Review: Maritimo S50

By: John Ford, Photography by: John Ford

Presented by
  • Trade-A-Boat

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This Maritimo S50 is what you get when someone wants a unique luxury motor yacht from Maritimo.


  • The Maritimo S50 has an attractive and practical single-deck layout suited to socialising and family bonding.


  • There’s loads of room in the master stateroom, with views either side.


  • This luxury motor yacht has a well-equipped kitchen with enough storage space for extended cruising.


  • A side door at the helm would be a good addition to the Maritimo S50.


  • Regrettably there’s no flavour option in the soda tap.


An unbounded enthusiasm for life on the water from the owner of this Maritimo S50 gave me a new perspective of what it’s like to own such a luxurious (and to most of us, expensive) motor yacht.

Frank Fodor might have a tough working life chasing debt defaulters but he makes up for it by lapping up his surroundings aboard one of our more opulent homegrown boats. Clearly successful in a business that employs a dozen people and tracks down millions of dollars a year, he values time away from financial turmoil and delights in having people aboard. You can tell it’s not to show off his toy, it’s to share the pleasure that boating brings.


Maritimo S50

Maritimo S50

Frank switched to a Maritimo last year when the space offered in the full beam master suite convinced wife, Gina, that this was the boat for her. Slotting into the Maritimo yachts range between the Maritimo S48 and S58, the S50 shares a hull and running gear with the M50 motoryacht flybridge cruiser. A solid-glass bottom and balsa-cored topsides combine durability and weight balance while the shallow shaft angle delivers maximum efficiency. The Maritimo S50’s single-deck configuration makes perfect sense. As an entertainer it brings everyone together, travelling in surroundings that take in the view while the skipper can interact with guests or family. On the other hand, the flybridge version may be more in tune with long distance travel for a broader view, yet still allowing crew to mix with the skipper. One deck or two, either way, Maritimo pack lashings of contemporary features into their vessels to ensure everyone makes the most of the experience.

Frank’s adventures in boating sprung from his work when he accepted a Signature trailerboat as payment on an outstanding debt. Realising the pleasures of boating but wanting to stretch his opportunities he moved up to a Riviera 4700, which he kept for five years before hankering for something on which his family could spend more time.

Having decided on the Maritimo S50, he ticked nearly every item on the options list and then added more, challenging the factory to deliver something special. Because his wife wasn’t completely comfortable with a boat being buffeted at anchor in a busy waterway Frank didn’t want to "rock the boat" with his new purchase either, so in went a $107,000 Seakeeper 9 gyroscopic system to guarantee a good nights’ sleep and steady passage through the waves. According to Frank it’s been the best investment he’s made in his boating life.



Luxury options everywhere

Entertainment unit on Maritimo S50

Given everything else he has managed to slot on board, that might be a big call. My favourite could well be the Zip Hydro Tap in the galley sink which delivers sparkling cold soda water at the flick of a mixer arm. Or maybe the Seaco espresso machine would come a close second.

But the eye-bulging list goes on. Miele appliances include fridge-freezers, a combination microwave Speed Oven, dishwasher and a WT2780 washer-dryer in the master stateroom. Isotherm freezers in the cockpit add to refrigeration and there’s an icemaker, naturally, in the saloon with plenty of water from the 800L tank, backed up by a desalination plant.

Frank wasn’t leaving navigation and other electronics to chance either and, while so far he has stayed within striking distance of his Hawkesbury river marina base, there are plans for extended voyaging when time allows.

Getting the boat safely into dock are the standard front and rear thrusters, but a $15,000 Yacht controller makes it look easy and it can be used from anywhere on board through the wireless interface. So that guests don’t miss out on their television fix, a Foxtel satellite link feeds twin 32in screens in the saloon, placed so that no one has to crane their neck, while a superior Bose sound system makes sure they don’t miss a word.


Layout and design

Maritimo S50 interior lounge

All this might sound like the stock Maritimo is missing essential ingredients but that’s far from true. However, because owners have individual tastes and needs, the factory leaves it to them to decide on equipment levels above what’s already a very well sorted and comfortable long distance cruiser or weekend entertainer. Bi-fold doors to the saloon create a very friendly indoor-outdoor ambience while full storm covers keep things warm and dry .

The wide swim platform is a favourite in summer, especially when lowered 400mm into the water. I can easily imagine lolling here with a cool drink in one hand – instant sparking soda of course–and a light fishing rod in the other. It has its own BBQ and wet bar with fridge, easy access to the large lazarette and to the cockpit via a single step on either side; gates keep littler kids from straying too far.

Our test boat sported the optional Euro-style transom with a lounge, an ultra-glossy teak table and ample room for deck chairs under an extended awning. Wide and well-protected walkways take crew forward to a bow area with seating on the roof of the forward cabin. Inside, the port side galley has a smooth workflow–from the large slide-out panty to fridge to benchtop, cooktop and sink. .

The forward section of the saloon seems devoted to making sure the skipper doesn’t feel left out when underway. While the helm may have only a single Pompanete chair, it’s right in the social hub of the S50. A leather L-shaped lounge aft of the helm will seat four guests while the diner to port will handle another six around an extendable teak and vinyl table. Along with the spacious master there is a guest double in the bow along with a bunkroom and combination day head/ guest bathroom.


Handling and ride

Maritimo S50 on the wtaer

Settling into the helm chair gives masterful views ahead and to the sides and setting the well-placed side controls to forward had us moving quickly onto plane as the 715hp Cummins diesels spun into life.

At speed the bow rises slightly and engine noise is restricted to a low hum. Steering is light but precise and the Seakeeper held things impressively steady when we tracked down the wake of passing ferries making their way up the Hawkesbury River. I’m told the system eliminates 70 per cent of side roll and improves fuel economy by five per cent – handy, but not quite in the self-funding range. Settling into a cruise around 20kt, it was easy to imagine Frank heading down the coast to the Harbour and nudging gently onto a pontoon in Darling Harbour.


Cummins QSM11 marine diesel

Maritimo S50 powering ahead on the water

Frank says he had no particular reason for choosing the Cummins engines over the standard Volvos other than he likes the idea of American muscle and had a good run from the Yankee Cats on his Riviera. He was also impressed with the extended three-year warranty he has on engines and gearboxes.

With thousands of these marinised engines installed over the last fifteen years, they have proven reliability from the big 10.8L in line six-cylinder block. QSM 11’s range in power from 300hp to the 715 maximum fitted to the test boat. This higher output from the same block is achieved by engine mapping for increased revs and fuel flow through electronic fuel injection but without super-high-pressure common-rail technology.

An advantage of the relatively narrow in-line configuration was clear in the twin-engine setup. Their compact design left room to move for maintenance and the gleaming white finish added to the impression of a perfectly clean engine room in our S50.

Right through the test the engines ran smoothly and were remarkably quiet – in part due to the Maritimo’s effective noise damping, but also because they are generally regarded as quiet operators. No smells or smoke were experienced in the engine room after our run, from the exhaust at full noise or on start-up. SmartCraft gauges give all engine telemetry in easily-read displays which are fairly intuitive to navigate, while digital throttle and shift controls made gear selection silent and silky smooth.

The Cummins engines seemed perfect for the S50, delivering 28kts at maximum revs of 2500 and a fuel burn of 280lph from both sides. Cruising at 2200rpm would see a realistic range of 384nm at 22.5kts from the 3800L tanks with 10% in reserve. 


Maritimo S50 sea trials

Cummins QSM11 715hp marine diesel engines x 2, 3 pax, 75% fuel, Teignbridge 5-blade 30 x 37.5" propeller. 3800L fuel tank (calculations leaving 10% in reserve)





600 (idle)
























2500 (WOT)




* Sea-trial data supplied by the author



Maritimo S50 specs

Maritimo S50 price: $1,440,000

Priced from



Seakeeper, Garmin electronics package, swim platform, water maker, much more.







TYPE Monohull, luxury express cruiser


BEAM 5.08m

WEIGHT 21,830kg

DRAFT 1.215M




FUEL 3800L




MAKE/MODEL Twin Cummins QSM11 marine diesel engines

TYPE In-line, 6-cylinder, turbo-charged, four-stroke marine diesel



WEIGHT 1188kg

GEAR RATIO 2.24:1(ZF325-1A)

PROPELLER Teignbridge 5 blade 30 x 37.5" Aquafoils



SBM Maritimo Sydney

81 Parriwi Rd, Mosman NSW 2088

Tel 02 9968 1222



See the full version of this review in Trade-A-Boat #480, on sale July 14, 2016. Why not subscribe today?


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