It is with great pride that we announce SW96 Nyumba has received a significant accolade at the recent “Design and Innovation Awards”, hosted by Boat International in the picturesque Austrian village of Kitzbühel.

Nominated in the Eco Awards category, Nyumba has been awarded a Special Commendation by the judges for her innovative hybrid propulsion system, described as “the first of its kind on a yacht of this size.”

Differently from the SW108 Hybrid project, which was originally designed to accommodate a Diesel Electric System, the SW96, with its first unit launched in 2017, was initially engineered to host a traditional propulsion system.

Motivated by a forward-thinking and ambitious owner, we embraced the challenge of crafting a more future proof yacht. CCO Andrea Micheli explains: “Our innovation journey led us to adapt the existing SW96 platform, introducing what we confidently believe to be the most sophisticated high-voltage hybrid propulsion systems available on the market. Our system stands out for its remarkable energy density, ensuring that, for the given footprint, it delivers an unparalleled amount of power. This achievement is a testament to our commitment to pushing the boundaries of efficiency and sustainability, drawing inspiration from industrial developments in various sectors. We chose BAE Systems as our partner, taking into account their comprehensive package proposition encompassing generation, propulsion, and energy storage. We always aim to be at the leading edge of technology but never at the bleeding edge” .

Southern Wind SW96 Nyumba

Marco Alberti, SW CEO comments: It might seem surprising to source a hybrid drive from the public transport industry rather than using a system designed from the outset specifically for marine use. Nevertheless most, if not all, of the commercial marine high-voltage diesel-electric hybrid systems currently on the market were far too big for a 29-metre (96ft) sailing yacht and the leisure marine systems are much too small. The suppliers at both ends of the spectrum don’t see enough demand to upscale or downsize their existing products, so there’s a gap in the middle of the market from around 200 to 400kW (roughly 300 to 500hp). Or rather, there was a gap which BAE Systems has now filled, in partnership with our shipyard”.

As a result, Nyumba is the first sailing yacht below 30 meters equipped with a high-voltage system. This once again demonstrates the strong versatility of our Smart Custom constructions, offering owners not only ample customization options but also the opportunity to introduce technological innovations into a reliable and tested platform.

BAE Systems is a globally recognized partner specializing in advanced technology-driven solutions for defence, aerospace, and automotive applications. Their HybriGen® power and propulsion leverage proven technology from the bus industry and bring it to the water. With over 12,000 transit bus systems worldwide using its hybrid technology, BAE, working closely with the Southern Wind Technical Department, successfully miniaturized this reliable technology, making it suitable for the SW96, SW100X and SW108 engine rooms.

Marco Alberti comments on this important recognition: “We are honoured that our efforts were acknowledged by the prestigious judging committee, who deemed Nyumba worthy of commendation among a distinguished panel of finalists. We cannot help but be proud of this significant achievement and extend our gratitude to Nyumba’s owners for their trust in us and to all those who contributed to realizing what we consider a major innovation towards more sustainable sailing”.



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