10 Dec 2015
The superyacht supercar
By Rory Jackson
UK, Liverpool. BAC, the British performance car specialist, has launched a superyacht supercar concept. We speak with Ian Briggs, BAC Mono’s co-founder and former luxury yacht designer, about the gap he feels is present in the superyacht tenders and toys market and the product he hopes will fill this gap.
“We were talking about boat design, I have always loved designing boats because there is every element of design included in yachts, and then we started talking about the toys,” starts Briggs. “Everything is based around the water, the land component of exploration seems almost out of bounds if you are on a yacht. I would like to arrive at a port, winch off a BAC Mono and blast around the mountains for an afternoon.”
The BAC Mono Marine, based on the proven and popular land version, weighs in at 580kg, has 305bhp, goes 0-60 in 2.8 seconds and is a marinised, 2.5 litre Mountune-powered single-seater custom performance car.
BAC Mono Marine
“The Mono product is nothing to do with transportation,” Briggs explains. “It is nothing to do with travelling from A to B, it is about travelling from A to A, it’s a piece of extreme sports equipment, in this instance the extreme sport is driving. It is all about the experience.” In this context it becomes clear why the Mono Marine had to be a single-seater, to share the experience would be to compromise.
Broadly speaking the differences between the land-based Mono and the Marine Mono fall into two categories. The first category focusses on how to stow and remove the car from the yacht, whereas the second category is all about protecting the vehicle from the tough marine environment.
“The main visual difference is the area around the roll hoop and the structure we have created within there. That structure, plus an additional piece of equipment allow us, with a single crane and single lifting point, to pick up the car at its perfect balance point and deposit it on land,” continues Briggs. He points out that when you see an F1 car lifted in the air the support team is always tentatively holding the nose because the car is never quite balanced, BAC Mono have developed the necessary technology to avoid this problem.
In the second area of development BAC Mono have marinised the vehicle by developing an anti-corrosive coating for components. All the electronics are cast in specialist materials that isolate them from the environment, but also allow the heat from the electronics to dissipate.
“All the cabling is done differently; the connections are done with connectors that are marine certified. A number of the aluminium finishes have been hard anodised as opposed to the regular anodisation process and we have used a lot more stainless steel fixings. We have covered all bases for a product required to live that kind of life.”
Needless to say, BAC Mono have been extremely thorough with this marine conversion, overly so in some cases. The BAC Mono Marine also comes with its own customised, carbon fibre environmental chamber for the mothership. In practice this container would negate the necessity of the detailed marinisation. However, Briggs has correctly identified that the discerning consumers of the superyacht world expect above and beyond as standard.
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