I will provide some insight. I have sailed on a 44i. Been on the boat a number of times, and am actually going to Argentina next month to view the new facilities. I am seriously considering purchasing
a 44i. Here are my observations:
* Part of the look of these from the outside is a function of design. In other words, higher windage, but very open inside with galley
down, and safe deck
(no rounding or sloping edges, etc). I have been on a lot of cats looking for the right one, and the open feel with galley down is what has my wife excited.
* Well made, great joinery, safe boat for cruising. Not the fastest on the block, but that wasn't a priority for myself and family
. We were in 6.5 knots of wind
doing 5.5 knots. Not too bad. full tanks
, 10 people on the boat.
* I attended the Antares
University in SC this year, and spent a LOT of time going through boat systems. In short, top notch quality all around.
Bottom line, like anything, there are tradeoffs. I feel, for myself and family
, that safety
(easy to single
hand), comfort and overall usability is key. Not to mention that the folks at Antares
are very genuine in their passion for the boat and have what I feel to be (so far) excellent customer service
. I have talked to a number of 44i owners, and all have been VERY happy with the boat and the 'new' company. For the most part the same people at PDQ
. biggest change is their production facility in Argentina...that is what is driving my trip...to make sure I am comfortable with the new location.