Silvestris 23 at the Monaco Boat Show
You own the Lamborghini, the holiday condo in Port Douglas, and the Ducati 1198. Okay, you don’t, but let’s just dream for a moment. Pretend you’re Vince from Entourage and you’re taking Lara Bingle out to dinner at a swank restaurant on Sydney Harbour. You could drive (or rather, get Turtle to chauffeur you), but you can do better than that, surely. A stretch Hummer is just tacky. The girl needs to be impressed.
Here’s your answer: take her to dinner on your 23ft Silvestris Sports Cabriolet. This is how the Dutch company describes their lovely creature in their brochure: “...our drive is to meet the requirements of the discerning boat lover. Just like the chef of a top-class restaurant who prepares an exquisite dish exactly to your liking and is nevertheless able to surprise you.”
Quite. But apart from being drop- dead gorgeous, the boat has a high- tech, supercar pedigree. The Silvestris is designed by Dutchman Maarten de Bruijn, famous for designing the Dutch supercar the Spyker. His love for all things fast and beautiful is evident in the Silvestris, from the bucket seats to the dashboard, which features no unnecessary gauges and is lit, according to the builder, to create “a warm atmosphere when driving off into the night.” Romantic, in other words.
The hull is made from durable aluminium (note that the Spyker is also aluminium), the leather on the seats and trim is seawater- resistant, hand-stitched and designed in-house. Remote-controlled, hydraulically operated hatches enclose the seat recesses, sealing the boat hermetically like an oyster, making it a true cabriolet.
One clever feature: if you decide to use her mostly as a two-seater and keep the rear seat bay closed, you can get an (optional) sun bed, made from the same saltwater-resistant leather, that fits the deck behind the front seat-well. Nice.
The Silvestris’ lightweight, aluminium skin is riveted and bonded with the very latest adhesive to a tubular space-frame, which, says Silvestris, makes the boat “the strongest and most durable of its kind.” The rigid hull has effective sprayrails and a stabilising, ‘crashbox’-type stern. A length of machined aluminium strengthens the bow.
There are four engine options. The ‘basic’ model has a Volvo Penta 5.7L petrol V8 in the bay, producing 239kW and driving a Duo Prop stern drive. It gives a top speed (according to the manufacturer) of 48 knots. For those who prefer diesel, there are two options: a Volkswagen 3L diesel V6 TDI, delivering 195kW and driving a Mercruiser Bravo III propulsion system at up to 42 knots, and there’s a Volvo Penta L5 2.4L, 5-cylinder diesel, also driving the Duo Prop system, and delivering 140kW to take you up to 38 knots. Finally, for those for whom a lot is never enough, Silvestris are offering a Limited Edition version powered by an 8.1L petrol V8 engine by Bones Marine that produces 410 kW / 560 HP, pushing you to a neck-breaking estimated top speed of 60 knots, according to the company.
All the sterndrive units, says Silvestris, are fitted “to reach the lowest levels in noise, vibration and harshness.” The exhaust system also helps keep the beast quiet with its electronically operated Engine Note Enhancement Valves (ENAV).
At 23 feet, the Silvestris is, um, a trailerboat. That’s right. You can park her in your driveway. And how much does she cost? I hear you say. If you have to ask, then perhaps you’d better look elsewhere...