Japanese Sailboat Brands

Japanese Sailboat Brands | Life of Sailing

Last Updated by

Jacob Collier

August 30, 2022

Many Japanese boats are considered among the best in the business. If you are thinking about the best Japanese sailboat brands, you’re in the right place.

Japan is no stranger to the world of sailing. When it comes to investing in a sailboat, you might want to consider Japanese sailboat brands because their boats offer just the right mix of technology and ergonomic design, which is what sailing enthusiasts look for in boats.

From Mitsubishi to Ishikawajima-Harima, and Yamaha, there are many Japanese brands that are making a mark in the sailboat industry. These sailboats range from compact beginner vessels to luxury yachts for more experienced sailors.

Many Japanese brands produce a range of reliable boats for sailing newbies, as well as experts that can make the sailing experience comfortable and fun.

As sailing enthusiasts who have owned and sailed in many different types of sailboats, including Japanese sailboats, we are in the ideal position to help you make a more informed decision when it comes to choosing from Japanese sailboat brands.


Table of contents

Japanese Sailboat Brands

There's no disputing that sailors are passionate individuals. They are so enthusiastic about sailboats that they’re always on the lookout to find the greatest ones. Many sailing enthusiasts fantasize about owning a sailboat, but few of us ever have the opportunity to cruise the seas on something we can truly call our own. While you can rent a sailboat, many sailors aspire to purchase one.

Gliding over the ocean, waves, and wind in the company of a beautifully made sailboat provides an unparalleled sense of comfort and calm. When you combine this with the fact that sailing takes you far away from the everyday grind that we've grown accustomed to, it's easy to see why sailing is so enticing to the people. However, without a decent sailboat, all of this enjoyment and the pleasures of sailing are lost.

Contrary to popular belief, buying a sailboat is not out of reach for everybody. It's something we can all accomplish. But, first, it's vital to understand some of the greatest sailboat brands. The greatest sailboat brands can make your sailing life smoother and more enjoyable. The top sailboat brands have perfected the skill of carpentry for decades, if not centuries.

What makes Japanese sailboat brands unique is that they've committed their abilities and a significant amount of time to developing and constructing the highest quality sailboats available. You've come to the correct place if you're seeking the top sailboat brands from around the world. We'll talk about the best options in Japanese sailboats, something that will provide you with a fantastic escape from your daily routine.

Ishikawajima-Harima Heavy Ind. Yachts

Yachts are constructed in Japan by Ishikawajima-Harima Heavy Industries. The shipyard has produced superyachts up to 77 meters long and 2200 tons, with an average of 56 meters long and 787 tons.  The company Ishikawajima-Harima Heavy Ind. launched a total of 5 superyachts and is showing no signs of slowing down any time soon.

IHI Corporation is a heavy-industry producer with four primary areas of focus: resource, energy, the environment, and defense. But, it has also garnered a reputation for its luxury yachts. IHI's origins date back to 1853, when the Ishikawajima Shipyard, Japan's first modern shipbuilding plant, was founded.

The firm was instrumental in Japan's modernization, utilizing its shipbuilding expertise in new fields, including plant construction, aero-engines, and heavy machinery manufacturing. Ishikawajima Heavy Industries joined Harima Shipbuilding & Engineering to become Ishikawajima-Harima Heavy Industries in 1960, the successor of Ishikawajima Shipyard. In 2007, the name IHI Corporation was chosen to promote the company's worldwide brand.

IHI is dedicated to making a positive impact on society via technology, integrating a wide range of engineering skills to fulfill the growing worldwide need for energy, urbanization and industrialization, and transportation efficiency.

One of the standout yachts of the company includes the Paloma. The luxury yacht is an incredible feat in yacht design; the vessel was built in 1965 at the Ishikawajima-Harima shipyard in Japan and measured 60.25m (197' 8"). The yacht was completely rebuilt in Malta in 2003-04 to the Owner's specifications.

The luxury yacht features some great amenities, such as comfy furniture and decor, a/v entertainment system, water sports equipment, a luxury on-deck Jacuzzi, and anchor stabilizers for a smooth stay aboard the luxury yacht.

During Paloma's renovation, she acquired new onboard systems as well as the majority of her interior and external equipment, including an entirely new engine room with cutting-edge engineering equipment and cutting-edge navigation and communication systems.

The interior décor is subtle modern English style, with a blend of rich, colorful materials complimented by her original wood paneling that adds to the warm and inviting environment. The main salon of the classic yacht Paloma is spacious, with many comfortable seating places, a wide sofa, bar facilities, an office room, and a giant Plasma screen television.

The formal dining space, which can be closed off, is located forward of the main salon. A plasma TV and music equipment are installed in an audio/visual recreation room placed ahead of the eating area. Paloma is a classic yacht with a large main deck, which is part of its aesthetic appeal and is the reason why Ishikawajima-Harima Heavy Ind, makes it one of the biggest names in the yacht world.

New Japan Yachts

New Japan Boat was founded in 1969 in Shirai, Makinohara City, Shizuoka Prefecture, and is currently one of the few domestic yacht builders. The company used to solely make yachts but expanded into the RV / camper sector, which has a lot in common with yachts. They've started doing interior work and selling components for campers, particularly outfitted cars.

Requests for different FRP-related items, such as FRP sinks, custom-made products, and shells for mobile sales vehicles, are also accepted by the company. The Libeccio is their best-selling yacht. Libeccio, a 26ft class representative boat, is a best-selling true cruising yacht capable of running in open waters.

The Group Fino design provides a superb combination of stability, operability, usefulness, and comfort that never gets old. A strong hull that has sailed the seas of Japan and a serene cabin made of teak. The most crucial but frequently overlooked subject once you leave the port is returning to the port. The company has solved this problem with its modern design and features.

Libeccio's hull stability is designed to provide high stability and sailing performance without adding additional weight. It is a critical feature that eliminates the anxiety of running in heavy winds while also reducing occupant fatigue. NJY's dedication to "hand lay-up" creates the hull by stacking without omissions. The hull liner is, of course, fully attached to the interior of the integrally molded hull.

It is one of the strongest hulls ever made, designed to withstand the worst sea conditions. The same manufacturing procedure is used for all NJY boats. The ability to quickly convert a small place to its intended purpose. This is a key consideration in this class and is what sets them apart as yacht builders. It is adjusted for optimum usage in any environment, from the living area to a navigation room, dining room to a luxurious bedroom.

Aoki Yacht

Aoki Yacht is another big name in the world of Japanese sailboat building. The sailboat builder is known for its design of the Zen24, which is a class apart. The inspiration behind the design is clear, which is that it’s important to practice sailing with a single hand for a long period in order to develop your sailing skills. In 500 hours, a little difference in wind level may be noticed, and in 1000 hours, blind sailing is conceivable. Zen24 is a semi-custom sailing vessel, which makes that possible.

You may mix and match the fittings, equipment, and even the interior finish to suit your riding style. There are three standard kinds. To ensure a long life, an ISO-based weather-resistant polyester resin is employed, and a UV blocking layer is produced under the gel coat. The essential keel mounting portion is attached to the inner hull using a sturdy fastening mechanism. The firm has a dependable and straightforward fitting out to improve your sailing. The engine is capable.

Outboard motors and diesel inboard motors are all options for the powerplant. You'll feel fantastic while sailing alone on a yacht that is so quiet that you could go unnoticed. However, not only for skippers but also for convenient equipment, rapid weather changes might be a difficulty. When the weather suddenly changes, the captain runs out of room and mishandles the equipment. The halyard that goes to the cockpit is prone to errors. A single blunder sets off a chain reaction.

In this sense, the ocean's reality frequently falls short of expectations, so you will need the right boat for the job. Even if you are only sailing for the day, you may experience unexpected weather changes. It is safer to plan for unexpected weather changes, which is easy to do on this luxury yacht because of the many modern features that make it easy to navigate.

Complex fittings stymie the sailors’ ability to control the vessel, which is why this boat is extremely easy to use and maneuver. This is due to the fact that the reading of the wind and tides is updated in real-time, so you are not distracted while navigating. This is exactly what a skipper needs; it is a strategy that allows the boat to function at its optimum by employing basic fitting out to observe sails, wind, and currents, which the Zen24 allows sailors to do effortlessly.

Nishii Zosen KK/Sterling Yachts

The motor yacht Lady Orient is a 48-meter (158-foot) large carbon ship designed by Sterling Scott and built by Nishii Zosen Kk/Sterling Yachts. The motor yacht Lady Orient, which can accommodate 20 guests and 13 professional crew, was previously known as 687 Lady Kinara; her build project name, or yacht title was Asean Lady.

The naval architect engaged in the formal vessel composition for Lady Orient was Sterling Scott. Sterling Scott was also involved in the basic design work for this yacht. This boat was built by Nishii Zosen Kk/Sterling Yachts in the well-known yacht-building country of Japan. Before being given to the owner, she was successfully launched at Ise in 1983.

A total beam (width) of 8.23 m or 27 ft creates an impression of spaciousness. She is quite shallow, with a maximum depth of 2.74m (9ft). The hull of the motorboat was constructed using the material carbon. Carbon fiber is used to construct her superstructure above the hull.

Lady Orient can attain a top speed of 16 knots thanks to two Caterpillar diesel main engines. Twin-screw propellers are connected to the engines. Her overall HP is 2110, and she has 1553 Kilowatts. She uses Naiad as a stabilizer. The Lady Orient was built to accommodate up to 20 people. This ship can accommodate up to 13 passengers. This ship can accommodate up to 13 capable crew members, allowing for a relaxing luxury yacht holiday experience.

The luxury yacht Devotion was completed in 1986 at the Nishii Zosen Kk/Sterling yard and is 43.6 meters (143 feet) in length. As a result, she was proudly manufactured in Japan. Her former names were 688 Shalimar, Lindeza, and Marjorie Morningstar (s). Bannenberg Designs Ltd created an elegant external style. Sterling Scott created the naval architect design for the warship. The interior design was created by Arthur Fishman (1986) and Susan Puleo (1990). The superyacht hull was constructed using composite material, which makes the vessel more ergonomic.

The draught is 2.59 meters (8.5 feet), and the beam is 7.92 meters (26 feet). The superstructure is mostly composite up top. With a cruising speed of roughly 14 knots, Devotion has a range of over 2500 nautical miles under typical weather conditions. Her whole range is powered by her 60500-liter fuel capacity. The maximum number of visitors allowed at Devotion is nine. The boat can also accommodate up to 8 yacht crew members, ensuring a relaxing luxury yacht holiday.

Horizon Group

Horizon Group is the first Asian yacht manufacturer to use four separate subsidiary shipyards to manufacture its premium boats. Each yard adds a specific technique to the development, allowing for not just higher capacity but also a more efficient build operation overall, according to Horizon Group CEO John Lu's design. The shipyards may integrate and grow on each other's ideas and resources under Lu's group structure while emphasizing the spirit of artisanship.

Horizon is distinguished from other yacht builders by its flexibility in design and construction, which allows each boat to be modified to fit the unique owner's lifestyle. Horizon's devoted staff of highly experienced professionals makes this degree of personalization feasible. Horizon's specialized staff of highly competent yacht-building professionals would not be able to provide this level of personalization.

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries has designed and built many luxury yachts over the years. Dubai Shadow was once known as Umitaka Maru's project/yacht Australis Mentor. Mitsubishi Heavy Industries built this 79-meter (259-foot) luxury yacht in 1973. The superyacht Dubai Shadow is a stunning vessel. Mitsubishi Hi is the naval architectural business that created the yacht's blueprints and overall arrangement.

Dubai Shadow is the support boat for the luxury superyacht, which was previously the world's largest superyacht. Dubai Shadow is a powerful and durable vessel meant to transport all of the extras that do not fit aboard Dubai, such as tenders, speed boats, toys, jet skis, and fishing and diving equipment. The Dubai Shadow also serves as a support vessel for additional supplies and lodging.

Mitsubishi Hi was the naval architect for Dubai Shadow's official superyacht design work. This project was also completed successfully by Mitsubishi Hi. She was officially launched in Shimonoseki in 1973, and after sea testing and final completion, she was handed over to the owner who commissioned her.

In Japan, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries completed the construction of a new motorboat. Steel was used to make the hull. The superstructure of a motor yacht is mostly built of steel. Dubai Shadow has an amazing interior capacity with a width of 12.4 meters (40.7 feet).

She has a 5.35m draught, which is rather deep (17.55ft). By 2006, she had completed refit improvements and modifications. A single screw propeller propels the Dubai Shadow. The yacht's primary engine produces 3304 horsepower (or 2475 kilowatts).

Hitachi Zosen Corp.

Hitachi Zosen Corporation is a major industrial and engineering corporation founded in 1881 in Osaka, Japan. The company has also been recognized for its sailboat designs, such as the company’s signature design, the yacht Mikado.

The sailing yacht Mikado is a 47-meter-long, 155-foot-long aluminum boat designed by William Garden and Martin Francis and built from the keel up by Hitachi Zosen rp. A spacious ketch motor sailer is a particularly unusual Japan-built superyacht that was launched to great acclaim in 1986. William Garden and Martin Francis were the naval architects that created the design for this ship. Parish-Hadley is also responsible for interior design. She is a ketch motor sailer in the conventional sense.

The naval architectural firm William Garden was engaged in Mikado's technical superyacht design. Parish-Hadley was in charge of her interior design. The boat design is also linked to William Garden and Martin Francis. William Garden and Martin Francis are also involved in the yacht's overall design partnership.

The yacht was designed and built in Japan by Hitachi Zosen rp. Before being given to the owner, she was successfully launched at Kanagawa in 1986. Aluminum was used for the primary hull, making the boat lighter. The superstructure of a sailing boat is mostly built of aluminum. Mikado is rather huge, with a width of 9.51 meters (31.2 ft). Her draught is 6.34 meters (20.8 feet) (20.8ft). In 2008, she had refit improvements and alterations made.

Mikado has been designed to reach a top speed of 12 knots thanks to twin GM diesel engines. Twin-screw propellers power her propulsion system. In addition, she has a driving range of 3000 miles. When traveling at her cruise speed of 11 knots, she has a range of 3000 miles. Her total HP is 972, and she has 715 Kilowatts. Vosper is her go-to stabilizer.

Kanawa Shipyard

The Kanawa Shipyard also has quite a few luxury yacht designs under its belt mainly because of collaborations with other world-renowned yacht designers. One such design is the Don Giovanni, a superyacht designed by the company in 1964.

The superyacht Don Giovanni can accommodate up to 6 guests along with a total of four crew members. Her rather conventional interior design was christened in the year 1964 and exemplifies the typical yacht setting from A Pistoia / S Caracci (Refit), which are the leaders in interior yacht design.

Kanagawa was the naval architect company in charge of Don Giovanni's technical superyacht design. Kanagawa was also a successful collaborator on this project. The general inside styling was chosen by interior designer A Pistoia / S Caracci (Refit).

She was successfully launched in Kobe in 1964, and after sea testing and final completion, she was transferred to the yacht owner. In Japan, Kanagawa Shipyard constructed a new-build motorboat. With a total beam (width) of 7.85 m or 25.75 ft, the sensation is adequate. Steel was utilized to construct the hull of the motorboat. Steel is used to construct her superstructure above deck. In 2009, more refit and upgrading work was completed.

The boat is powered by a nippon hatsudaku compressed air start engine. Twin-screw propellers propel her sheathed in skirts that double as the vessel’s rudders. The yacht's engine produces 1000 horsepower (or 783 kilowatts).

Yamaha Motors

Yamaha Motors was founded in 1955 in Japan. While the company is known for its motorcycles and other vehicles, including outboard motors, they have also made a name in the boating industry. Since its inception more than 50 years ago, the Yamaha Motor Group has been dedicated to the production of different values via manufacturing and services.

The Yamaha Motor Group is a firm that uses wisdom and enthusiasm to achieve people's ambitions, with the goal of offering fresh feelings and prosperous lifestyles to people all over the world, and is constantly expected to be "the next impression." It is clear that they want to be known as an amazing creative firm.

Yamaha has always strived to be a company that is new and impresses by offering new value. They have built unique goods and a wide range of products using a mix of energy and four main technologies: body/hull technology, control technology, and powertrain, just to name a few. The firm has expanded through expanding our business and creating demand for ourselves.

The electrification of mobility, the rapid growth of digital technology, and the rearrangement of numerous frameworks that follow it are all big developments in business trends. Under such conditions, modern technology, a diverse set of business foundations, and the capacity to mold ideas and concepts will be important driving forces.

Japanese Sailboat Brands
Jacob Collier

Jacob Collier

Born into a family of sailing enthusiasts, words like “ballast” and “jibing” were often a part of dinner conversations. These days Jacob sails a Hallberg-Rassy 44, having covered almost 6000 NM. While he’s made several voyages, his favorite one is the trip from California to Hawaii as it was his first fully independent voyage.

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