Nautical Expert

Motorboat magazine

Sargo boats as the best example of Scandinavian practicality

Updated on February 11th, 2024

We are the most devoted fans of Scandinavian motorboats. The fact is that boats are built here not so that they look good in a Mediterranean marina, but so that you can travel without restrictions through the harsh northern waters, without questioning the reliability of your vessel. And that is why they always look very practical and impressive.

When you need boats without compromise, then Scandinavia enters the main arena. The Finnish shipyard Sargo is one of the brightest representatives of this philosophy. Founder Edy Sarin, having worked with various manufacturers for decades, eventually gained experience and created a company that produces exactly the kind of boats that fully correspond to his ideas of quality and reliability.

Sargo 45 Helm station

The current flagship of this family shipyard is the 14m Sargo 45, also available in an Explorer version. What’s the difference, you ask? Well, the color of the hull. Also the color of the handrails, which will be powder coated. Estimated price around €1 million.

Sargo boats as the best example of Scandinavian practicality

In fact, of course, the dark hull combined with the dark roof and white superstructure looks great. These are not working aluminum boats, on the contrary, they are made for comfortable cruising with family, friends or, what some of us like much more, alone. So GRP is very relevant here. Fiberglass is heavier, which means that when rough, the boat will move much softer and, moreover, quieter.

For high latitudes, aluminum would require very good thermal insulation to get rid of condensation. In addition, GRP boats look much better with minimal effort, the manufacturer can give the hulls any contours for maximum performance, and you’ll worry less about galvanic corrosion. Yes, aluminum is stronger, but our statistics show that the fatal penetration of high-quality fiberglass boat hulls is extremely rare.

Sargo 45 Saloon

Minimalism reigns inside all Sargo boats, and the placement of every interior detail is well thought out. You can also find some non-standard solutions that save a lot of space. We did not find significant shortcomings in the placement of beds. In addition, the shipyard will certainly be able to offer you cabin customization.

Sargo 45 cabin

The main thing that you will definitely like is the bright saloon with a large sunroof. It’s not the widest saloon we’ve seen, but that’s no surprise given the side decks, which are, it must be said, very safe, with no unexpected steps that everyone always trips over.

The Sargo 36 is the only boat in the range that can be supplied with a flybridge. This is logical given that the main target market is in countries where it is very easy to make accurate weather forecasts, because snow mixed with rain is the most likely weather event.

Talking about seaworthiness, course stability, predictability and efficiency of Scandinavian boats means talking about too banal things. However, we should note that the Sargo 45 and lower models are very fuel efficient over a wide range of speeds and have excellent range for a planing hull.

Sargo 45 engines

At a cruising speed of 23 knots, two Volvo Penta IPS650s will consume 90 liters per hour and have a range of over 500 nautical miles.

If you slow down to 9.5 kn and switch to displacement mode, then the fuel consumption will be only 23 liters per hour, and the cruising range will increase to 815 NM.

The Sargo 45 has a top speed of 37.2 kn, with a corresponding fuel consumption of 187 liters per hour and a range of 396 NM.

This data is valid for Sargo 45 with IPS drive. We are not big fans of IPS, but in this case they allow you to move the engines aft, out of the saloon, which will greatly please you and your guests, making it possible to communicate without raising your voice. And, of course, IPS will make you the king of mooring and maneuvering in tight spaces.

Volvo Penta IPS Drive

Optionally, the IPS can be replaced with sterndrives. Then the efficiency will increase even more, and the maximum speed may exceed 40 knots. The saloon will remain quiet, and the bow thruster will eliminate all the difficulties of mooring. However, then you will not be able to install a hydraulic bathing platform, but only a fixed one. On the other hand, you will be able to lower the draft and approach shallower places because the stern drives can be raised.

Generally speaking, Sargo boats are a treasure trove of practicality. Everything here is as simple and convenient as possible, from the process of mooring and removing the fenders in special lockers to moving around the cockpit and navigating in the pilothouse with amazing visibility, which is impossible to achieve on sports cruisers. The number of different places to store any useful little thing is incredible. And finally, what we love the most and consider as a must-have for all good boats is the skipper’s side door.

These are not the cheapest boats and you can find more affordable ones. However, in the case of Sargo, we can really trust these boats. In any weather, these little planing trawlers just continue to work and that’s it. Quiet, calm and efficient.

Sargo’s main competitor is another Finnish shipyard, Targa. You can argue endlessly about whose boats are better, so we also modestly expressed our opinion.

What we especially like:

  • Undoubted Scandinavian quality and reliability
  • Incredible versatility
  • Lack of electronics where it is not needed
  • Seaworthiness
  • Helm station

What can be improved:

  • Price

Sargo 45 Explorer on test

Specifications Sargo 45 Explorer

Price €1,000,000
Length overall 14,60 m / 47.9 ft
Beam 4,25 m / 13.94 ft
Draft 1,20 m / 3.9 ft
Dry weight (double engine) 12 000 kg / 26 460 lb
Berths 2 cabin version 4 pers.
Berths 3 cabin version 6 pers.
Engine recommendation (Twin sterndrive DPI) 2×440
Engine recommendation (Twin IPS 650) 2×480
Cruising speed up to 30 knots
CE category B-Offshore