Sprawling, transforming yacht concept to ferry your supercar from island to island


July 31, 2012

The CXL 160 will come with a McLaren MP4-12C, which has its own designated storage compartment

The CXL 160 will come with a McLaren MP4-12C, which has its own designated storage compartment

Image Gallery (29 images)

The McLaren MP4-12C is one of the more interesting supercars on the road, and it conveys a certain sense of wealth and connoisseurship about its driver. Of course, the MP4-12C's prestige pales in comparison to any massive, multi-million-dollar yacht ... unless, of course, it happens to be on board such a vessel. The Ultraluxum CXL 160, currently in development, is a huge, high-tech sailing yacht with a show garage designed specifically for the MP4-12C.

Ultraluxum Yachting's founding partner Jean-François Ruchonnet has set out to create what is called the "most extreme fusion of architecture, design, comfort, performance, economy and technology ever created in a luxury sailing yacht." That vessel is also billed as the world's largest cruising trimaran.

"I had a dream of leaving my house in Monte Carlo, getting onto a yacht in the harbor and sailing with my family for New York to arrive in less than a week," Ruchonnet recalls on Ultraluxum's website. "I wanted to travel in the same style, comfort and speed as a motor yacht but without using thousands of gallons of fuel. And when I arrived, I saw myself driving my car off the yacht straight onto the road in the USA."

In order to bring that vision to life, Ruchonnet and Ultraluxum, world-renowned naval architect Jean-Jacques Coste, and a number of outside partners have set to work on a massive sailing yacht that measures 48 meters (157.5 feet) in length by 60 meters (197 feet) in height. The key to the CXL (Carbon Xtra Light) 160's combination of ocean-hopping range, comfort, and sailing stability will be in its folding carbon fiber hull beams, which decrease hull width from 23 meters (75 feet) across on open water to 11 meters (36 feet) when mooring. This allows versatile, roll-free mooring in the harbor and solid, stable navigation at sea.

While we have to take claims about renewable resources and "harmony with nature" with a huge rock of salt when applied to gigantic resource-hogs like 160-foot yachts, Ultraluxum does claim that every effort will be made to keep the boat's operation clean and renewable. Its primary motivation, of course, comes from the wind, and on-board power is handled by a lithium-ion-based battery management system. The optional propulsion system will be a hybrid design.

In terms of sleeping and living quarters, the CXL will be a bit like a large waterfront vacation property. Outside, it will offer several open decks for soaking in the sun and atmosphere, a hot tub, and a dining area. The water will be but a quick climb down the swim ladder. Inside, the owners will enjoy a master cabin with en-suite bathroom, while up to four guest cabins and three crew cabins sleep the rest of the boat occupants. A spa can be added in place of one of the guest cabins, and there will also be a dining area, lounge area, additional bathrooms, a galley, and a navigation station. The interior is equipped with a full audio-video system and high-speed Internet access.

Oh, yes ... the McLaren. McLaren Applied Technologies, the branch of McLaren Group that applies its design and technology expertise to other industries, has is helping Ultraluxum in developing the carbon fiber hull beams. So naturally, the car that Ruchonnet mentioned in his original vision has become the McLaren MP4-12C, which will be included with CXL purchase. It will slide into a garage in the aft of the boat and remains visible through glass walls. If the MP4-12C isn't to your taste, we're pretty sure any supercar - including the MP4-12C's soon-to-be-revealed big brother McLaren flagship - will fit just as nicely.

You've probably figured out that you'd need a nine-figure-plus bank account to ever consider purchasing a CXL craft. That notion is correct: Ultraluxum lists the price of the CXL 160 at a cool €42 million (about $52 million). It can be configured for either personal or commercial use.

The CXL 160 will be on display in some form at the Monaco Yacht Show in September. If a $50 million, 160-foot vessel is just too much boat for you, Ultraluxum's public told us that there are also smaller boats in the works.


Gizmag spoke to Ultraluxum to nail down the status of the CXL 160. As of August 1, 2012, "the yacht is ready to be build with all technical and financial aspects finalized." Whether a completed model will be ready in time for Monaco remains to be seen.

Source: Ultraluxum Yachting via Jalopnik

About the Author
C.C. Weiss Upon graduating college with a poli sci degree, Chris toiled in the political world for several years. Realizing he was better off making cynical comments from afar than actually getting involved in all that mess, he turned away from matters of government and news to cover the things that really matter: outdoor recreation, cool cars, technology, wild gadgets and all forms of other toys. He's happily following the wisdom of his father who told him that if you find something you love to do, it won't really be work. All articles by C.C. Weiss

You know the worlds got it's priorities right when we build stupid things like this for people with TOO MUCH money.... -_- It's not like the worlds running out of resources or anything...

Mike Daniels

I am going to have to agree with Micheal here, who gives a dam about this boat, its not exactly ground breaking, its nothing more than a wow factor, as in "wow, what a waste of money and why the hell am I reading this crap".

Dan Lee

You're right, the world isn't running out of resources. And the amount of activity involved in designing and building this will keep many people active and working, employed and fed for the duration of its construction--not to mention the effort needed to keep it afloat.

Enjoy the technology on this site or preach poverty and neoluddism, you can't really do both and be philosophically consistent.

And what the heck is "too much money"?


Oh no!

Are the carbon fibre mines running out, Michael?

It's not like they'll be making these things in their thousands, you know...

And Dan: what, exactly, is wrong with "wow!"?

Keith Reeder

Fifty million bucks for a toy. wow. Is this a record? When it gets written off by some billionaire's spoilt kid, thats what we really want to see!


Actually the carbon fiber mines are running out!! Facts are the energy, etc needed to make CF is what is running out. And why would one use CF in this craft? It won't decrease weight more than a rounding error over medium tech composites that cost 10% as much.

Unless 20+ people live on this ear full time it has little but waste.

Next getting to NY in 5 days under sail isn't going to happen in such a craft. 10 woulde be more ;like it and even then one wouldn't be comfortable in the conditions/storms needed to do even that.

Next one isn't going to put their extremely expensive McLaren in a salt water environment.

Carbon mines? Carbon fiber is usually a petroleum or coal tar product. Although it would take an obscene amount of money to build and buy this thing, it would provide an incredible amount of middle class jobs that could not be readily outsourced. It would provide good job training and hopefully open up more opportunities for innovation in the future. Of course all this would be happening near Monaco where Ultraluxum is based. Take the Stratolaunch project: It is creating a huge amount of middle class jobs. yes, Paul Allen is rich. If the government took his money for redistribution it would just be wasted. Instead, innovation is alive and well in Mojave. The doubters will be silenced and a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will be launched to space from between the fuselages of a monster jet. Families will have breadwinners building the thing. I say build the boat. Silence the critics. Bill Brewer

Hey Bill do you think there would be any critics here?


re; jerryd

In ancient Rome bronze became cripplingly expensive (The tin mines were played out) there was a great deal of complaining that civilization was going to collapse and that there was no hope. But then a wiley entrepreneur hunted down the source of a grey metal and learned its secrets. Iron went from being had only by the rich in extraordinarily expensive imported bobbles to being cheaper than bronze had ever been converting the legions from ranks of bronze to ranks of iron. Incidentally new sources of tin were found but it didn't make the the discoverers rich because iron is better than bronze in most applications and with the reduced demand the price tin and bronze plummeted.

Carbon fiber can be made from rayon by cooking it as some extreme temperatures in an oxygen free environment.

Rayon is a manufactured regenerated cellulose fiber and is made from wood pulp.

"We're running out and disaster will ensue." is an old old song and almost inevitably wrong. When the natives of Easter Island killed the last of the trees that made adequate boats to move the giant heads they trapped themselves and cut themselves off from there primary food sources. The problem there was not inadequate resources but human stupidity. There is evidence that some of the rational amongst them escaped over the sea in the fishing fleet but the last time I checked that was a heretical view.

Don't complain that resources are running out go find other resources.


I always love how the comments of people from any article like this is how the world is going to sh!t and some people are spending their own money on whatever it is they like, the nerve. And how these said people are absolutely stupid idiots who only had the money given to them or dropped in their stupid laps, or inherited.

Realistically if someone earns a lot of money they should be able to spend it however they please, most people who have this much money are work-aholics who rarely have time to enjoy all the money they earn, and when they do have time they go all out, good for them.

Nathaneal Blemings

@Nathaneal Blemings: Yeah, right? It always makes me giggle when I read comments on an article speaking about what so & so just bought. People come out of the woodwork to 'chastise' the person who spent his/her OWN money to buy something they wanted. They do their best to 'shame' the person in question, commenting on 'how much good' that money could have done had it been donated to charity or given to (fill in the blank). These people don't stop to think about how much money these people have probably already donated to charities and causes. It simply enrages them that someone would 'waste' money on buying a 'silly luxury'. They also don't stop to think about all the hard work most of these rich people have put in in order to BE rich! In the end, we as humans are almost always driven by jealousy, which we try to hide by calling others 'greedy'. It's kind of a sad world. Only if one can find the humour in these self-righteous comments can many of us refrain from shooting off an acerbic reply and possibly engaging in a (total waste of time) 'flame war'.

Post a Comment

Login with your Gizmag account:

Related Articles
Looking for something? Search our articles