After more than 5 years of production and several hundred sold, Hunter Marine is introducing an exciting new version of the 33, known as the e33. We sat down with Hunter’s Director of Sales, Greg Emerson, to learn more about the all new model.
Hi Greg! We are excited to learn more about the new e33 because the 33 has been a very popular sailboat in our program since it was introduced in 2005. What prompted Hunter to change now?
Greg: The Hunter 33 has been an extremely popular model for us. We have built over 625 units since it was first introduced and all have been retail sold now except for four that are still in dealer inventory as a stock boat. That means that the used boat market has become saturated with Hunter 33’s because many of those 33 buyers have moved up to larger Hunter’s and they have either sold or traded in their boat. When someone is looking for a 33 foot sailboat to purchase, they usually consider the used boat market as well and because there are so many Hunter 33’s out there it becomes harder and harder to sell a brand new one. That is, unless it is different from the previous one. The New Hunter e33 is very different and we believe that we have a true winner. To date we have taken 34 orders out through February 2012 of which 8 are already retail sold.
We have heard this boat has a saildrive.Tell us more about the use of saildrive? This must mean you have moved way from Yanmar?
Greg: The saildrives are becoming more and more popular and all the issues that saildrives were once known for have been corrected. We haven’t done saildrives in the past except on international boats and the new e33 as an introductory level boat seemed like a great place to begin. The engine is still a Yanmar but the lower drive unit is made by ZF.
We see aluminum boats with a hard chine but not very often do we see it on a fiberglass boat. Please explain how this came about?
Greg: The hard chine adds stability to the boat. This is seen in power boats and more and more designers are considering a chine on a sailboat hull to increase the stability. We first tried a chine in the Hunter 18 we introduced last year and the difference in it and its predecessor the Hunter 170 which did not have a chine was huge. Our design has always been geared toward making the boat not only easier to sail but more comfortable to sail. The chine further helps with this design mission.
Was Glen Henderson involved in this hull design too?
Greg: Yes, Glen Henderson still designs our hulls and he was very instrumental in the hull chine being part of the new e33. Glen has two design philosophies which are; easier to sail and more comfortable to sail.
Is that the only change to the hull or did you push it back to the stern like the e36 for more room in the main cabin?
Greg: The beam was carried further aft to accommodate the new swim platform design just like the Hunter e36 but remember the beam widens at about the start of the aft cabin and then aft. Not from the main salon so the main salon doesn’t get wider.
Like the new 36 model we see the “e” added to the model of this boat. Tell us about what that means for the 33?
Greg: Just like the e36 the “e” stands for extended platform because it also has a swim platform that can easily be lowered to extend the swim area and also makes boarding easier whether from a dock or out of the water.
Is the deck and rigging setup basically the same or has it changed as well? I see it got the modern window treatment like the 36…
Greg: The deck styling is sleeker with flush mount hatches like the Hunter e36. The only change to the rigging is that the inner shroud goes inboard to a chain plate anchor as opposed to outboard on the previous 33 model. This does two things, it strengthens the chain plates and also allows for easier movement around the deck when walking forward because there is more room between the inner and outer shroud. We have also added dual ended mainsheet on this boat as standard equipment.
What is new down below?
Greg: Several things have changed down below. The companion-way stairs which cover the engine area is set up on a gas assisted shock which makes checking your engine easy. The flooring is a material that looks like real wood and looks much better than the previous floors. The nav-station can be made into a seat when not in use which adds additional seating. The main salon table has an easy lift system which makes raising and lowering the bunk simple. The forward cabin has two hanging lockers which create more storage space. We have also added to the TV/Stereo option an I-Phone & I-Pod docking station for video and audio, a cell phone booster option and various teak options including teak on the cockpit table as an option.
Is there performance version of the 33 like the 36?
Greg: Unlike the e36, there is not a Performance Version that we are advertising but with what we have learned from the e36, we now know that we can do a performance version on any model by making available the same package as you have seen on the Performance Version of the Hunter e365.
Thanks Greg! We know our members are excited to sail this boat and we expect to see dozens of this new model begin to show up in our fleets next Spring. We are lining up potential owners right now!