Bali 4.2

2021 July 1

This comfortable cruising cat has plenty of space for three couples to lounge about

try to keep my reviews objective. I don’t always succeed. If I see what I consider to be a “design flaw” I’ll point it out. But aesthetics are so subjective. I hesitate to impose my sense of yacht beauty on you. So, I’ll just let you look at these two catamarans this month and decide for yourself if they are handsome boats.

The Bali 4.2, a 41-foot cat designed by Olivier Poncin and Xavier Fay with interior design by Lasta Design Studio, is certainly very interesting in that it has some features that are new to me. It’s a complex design but I think it makes sense. The hulls show a long chine cum spray knocker running from stem to transom. The keels have a relatively short chord resulting in a minimal planform area. 

Draft is 4 feet. The specs list two displacements: “light” and “maximum” with 8,064-pound difference. That’s a lot. If I use the light displacement figure I get a D/L of 196. If I use the maximum displacement I get a D/L of 251. Looks like two different boats. The L/B is 1.8. If I take the L/B of the individual hulls it is 5.44. The bows show the now fashionable reverse rake. I think this is a cat designed for comfort and not speed.

What makes this design interesting to me is that there are two “cockpit” areas, one forward and one aft. If you look at these areas as lounging spots you could even count three with the area over the bimini aft. By spreading the lounging area out the designers were able to expand the main deck accommodations aft. 

On the main deck level there is a large galley to port forward, what looks like a chart table to starboard and dinette and settee aft. There is access to the forward cockpit just starboard of the galley. Going down into the hulls you have the option of three cabins and three heads or four cabins and four heads. The four-cabin layout will work well for the charter trade. The three-cabin layout devotes one entire hull to the owner’s cabin with head and shower forward.

The deck is complex with steps up to the upper level (I don’t know what else to call it) port and starboard leading up from the aft cockpit/patio area. The steering and sail control station is to starboard on this upper level. There is a lounging pad to port on the upper level and a place for solar panels to starboard. The forward cockpit has settees and a dining table. Forward, the trampoline area makes a perfect place for sunning. Three couples could spread out very comfortably on this boat.

Cats seem to be very forgiving in terms of where the mast goes. This mast is quite far aft. The SA/D for the light displacement is 16.53 and 14.16 for the maximum displacement. I would consider this a short rig. Maybe that’s to keep the charter sailors safe. Cruising cats have been known to capsize from time to time. That would spoil your day.

I feel a bit guilty when I review cruising cats. I have sailed quite a few catamarans and I have designed one 54-foot cruising cat but I have never been cruising on a cat. I’d like to try it some time. 

LOA 42’2”; LWL 40’10”; Beam 23’3”; Draft 3’10”; Displ. 23,000 lb.; Sail area 915 sq. ft.; Fuel 159 gal.; Water 227 gal.; Twin 45-hp.; D/L 251; L/B 1.8; SA/D 14.16

Our best estimate of the sailaway price: $363,800


Bali Catamarans