Mar 24, 2022

Electric FlierCommissioned by the owner of the 2020 UK-built sailing/electric yacht Geist, the 35’ Electric Flier is an electrically powered sportboat made out of wood. She will be built by Spirit Yachts, which was founded in 1993 to give connoisseurs a wooden alternative to fiberglass production boats. The foiling, propulsion and technical aspects of the boat will be managed by BAR Technologies.

BAR was founded in 2017 by Martin Whitmarsh and Simon Schoefield to bring next-level engineering to the marine industry. They had experience in the highest levels of yacht and auto racing. Schoefield is a veteran of many America’s Cup campaigns and Volvo Ocean Races while Whitmarsh was a team principal at McLaren’s Formula One team and deputy chairman of McLaren automotive. Their backgrounds merged when Whitmarsh moved from cars to yachts, signing on as the chief executive of the 2017 UK America’s Cup entry. BAR Technologies was founded soon after.

GeistThe owner of the all-electrically powered Geist commissioned Electric Flier.

BAR has many internal teams that specialize on wide-ranging projects. WindWings solid sails are designed to make cargo ships more fuel efficient. BAR’s patented Foil Optimization and Stability System (FOSS) combines active hydrofoil technology with custom hydrodynamics and is being used on crew-transfer vessels and high-speed recreational boats like the Princess Yachts R35 powerboat.

Electric Flyer, officially named the Spirit 35 (F), merges the best efforts of Spirit and BAR Technologies. With the advances in battery technologies and electric drivetrains, yacht owners are now actively analyzing the possibilities for the marine industry. At Spirit, the company had to install an electric charging station in its yard because so many employees were driving electric cars.

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Electric Flyer will rise on her foils at 14 knots and cruise at 22 knots with a projected top speed of 30 knots. Her cockpit can be configured to seat six in the open layout or convert to the two-seat Spider. No details about the battery size or motor have been released and BAR hasn’t said if the boat will use the FOSS system. Spirit says the boat will have a range of approximately 100 nautical miles and five hours of operation.

PlansElectric Flier’s cockpit can be closed for two people or opened with horseshoe-shaped seating aft.

John Cooper, the CEO of BAR, says he’s seeing significant market demand for sustainable recreational boats. “The Electric Flyer is an exciting opportunity for BAR to collaborate with Sean and his team’s strong track record of designing beautiful boats. We are looking forward to working with them to bring advanced foiling technology to the classic yacht world.”
Added McMillan, “The trend for forward thinking, environmentally aware yacht buyers are driving exciting changes for the next step in classic yacht design. You can see that future unfolding here. The build of Electric Flyer is underway, and she is expected to be delivered in the second half of 2022.