Time and again, the yachting world benefits when an engineer is also an avid sailor. That’s because this combination quite often results in transformative boat building.
And, that’s what happened when hydrodynamics expert, Michael Dufour, recognized the potential of polyester in 1957 and thought: I could build a boat out of this. Seven years later Dufour designed and built a sailing yacht made of polyester. By 1965, he had sold 20 polyester yachts, and tripled that number the next year. From then on Dufour’s sailing yachts transformed the live-aboard yacht. Dufour catamarans and sailing yachts range from 30 to 63 feet and are built in a 50,000-sq.-ft. factory in La Rochelle, France.
I Could Build a Boat Out Of Polyester
Dufour Yachts History
In 1971, Dufour founded the Grand Pavois boat show and extended his sales network to Europe and the U.S. Dufour Yachts became the leading exporter of boats in Europe and won the Export Prize in 1973. For the next seven years, Dufour Yachts designed and introduced nine new models: 35, 27, 33, 34, 1300, 29, 31, 2800 and 1800.
In the early ’80s, the quality brand leaned into luxury and introduced the Dufour T7, 3800, 4800 and D28. Shortly after, the Dufour 42 Lacoste was born. Only 12 models of this quality Dufour yacht were built before the company moved on to its luxurious, contemporary Prestige line.
The ready-to-sail Dufour Classic Yachts launched in ’94 focused on making cruising as comfortable and enjoyable as possible. It was in 2002 that Dufour sailing yachts took a fresh tack and began collaborating with renowned naval architect, Umberto Felci, to design different lines to meet the demands of discerning sailors. Felci’s Dufour Performance range (2002) and Grand Large range (2003) focused on performance and cruising respectively.
For more than six decades, Dufour Yachts repeatedly refined its image by creating unique and ever more luxurious sailing yachts with streamlined exterior profiles and smart, comfortable interiors. Here are brief descriptions of the top-10 Felci-designed Dufour sailing yachts and Dufour catamarans for sale.
Dufour Yachts under 40 feet
The three Dufour yachts under 40 feet deliver speed, easy handling, comfortable accommodations and are ideal for cruising couples.
Dufour 310 (2013): Double the fun.
With two steering wheels and double rudders, the Dufour 31 yacht guarantees balance and maximum control. The self-tracking jib offers a safe, carefree experience for the solo sailor.
Dufour 360 (2017): Quick and stable.
The Dufour 36 yacht has a huge cockpit, full galley and the choice of two or three cabins.
Dufour 390 (2019): Dufour 39 yachts for sale have innovative layouts.
Large areas for socializing, jam-packed with technology. This model was singled out as the most well-rounded sailboat in its class.
Dufour Yachts under 50 feet
The three Dufour yachts under 50 feet have impressive hull volume, are easy to steer and moor, and make excellent cruisers.
Dufour 412 (2016): The Dufour 41 sailing yacht has one of the biggest beams.
Almost 14 foot midship beams in its class, ensuring stability and increased deck space.
Dufour 430 (2019): Dufour 43 yacht balances performance with comfort and effortless movement onboard.
This 43-foot sailing yacht is an excellent cruiser for sailors seeking adventure.
Dufour 470 (2021): In keeping with Dufour’s penchant to enhance the brand and appeal to a wider range of sailing enthusiasts.
The Dufour 43 yacht comes in three versions: Easy (simple and comfortable), Ocean (traditional, seaworthy), Performance (racing).
Dufour Yachts under 65 feet
The trio of Dufour yachts under 65 feet sport exciting innovations that move them to the head of their class. Elegant, yet constructed for high-sea sailing.
Dufour 530 (2020): The Dufour 53 yacht merges the best from the Dufour Performance and Dufour Grand Large lines to create a spacious, elegant sailboat.
that has been nominated three times by Cruising World (Boat of the Year) and SAIL (Best Boat) and by British Magazine Sailing Today (British Yachting Award 2020).
Dufour 56 (2016): Yachting aficionados describe sailing the Dufour 56 yacht as “child’s play”.
It’s that intuitive and easy. Partner that with speed, reliability and the ultimate onboard comfort and luxury, and you’ve got a sailboat for the ages.
Dufour 61 (2020): In keeping with Dufour’s recipe for sailing success, the Dufour 61 is simple to operate.
The Dufour 61 is beautiful to look at, features well-planned wide open spaces and is speedy and safe.
Dufour 48 (2018): The Dufour 48 catamaran yacht represents the company’s first foray into the popular multihull market.
With room for up to a dozen overnight guests, this cat can be configured for up to five cabins and five heads. The Dufour 48 catamaran is available in both power and sail.
- Founder: Michael DuFour
- Parent Organization: Fountaine-Pajot
- Type: Luxury sailing yachts and catamarans
- Size: 30 to 63 feet
- Lines: Prestige, Classic, Performance, Grand Large
- Models: 310, 360, 390, 412, 430, 470, 530, 48, 56, 61
Check out our comprehensive boats for sale database of Dufour sailing yachts for sale today. Find your boat. Then set sail. It’s that easy.
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