When Candela launched its C-8 speedy electric boat last summer, the brand said it hoped the new model would bring an “iPhone moment for boats”. Less than six months later, that bold claim doesn’t seem so unrealistic.
The Swedish company has released video footage of its impressive prototype 28ft electric hydrofoil boat cruising the waters outside the company’s headquarters in Lidingö, Stockholm. The C-8’s maiden voyage reached its planned “lift-off” speed of 16 knots before flying noiselessly over the water at a cruising speed of 20 knots, according to the company.
What is particularly impressive in the video is the transition from C-8 to “flight”. It rises gently from the surface like a whale taking in air before gliding above the water. The smooth transition is due to the C-8’s computer-controlled hydrofoils, which Candela says will use up to 80% less power than conventional planing boats, meaning longer range and higher speeds. . The foils, of course, are retractable for those who prefer a more traditional boat ride, and there’s even an autopilot option that will follow a set course thanks to the fly-by-wire steering system.
In the video, the C-8 cuts a nice profile hovering over the water. The carbon fiber hull facilitates this, as the vessel is significantly lighter than its conventional counterparts. It also offers more space than its predecessor, the C-7. The new model can accommodate up to eight people, with a cabin that can accommodate two adults and two children.
Of course, when it comes to any electric vehicle, range is the most important thing. On that score, the C-8 can travel 50 nautical miles on a single charge with the 44 kWh battery pushing it to 20 knots. For boaters who prefer a little more zip, the vessel can reach 30 knots. This will likely drain the battery faster, but don’t worry: it can be fully charged in around two hours.
Candela said he has already placed 100 orders for the C-8, and those interested can reserve one today. These boats will cost around $339,000 (€290,000) and the first C-8s are expected to be delivered in the second half of 2023. Two models are available – a day cruiser and a hardtop – and you can choose from a selection of two exterior colors with options for upholstery.
Will the C-8 bring a smartphone-level disruption to the boating world? Stay tuned to find out.