Despite many years of flying, I still get a feeling of awe at takeoff. A fully loaded Airbus A380 can weigh almost 1.3 million pounds. Now, I know how it flies. I understand the physics. I just can’t quite get my head around the scale.
Blasting at nearly 50 knots around choppy seas off La Spezia, Italy, in the Pershing 7X evoked similar emotions.
The 7X’s powertrain consists of twin 1,800 hp MAN V-12 diesels whisking Top System T85 surface drives. On board, there’s something of a runaway-train feeling, with the nearly 70-foot yacht seeming as if it just doesn’t want to stop accelerating. The ride is exhilarating. The 7X is fast, even for a Pershing.
According to the builder, the hull and superstructure are approximately 90 percent carbon fiber, and the interior is mostly Larimar paneling, which has PVC cores and okoume veneer skins. The latter alone is said to have saved around 3,300 pounds of vessel weight compared to a more conventional interior. Overall, the 7X displaces about 77,000 pounds unladen.
When I was aboard, the yacht was around the half-load mark with 300 gallons of fuel, 137 gallons of water, six people, and no tender or stores. At 48 to 49 knots with the optional Easy Set autotrim feature, the 7X spun the V-12s at 2,250 rpm and burned 174 gallons per hour. The 7X should be a true 50-knot machine in fairer conditions than I saw that day.
The recommended sustainable fast cruise is 42 knots, which means 2,000 rpm on the engines and, according to my numbers, a total fuel burn rate of 148 gallons per hour. Allowing for a 10 percent reserve, those figures equate to a range of around 240 nautical miles. (The range extends a bit if you dawdle.)
Pershings are built for drivers. These machines can be handled like boats half their size. The 7X’s modified deep-V hull form has 17 degrees of deadrise aft. The Naviop-Simrad integrated bridge is addressed by a pair of pilot seats. When the captain has had enough of winding the wheel, he can use the optional Xenta joystick control system, which works in close-quarters and cruising modes. There’s also an optional dynamic-positioning system.
Inside and out, Pershings are exuberant. Drawn by long-standing Pershing designer Fulvio De Simoni, Pershings never underpromise visually. The buttress tunnels are unique to the newer X models and remind me of surf tubes. Most Pershings are delivered with optional metallic paint schemes, and Hull No. 1 is a new color: “alusilver.”
As for utility, there’s 340 square feet of exterior deck space, 75 square feet of swim platform, 204 square feet of cockpit protected by the superstructure overhang, and bulwark-protected side decks running forward to sun pads and a chaise-style lounge. Inside, the salon is light and bright thanks to virtually all-round glazing with twin sunroofs above. The forward sunroof slides open electrically.
The interior is 680 square feet. Beyond the open-plan 135-square-foot salon and bridge, the standard layout has a galley on the lower deck, as well as three en suite staterooms. The master is a 172-square-foot space amidships, while the VIP stateroom is in the bow, and a twin-berth stateroom is between them. The galley doesn’t feel buried, either. A single-pane windshield above it brings in natural light.
A two-stateroom setup is also available, with a lower-lounge extension to the galley instead of the twin-berth stateroom. In that layout, the twin stateroom’s head becomes a dedicated day head.
The 7X’s single-bunk crew cabin is between the owner’s stateroom and the engine compartment. Its hatch access is beneath one of the cushions on the cockpit sofa.
The 7X is what Pershing refers to as a Generation X model, and is part of the builder’s portfolio of eight models ranging from 54 to 140 feet length overall. The 7X sits between the eight-year-old Pershing 62 and the Pershing 74, which is still popular after 10 years in production. As of fall 2020, seven of the Pershing 7Xs had been sold. Two of them were bound for the Americas. Hull No. 2 went to New York.
As I write this, it’s been a few months since I was on board the Pershing 7X in Italy. If I close my eyes, I can still feel the yacht taking flight. The experience stays with you, deep in your bones.
Take the next step: pershing-yacht.com