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08-02-2017, 01:27  
is not a speed demon but she quite well for her length and does well in light air. She handles rough extremely well with her canoe sterns giving me much confidence in heavy following seas. Prouts were built in for the North Sea and she lives up to her name quite well.

The 'mast-aft' rig with the small main, large sail with all lines & dropping down into or led back to the makes her very easy to handle alone. About the only time I must leave the is when I put up a .

These cats were designed with mini-keels to enable to dry out so I can easily set down somewhere between tides for . Occasionally I do and can be lifted out by almost any travel hoist anywhere due to her narrow beam.

As I don't do charters and am not obliged to enter & exit frequently, I really like the . The ability to the drive up when sailing eliminates drag, and allows me to use a normal three bladed . That drive can be also swiveled 30 degrees via a small tiller which does help to get around tight corners.

This has a low bridge with a center “nacelle” and there is some truth about the vicious reports concerning the “slamming” that these supposedly do. Yes, they will hobby-horse and slam if not loaded properly. It took me nearly three years to learn how to overcome that problem. I won't go into the fine details now but I do not have any complaints anymore since I learned how to lighten, eliminate weight on her extreme ends and distribute properly the necessary items that are needed to be kept on-board.

These cats were not built to be spacious condo-style catamarans nor were they built for or chartering but I do think they fit the description very well of being “well-built, strong, sea kindly, good live-a-board cruising catamarans”.

I have had my Prout for almost 11 years and have traveled close to 42,000 nm which includes one westward solo . But even today, I still discover things about her features that someone along the way during the long Prout of building catamarans had thought of.

Prouts are really and classy catamarans.

Below are some old articles about Prouts that I've collected that still can be accessed:

Warren Drifter
08-02-2017, 17:27  
Boat: Leopard 39
, this would be a great vessel for waters. I would imagine the sail plan is very versatile, and it's certainly salty looking too. I see some on the market with twin diesels and shaft drives. Bridge clearance is limited, but I imagine the other side of that coin is less windage from freeboard; and btw, congratulations on the solo .
08-02-2017, 18:24  
in various stages of completion allowing fit-outs to be done by the purchasers. This scheme resulted in not all but many of their catamarans to be fitted out by amateurs using inferior methods like perhaps nice but heavy inside, badly tabbed bulkheads, household quality & bad to name a few. My was fortunate to be have been fitted out entirely in Prout's yard using the furniture division of their company to do the using mostly lightweight grade from that was certified by Lloyds of London. So far, I have only experienced normal deterioration and nothing major.
08-02-2017, 22:39  
09-02-2017, 00:23  
, center of gravity & height

on a Prout 37 needs to be tensioned so that it is perpendicular to the waterline with zero rake. I use measurements from the bootstrap to obtain that 90 degree angle. The center of gravity on these boats are just in front of the mast and aft bulkhead. If the mast was to be stepped more forward, then it would probably have to be raked accordingly back to compensate. Perhaps this is the reason for the raked back masts on other cats, e.g. some Dean catamarans.

top height, upon entering through the door, the 3ft x 3ft floor area just inside has approximately 65.5 inches head height. Stepping directly to port brings one down into the port and going to starboard brings you to the table area which has approximately 71 inches head height. I am 6ft tall and still have never had a problem.
09-02-2017, 22:44  
Boat: Aloha 34
of 4 voyage is a mid 90's Prout 45. I just like 'em, and can't wait to get on one! Seem like good boats for the $.
10-02-2017, 01:20  
. As the pipes up, I start the head sail first and then later the main. And all from inside the cockpit as all halyards and reefing lines drop down right next to the .

BTW, there's a neat site called Prout Owner Association that has a forum and various items including and some information on the various Prout models with their original brocures.
11-02-2017, 13:57  
at the moment receiving treatment. Tell me more of weight distribution... Steve.
11-02-2017, 16:54  
with an 8hp hanging on it. A large heavy sat on the back deck. Under the bunk in the aft port cabin was a heavy genset. Under the sofa was a heavy twin airconditioner. The chain locker had 50 meters of 9mm chain and a 45 lb . I got rid of all that stuff. I bought a light weight roll-up and a 2 hp outboard and now only use an FX-37, 5m of chain and the rest is 5/8" NER nylon . I keep 10m of chain stored aft to add whenever I am around . I kept the but hardly ever use it. I installed a and put sounding tubes in the and refrain from filling each more than 60 liters unless I am in rough sea conditions or on a rough anchorage and then I fill more for ballast. If I buy extra in jerry cans for a long , I clean and store them in the aft cabins just inside the entrance. I sealed the lids of those aft hatches in each aft cabin, installed small caps and they are only extra empty bouyancy chambers now. I keep all my heavy spares under the saloon sofa as far back towards the mast as possible. I also keep a lot in that compartment plus those compartments next to the entry of both port and stbd cabins. This arrangement and trim shows me sitting perhaps 2" plus higher in the bow. But keeping her light as possible with the 'cargo' stored near or just behind the mast and being a bit high in front works well and makes for a much better & smoother ride.
04-05-2017, 19:05  
Boat: Hunter 22
05-05-2017, 16:41  
Boat: fountaine pajot athena 38
10-05-2017, 06:36  
15-05-2017, 06:53  
Boat: Prout Snowgoose Elite 37
had to cut rig away looking for info on mast length plan havng to buy usedmast inrip dulce to make it back home thanks s/vToucan
01-02-2018, 08:44  
a 1993 Prout Snowgoose Elite right now.
03-02-2018, 04:24  
Boat: Prout Snowgoose 35
has a low bridge deck with a center “nacelle” and there is some truth about the vicious reports concerning the “slamming” that these boats supposedly do. Yes, they will hobby-horse and slam if not loaded properly.
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  • By Tom Neale
  • Updated: August 5, 2002

prout catamaran reviews

Laying to her mooring, the Prout 45’s sleek rounded hulls, tear-drop shapes astern and contoured bridge promise to handle seas with minimal slapping and jerking.

Boarding stairways molded into each hull usher the cruiser to comfortable cockpit seats and table. Close by are large storage compartments, hefty davits aft and a dedicated compartment for a survival raft, one of the boat’s many notable safety features. Hydraulic steering and dual engine controls are at hand from a comfortable helmsman’s seat secure within the cockpit but with a good view under a nice Bimini.

In light air, the boat performed for us quite well. She’d recently proven herself offshore by crossing the Atlantic and sailing through a roaring northeaster on an East Coast passage. An Aero Rig powered the boat we sailed (see “Straight Aero” Jan. 1997).

The standard marconi rig costs considerably less. Under power with two Volvo 30-horsepower motors and Sail Drives, the boat turned sharply and maneuvered easily while remaining relatively quiet (exhaust is by way of a waterlock muffler) and comfortable, doing a lively eight knots at 2,450 rpms.

You can choose from four cabin arrangements. The Charter model we sailed had extra staterooms and, thus, fewer creature comforts than the Family or Master Stateroom versions, which contain fewer heads but more storage and separate shower stalls. The galley is snug and convenient to the saloon and cockpit. The view is great from the saloon’s wraparound seating, which is served by a large dinette. Forward of the saloon, two large berths, separated from each other by a bulkhead, are accessed from either hull. The bulkhead between them and the saloon opens. Ten deck hatches and 10 opening ports ventilate belowdecks.

Equipment installations are nicely done. Stainless steel ladders from aft-deck hatches lead to the rudder systems, shaft seals, batteries and aft end of the engines, the forward ends of which are also accessible through large hatches under the aft bunks. Plumbing, refrigeration and other systems are generally accessible, and Prout promises to hinge future electrical panels.

The manufacturer’s agents assured us that this boat can carry about two tons of payload after adding a gen set and filling the tanks.

Mud on the ground tackle gave yet another sign that the boat could and had been doing its stuff. The dual-anchor system is well thought out. The primary anchor feeds out from the forward wall of the bridge, keeping its weight and that of the windlass and chain back toward the boat’s center.

The boat is built to Lloyd’s ISO 9002/BS 5750 certification and can be purchased in varying stages of completion. Hand-laid of solid fiberglass up to the waterline, the hulls’ topsides are cored with end-grain balsa. Some critical areas are Kevlar reinforced. Deck coring is relieved in the way of stressed fittings. Diagonal, torsion-control bulkheads are designed to handle the connective structure’s stresses. Four collision bulkheads and integral water tanks in the hulls’ bottoms add to safety. The boat comes with a five-year osmosis guarantee

Prout 45 Specifications:

  • LOA: 45’0″ (13.7 m.)
  • LWL: 42’0″ (12.8 m.)
  • Beam (max): 20’10” (6.4 m.); 46% LOA
  • Draft: 3’5″ (1.04 m.)
  • Disp: 21,450 lbs. (9,730 kgs.)
  • Sail area: 942 sq. ft. (87.5 sq.m.)
  • Mast above water: 60’6″ (18.44 m.)
  • Length/Beam (hulls): 8:1
  • Underwing clearance: 2′ (min) to 2’8″; 4-6% LOA
  • Cabin Headroom: 6’3″ (1.93 m.)
  • Disp/Length: 129
  • SA/Disp: 19.5; Bruce #: 1.1
  • Fuel: 85 gal. (322 ltr.)
  • Water: 160 gal. (606 ltr.)
  • Holding: 38 gal. (144 ltr.)
  • Auxiliary: 2 x 30-hp Volvo Penta
  • Designers: David Feltman, Rob Underwood
  • Base Price: $446,600

Prout USA, Inc. 326 First St., Suite 33 Annapolis, MD 21403 Phone: (410) 280-8500

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Prout 45 Review

26th nov 2015 by samantha wilson.

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The Prout 45 is a direct descendant of the original Prout designs that pioneered the cruising catamaran. The boat balances luxurious accommodation for longer voyages with outstanding performance and simple short-handed cruising ability. The latest Prout model, now being manufactured in China, the Prout 45s, has a sumptuous and customisable interior offered with different layouts that shared the same main cabin on the upper level, but featured variations such as four staterooms and two heads, or three staterooms and three heads. Buying a second-hand Prout 45 is a sound choice – the award-winning structure ensures peace of mind.

Who and what was this boat designed for?

The Prout 45 is an ocean-cruising catamaran designed to be easily handled by a short-handed crew. The aft stepped mast ensures simple operation of the sail area with the minimum of effort. The boat’s shallow draft makes it equally capable of slipping into a shallow lagoon or settling on a beach.

What commentators say about this boat?

The name Prout is almost synonymous with cruising catamarans.

The first Prout 45 Ocean Ranger was a ground-breaking design, superbly sea-worthy and fast, winning races such as the Crystal Trophy in 1968.

She was one of the very first large glass fibre catamarans built and laid the foundations for the Prout range of 45 and 50 catamarans which proved so successful over the following 30 years.

The focal point of this design is the deck. For entertaining in sunny weather this design has a huge amount of what the Prout people call ‘Beach Deck’. In most harbour gatherings, the Prout 45 would be the designated ‘party boat’.

Model variations

Because the original British firm ceased trading we have found it difficult to get historical information on the Prout 45. We know that the first Prout 45 Ocean Ranger was built in 1965. However we cannot find further data on the model variations. If you know, please get in touch as we'd love to be able to show the full Prout 45 history.


  • Length overall: 45ft 0in (13.7m)
  • Beam overall: 20ft 10in (6.4m)
  • Draft: 3ft 5in (1.04m)
  • Displacement: 10.72 tons (9,730 kgs)
  • Mast above water: 60 ft 6in (18.44 m)
  • Mainsail area: 360 sq ft (23.46 sq m)
  • Genoa area: 582 sq ft (54.09 sq m)
  • Staysail area: 115 sq ft (10.69 sq m)
  • Spinnaker area: 1700 sq ft (158 sq m)
  • Fuel capacity: 85 gallons/102 US gallons (322 litres)
  • Water capacity: 160 gallons/192 US gallons (606 litres)
  • Engines: 2 x 30-hp Volvo Penta

What’s great about the Prout 45?

  • Hull structure integrity – 4500 Prouts with no recorded hull failures.
  • Designed for short-handed cruising with all sail controls led to the cockpit.
  • Excellent all-round visibility from the cockpit.
  • Design features to reduce pitching, improve windward performance and eliminate twists between the hulls.
  • Good access to rudder systems, shaft seals, batteries, engines, plumbing, refrigeration, and other systems.
  • Spacious accommodation, with a choice of four layouts.

What to look out for on a pre-owned Prout 45?

Prout engineers report few problems with this boat. If you have owned a Prout 45 and would like to share things to watch out for and potential faults that might occur on this boat from time to time, please get in touch.

Keeping your Prout 45 in shape

When buying a used Prout 45, regular scheduled servicing and attention to some minor points will keep your craft in top condition.

Regular servicing

Carry out regular engine and drive servicing in line with the manufacturer’s recommended intervals.


Check the hull for possible impact damage or starring. Repair using a gel coat and acrylic paint to prevent the risk of osmosis.

We don't currently have any specific information on laying up the Prout 45.

If you have ever owned or worked on a Prout 45 and would like to share your thoughts, then get in touch and we'll add your information to the page.

Model-specific repairs

The Prout 45 is known/not known for needing specific repairs more frequently than other boats.

Why buy a pre-owned Prout 45?

A second-hand Prout 45 is a boat that should be on your list if you’re looking for an ocean-going cruising catamaran that offers good sea-keeping, reliability, and comfort.

Written By: Samantha Wilson

Samantha Wilson has spent her entire life on and around boats, from tiny sailing dinghies all the way up to superyachts. She writes for many boating and yachting publications, top charter agencies, and some of the largest travel businesses in the industry, combining her knowledge and passion of boating, travel and writing to create topical, useful and engaging content.


More from: Samantha Wilson

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Prout 45 – Boat Review

By Tom Neale Laying to her mooring, the Prout 45’s sleek rounded hulls, tear-drop shapes astern and contoured bridge promise to handle seas with minimal slapping and jerking. Boarding stairways molded into each hull usher the cruiser to comfortable cockpit seats and table. Close by are large storage compartments, hefty davits aft and a dedicated compartment for a survival raft, one of the boat’s many notable safety features. Hydraulic steering and dual engine controls are at hand from a comfortable helmsman’s seat secure within the cockpit but with a good view under a nice Bimini. To read complete story – click here for Prout 45 – Boat Review on Cruising World website

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Prout 35 Snowgoose Review with Carl Michael

  • Post author By Richard
  • Post date November 17, 2020
  • 2 Comments on Prout 35 Snowgoose Review with Carl Michael

prout catamaran reviews

We interviewed Carl Michael who owns a Prout 35 Snowgoose which he bought from our for sale by owner listings . He kindly answered our questions about the Prout 35 after his Solo Atlantic Crossing in 2020 which is available to see on his YouTube channel . Please subscribe to his channel to follow for more awesome adventures.

Can you tell us a bit about yourself and the boat ?

I’m a 30 something adventure motorcyclist turned sailor. Having returned from a 6 month motorcycling tour of South America, I was looking for my next adventure. Whilst cycling in France, I saw a number of boats cruising slowly along the Loire with their mast unstepped and drink in their hand and seemingly without a care in the world. Having been wild camping in the high altitude of the Bolivian Altiplano, the humidity of the rainforrest, and the harshness of Patagonia, a boat looked to be a comfortable option. And so the search began for a safe, solid liveabord sailboat. 

Why did you choose the Prout 35 Snowgoose?

prout catamaran reviews

Initially I was avoiding Prouts. There was listed on catamaransite, and read the ad, then dismissed it. The design is too old, the bridgedeck clearance is low, they aren’t fast enough, and I didn’t like the look. 

I looked at the Heavenly Twins 27 but deemed it too small. Viewed a Comanche 32 which I really liked, but it needed more work than I was prepared to do at the time. I saw a few custom catamarans also in the <40’ range. Then whilst at Multihull World in the UK I viewed a couple of Prouts. A Quest 31, and a custom 35. I still wasn’t convinced. 

After nearly six months with little else available on the market, I decided to come around to the idea of a Prout. The listing I’d previous seen was in Spain. I flew over to take a look, and while I still had my reservations, I could see myself living on the boat, so I put in an offer there and then. 

When was she launched?

Jade was first launched in 1977

What’s the best thing about her?

Easy to sail single handed. Small enough to inspire confidence when working on her, but large enough to be a comfortable liveaboard.

What would you change if anything ?

If she was at the design stage again, I’d have head in the aft cabins. I’d also change the rudder stocks to allow mechanical tie bar to live inside the transom rather than outside. And for the sake of being modern more angles and straight lines rather than curves. 

Is she easy to maintain?

Being a small boat she is relatively cheap and easy to maintain, but lots of compound curves, and the lack of any straight or parallel surfaces does add some complexity when refitting. 

Is she easy to sail short-handed? To shorten sail? Easy to reach the boom?

In my first year I sailed single-handed from Spain to Greece via the Balareics, Sardinia, Sicily, and Malta. I later crossed the Atlantic, again single-handed. All lines lead to the cockpit. Being a cutter rig with an aft set mast means none of the sails are overly large. Both headsails are on furlers, and the main on my boat is an aftermarket in mast furler. 

What’s she like in heavy weather / a blow / big seas

It’s worth pointing out that I’m a fair weather sailor. The largest seas I’ve been in were 4.5m when crossing the Atlantic. I had about 28knts of wind and would surf down the waves at up to 16knts. Being downwind, this was very comfortable and I could happily sit and read a book. Wind is seldom an issue, it’s the sea state.

How does she sail in light winds?

prout catamaran reviews

Light wind sailing with a spinnaker is fantastic. Very comfortable, and being a small boat, the spinnaker isn’t unwieldy when singlehanded. In fact I used one a lot on my solo Atlantic crossing. I’ve had 9.5knts downwind with a symmetric spinnaker, but around 6-8 knts is the norm. I tend to put it away when the apparent wind gets over 16 knts. 

On whites she’s not so good, but that is more to do with sail material and weight rather than the design of the boat. It takes a good 12-15 knts until she picks up speed. 

How does she sail close hauled?

I avoid being close hauled like the plague. I had two great sails at about 60 degrees. One from Cadiz to Portugal averaging 6.5knts over 8 hours in 15knts of wind, the other in 18knts where I was flying along at 8knts before reefing. Shelter from Zakinthos meant that the water was nice and calm. 

Generally though going up wind is unpleasant. Having such a big genoa means it needs to be furled in stronger winds. This hurts the shape which ultimately affects pointing ability. I remember a sail in Portugal where we had 30 knts on the nose. The genoa was triple reefed. We needed to tack to clear a headland, but the tacking angle was so large, we were effectively going backwards, and just decided to motor instead. 

Any problems with bridge deck slamming?

Slamming and the motion going into the waves can be a problem. It’s one of the few times I get sea sick. Here it’s the frequency of the waves that matter more than the height. The motion can be extremely violent. So much so that when motoring 5 knts into the 1m seas less than 5 seconds apart in Curacao I snapped a mast tang. I had to slow down to 2 knts to keep things civilized. 

On all other points of sail, bridge deck clearance isn’t an issue. 

How about on a reach, heading down wind?

Downwind sailing is a dream. Almost effortless regardless of the speed, waves and wind. My most enjoyable downwind sail was probably from La Graciosa to Arrecife. I had the genoa and the stay sail bot poled out and was doing near 8 knts in 20 knts true. In fact I was enjoying the sail so much that I missed the entrance to marina by about a mile. 

On a beam reach, she can quick also, but the sea state will dictate comfort levels. My very first sail was from Cartagena to Mar Menor. Once I turned the corner I had 16 knts on the beam and was sailing along at 7.5 knts. In beam on in bigger waves (2m) she can be very rocky. Sea sickness pills are likely required. 

Typically, what’s your average speed on passage?

Average passage speeds are around 5.5 -6.5 knts

What’s she like under power? Speed, manouevrability?

At some point during her life Jade had a Yanmar 3GM30 shoe-horned into the engine bay. This combined with the steerable Sillette drive leg gives a surprising amount of manoeuvrability and speed under power. Not quite the same as having two engines, but no bad. Going astern in a cross wind can be challenging though. 

Motoring at 6knts is no problem if needed. 7.5knts is the absolute maximum in perfect conditions. I have two props on board so it really just depends which one is attached. 

Is she easy to dock, what’s the visibility like?

Docking is easy enough, but general visibility from the cockpit is atrocious. The cockpit sits very low in the boat. At 5’10” I can see both bows when standing, but only just. Tip toes works better. For longer sails there isn’t really anywhere you can sit/lie down and feel comfortable that you can see all around you. 

The best visibility is actually from inside either the saloon or the master berth. It’s not 360 like a Lagoon or similar, but it’s not bad. This is where I tend to spend the time on long multi-day/multi-week passages. 

What is she like on the hook?

prout catamaran reviews

Most of my time is spent at anchor. Normally between April to October in the Med, and year round in the Caribbean. Being only 4.5 tonnes loaded, I sleep very comfortably knowing that the 25kg Rocna is going to hold well. 

The motion is usually calm and stable, though beam on into a swell is less comfortable than modern cats due to the narrow beam. That being said, seldom do I ever have to worry about spilling my beer. I can’t say the same when I have drinks on my friends 43’ monohull. 

Is she comfortable down below?

Comfort down below is good. The galley is spacious and the head has more room than you could ever need. Being critical I would say the layout could have been better. Visit a Heavenly Twins 27, or an Ocean Twins 36  and see how well it uses its space, then you see where the Snowgoose 35 could improve. That being said she is perfect for a couple with the occasional guest. 

Is she good for hosting guests?

A standard Snowgoose 35 should be able to sleep 6. You’d never to do it though. Somewhere down the line mine was converted to the stateroom layout. This provides a lot of space for the owners but less so for guests. 

A couple and one guest is perfect. Two guests also works for possibly not for more than a week. 

The rear cabins are crawl spaces and the one near galley is usually used for storage, that leaves the aft berth (without head height), and the two benches in the saloon. I feel bad when guests crawl into their berth, whilst I have a dressing room and nice size double.

How is the storage space on the boat?

Personally I don’t think there’s a lot of storage space once you’ve added your batteries, pluming, electronics, and accessories. Monohull friends think differently when I pull out my full sized Kacher wet and dry vacuum, Riese und Muller bicycle, electric scooter, and Bosch tools still in the original L-boxes.

What kind of modifications have you done and why ?

I bought the boat from a fellow cruiser, who seemed to have questionable ability when it came to fixtures and fitting and electronics, that being said she was very well equipped. 

Most of my modifications were based around comfort. The very first thing I did was to install an electric toilet. 25-35 pumps on the old Jabsco every time you get up in the night to go for a pee. No thanks. The second was to get a portable freezer. I bought the Dometic CFX50. Next came a watermaker, and a washing machine.

For power I added additional solar. Over 1kw at one time, now down to about 900w. Then changed out the windlass battery, 6 Trojan T105s, and starter battery for a 280ah LiFePO4 bank, saving nearly 200kg in weight. 

Sailing wise I installed a completely new modern autopilot and, and NMEA2000 network, along with a class B+ AIS transponder.

The boat has an aftermarket in-mast furling system, but the cheap dacron mainsail had stretched, so splashed out on a new laminate mainsail. The genoa was kept, but it’s getting time to change it now.  Most of my other work has been just general maintenance and trying to up the interior a little (which whilst liveable could still use some work). 

Any plans for further customisation?

I have been wanting to install a hard top over the cockpit cover for some time now. Unfortunately I haven’t been anywhere with access to good materials and working areas in order for me to carry out the work. I could do it from wood, but my preference is foam core and fibreglass to keep things as light as possible. 

A lightweight hard top would allow a larger solar array and provide better shade, especially in the Caribbean. 

If you were to swap her for another boat, what would that be? Or maybe you wouldn’t swap her?

I wouldn’t swap her for anything else in the same price range. You just can’t been the value of a Prout. Add to that the strong construction and you’re on to a winner. You could spend another $30,000 on refitting and kitting out the boat, the total cost of a Snowgoose 35 would still be tens of thousands less than even 20 year old boats like an FP Athena 38, Lagoon 380, or similar. 

Anyhow, money being no object, I’d have a Neel Trimaran. 

Anything else you would add to help people thinking of buying a Prout 35?

prout catamaran reviews

Just to do your own research, and see as many as possible. I can be overly critical so bear that in mind, along with the fact these boats are a minimum of 40 years old now. 

The Snowgoose 35 were solid glass throughout including the bridgedeck and coachroof. Later, Prouts changed to balsa sandwich, so that’s something to note. 

  • Tags Catamaran Interviews , Catamaran Reviews

2 replies on “Prout 35 Snowgoose Review with Carl Michael”

Hi do you have and dimensions for the ideal size and tyke of spinnaker for the snowgoose 35? Thank you

Sailed snowgoose 35 through Hurricane Greta , Canaries, from Chichester uk to Bundaberg, Qld,Australia.only damage on arrival was crack in bulkhead.

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20 Performance Cruising Catamaran Reviews

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Catamarans are exciting and fast sailboats that offer some great features. With so many types and brands to choose from, it’s hard to find which is worth your investment. So, what are the top performance cruising catamarans ?

The best performance cruising catamarans are the Manta 42, Dolphin 42, Leopard 48, and Fountaine Pajot Elba 45. The McConaghy MC50, Privilege 435, and Nautitech 441 are also impressive models. The best offer optimal performance and can sail a 250-mile voyage easily.

Have you just begun your catamaran research but don’t know which to buy? Are you looking for a performance cruising catamaran that’s worth the investment? Let’s take a closer look at 20 performance cruising catamarans and what makes them the best.

The Top 20 Performance Cruising Catamarans

Catamarans are racing ships that have slowly been making waves in the cruising world. The design focuses on lightness and simplicity. Combined, these two elements ensure a faster ship and make them great for long distances.

The multiple hulls on the catamarans offer optimal water displacement, allowing them to glide through the water with much less trouble than single-hull boats. Because of their design, a catamaran’s performance will vary depending on the conditions you sail them through. The ocean and wind will play a significant role in how fast your catamaran will go as well as how smooth the ride will be.

When comparing catamarans for speed, there are four numbers you’ll want to consider:  

  • Bruce Number: The speed potential based on the power (sail-area) to weight ratio of the boat
  • Texel Rating (TR): A formula that will calculate how long it takes to sail any distance
  • Kelsall Sailing Performance (KSP): Potential speed of a vessel
  • Base Speed: The average speed of a boat over 24 hours of sailing

These numbers signify a cat’s performance so that you can pick the one that best suit your needs, whether you’re looking for a fast catamaran or not.

In addition to speed, your catamaran should have everything you need to be comfortable on your voyages. There should be plenty of living space for you and your crew or family members. When choosing the best catamaran for your needs, consider how much gear you will have with you on any given trip and if the ship you’re looking at has enough space for all of it.

The Manta 42 is a favorite of many sailors. Its beautiful design has a high bow and an incorporated curved crossbeam, the latter being unique and making the ship easy to spot from far distances and onshore.

Typically, aluminum crossbeams are used, and they allow for more movement in the bows. Since the Manta 42 doesn’t use aluminum ones, the ship is more susceptible to cracks in the bow caused by stress. However, the width of the Manta 42 makes the ship stable on the water, and the narrow hulls make it great for slicing through the water with speed and agility.

The Dolphin 42 has the best balance of performance and cruising comfort . What is truly special about these boats is that they come equipped with daggerboards . These bad ass features allow the ship to pull into just about any anchorage, including the shallow ones. 

The Dolphin is made with a foam core, which is designed to make the entire ship lighter. However, this doesn’t compromise the performance of the boat. It makes it perfect for cruising through the ocean with high-performance levels.

One thing to keep in mind is those convenient daggerboards. If the ship were to run aground, the hull integrity could be compromised. And if the daggerboards are removed or lifted, they will expose the rudders underneath. These features don’t ruin the ship’s functionality, but it’s important to note them just in case.

The Leopard 48 is a catamaran that you’ll definitely want to see. The design uses some of the best techniques to ensure optimal speed, weight, and cruising performance. The hulls are narrow — like most catamarans — and are built to reduce the amount of water that flows on the deck. It also reduces the amount of sea spray along the sides.

The Leopard 48 has two bulkheads (one in the bow and the other in the stern) designed to keep water out of the ship in an accident. It’s designed for long journeys, and the vessel comes with everything you could want for everyday living.

Fountaine Pajot Elba 45

The Fountaine Pajot Elba 45 is a fantastic powerhouse ship with luxury at its core. The living quarters of this catamaran are impressive and are sure to provide you with every comfort you could possibly want, no matter how long you sail it for.

The designers considered everything when designing this ship. They’ve simplified the prep work for the sails, making it easier than ever to get underway. The build of the Fountaine Pajot Elba 45 makes it fast when sailing or when under power. 

McConaghy MC50

The McConaghy MC50 is on the smaller side of catamarans in the McConaghy brand, but that shouldn’t disqualify it. This ship was designed with wide-open concepts and high bows. There’s no doubt it’s made for luxury but can hold its own in performance and speed departments.

Even with its luxury items (such as its full washing machine), this ship moves through the water gently. While it’s clearly designed for comfort, it’s still a relatively fast boat. However, there is a downside to the layout of the boat. The helms are much more exposed than other catamarans, which could be a potential safety hazard.

Privilege 435

The Privilege 435 is a catamaran designed to go long distances. It uses a heavy displacement so that the ship glides through the water with ease. The vessel is also built with a low-slung structure to help prevent winds. 

A slight drawback could be the heat buildup caused by the sun seeping in through the windows, as there aren’t any outside shades or ways to block the sun except for the internal shades. The other downside to this catamaran is that the Privilege’s bridge deck has low clearance . Other than that, the ship is an excellent option for those looking for a well-built cat.

Nautitech 441

The Nautitech 441 is another impressive catamaran to consider. The interior is slightly smaller than some others we have gone over, but don’t let that fool you. This boat is full of great features to make your trip comfortable and successful.

For example, the Nautitech 441 is equipped with a rain gutter situated around the entire coachroof. This gives you the option to collect the water for your freshwater tanks, or you can simply let it drain off the boat through the Y-shaped valve.

It’s a fast little boat that can use either the sails or fuel to reach 9 knots in moderate conditions. That’s not bad if you’re looking for a comfortable, decent-sized cruising ship with a bit of a kick.

The ICE Cat 61 is a catamaran designed and developed in Italy. The ship uses a carbon mast and is very easy to use.

The ship’s size and the power-to-weight ratio allow for reaching top speeds that isn’t possible with a monohull. The living areas are also large and are perfect for entertaining, making the ICE Cat 61 a great option to consider when shopping for your new catamaran.

The unique aspect of the Lagoon 440 is the engine. It doesn’t not have to run on diesel fuel because Lagoon offers a fully electric version. This is great for those who are looking for a more eco-friendly way to run their boat. This catamaran uses two electric motors, which are mounted on each hull of the ship, but the best part is that these engines are almost entirely silent.

The inside is just as luxurious as the engine is, designed with families in mind and for long-distance journeys. It’s a ship that would handle itself perfectly in deeper waters and even in harsh winds.

Antares 44i

The Antares 44i is a well-designed catamaran that is meant for long-distance journeys like most catamarans are. The layout is engineered to give you the best views throughout your trip, and the cockpit is fully equipped in the event you’re sailing single handed.

The motors are installed in a discrete location and are almost completely silent, allowing for outstanding performance without sacrificing your comforts. There’s tons of storage available as well for all of the gear that comes with sailing.

The Catana 50 has a well-built design that is meant for high speeds and effective sailing. The daggerboards help the hulls cut through the water with little trouble. There is also excellent storage for your gear located throughout the boat.

What is genuinely superior in this catamaran is the ability it holds to turn itself around with ease and speed. There is no struggle to reverse the ship and maneuver it around the dock. Walking around on the boat is easy enough, but the cockpit setup and helm are situated awkwardly, so it requires a bit of walk around to use all of the ship’s controls. 

The Voyage 44 is a performance cruising catamaran that is well-built for a bargain price. It’s something that you just can’t beat when looking for a new yacht because this ship has everything you could ask for.

It’s designed with day cruising in mind, but that won’t limit it to short distances. What’s also great about this boat is the amount of seating it offers, fitting 32 people comfortably. The ship is functional, and the layout is designed to make traveling onboard the vessel as simple and straightforward as possible.

Atlantic 42

The Atlantic 42 is a fan favorite. This loyal following stems from the Atlantic’s look and effectiveness, and consumers seem to love how easy this ship is to sail and how capable it is for deep ocean sailing.

The size of the Atlantic 42 is something fans of this catamaran love. It might look small from the outside, but the inside layout is well done and feels spacious. The cockpit location in front of the mainmast takes advantage of the rest of the ship’s structure, making it a more flexible design than some other catamarans available.

Outremer 45

The Outremer 45 is designed a bit differently from other catamarans because the hulls are narrower than usual. This helps make the Outremer 45 a fast ship, but it’s done for safety reasons as well. The narrower hulls will prevent the vessel from skidding on the water as much as other catamarans. It also reduces any pitching you might experience from flying through the water at top speeds.

The interior is smaller than many other boats in this article, but the design doesn’t sacrifice your comfort. The cabin has an open concept to easily pull the outdoor seating into the indoor living space, meaning it’s perfect for entertaining and comfortable living. 

The Bahia 46 is on the bigger side by catamaran standards. It’s designed by the brand Fountaine Pajot, which has been building catamarans for years. In fact, Fountaine Pajot is one of the leading brands in cruising catamarans.

The foam core’s overall design, the high bridge deck clearance , and the low center of gravity make this ship an excellent option for deep ocean sailing. It will hold its own on rough waters as well, and there’s also plenty of space for entertaining on the inside of the ship. 

The Prout 45 is an excellent catamaran to consider if you plan to sail with a limited crew. The positioning of the mainsail and the mast make it simple to use and easy to reach. Also, the mainsail itself is smaller than other ships and easy to handle.

The interior isn’t like some of the newer models. In new catamarans, the concept is more open and free-flowing between inside and outside. In the Prout 45, things are more traditional but still comfortable. Don’t worry; you still have plenty of room to entertain and plot your voyage.

Gemini 105MC

The Gemini 105MC is a unique catamaran. That’s because instead of being designed solely by the builder, it’s a collective effort from the builder and many sailors who used the vessel. They wrote in their suggestions to improve the Gemini, and the builder used the most relevant ones to build the newer models.

If you’re looking for a ship for a cross-ocean voyage, you may want to consider another catamaran. Due to the ship’s size and weight, it’s less likely to make it across the ocean. However, that doesn’t mean it’s not a great ship, and this vessel is perfect for sailing near the coast. 

The Gunboat 62 is the first catamaran of this brand. The Gunboat 62 is an older model, but it’s still considered one of the fastest. These ships were also the first to introduce luxury to performance cruising. 

The interior is slightly outdated, and technology has advanced since the brand launched these ships. However, this boat’s overall performance is unmatched, though there also isn’t as much space available for storage. 

Marsaudon TS5

The Marsaudon TS5 is one of the fastest catamarans available. It’s designed with panoramic views from the interior, and the ship speeds up quickly due to its lightweight design and shape.

The ship can be challenging to maneuver, which makes it better suited for experienced sailors. While the interior still has plenty of luxuries, it can be considered bare. The designers want to keep the ship light to increase its speed, meaning some comforts have been sacrificed, such as space in the living quarters.

Unlimited C53

The Unlimited C53 is a fast racing catamaran with all the comforts of a cruising ship. The design uses a new technique of connecting the two hulls at 1.3m above the waterline. This is unheard of in most catamarans, and this feature minimizes how the ship handles rougher seas.

The ship uses all of the necessary tanks and equipment to keep the boat balanced on the water. Perfect weight displacement throughout the vessel makes it ideal for racing and long-distance sailing. The interior is also spacious and provides all of the comforts you could need. 

In the end, the best performance cruising cat for you is going to come down to your personal preferences and what you want in a boat. Each catamaran on this list is going to provide you the best features you could ever imagine in a ship. Hopefully, the reviews of the top 20 performance cruising catamarans will help you find your dream boat!

Owner of A minimalist that has lived in a caravan in Sweden, 35ft Monohull in the Bahamas, and right now in his self-built Van. He just started the next adventure, to circumnavigate the world on a Catamaran!

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Prout Catamarans

prout catamaran reviews

Unfortunately, Prouts are no longer made. For a time, new owners of the name kept the story going, but for now the brand seems to have hit the buffers. But who knows?

If you are looking for a second hand boat, check out our Prout Catamaran for Sale page.

First Steps, Shearwater

prout catamaran reviews

2 Canoes In the late 1940s and early ’50s, 2 brothers, Francis and Roland Prout were the UK´s top canoeists, and represented Britain in the 1952 Helsinki Olympics.

The brothers worked in the family boat building business, G. Prout & Sons Ltd, making folding canoes and dinghies. The firm had been formed by Geoffrey Prout and his sons, Roland and Francis, in 1935. After the war, Roland and Francis and their father and mother started up again in a factory at Smallgains Corner. The company grew and hundreds of folding dinghies and canoes were sold all over the world.

Two Hulls Were Faster than One Roland and Francis had a “Eureka” moment in 1947. What if you lashed two canoes together? Prout catamarans were born. The Polynesians had thought about it a long time before that, but hey, we’re talking Essex remember! In any case, they weren’t too advanced in yacht manufacturing in the South Seas at that time.

The brothers started experimenting with two Kl racing kayaks tied together with a bamboo platform and adding a mast and sails. The experiment was so successful that the brothers decided to design and build a catamaran, which was called “Shearwater”.

roland and francis prout

“We shot out of that creek and reached about 15 knots,” said Francis Prout at the time. “It was as if we were on tram lines, turning was difficult because we were going so fast.”

Shearwater: the Legend This catamaran was known as Shearwater 1, it raced locally and won every race. In 1954 the boat was entered in a “D” class handicap in the Isle of Wight and Burnham regatta week, and won outright. The Duke of Edinburgh was so impressed with its performance he subsequently bought a Prout catamaran.

This generated lots of interest in catamarans which led to the Prouts designing more models until they hit on the smaller and more easily trailed Shearwater III.

prout shearwater III

Roland and Francis entered the No I Shearwater III in the first Cross-Channel Dinghy Race from Folkestone to Boulogne in 1956, and beat all of the best racing dinghy helmsmen of the day by over one hour. This publicity built good demand for the Shearwater III, the world’s first production catamaran. They built over 2000 of them.

The brothers followed up Shearwater with its smaller sister the Swift. And then in 1955, they started to build the 36ft Flamingo cruisers followed by a series of vacuum-bagged, cold-moulded cruisers, including the original SNOWGOOSE built for Don Robertson, chief Test Pilot for de Havilland. When eleven years old, this boat finished second in the Round Britain Race.

Bigger Cats

In the meantime, the Prout Brothers continued to work on new designs, mostly larger craft, including:

The Cougar, a 19ft 2 man catamaran, 27ft and 31ft Ranger Class cruisers, a 45ft Ocean Ranger, and 35 and 37ft cruisers, such as the “Taranga” Class. Prout was the first company to produce fiberglass catamarans.

Tsulamaran Prout 77

In 1966, a 77 footer called ‘Tsulamaran’, was built:  the largest catamaran ever. Prout were ahead of their time on this one. Prout built the first ever catamaran to sail around the world. Dr. David Lewis’ ‘Rehu Moana’ competed in the 1964 OSTAR , and then went on to complete a circumnavigation.

Snowgoose 35

The first of the more modern designs was the Snowgoose 35, a real innovation at the time in 1971. The Snowgoose 35 was produced by Thames Marine under license from G. Prout & Sons

Prout Snowgoose 35

Prout Catamarans Ltd is Born

prout catamaran reviews

In 1976 a new company was launched with the Prout brothers: Roland and Francis Prout, John and Tom Lawrence, Rodney Hall and Robert Underwood. The company was known as Prout Catamarans and Robert Underwood was appointed managing director.

Canvey Island The new company, based on Canvey Island (some seven square miles lying off the South Coast of Essex in the Thames Estuary) was licensed by the Prouts to manufacture, promote and sell their catamaran designs, starting with the Quest 31 and taking on the production of the Snowgoose 35.

In the seventies, the Prout brothers focused on design and soon came up with the Prout Snowgoose 37, Sirocco 26,  Quasar 50, Quest 33CS, Quasar 50 S2 and Espace, Snowgoose 37 Elite, Scamper 26 trailer/sailer, Event 34, Escale 39, Prout 45 and finally the Prout 38. Add to that the Panther 44, 61, and 64 power yachts.

It was a time of tremendous growth for the company, but this is also an indication of their inability to streamline their range. This would come to haunt them later (more on that below).

Prout Models, Canvey Island

prout catamaran reviews

The following yachts were designed and built by the company through the Prout “Golden Years”. Sorted in order of length, not launch date.

  • Prout Swift 14’ 6″ racing catamaran (1958)
  • Apollo 18 (1969)
  • Prout Cougar (1962)
  • Prout Ranger 27 – the world’s first all GRP cat (1962)
  • Ranger 31 (1963)
  • Prout Scirocco 26 (1982)

Prout Scamper 26 (1983)

  • Prout Quest 31 & 33CS (1976 & 1985)

Prout Event 34 (1989)

  • Prout Snowgoose 35 (1969)
  • Prout Snowgoose 37 (1978)
  • Prout Snowgoose Elite (1986)
  • Prout 38 (1998)
  • Prout Escale 39 (1990)
  • Prout Ranger 45 (1966)
  • Prout 45 (1995)
  • Prout 46 Ken Freivokh Design (1998)
  • Prout Quasar 50 (1979)
  • Prout Quasar 50 Espace with high volume hull (1988)

Prout Scirocco 26 (1980)

The smallest of the range (Prout did manufacture a Ranger 27 back in the early sixties), the Scirocco had low-aspect-ratio fixed keels and what they called an “ant-slam nacelle” – something that you can see on modern Lagoon cats to this day.

She had the mast stepped back with a big headsail in the Prout fashion – that kept the pressure off the lee bow.

prout scamper 26

A 26 foot open bridge deck cat, the hulls were built with the Scirocco molds but they added a bigger sail area, a rotating mast and a fully battened sail. She’s a fast coastal cruiser that can be taken apart for trailing.

Many thanks to Martijn from Edam in the Netherlands for sharing his information on the Scamper. Martijn owns one of these coastal cruisers and reckons that Prout built 8 of them. They went for £9,995 + VAT at the time. An extra £1500 got you a trailer.

Practical Boat Owner Feb 1985: Scamper 26 Review Yachting World Sep 1984: Scamper 26 Test

Prout Quest 31 (1976) & 33CS (1983)

The Quest 31 launched in 1976 and the new design philosophy was used in the famous Snowgoose 37 launched 2 years later. The Prout brothers often commented that the 31 was the best catamaran they ever made, a decent sailing cat if you keep the weight off, although prone to slamming upwind.

Prout Quest 31 Brochure

The 33CS was the upgraded design launched in the eighties. I have a soft spot for these Prouts as the first cruising cat I ever sailed on was a Quest 33: “Shady Lady”

Prout 33 Shady Lady C1161

The 33CS has extensions to make the aft berths almost doubles, but it is heavier.

The Quest is strong and seaworthy, a very easy yacht for soloing. They don’t have much headroom though…

Check out Wolf Hoffman´s blog on “IDA” where he takes her through the Corinth Canal in Greece.

This model evolved from the popular Quest 33 and came out in ’89. In fact both models were produced at the same time for a while as the Quest 33 had a lower spec and price tag.

A 34 Footer with More Space She was conceived as a smaller version of the Snowgoose 37 elite, with a similar design philosophy – better load carrying than the Quest and the bump out for a bigger aft cabins. That did slow her down a bit, but she can carry more gear for long passages.

Prout developed the Event 34 from scratch with yacht designer David Feltham. The Event is higher, wider  and broader in the stern sections which means more room down below. The extra volume in the sterns (which end in transoms rather than being canoe shaped) reduce pitching. That trademark Prout nacelle is well developed, almost touching the water at the stern of the boat.

prout event 34

She’s Strong The hull is a one piece solid molding. It’s a strong, seaworthy boat.

The sail plan is typically Prout with a large low aspect genoa and a small main set (Mainsail) well aft.

She came in the Family Layout with a large double berth at the forward end of the saloon accessed through a dressing room forward in the starboard hull, or the Open Plan Layout with a larger saloon that could be converted into a double berth.

This Prout Event 34 blog is good – a guy sailed his 34 around the British Isles with his dog.

We have heard from Peter Zabell who bought one of the first Event 34 kits from Prout in 1988/1989. His 34, Salt Peter was launched in 1991. He left the UK on her in 1992 to sail around the world and sold her in Australia in 2006.

Prout Event 34 Brochure

Snowgoose One Off (1955)

The original Prout Snowgoose was built in 1955 as a one off for Don Robertson, the chief Test Pilot for de Havilland. This was a vacuum-bagged, cold-moulded cruiser.

In 1961, she won the Multihull Round the Island race in a record time of 7 hrs. 46 mins. 51 secs. Then in 1966, Don’s 36′ Snowgoose came second in the Round Britain Race behind the 42’ ‘Tomi’.

‘Snowgoose’ was the inspiration for the later production series: the 35.

Prout Snowgoose 35 (1969 – 77)

The first production Prout Snowgoose was launched in 1969. Originally it was called a Snowgoose 34, but I guess someone got around to measuring one with the rudders on and they renamed it the Snowgoose 35!

It was the first catamaran to launch with the now famous canoe shaped Prout Nacelle giving you more living space and headroom inside and it allowed an inboard engine with an outdrive leg to be installed. The all fibreglass Snowgoose 34/35 design was introduced with an Prout offshore rig and low aspect ratio keels.

prout catamaran reviews

The Prout 35 was the first version of the Snowgoose range, at first manufactured by Thames Marine under license from G. Prout & Sons until 1976, and then by Prout Catamarans. She has slender hulls and narrow berths, and is a good sailer but easy to overload.

In 1976, the 35 was replaced with the Snowgoose 37, developed alongside the Quest 31.

Again, this boat had a cutter rig well aft with a low centre of pressure from the sail which resulted in good stability.

The secluded owner’s berth was in the forecabin (something that Privilege cats continue with to this day). She even had flush hatches on the foredeck.

The older Snowgoose cats had slimmer hulls than the 37s and sail faster and point higher. But there is less living space and can´t carry so much weight. If you keep the weight down (particularly off the ends) she will sail well.

With thick, strong hulls and over engineered rigging, she’s another tough boat.

Prout Snowgoose 37 (1978 – 1986 )

The Circumnavigator The Snowgoose 37 is probably Prout’s most famous boat and the model that has completed the most circumnavigations. If you sail across the Atlantic from Europe to the Caribbean, there’s a pretty good chance that you will bump into a Snowgoose in a bay or marina somewhere. More than 500 were built, mostly in the eighties. I believe the #1 hull is a yacht called “Cavalier”.

Most Snowgoose 37s have single engines with a rotating, retractable sonic drive gear, typically between 30 and 40HP.

The ‘new’ design was launched in 1978 had more standing headroom and living space with a redesigned berth and galley. The sail plan was improved – the large genoa and small mainsail concept continued.

Read our full Snowgoose 37 review.

Prout Snowgoose 37 Brochure

Prout Snowgoose 37 Elite (1986 – 2002)

Prout Snowgoose customers had been asking the company for a boat that could carry more weight for longer passages and that had more room down below, especially in the aft cabins, so in 1986, Prout launched an upgraded version of the design called the Snowgoose 37 Elite which was beamier.

prout catamaran reviews

This helped reduce pitching, but she was also heavier and did not perform quite as well up wind as the original 37 (unless the older boat was overloaded).

The 37 Elite has a low bridge deck with a center “nacelle” like many Prouts and there is some “slamming” in rough weather, but you can minimise this with good weight distribution: take off the weight from her ends and she will sail well.

The hull shape of the Elite is slightly different to the original 37. Whereas the standard Snowgoose has two transom-hung outboard rudders, the Elite has slightly smaller rudders below the waterline.

prout catamaran reviews

An example of one of these boats is Snowgoose Elite #340 Wildgoose Too (formerly Double Vision) that was launched in 1989

In 1996, Prout announced that they had delivered their 400th Snowgoose.

You can also read our Snowgoose 37 Owner´s Review here.

Prout Snowgoose 37 Elite Brochure

Prout 38 (1998 – 2002)

The Prout 38 was launched in 1998, just 3 years before Prout Catamarans Ltd went into receivership for the first time. Which is a shame, because with this model the UK company really started to find their design feet. You can see a lot of design cues from the larger 45 that was launched 3 years earlier.

Prout 38

Unlike more modern French designs, you still have to step down to the saloon from the aft cockpit, but on the flip side, it´s pretty cosy when you get in there, and she is a strong, sturdy boat that can handle a blow.

The Prout 38 is not a light boat but follows on in their tradition of strong, sturdy yachts that are easy to sail short handed thanks to the aft position of the mast.

The interior is designed for three couples with one head in the port hull and a “Down Galley” is sunken in the starboard hull with a Cool Box in the forward berth. She´s a good looking catamaran with a high quality, traditional interior finish.

Prout 39 Escale (1991 – 2002 )

The Escale 39 was proportionally wider and roomier than previous Prout designs: the length:beam ratio is about 2:1, similar to most modern cats. This made her more stable, but you lose some of those other Prout benefits like cheaper marina fees and the ability to motor down inland canals. She´s a good load carrier.

Prout 39 Escale

The bridgedeck extends almost to the bows to improve rigidity and living space and she has buoyancy chambers fore and aft for safety.

The Big Nacelle The famous Prout nacelle was developed further on this boat to increase accommodation and reduce slamming – it’s almost a third hull.

The rig again is comprised of a small high aspect main and large low aspect headsails. The centre of effort is kept low and aft. She’s a fine world cruiser.

Prout 39 Escale Brochure

Prout 45 (1995) & 46 (1998)

The sleek looking Prout 45 was launched in 1995 following on from the 50 Quasar and was one of their prettiest boats. 3 years later, the Prout 46 was launched with the new 38 which was basically an extended, upgraded version with a high end pack. Read our full Prout 45 Review here.

prout 45

Strong and Sturdy The 45 is a well made, solid boat. The low bridge deck clearance means there can be a bit of slamming going up wind and the displacement is on the heavy side. You won’t be breaking any speed records, but this is a  catamaran that will take you anywhere safely.

The flip side with that lower profile, is that windage is significantly reduced versus other designs. Up front, she looks a bit like a Privilege on the foredeck with those small trampolines and the nacelle. They are very popular boats still that hold their value very well in the second hand market. All the lines come down the aft side of the mast – and because this is positioned aft in the Prout position, your sheets, halyards and reefing lines are all to hand in the cockpit.

Galley Down With the galley down in the starboard hull, the saloon is very comfortable. In fact the interior design is pretty innovative, an idea that has been continued by Privilege and Lightwave from Australia.

The saloon stops short of the forward bulkhead, so there is space for an owner´s cabin forward in the center of the boat. The Prout nacelle that runs fore and aft along the main deck, adds living space and headroom as well as buoyancy.

The 46 was an interior upgrade. Prout teamed up with Ken Freivokh on this relaunch – these are rare but worth looking out for.

You can also read our Prout 45 Owner’s Review from Sailing Zarafet.

Prout Quasar 50 1979 and Espace (1988)

The Prout Quasar is not the prettiest boat in my personal opinion, but she’s comfortable, stable, and can go through anything. The design evolved from the older Prout Ranger Ocean class, and I have been told that they can move nicely if you keep the weight down and  off the ends. They also suffer from wave slam, but these are tough boats that will safely cross oceans.

Plenty of Interior Space If you are looking for a great value, safe and solid world cruiser, the Prout Quasar 50 is worth a look, especially if you are planning on sailing in colder climes. This boat has pretty much maxed out its interior living space- it´s BIG inside, and even in warmer climes there is plenty of space outside with that solid foredeck.

prout catamaran reviews

From 1988 onwards, Prout launched the Quasar 50 Espace which added 3 foot onto the beam- that means even more living space, so bear that in mind if you are looking for a good second hand example. Like their other models that had an XL version (eg the Snowgoose Elite), this affected the performance, but it means that the boat can soak up more weight for longer passages.

The Bankruptcy of Prout (2001)

In the late nineties, Prout Catamarans were running into headwinds with currency exchange rates, increased competition and falling demand. Looking at the list of models on sale, it would seem that they weren’t that great at rationalising their product range and increasing production efficiency.

The Quest Years, Limping On In July 2000, Prout Catamarans was bought by the Quest group, a Canadian company. The plan was to put capital into the business and use Prout Catamarans as the preferred builder for their charter fleet.

They couldn’t turn the loss making business around, however, and Prout Catamarans went into receivership in September 2001, just a year after the purchase. A new Quest subsidiary called Prout UK bought the latest molds, 11 boats under contract, and the employees that they needed. Robert Underwood left towards the end of the year.

In 2002, Prout folded again, this time for good. The company was liquidated and its assets sold, the most valuable of which were the molds.

Broadblue and the South African Connection

After Prout UK went bust, the assets of the company were sold off. Most of the value was in the molds and the brand.

The Molds Travel The 34, 37, and 39 molds were sold and shipped to South Africa. The newer 38 molds were kept in England and later turned up as the Broadblue 38. One of the directors of Broadblue is Robert Underwood, so I am guessing some kind of deal was done there. There must be more to the story, I might try and bend his ear if I ever see him at a show. Broadblue also got hold of the 46 mold as well, as they sold those in the early 2000s.

You might see 38′ Prout Mantas on the market built in South Africa. They are basically the same boat as the 39 Escale but with shorter sugar scoops. They built around 35 of them, good quality builds in the main.

Prout International

The 45 molds and the Prout brand were bought by a company called Prout International who marketed their boats out of Hong Kong. The company was ultimately owned by a Chinese-Canadian consortium called the Winfair Group I believe. Quest was a subsidiary of the Winfair Group….the plot thickens! I imagine that there was a lot of musical chairs going on so that then assets were offloaded without any debts attached.

The Asian Connection Manufacturing was initially moved to Thailand (Concordia Yachting Limited), and then to China where Prout International were still selling 60ft+ models until around 2012.

The yard in China was owned by Winfair Marine Ltd in Zhuhai: probably owned by the same person as Prout International: Jack Tse.

They marketed and sold later versions of the 45 called the Prout 45S. They seemed to have ceased trading around 2013 following disputes with both shipyards and customers.

Prout 50SW

They also built a fifty footer sold as a Prout 50SW and a Dixon designed Prout 72.

Serenity Shipyard in Thailand also seems to have built a few of these Prout International designs (or adaptations)- I am not sure whether they just finished them off here, or they were built from scratch here.

The high water mark for Prout International was the launch of a Prout 77SM in 2013 now called Blue Gryphon. She is available for charter.

Other Brands

Did you enjoy this history of Prout? Please contact us if you have any further information on Prout, we’d love to hear from you. You might also like the following catamaran brand histories:

Balance Bali Catana Dazcat Fountaine Pajot Gunboat HH Kinetic Lagoon Leopard Marsaudon Composites Nautitech Outremer Privilege Sunreef

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    Prout 38. The new british wave. Boat test from the Multihulls World #44 (feb/mar 1999) This new English catamaran modernizes the range while privileging the simplicity of maneuvers and adopting a roof with panoramic visibility.

  20. 20 Performance Cruising Catamaran Reviews

    The best performance cruising catamarans are the Manta 42, Dolphin 42, Leopard 48, and Fountaine Pajot Elba 45. The McConaghy MC50, Privilege 435, and Nautitech 441 are also impressive models. The best offer optimal performance and can sail a 250-mile voyage easily.

  21. Prout Catamarans

    Prout Catamarans Ltd is Born. Prout Snowgoose. First cat with the Prout Nacelle. In 1976 a new company was launched with the Prout brothers: Roland and Francis Prout, John and Tom Lawrence, Rodney Hall and Robert Underwood. The company was known as Prout Catamarans and Robert Underwood was appointed managing director.