It seems like every time you check out superyacht trends on social media; you see a new yacht being launched. But how many superyachts have been built in recent years, and what does the future look like for new builds? Are boats being made bigger as the years’ progress? We looked at the trends within the industry from 2013 to now (2023).

Photo of a superyacht about to go into the sea.


Are more superyachts being built?

Between June 2013 and June 2023 – almost 700 boats over 40-metres produced.

Compare that to the previous 10-years, the numbers are down by around 300* – over 1000 yachts built.

*Taking into consideration the blip of 2020/2021, where things slowed down significantly.

In 2007, the industry peaked, with 483 yachts (24m +) being delivered. In 2013 we saw a decline to 300 deliveries; in 2015, deliveries dropped to the lowest amount since 1999, with around 250 yachts delivered. At the time of writing (July 2023), 253 boats have already been delivered, and the projected amount by the end of 2023 is 546.

Are superyachts getting bigger?

Since the early days of superyachts, around the turn of the 20th century, there have been seventy-three yachts built at 100 meters or more. Almost half of those were made in the past decade and the number is projected to surpass one hundred within the next five years alone.

bar chart of average yacht sizes from 2013 to 2022

Research suggests that the average length of yacht increased steadily from 2013 before peaking in 2018 and dropping off again in the early 2020s (based on boats 40m +).

However, If the order books of the major shipyards are anything to go by, the trajectory of customers looking to build or purchase substantially sized superyachts is set to increase.

These shipyards aren’t only building larger yachts on average, but they are working with designers to push the boundaries of design.

Motor Yacht or Sail Yacht?

In the last ten years, only 9% of yachts over 40 metres were sailing yachts compared to the 14% pre-2013.

Although more sailing yachts are in production, the trend suggests there is an overwhelming preference for motor yachts. This is unsurprising as there is a growing want for both support vessels and expedition vessels. The former needs to be built to carry all the toys, tenders and extra desired equipment, while the latter must be built to withstand far more challenging climates that most sailing vessels are not designed for.

In conclusion, there are more of both sail and motor yachts in production (or on order) than ever before, and shipyards are finding new innovative ways to build faster and bigger, which shows the industry is on the up once again.

Statistics within article are from BOATPro
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