Boat Test: 2006 Delphia Yachts Delphia Cortina 480

Boat Tested2006 Delphia Yachts Delphia Cortina 480
Price As TestedNot Available
Category Cuddy
Manufacturer Delphia Yachts
Length15ft 7in / 4.75 m
The Delphia Cortina 480 by Eurostar is totally unique in the marketplace.

This is a 1200 pound, 15'6" trailerable boat that has a fully enclosed cabin capable of sleeping two 6 foot tall people and it has a pilot house hardtop over the helm with more than 6 feet of standing headroom. This is a boat that will require you to readjust your thinking!

The amazing raised pilothouse hardtop with generous Plexiglas windows on three sides, gives the impression of a far larger boat. Yet, you could trailer this boat behind any one of several ordinary minivans and it could manage enough supplies and equipment for two people to cruise the Trent Severn Waterway (or other similar bodies of water) on a vacation; camping by night cruising, fishing and exploring the shallows by day. It's a boat that opens up a world of possibilities you never would have dreamed possible for less than $20,000.

Eurostar in Oakville, Ontario imports these boats from Delphia Yachts in Poland. The designs are genuinely European and in the case of the Cortina 480, are unlike anything else. The vital statistics are that the hull weighs 440 kg, the Yamaha F 50 [a new model this year] weighs 108 kg and the boat has a center line length of 15''7", on an 83" beam with a maximum horsepower rating of 50.

The exterior appearance is quite remarkable. At the bow are a pulpit, cleat and generous anchor locker with a lid. There is a deck hatch for cabin ventilation. The slide decks are 6" wide and finished in a good non-skid surface. Welded stainless steel bow rails forward, handholds on the cabin roof and vertical posts you can hang onto at the aft edge of the pilothouse, make getting around safe and easy.

Other good exterior features include substantial cleats at the stern, a swing down stainless boarding ladder on the port side and a fibreglass cowling over the engine to isolate sound. In the cockpit is a side seat housing the fuel tank and to starboard is a bench for two. Ahead of that is a little fibreglass seat where the captain can sit and under that is the battery. The helm has a footrest, a ships wheel on the bulkhead and an instrument cluster on the top.

What is really remarkable, is finding a boat under 16 feet that has a fully enclosed sleeping cabin with two berths. Underneath the berths are storage areas and there is sitting headroom throughout. The most obvious item we found lacking, was a head, although I'm sure a resourceful owner could fit one.

The design of the boat offers intriguing possibilities but how was the performance? Well, the Yamaha F 50 performed beautifully and is likely to deliver excellent fuel economy as well. We felt the best cruising speed was 20 mph at 4,000 rpm and the Cortina 480 Pilothouse ran out to a maximum of 29 mph at 5,500 rpm; a little under the engine's maximum. A different prop might be better. The boat stays very flat even in the tightest turns and felt solid and secure crisscrossing other boats' wakes'.

You can easily see an avid fisherman fitting downriggers to the aft decking. The cabin can be padlocked, so you could leave your rods, reels and tackle in there safely. The Yamaha F50 idles silently and showed a 3 mph trolling speed at 800 rpm and only 70 dbA at the helm.

Overall, the performance left little to be desired considering the size and power. The helm allowed comfortable standing operation with excellent vision in all directions and of course, tremendous weather protection. Windshield wipers could probably be fitted and we did feel that the pilothouse deserved to have ventilated side windows to avoid fogging but otherwise, this boat offers a remarkable combination of features of accommodation in an extremely compact and affordable package.
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