Aicon 72 — By Capt. Bill Pike
— November 2005
Aicon intros a 72 express cruiser with an edgy, top-down personality.
Truthfully, I was a tad amazed by the formal introduction of Aicon’s 72 in Taormina, Sicily. While the big, muscular performance cruiser’s exterior was pretty much finished, her interior was only about 90 percent done. Not that I’m a stranger to this sort of thing. I’ve tested plenty of yachts that were officially a couple days away from completion, mostly because the test had to accommodate a fast and frenetic boat-show preparation schedule. But flying all the way to Europe to view an unfinished model was something new to me.
The boat ride that capped the event was a splendid one, nevertheless. Sea conditions on the deep-blue Mediterranean south of the dramatic rock outcroppings that stud Isola Bella were sporty, with long, six- to eight-foot rollers white-capping down the coast. The sun was out, and the 72 carried the sort of party-hearty cargo she was born and bred for, a contingent of 20 or so convivial passengers, all totally committed to giving their expensive sunglasses a serious workout while enjoying the high seas in what appeared to be the most high-fashioned marine conveyance to hit town in months.
I stood alongside Capt. Francesco Carlo Bonaccorsi during the ride, watching him spin the sport-type wheel at the port-side helm station as he worked the 72 through fast-paced turns and figure eights. It was a spirited performance. Top speed, as measured by the handheld GPS Bonaccorsi had propped on the dashboard, seemed to run something like 40 mph, maybe a tad more. And the smoothness and dryness of the ride was phenomenal—the solid, unflinching directionality we experienced while zooming the straight stretches was reminiscent of the old, comparatively heavy but exceptionally seaworthy and fast high-performance deep-Vs I used to test-drive stateside in the early ’90’s.
And the turns were a trip—the 72 simply hunkered into them, came ’round quick, and returned to the beeline-mode with the sort of power that has a visceral component to it. And we experienced virtually no side slip, no propeller blowout, and nary a drop of spray on the windshield, even from blasting head seas.
We returned to Taormina not long before the sun dissolved like a giant red Alka-Seltzer tablet into the horizon, a happenstance that allowed me to spend some time onboard looking around. Of course, with the interior being incomplete, I wasn’t able to accurately gauge the level of fit and finish. But I was able to check out the intricacies of the layout and examine the engine room.
This article originally appeared in the November 2005 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.