Catamarans are multi-hull vessels composed of two hulls. This geometry allows them to be balanced on water and in turn gain a great deal of speed. Compared to single-hull boats, catamarans are regarded as much faster. But how fast are catamarans actually?
Catamarans come in various types and sizes. They start from 14 feet up to 100 feet. Each one can reach a different speed limit. Typically, a cruising catamaran sails at 15 knots. A sport cruising catamaran can reach 30 knots. A racing catamaran is somewhat faster and can sail at 45 knots. The power cruising catamaran is probably the fastest vessel and can travel at 70 knots.
One of the main features that make catamarans so fast is the integration of assisting foils that lift the boat off the water. In addition, catamarans are equipped with stability advancements that allow them to gain speed in the ocean.
To better understand how fast catamarans are, they are divided into three groups:
- The sport boats
- The racing ones
- The cruising catamarans
The sport catamarans are recreational vessels designed for a small crew. Their interior is limited as well. Most of them have no living quarters as they are only used for short trips. Some sport catamarans are also used for racing, however, the maximum speed they reach in ideal conditions is 40 knots.
Racing catamarans are used in ocean races and rallies. They are large yachts that can go up to 100 feet and sail at a maximum of 45 knots.
Cruising catamarans on the other hand are more comfortable vessels used for ocean crossing as well. They are equipped with luxurious living quarters. Because of their size, load and volume, these catamarans usually sail at 10 knots, with a maximum speed of 15 knots in ideal conditions.
Some catamarans on the other hand are fitted with powerful motors that favor speed over space. The most common catamaran of this category is the power cruising catamarans. These boats have living quarters and offer the same stability as sailing catamarans. However, the integration of a powerful motor allows these vessels to reach about 70 miles per hour. These catamarans are typically used for passenger travels to shorten the trip between two relatively close destinations such as the mainland and a not-so-remote island.
Power catamarans are also used by the military to transport items. They are particularly on-demand as they can sail in shallow waters as well.
In terms of their performance, catamarans have less resistance to water. Their hulls are smaller so they also have a smaller bow wave created by water displacement to fight. In addition, catamarans only need 4 times the power to double their speed, which is much less power than a monohull would require. Apart from using less energy, catamarans are also good at conserving energy.
Moreover, they are stable and can resist capsizing more than other vessels. They have twin engines that provide more control over speed and stability. Last but not least, catamarans offer smoother voyages and are great for entertainment.
All in all, catamarans can achieve a 30% faster speed than monohulls. Learn more interesting facts about catamarans with TheBoatAPP. Compare these vessels at TheBoatDB. Follow our blog for more interesting facts!