Passion project

The first hybrid Southern Wind 108 is taking shape in Cape Town.

22 December 2021


The first unit of the hybrid SW108, now under construction in Cape Town represents a turning point in Southern Wind’s offering of luxury, high-performance superyachts.

SW108#01 HYBRID is the result of a collaborative design process that has benefitted from the passion of motivated owners, the expertise of SWS in building versatile and reliable yachts, the designers’ drive for innovation and the owner’s experienced project management team.

With exterior and interior penned by Nauta Design and naval architecture by Farr Yacht Design, SW108#01 is characterised by a strong focus on performance.

“The production of SW108 will begin with a well-canvassed, very powerful arrangement for exceptional performance in light winds, but also up through the wind range,” explains Jim Schmicker, Vice President of Farr Yacht Design.

“Configuration of SW108#01’s propulsion system, sail plan and appendages were optimised through numerous iterations and refinements to meet the owner’s specific performance goals.


“Southern Wind has the flexibility to accommodate multiple rig and appendage options that will allow the shipyard to tailor the SW108 to many needs and tastes.”

The yacht will feature an increased sail plan, a lifting keel (4 to 6.2-metres) and twin rudder configuration, all of which contribute to making her a very powerful yacht.

A full carbon hull, deck and bulkheads, high modulus carbon mast and boom, carbon rigging and titanium deck fittings have helped to keep the displacement to only 73.2 tons.

Inspired by the GT lines of the two latest SWS yachts, SW105 Taniwha and SW96#04 currently under construction, SW108#01 is characterised by a deck design specifically created to meet the owner’s detailed brief, as Massimo Gino from Nauta Design recounts.

“The new deck layout is fresh but immediately recognisable for its clean, sober geometries that include all the touchstones of the GT look in a new configuration. SW108#01 has a redesigned coach roof that lets even more light into the yacht through a central skylight and side windows.

“The design is sportier and lower slung than the most recent yachts. The guest cockpit is quite spacious and connected to the interior by a very large companionway protected by well-proportioned coamings. These latter incorporate hatches to let natural air flow into the cabins below.”

Energy-efficient and environmentally conscious, SW108#01 will feature a hybrid diesel-electric propulsion system designed in collaboration with BAE Systems, a global leader in the design and manufacture of technological solutions.

“We are collaborating with Southern Wind on electric-hybrid power and propulsion for clean and efficient yacht operation,” says Peter Brooks, Account Manager of Marine and Port Solutions at BAE System.

“Our next-generation electric propulsion technology uses a modular design with advanced power electronics to optimise liveable space and extend zero emissions through improved electrical efficiencies. A HydroGeneration mode will recharge energy storage when the SW108 is under sail.”

SW108#01 interior features a four-cabin layout: the owner’s cabin is forward in the quietest area of the yacht, and three-guest cabins are amidship. This arrangement allows for a spacious and enjoyable L-shaped social area ahead of the saloon that includes living and dining areas and a TV lounge.

SW108#01 will stand out for the completely new style of her interior: new furniture geometries, wood colours and finishing, lighting system, and textures will all complement in a holistic way offering a sense of warmness and elegance.

Andrea Micheli, Commercial Director at Southern Wind Shipyard, cannot hide his satisfaction with this outstanding achievement.

“The conception of this yacht has been stimulating since day one. It’s great to meet owners who trust you and offer you the inputs to do something new, relying on our expertise. We were glad to be supported in the process by Sebastian Allebrodt of A2B Marine, the project manager who accompanied the client in the early phases of the design process.

“As a shipyard specialised high-performance construction, we put at the service of the owner our know-how to build what lends itself to be a real smart custom yacht.”

The Hull and deck of this first unit in the new SW108 are undergoing lamination and delivery is scheduled for early Summer 2023.