft deck below as well as the ability to fully enclose it. The aft end of the flying bridge also accommodates a large optional sun pad.

 

Skylights. Forward of the helm are three skylights that pour natural light into the salon and helm areas. And, as the companionway to the staterooms is wide open, this becomes another area that benefits from this design feature.

Asymmetrical Side Decks. The starboard side deck is 15'6" (39.37 cm) wide and is easy to negotiate. (See our video.) The port side deck is 12'6" (31.75 cm) wide and took some hip-swiveling by a trim Captain Steve Larivee to pass along it, but was definitely doable. There is a sliding side door at the helm to starboard.

Four-Panel Sliding Doors. There are four glass panels - three of which slide -- in the boat's opening between the cabin to the aft deck. By using the four panels the builder is able to maximize the width of the opening and the "outdoor" feel when sitting in the cabin.

 

Between the wraparound windows, the forward skylights, and the hullside windows, the Velasco 43 is all about light in interior spaces.


Performance

 

The Jeanneau Velasco 43 has a LOA of 44’11” (13.7 m), a beam of 13'6" (4.13 m), and a draft of 3'7" (1.09 m). With an empty weight of 23,724 lbs. (10,761 kgs.), 158 gallons (598 L) of fuel (half full) and four people onboard we had a test weight of 24,432 lbs. (11,082 kgs.).

With a pair of 380-hp Cummins QSB 6.7 engines turning the ZF V-drive transmissions, we reached a top speed at 3070 rpm of 27.8 kn. At that speed fuel burn was a combined 34.3 gph (130 lph), giving the Velasco 43 a range of 231 nautical miles. Best cruise came in at 2700 rpm and 22.7 kn. At that speed the fuel burn was reduced to 25.89 gph (98 lph), giving the Velasco 43 an endurance of 11 hours and 250 nautical miles, while still maintaining a 10% reserve.

 

The Jeanneau Velasco was powered by twin 380-hp QSB 6.7 Cummins engines with ZF V-drive transmissions. She reached a top speed of 3070 rpm of 27.8 knots. The fuel burn was a combined 34.3 gph, giving her a range of 231 nautical miles.

 

Handling Characteristics

On acceleration, she has a 5-degree bow rise and she seems fairly comfortable maintaining that angle at cruising speeds. With her foredeck angled down slightly she still maintains good sightlines ahead of the bow. She leans only 10-degrees into the turns and then seems to come back from that and stays relatively flat, providing a unique but still comfortable riding characteristic. She handles sea conditions well and I think she will present a comfortable platform for extended trips.

 

Her main deck has a galley across from the helm and a dining area diagonally across from the galley. An open aft deck and bow pad provide two more social areas.

 

 

Swim Platform

The full beam swim platform comes out 3'5" (1.04 m) from the transom, making it wide enough to accommodate a RIB tender. That being the case, owners may want to opt for the hydraulically actuated swim platform that will not only ease launching, but create the much enjoyed teak beach.

With the optional hydraulic swim platform in the lowered position, a ladder to the cockpit reveals itself to starboard.

 

 

Aft Deck

The aft deck is accessed from two steps to the starboard side. It features four across bench seating with storage underneath that is large enough to accommodate a life raft and is surrounded by standard teak decking. The open space measures 11'8" (3.56 m) across by 5'5" (1.65 m). Small steps are on both sides leading to the side decks. A hatch in the center leads to the engine room.

 

The spacious aft deck can easily accommodate the table from the galley being relocated.


Engine Room

 

 

This Velasco 43 featured the first installation of the new Cummins QSB 380-hp high output engines that I've seen and I was impressed with the installation. A single post ladder led directly between the two engines for the daily check points. ZF V-drive transmissions were located forward of the engines, as was the optional 11 kW generator, all being serviced by a hatch in the forward bulkhead that was accessible from the storage compartment located in the salon deck.

 

The engine room is accessed from a deck hatch in the center of the aft deck.

 

ZF V-Drives. This is a new generation of V-drive from ZF which is directly flange-mounted to the engine, which reduces vibration, ware, noise and also allows the unit to be moved slightly aft. It uses a gear cascade that is more energy efficient than conventional V-drives which typically lost 5% of power or even more.

Bow

Our test boat was fitted with optional teak decking on the bow and side decks. The trunk cabin is slightly sloped downward providing a little more visibility from the lower helm at cruise speed, while sacrificing marginal headroom over the berth in the master stateroom. Two sun pads flank the skylight and deck hatch providing light to the master stateroom. The pads are secured by two handrails. If needed, additional central cushions create a wide area to enjoy the sun. Fully forward a Lewmar anchor windlass is recessed into the deck with the rode leading out to a stainless anchor roller.

 

A 3” (7.62 cm) toerail leads to a stainless rail 29” (73.66 cm) off the deck, well exceeding ABYC standards.

 

Dual sun pads add yet another lounging area on the Velasco 43. Notice the flat and protected cushions. Central cushions can be added to create a wide one-piece sun pad.


Saloon

Triple-wide glass doors provide an opening of 5'1" (1.55 m) and allow for a seamless transition between the outside and inside. The salon presents booth style seating to starboard and an aft facing lounger to port.

 

Salon seating adds to the aft deck seating with the glass doors opened to their full width.

 

The salon presents an overhead measuring 6’7” (2.0 m) off the deck.

Next to the settee is a hatch to a large storage compartment that has room for dry goods, a freezer or an optional wine cellar. The hatch, which can be seen behind the removable ladder, leads to the engine room at a position right at the generator and V-drive transmissions.


Across from the dining table is a lounger with a TV on an electric lift. Note the lounger which is unusual in this type of boat.


The dinette will easily accommodate four, but should additional guests arrive, two extra seats can be removed from under the starboard bulwarks to increase the seating capacity at the table to six. Headroom in the salon is a surprising 6'7" (2 m). Naturally, the dinette table lowers to convert to a berth, should those additional two people decide not to leave. The table is also secured to the deck by thumb screws which are easily removable, allowing the table to be repositioned or even relocated to the aft deck.

 


Helm

The starboard side helm consists of a fiberglass module set into position. Dual-molded panels are to port and starboard, the port housing the chartplotter and dual SmartCraft gauges. The starboard contains the Vessel View display, autopilot and VHF radio. In the center is a recessed section housing the compass with the rudder indicator just beneath. The ignitions are below the three-spoke leather-wrapped wheel and are well clear of the knee-strike zone.

 

The lower helm station is a leatherette covered fiberglass module mounted onto position.

The lower helm has a double-wide helm seat with a full length flip-up bolster. Under the seat is the refrigerator, easily accessed from the galley to port.

 

 

The opening side door was a welcome feature on our hot test day. And it facilitates single-handed operation with easy access to the midships cleat.

 

There are two appealing features of the lower helm. First, it provides excellent sightlines and ergonomics from a standing position. I spent most of my time operating while leaning back against the seat with one foot on the footrest. The second feature is the opening side door. This provides ventilation while at the same time gives the Velasco 43 the added benefit of being able to tie her up single-handed. Just outside the side door is a midship cleat. Drop a line dockside from that cleat and it's an easy bow and stern line to complete the process.

 

Galley

The U-shaped galley is located to port of the helm and not only benefits from the natural light pouring in from the wraparound windows and overhead skylights, but also from the opening side window as well. The solid surface counter in the galley has square corners and hard edges, but with the roominess of the Velasco 43 it presented no problems while underway.

 

The galley is to the port side of the helm and an opening window allows for ventilation while cooking.

 

An aluminum backsplash wraps around the front and side of the galley while the counter is sectioned off with a glass partition. A double basin sink is forward with covers that increase the usable counter space. The stove is to port with an optional dishwasher beneath. A modest refrigerator/freezer is under the helm seat. An optional additional freezer can be installed in the storage compartment below.

 

Between the galley and the helm is another in-deck storage area, complete with a combination washer/dryer.

 

Below deck are two staterooms and two heads, one serving double duty as a day head.


Master Stateroom

 

The master stateroom is forward and features a twin island berth with storage underneath. Natural light comes in from dual hull side windows with opening port lights to either side as well as an overhead skylight and opening foredeck hatch. Access to an ensuite head is located in the aft port bulkhead and it includes a corner mounted walk-in shower separated from the rest of the compartment. An opening port light is embedded into the hull side window appropriately accommodating ventilation.


The master stateroom offers a good balance of soft tones and plenty of natural light.

Both heads offer separate showers, closed off from the sink and toilet.

Guest Stateroom

The guest stateroom is to starboard with standing headroom at the entrance. The overhead above the berths runs from 28” (71.12 cm) down to 23” (58.42 cm). The compartment itself is just wide enough to accommodate the twin berths and the hullside window alleviates any claustrophobic feelings. Forward is a private entrance to the head, which is almost as big as the master head with the addition of a second entrance to the companionway, allowing it to serve double duty as a day head.

 

 


The guest stateroom offers two berths and good views from the hullside window.

 

Flying Bridge

 


The flying bridge allows for socializing within close proximity to the captain. An optional galley to starboard completes the social picture. A large sun pad is aft.

 

The flying bridge is accessed from a stairway in the aft deck fabricated from stainless railing and teak stair treads. With a ladder in this location, valuable space is freed up inside the salon.

 

An optional sun pad allows for great views while sunning from the flying bridge.

 

 

A flying bridge galley can be used for making al fresco meals while enjoying the views. Definitely go for the optional grill in the space to the left of the sink.


At the aft end of the flying bridge deck is an optional triple-wide sun pad that will provide excellent views while catching rays. Forward and to port is U-shaped seating with the forward seatback being reversible, allowing it to accommodate forward facing passengers... a much preferred position when underway. Directly across and behind the helm, is an optional flying bridge galley with a sink and space for an optional grill all under a single piece hatch. Below are storage and a cockpit refrigerator.

 

The forward seat at the flying bridge settee has a flip-back that also allows for forward facing seating next to the helm.

 

 

Helm

The flying bridge helm, much like the lower helm, is a pod-style mounted to the starboard side. The same separate modules to port and starboard house the electronics displays and gauges with the compass mounted in the center of the two. The lengthy Cummins engine controls allow for comfortable operations from the standing position. The smoked glass windscreen did a good job of deflecting the breeze over my head.

 

The flying bridge helm has a lot of similarities with the lower helm. An off-white color would reduce the glare effect on sunny days.

 

As expected, sightlines from the flying bridge helm are outstanding.

 

One significant difference between the lower and upper helm is that this flybridge helm features a single bucket seat as opposed to the double-wide bench seat below. But with the forward facing seat nearby, there is still the benefit of extra eyes looking forward.

 

The Velasco 43 has a 5-degree bow rise and maintains the angle well at cruising speeds. She has good sightlines ahead of the bow as well.

 

Observations

Jeanneau has taken an important step with the creation of the Velasco 43. When in home waters she can provide a welcome platform for day boating and entertaining, and while she’s hard to classify into a single category, clearly she makes a capable cruiser. With the storage and amenities to allow her owners to stay onboard for an extended period of time and go nearly anywhere, we can see her exploring far and wide. Remember, at 7.4 knots she has a range of 503 nautical miles, with a 10% fuel reserve.

 

Specification

Length overall

13.7 m / 44'11"

Hull length

11.98 m / 39'3"

Hull beam

4.13 m / 13'6"

Light displacement

10761 kg / 23724 lbs

Standard keel draught

1.17 m / 3'10"

Fuel capacity

1170 L / 309 GAL

Water capacity

400 L / 106 GAL

Cabins

2

Motor

2 x Cummins QSB 6.7L 380 Cv

CE Category

B12 / C14

 

 

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