SAIL Magazine Review

Boat Review: Leopard 40


Size matters—and when you’re working with small spaces, creativity matters even more. The Leopard 40 feels like a much larger catamaran, because its South African builder, Robertson and Caine, incorporated owner and charter company feedback to optimize spaces aboard.

Design & Construction
It’s easy to build big. Functionality and comfort come from having lots of space to work with, but when the tableau shrinks, it’s a clever designer who can still make it work. Naval architects Simonis Voogd have created hulls with increased volume for better cabin space below and leveraged the forward cockpit concept found on the 40’s 44ft and 48ft siblings.

The bows are bluff to maximize waterline length, which both boosts performance and increases interior volume, the blunt transoms make it easy to board from a dock, and the cockpit sole is on the same level as the saloon sole so the two two living spaces flow together without interruption. The build process, refined over more than 1,000 boats, features vacuum-infused laminates with cored hull and deck. Keels are fixed for simplicity and strength. The sailplan is simple—a smallish genoa and a large, fully-battened mainsail set on an aluminum Z-Spars mast. Continuous double-ended German-style sheeting easily controls the Ullman mainsail.

Blue Water Sailing’s Review


Leopard 40

By George Day · On January 23, 2017

This new spacious cruising cat from Robertson & Caine will thrive as a charter boat and be a comfortable floating home for cruisers. (Published Spring 2015)

We don’t usually start our sail trials of new boats by running them aground. But, that’s just what happened as we set off after the Miami Strictly Sail show last winter to give the brand new Leopard 40 a good test out in the open ocean. The channel through the Port of Miami can be a little tricky and has acres of shallows right next to it.

We had quite a crowd of folks aboard who were looking at the 40 to buy and those who were trying to get them to do so. Everyone was talking at once. We had hoisted the main and rolled out the jib and all seemed well until we stopped somewhat abruptly. The wind was blowing gently, the sails were full but the new Leopard 40 wasn’t moving.

It was time for the engines to show their stuff. We slacked the sheets and then threw the twin 29-horsepower diesels into reverse and gave them maximum revs. Inch by inch, the 40 gathered sternway, despite her drawing sails, and then the keels popped free and we were able to pivot and steer back into the deep water.

Yachting Monthly’s Review


05 Jan 2017, 22:21

Leopards can’t change their spots, but that’s no bad thing since this new Leopard 40 Catamaran offers space, speed and safety says Paul Jeffes.

Multihulls are one of the fastest-growing segments of the marine market. Visit any exotic charter location, from the Caribbean to the Seychelles, and you’ll find a wide choice of cruising catamarans. Why so popular? They offer incredible living space for families. Two couples sailing together can have the privacy of a hull each, with their own shower and heads. Shoal-draft opens up new horizons in today’s crowded anchorages and twin engines offer superb maneuverability. Cats may not be everybody’s ideal, but their design and safety has come a long way in a short time. Fewer modern cruising cats capsize than monohulls sink.

The Leopard 40 is a brand new design for The Moorings, one of the largest charter companies, with around 880 boats in 41 bases from Trogir, Croatia to Tahiti. Our test boat was sailed to the UK from her Cape Town builder, Robertson & Caine, who, since 1995 have launched more than 400 catamarans from 38ft to 62ft. More than two million ocean delivery miles have been made without incident and cats now represent around 28% of The Moorings worldwide bareboat charter fleet.

The Leopard is The Moorings’ first cat from the design board of Morelli & Melvin, who created the record-breaking round-the-world racing cat Cheyenne, formerly PlayStation, as well as the award-winning Gunboat 62 cruising cat. From a distance, first impressions are of a futuristic ‘spacecraft’, and stepping aboard, space is what you get – above and below decks. Catamarans have enormous deck area and adding the forward trampoline must bring it close to 70m².

Cruising World’s Review

Leopard 40

Leopard Catamarans has launched a new 40-footer that borrows liberally from the best attributes of its slightly larger siblings.

By Mark Pillsbury July 25, 2015

The first thought that flashed into my head when I walked aboard the new Leopard 40 was “I’ll do the cooking.” It was a sunny afternoon at the Strictly Sail Miami show, and the cat’s interior was flooded with sunlight thanks to the tall, vertical glass windows spanning the front of the saloon to either side of a watertight door opening onto the forward cockpit and trampoline — a very cool feature brought over from the boat’s 44- and 48-foot siblings. The side windows, curved slightly to follow the arching line of the cabin top, are quite large as well, and right where front and side walls meet is the galley, surrounded by a truly panoramic view. It gives the cook quite literally the best seat in the house, in my humble opinion.

Did I mention that I liked the overall layout pretty well too? There’s a nav desk tucked into the front port corner of the saloon that would be a fine place to stand a night watch. And you can dine alfresco: A table that seats eight sits in the saloon’s port corner, right next to sliding doors that open wide to let the interior flow outward to the great outdoors of the cockpit. There, a second table and bench seats can handle a similar-size crowd in the shade of the hard top.

Roger Priest checks out the latest import from overseas the South-African-built Leopard 40 luxury catamaran.

Proof of the pudding

Here’s the open-water proof. Ten Thousand miles, two ocean crossings and this 12-month-old Leopard 40 is in pristine condition, boat-show ready.Literally the only sign of the extensive cruise was slight fading of the headsail cover wrap.


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