88 Silver Edition — By George L. Petrie — August 2001
|Part 2: Pershing 88 continued|
Just aft of the saloon, the full-beam master suite offers a queen-size berth that’s angled to allow access on three sides and has roomy stowage beneath. Dresser drawers that could swallow a wealth of apparel are built into beautifully curved cherry cabinets, but the real clincher stowagewise is a huge walk-in closet that offers about eight feet of full-height rod space for hanging clothing, along with shoe racks, four five-foot-long shelves, and two full-length mirrors.
The master was also designed to let you mix a little business with pleasure, thanks to a handsome cherry desk along the port side that has a nav station repeater and room for a computer or other office paraphernalia. For owners who choose not to take their business aboard, Pershing offers an L-shape settee in lieu of the desk.
As impressive as the yacht was at dockside, the real pleasure came when I took her out for trials. As luck would have it, the weather was "rotten" for a boat test: sunny, clear skies, and a gentle breeze that stirred ripples barely a foot high. The yacht’s captain assured me that in his 23 years at sea, the 88 is the driest boat he’s ever driven. Judging by her generous freeboard, fine forward entry, and aggressive deadrise all the way to the transom, his assertion seems credible.
Naturally the 88 seemed stable in the calm conditions, but the impression continued at wide-open throttle, even with the wheel hard over. Visibility from the helm was excellent, thanks to the widely spaced windshield pillars that offer an unobstructed field of vision nearly 10 feet wide. I also noted little bow rise throughout the speed range. In fact my only disappointment was the yacht’s rate of acceleration: It took more than 30 seconds for the diesels to spin up to full rpm and well over a minute for the 88 to reach her top speed of about 40 mph. I found such acceleration out of character for this style of yacht. The captain attributed it to the DDC-MTU electronic control system, which fires only half of the 2000’s 16 cylinders at low rpm.
Maneuverability, however, was excellent. Even at very slow speeds, the Arneson surface drives provided positive steering, and I found the Twin Disc single-lever controls smooth and precise. Returning from our sea trial, I navigated several miles of narrow, winding waterway without having to touch the wheel.
Even maintenance could be a pleasurable experience on this yacht, thanks to 6'6" headroom in the engine room, three feet between the 1,830-hp diesels, and plenty of room to get at auxiliary systems outboard and aft. Staterooms and a head for the captain and two crew are just forward, with access via a circular stair to the aft deck. The stairway is a little cramped, but current production models have about four inches more elbowroom.
Fit and finish were first-rate throughout, and her construction specs indicate that her internal structure is built to the same high level of quality, with a solid fiberglass laminate in her bottom and Airex-cored hull sides. All main structural members are foam-cored for stiffness and light weight and are laminated under vacuum to achieve good resin infusion for maximum strength.
Inside and out, literally down to the very core, this racy Italian import delivers quality, luxury, and sophisticated style. Offering so many ways for guests to relax and enjoy, she could be a passport to pleasure.
Pershing Investments Phone: (305) 637-8885. Fax: (305) 637-8535. www.pershing-yacht.com.
George L. Petrie is a professor of naval architecture at Webb Institute and provides maritime consulting services. His Web site is www.maritimeanalysis.com.
This article originally appeared in the January 2003 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.