Finalists, winners and jurors at the Best of Boats Award 2023
The winners of the Best of Boat Award 2023 receive their prizes
BOAT & FUN Berlin 2023 hosted the tenth presentation of the Best of Boats Award. An international jury honoured the winners of the biggest international award for motorboats in a total of seven categories. It was also the first time a prize was awarded for electric boats.
On the evening of Thursday, 30 November 2023 amid a festive atmosphere at Messe Berlin's Marshall Haus, which was illuminated in blue color, the jury at BOAT & FUN BERLIN presented the Best of Boats (BOB) Award for the tenth time.
Daniel Barkowski, project manager for BOAT & FUN BERLIN, welcomed the guests and underlined the significance of the award: "We are very proud of ten years of BOB Award here with us. We are huge fans of the award – especially because we love the different categories. If you have a family, then you will be in search of a family boat. And if you want to have fun, you are looking for a fun boat. That is why we organize trade shows: People come here to find the boat that suits them, and the Best of Boats Award offers orientation and helps them decide. And that is why we consider the BOB Award the best event of its kind."
In a speech marking the tenth anniversary, Stefan Gerhard, who established the Best of Boats Award, retraced past events: "We have tested thousands of boats over the past years. In the history of the BOB Awards, we've had 211 finalists from 24 nations. Quite a large fleet." Among the judges presenting the awards were 16 chief editors and head motorboat testers from all over Europe and the US. They had conducted tests of the most fascinating models to be released over the last 12 months in various water sports regions.
For the first time awards were presented in a new category (Best for Electric), honouring the best pure electric and hybrid electric boats. Also for the first time, in the Best for Performance category, awards were presented for superboats – especially luxurious sport boats which impressed the judges with their speed and performance.
The winners of the Best of Boats Award 2023
Best for Beginners: Beneteau Flyer 8 (France)
Julijan Višnjevec, chief editor of Val Navtika from Slovenia, presented the Best for Beginners award to Marc Averhoff, Beneteau Export area manager, DACH BeNeLux, for the Beneteau Flyer 8. The day cruiser with its savoir vivre flair, cabin and sunloungers "is at once safe and comfortable", was how the jury described their choice. "We are very happy about the award. Bringing beginners into our world and sharing our passion for water sports and boats is what we all want", said Marc Averhoff, speaking onstage. "Many thanks for the award which I will gladly take home to our team in France."
Best for Electric: X-Shore 1 (Sweden)
In the Best for Electric category, awarded for the first time, the X-Shore 1 impressed the jury most. Stefan Gerhard presented the award to Alexander Nelgen, X SHORE's head of sales, Central Europe. Among the reasons for the choice was its outstanding value for money. "No one expects this kind of performance from an electric boat. It is also very quiet", said Alexander Nelgen, describing the advantages of the day cruiser.
Best for Family: De Antonio D50 Coupé (Spain)
For Arek Rejs, head motorboat tester at Wiatr magazine from Poland, a good family boat must be easy and safe to handle, roomy and also be fun. He presented the award to Marc De Antonio, CEO of De Antonio Yachts, for the De Antonio D50 Coupé. "The award is a great honour for us. We founded our company in 2012 with lots of passion and a desire to innovate. The award gives us the energy to keep growing", the winner said.
Best for Travel: Prestige M 48 (France)
Alfred Boer, head motorboat tester of the magazines Nautique from the Netherlands and Varen from Belgium, presented the Best for Travel award to Catina Burchardi of aqua marin – Boote & Yachten, who accepted the prize on behalf of Prestige Yachts. The Prestige M 48, a roomy catamaran, had impressed the jury. "It was time for a catamaran to win in this category", said a delighted Catina Burchardi.
Best for Fun: AMT 240 DC (Finland)
Giacomo Giulietti, head motorboat tester at pressmare.it from Italy, presented the Best of Fun award to Dominik Entzminger, managing director of AMT importers Boat Solutions, for the AMT 240 DC. "On the water, you need a boat that can be used in different ways, for fun as well as for travelling. The AMT 240 DC fulfils these criteria", said Dominik Entzminger.
Best for Performance: Frauscher 1212 Ghost Air (Austria)
Stanislaw Iwinski, chief editor of Yachtsmen from Poland, underlined the importance of this new category: "Many potential buyers focus primarily on the performance of a boat – but this must be combined with safety, comfort and usability." What sets the winning Frauscher 1212 Ghost Air apart is its outstanding performance and build quality. During the ten years of the BOB Award, Stefan Frauscher, CEO of Frauscher Bootswerft, has received honours several times. "We are always excited and very grateful to receive this award", he said.
Best for Future: Volvo Penta & Beneteau Hybrid Concept Boat (Sweden/France)
In the Best for Future category, first presented in 2019, the focus is not on individual boats but on forward-looking technology, said Stefan Gerhard. In 2023 the Best for Future award was won by Volvo Penta and the Beneteau Group, for their collaboration in designing a hybrid concept boat.
This boat has completed 200 hours of tests – with outstanding results, according to Nicola Pomi, Yacht Sales director, Volvo Penta: "It's extraordinary that so many people have been able to test the boat." Martin Schemkes, CEO of Delphia Yachts for Beneteau, sees hybrid engines as the technology of the future: "The fact that we are responsible for the environment was the starting point for this project." Its initiators regard their concept creation as a milestone on the way to more sustainable motorboats.