Think you recognize the creature in this photo?
Look a little closer. It’s not an orca — it’s an orca boat.
The Seabreacher Y is definitely the most unusual boat at the Seattle Boat Show, which opened today and runs through Feb. 5. The boat is on display in the North Hall at CenturyLink Field Event Center, the show’s main site, and reportedly attracted plenty of attention on the show’s first day.
Made by Innespace Productions in Redding, Calif., the boat is similar in size and scale to a real killer whale and has a rounded nose, large whale tail, pectoral fins and a dorsal fin.
It’s submersible and can “jump” up to 16 feet in the air, dive under the water and reach speeds of up to 55 miles an hour. The company designed the Seabreacher.
According to Innespace’s website, the Seabreacher is unsinkable. Its hull has enough flotation that the boat will stay buoyant and level even if the cockpit and engine bay are flooded, the company says, and though it could capsize if the canopy is open, it will self-right.
Inflatable aircraft seals keep the cockpit and engine bay watertight, according to the company, and the boat is equipped with automatic bilge pumps in case the pilot forgets to inflate the seals.
So how much will a faux orca set you back? Prices start at $65,000 for a standard model and go up to more than $80,000 for a heavily customized one. Each boat is built to order, with options such as airbrushed paint schemes, GPS, iPod dock, marine stereo system and climate controls. The company has so far made the boats for customers in the Caribbean, Korea, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (somehow it’s not difficult to imagine a sultan owning one).
The idea of zooming around Puget Sound in an imitation of one of the Northwest’s most majestic, iconic creatures is a little cringe-inducing — sort of like hang-gliding in a contraption made to look like a bald eagle. Chief Seattle must be turning over in his grave.
Still, I have to admit, this looks like a pretty fun ride, judging by the video below.
What do you think? Like it or loathe it? Would you drive one? Tell us what you think.