Germany’s largest catamaran builder, TOPCAT which has recently opened a showroom, warehouse and office at Inning on the shores of Lake Ammersee is once again launching a world premiere at the 50th international water sports exhibition in Düsseldorf.
The 17-foot-long (5.17 metre) K2X model is conceived as a sporty, fast and reliable allrounder. Not only can it be sailed in typical two-crew mode, but thanks to its hull shape which offers a high degree of buoyancy is equally capable with a family of four on board or for single-handed sailors.
This newcomer completes the now fully revamped model range in time for the 40th anniversary of the company. At ‘boot Düsseldorf’, which takes place from January 19 to 27, the K3X and K4X will also be exhibited on stand number G58 in Hall 15.
Whether setting sail quickly after work on your own, sailing with four of your family on holidays or as a helmsman with your crew competing in the club regatta – these were the challenges placed on the hull shape of the TOPCAT K2X. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations for the smaller K4X and K3X models were further refined. The U-frame, negative-rake bow and chines (broadening above the water at the front to prevent the risk of digging in through undercutting) remain. However, the optimum crew weight of 120 to 160 kilogrammes may deviate upwards or downwards by up to 35 kilogrammes, without causing any loss of speed or manoeuvrability.
“The buoyancy offered by the hull volume is sufficient for parents with two children. And 85 kilogrammes is an adequate weight for righting the cat after capsizing,” explains TOPCAT Managing Director Pablo Walden. Lighter solo sailors can use a righting aid with tackle system. The broad spectrum is also aimed at sailing schools where an instructor often joins the novice sailors on the trampoline at the beginning of the course.
Depending on the intended use, catamaran fans can choose between three sail configurations. The most basic one, which is called Classic, has a 13.5-square-metre Dacron mainsail with a 4.2-square-metre roller furling jib. With a single trapeze the boat is available ex-works for EUR 13,200 (all prices including VAT). The Dacron mainsail of the Streamcut has an extended top at the masthead and measures 15.9 square metres. Luff tensioners and a double trapeze are also included for EUR 14,300.
The total price of the regatta version is EUR 17,500, which includes a Pentex mainsail, a ball bearing traveller system and Harken mainsheet block assembly. Among others, it also includes the 17.7-square-metre roller furling gennaker, which is otherwise available as an option for EUR 2,400. A resolution passed by the TOPCAT Class Association, from the 2019 season, the K2X will be eligible to compete with other K2s in a one class regatta fleet and will be the very first regatta catamaran class to use a roller furling gennaker.
“Once the roller furling gennaker had initially proven itself with learning sailors, the simple and effortless handling of the system is also becoming established among more experienced sailors,” says Pablo Walden. A halyard guided on the mast allows the tension in the torsion lines to be controlled to ensure optimum furling and unfurling. Furthermore, this halyard can also be used in emergencies to shed and retrieve the complete gennaker while on the water.
The boatyard will also fit further extras upon request. These include keel shoes (EUR 520), for an easy launching on rocky beaches and reinforced hulls for sailing schools (EUR 600). The 2-piece mast, available for EUR 580 allows transportation on a roof rack and practical winter storage. With a width of 2.44 metres, the TOPCAT K2X can be trailered with an assembled platform.
The TOPCAT K2X completes the relaunch of the model range. After the 18-foot-long K1 flagship had already led the way as a class recognised by World Sailing in 2014, the K4X and K3X followed in 2017 and 2018. The relocation of the whole company from Gilching to Inning on the shores of the Lake Ammersee was associated with this. The modern production facilities and large warehouse are now co-located with the sales department at a single site. The newly constructed building also offers a showroom in which special events are held in addition to a display of all models. Meanwhile, the concept of simplicity for centreboardless GFRP double-hulled boats with an attractive price/performance ratio is set to continue uninterrupted.
Specifications TOPCAT K2X
- Length: 5.17 m (17 feet)
- Beam: 2.44 m
- Mast height: 8.2 m
- Mainsail: 13.5 m” (Classic) / 15.9 m2
- Furling jib: 4.2 m2
- Furling gennaker 17.7 m2
- Overall weight: app. 160 kg (depending on version)
- Number of crew: 1 4 (1-2 for regattas)
by Andreas Kling