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Bavaria SR33 Review (2023 Edition)
The Bavaria SR33 marks the culmination of a trio of contemporary entry-level cruising models. Unveiled to the world at the Düsseldorf Boat Show, we seized the opportunity to explore how this newcomer measures up against its two larger siblings.
With the SR36 and SR41 already establishing themselves as solid, well-appointed two-cabin yachts, Bavaria's introduction of the SR33 promises to deliver a similar blend of excitement and functionality in a more compact 11-meter package. The question remains: will this downsized version of the SR lineup retain the same level of appeal and versatility?
Bavaria SR33 Key Facts
- LOA 37.402ft
- Max Speed 30 knots
- Status In Production
- Yacht Type Sports Yacht
- Use Type Weekending
Test & Review Video
In this article:
Rivals to consider.
Our Scores Explained
Design & Build
Let's start with the essentials: Bavaria has a long history of crafting practical, user-friendly, and cost-effective sportscruisers. Collaborating with J&J Design, their earliest creations remain relevant and reliable today, prioritizing safety, ample storage, maneuverable hulls, and spacious interiors.
Moreover, Bavaria has been a pioneer in hardtop designs for vessels under 20 meters. Their hardtops boast a sleek aesthetic, avoiding bulkiness or overly rounded shapes, ensuring both functionality and style.
With the design leadership now under Marco Casali, the essence of the SR range remains intact. These boats still exude a smartness that is sure to impress even a decade from now. However, Casali's touch infuses more detail and finesse into the vessels, evident in features like the SR33's elliptical mid-cabin window design.
The SR range offers a diverse selection of petrol and diesel sterndrive engines, ensuring a guaranteed speed of 30 knots. Opting for diesel power may slightly inflate the base price of EUR €248,000 ex VAT, potentially nearing EUR €300,000. Bavaria is exploring the possibility of introducing a single-engine variant, which could further reduce the price while potentially enhancing efficiency. This consideration is particularly relevant as the SR33 features a relatively modest 500-liter (132-gallon) fuel tank, smaller compared to its competitors.
The attention-grabbing SR transom seat, maximizing the expansive stern of the boat, undoubtedly stands out as a key feature that will attract many potential buyers for a closer inspection. However, the ultimate success of the boat hinges on the overall balance of its design, particularly below decks.
A significant design consideration revolves around the decision to offer three four-berth models that are nearly identical in size. One contributing factor to this choice is affordability. By utilizing smaller engines and streamlining the production process, Bavaria can offer a range of pricing starting from the €UR 250,000 base figure and reaching beyond €UR 500,000 for the SR41.
Both the 11.7-meter SR36 and the 13.2-meter SR41 feature two separate sleeping cabins. The SR41, however, offers two toilet and shower compartments compared to the SR36's one, giving it a more spacious feel. If your cruising plans involve two couples, the additional heads and increased space of the SR41 may be more appealing. Fortunately, there's a noticeable price gap between the two models to aid in decision-making.
As for the SR33, its unique value proposition lies in its ability to strike a balance between size, amenities, and price point within the SR range.
Open & Closed Case
Despite its model name positioning it below the SR36, the SR33 is only slightly shorter by 11 inches, with near-identical cockpits. Below decks, the slightly lower LOA of the SR33 is noticeable but not significant. The main difference lies in the open-plan main cabin of the SR33, where the forward double berth is only curtained off. This design choice creates a relaxed interior ambiance and allows for a spacious pantry area, along with a nearly identical toilet and shower compartment compared to the SR36.
For cruising as a family or couple, the layout of the SR33 is highly functional. If cruising as a couple, the open cabin design essentially becomes your private stateroom, complete with a lounge, bar, and ensuite. Additionally, there is a proper, separate mid-cabin with full-standing headroom at the entranceway, ample ports, and a useful bench seat. If the need arises for two separate cabins, the SR36 is the better option. However, if you're willing to pay for a bit more space and the luxury of a private toilet and shower, the SR41 is the ideal choice.
As the details come together, the rationale behind each model within the SR range becomes clearer, allowing buyers to find the perfect fit for their cruising needs.
An unmistakable trait of the SR series, which we wholeheartedly support, is the preference for cooking on deck rather than below. In the SR33, a galley unit below decks serves primarily for storage and additional refrigeration, while a deep sink facilitates washing up efficiently. The adjacent dining area, though neat, is more functional than convivial, providing a space for gathering, enjoying coffee, and dining in privacy with a bench and stool arrangement.
The open forward double berth is positioned low for easy access and is surrounded by lockers and pockets for convenient storage. Generous stowage options abound throughout the SR33, with lockers strategically placed and clean storage voids under seats and berths. While some boats in this size class offer a closed forward cabin, few manage to combine two cabins with a lower lounge, and none rival the spaciousness and sense of openness offered by the SR33.
The toilet and shower compartment in the SR33 is indeed not identical to the SR36, but it closely mirrors its size and design. The compartment features a sensible layout, with the toilet and shower thoughtfully separated from the sink and vanity unit. This configuration ensures that one-half of the compartment remains dry while also creating a convenient seat for the shower.
Accessed through its portside door, the mid-cabin of the SR33 is truly impressive. Bavaria has cleverly extended the cockpit footwell well into the cabin, providing standing headroom throughout. While the SR36 features a bench seat that could serve as a child’s berth, the SR33, is simply a seat — but a highly functional one. Here, you can comfortably spend time and enjoy panoramic views through two tiers of hull-side windows.
At the single helm, a raised lounger and a tidy little seat to port provide seating for two or three additional passengers to join the skipper. Sliding side windows on each side offer not only valuable ventilation when the sunroof is closed but also facilitate easy communication with the deck or shore.
The console design is simple yet elevated, especially with the optional Glass Helm—an integrated Raymarine design featuring two 12-inch MFD screens. Reflecting Bavaria's confident character, the helm boasts a sleek sports steering wheel and prominent branding on the seat. Bavaria's expertise shines through in the throttle setup, particularly with the optional joystick positioned further back for optimal control.
The SR transom seat design, consistent across the three models, shines particularly bright here, offering a superb lounge area and captivating seascape views on a smaller vessel. Positioned outside of the hardtop overhang, it remains open to the elements and easily converts into a sunpad. While options like the telescopic table or extra storage infill are available, ample storage space is already provided under the transom seats.
Moreover, the transom design facilitates excellent dual access from the swim platform and onto the side decks, enhanced by strategically placed grab rails and stanchion posts extending aft.
Remarkably, this 11-meter boat boasts proper side decks—an often overlooked feature in vessels of this size. While many boats struggle to provide adequate decks at this length, some don't include them at all. Here, you'll find two wide, secure decks that lead seamlessly to the foredeck. Although there's no foredeck seating akin to the Beneteau GT32 or Regal Grande Coupes, an optional pad is available, with the transom lounge offering a comfortable alternative.
A Cooking Cockpit
The transom seats merge with the cockpit lounge, with a pivoting backrest creating a fluid connection between the two. A standout feature is the wet bar, a common inclusion on boats, but this one stands out for its larger size and thoughtful design to accommodate a two-burner hob and deep lockers. While an additional wet bar fridge is available as an option, it's a common feature on most boats.
Regarding the hardtop design, there's the option of a GRP electric sunroof, as seen here, or a more cost-effective canvas roof. Each option has its pros and cons — the canvas roof has a limited shelf life, while the electric sunroof offers less open sky for a higher price. Regardless of the choice, investing in the aft canopy curtain will be necessary for added comfort and protection.
Value For Money
Bavaria's forte has long been providing diesel-powered sportsboats and cruisers to a market largely dominated by petrol-engined US brands. Particularly appealing to European buyers, these diesel boats offered lower running costs without sacrificing the ability to cruise comfortably at 30 knots.
While there were still some areas for improvement on the options list, the overall package — whether petrol or diesel — remained highly valued for its combination of practicality, style, and affordability. This trend continues today, although there are indications that the pendulum may be shifting back towards petrol options.
At €UR 290,000, the Volvo Penta D4-300 diesel base price still represents excellent value when compared to other offerings in the market. However, this option does alter the dynamics of the boat. In contrast, the standard €UR 248,000 355hp 6.2l V6 Mercruisers seem like the more favorable choice. The additional €UR 10,000 for the Mercruiser joystick, compared to the €UR 15,000 for the Volvo Penta option, further emphasizes this point. Opting for a bow thruster adds €UR 5,000 to the total cost.
Beyond engine choices, the optional €UR 15,000 Comfort Package offers enticing features such as underwater and deck lighting, stylish teak decking, a cockpit fridge, and an electric flush toilet. Investing in the GRP sunroof will set you back around €UR 8,000, whereas opting for the canvas option costs a more modest €UR 1,700. Additionally, the sleek 12-inch Simrad Glass Helm comes in at approximately €UR 9,000.
This review began by questioning the cohesion of Bavaria's SR range, but now it's clear: these models offer buyers a rare simplicity in their choices. The progression in size, space, and cost is straightforward, supported by a design ethos that balances fun and functionality across the lineup. The SR33 stands out as potentially the best of the trio, encapsulating the SR cruising experience in a smaller hull. It's important to note that everything that makes the SR33 exceptional comes as standard—a testament to Bavaria's commitment to delivering value to boaters.
Reasons to Buy
- All the SR features at 11m
- Spacious interior
- Cockpit design
- Excellent deck access and stowage
Things to Consider
- No forward cabin
- Diesel engines hike price
Bavaria is a dominant force in the under 12m category, but it faces stiff competition from various European rivals.
Galeon, for instance, offers two 11m sportscruisers, the 370HTC and the 365HTS. The former features a coupe design with cockpit doors, creating space for a practical three-cabin layout below decks. Meanwhile, the latter, with its open hardtop design, provides versatility with options for cockpit doors and a separate mid-cabin.
Beneteau adds to the competition with the Gran Turismo 32 and 36, positioned around the Bavaria in terms of size. The GT36 offers a lower lounge and separate cabins, while the GT32 impresses with its social cockpit and convertible dinette below decks.
Sessa's C3X, slightly shorter than the Bavaria, utilizes space effectively with options for a lounge or galley and two separate cabins. Jeanneau's NC37, a coupe design, features a bright and functional enclosed galley and lounge, complemented by an impressive three-cabin layout.
Lastly, the Regal 36 Grande Coupe stands out with its bright deck salon and two-cabin accommodation. It boasts impressive speed, thanks to the option for outboard engines, making it a compelling competitor in the segment.
- Builder Bavaria Yachts
- Range SR-Line
- Length Overall 37.402ft
- Beam 11.352ft
- Draft 2.822ft
- Yacht Type (Primary) Sports Yacht
- Use Type (Primary) Weekending
- Cruising Speed Max Speed
- Fuel Capacity 132 Gallons
- Fresh Water Capacity 66 Gallons
- Engine Model 2x Volvo Penta D4-300
Bavaria SR33 Layout
The SR transom design makes full use of the main, wide-body section of the boat and connects to the main cockpit. Note the decent wet bar to starboard.
The open main cabin is joined by a separate mid and a toilet and shower compartment as good as that found on the SR33. There is no lower galley but there is a pantry areas and fridge.
Carl is a writer, editor, presenter and content creator specialising in yachting as well as men’s luxury. A former magazine editor, Carl has amassed some 20 years of hands-on experience with motorboats, testing over 350 models.
- United Kingdom
- Rest of World
2023 Bavaria Yachts SR33
Hull material, boat length (loa), see all details, boat description.
The latest premiere of the successful SR-LINE
With the BAVARIA SR33, BAVARIA YACHTS introduce another model of their successful SR-LINE for the 2023 season, following the SR41 and the SR36. As with all motor yachts of the BAVARIA SR-LINE, the focus during development was on creating space for life on deck. Below deck, the BAVARIA SR33 impresses with a well-thought-out room layout, providing generous space for four people.
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Performance & Ratios
A BAVARIA yacht is the perfect interaction of many elements. Everything is built around the extensive expertise of German engineering. It is an art that looks back on a long and successful tradition in boat building. Today it is possible to implement all this knowledge with a high degree of precision and quality. We make use of the best materials, the best equipment and exquisite craftsmanship to create something that is the essence of every BAVARIA: the joy of yachting.
The BAVARIA C38 combines perfect sailing characteristics, easy handling and maximum use of the interior space. Distinctive design features, such as the BAVARIA V-bow and Chines at the stern, guarantee safe and fast sailing characteristics and an incredible amount of space below deck.
The BAVARIA C42 is the logical progression from the BAVARIA C-LINE, but has its own distinct character. A modern, innovative hull shape with chines and a V-shaped bow developed by BAVARIA YACHTS guarantee both the best sailing performance and an unusually large amount of space below decks.
Extended hull, long window strip and slim-looking superstructure – these are all fresh, new touches. The BAVARIA C45 is designed as a yacht where you can feel entirely at home. It also happens to be the only yacht in its class to be optionally available as a five-cabin version and which has a dinghy garage. The new BAVARIA C45 is an absolute all-rounder.
With the BAVARIA C46 BAVARIA YACHTS sets a new milestone of their sailing yachts of the C-LINE. A variety of combinable cabin options below deck and a deck layout for single-handed sailors and skippers with a large crew make a BAVARIA C46 your very own C46. Experience the world premiere of BAVARIA YACHTS now at the major boat shows in Europe.
Our aim was to make the BAVARIA C50 nothing less than a new benchmark in the 50-foot sailing yacht category. It offers an elegant, flat hull line and stunningly dynamic silhouette. Everything is clear and minimalist, reflecting our understanding of good, modern yacht design. No other yacht offers so much space, so much comfort and so many possibilities.
The BAVARIA C57 is a pure expression of class, elegance and the finest craftsmanship. With the design and style of a megayacht, it sets new trends and boasts a long waterline which guarantees high basic speeds.
We believe that even smaller yachts can be tremendous fun. With the BAVARIA CRUISER 34 we have succeeded in bringing together the most important aspects of sailing – sailing pleasure and spaciousness – in one boat. This yacht has excellent and very safe sailing characteristics.
The BAVARIA CRUISER 37 is a cruising yacht for sailors who like to be sporty but don’t want to neglect the relaxing aspect of their leisure time either. Get it all with the most comfortable spaciousness – in the 2-cabin version for four people or the 3-cabinversion for six. The BAVARIA CRUISER 37 offers sportiness and pleasure par excellence.
The jury said: “European Yacht of the Year 2015”. We say: that comes as no surprise! That is because you would be hard pressed to find another sailing yacht in its class that offers more space, more comfort, more luxury if you want it, and is also this easy to handle.
With a BAVARIA VISION 42 you will not only experience first class sailing, you will also be a first class sailor! This is made possible by an extraordinary, unique exterior and interior layout. With its two cabin design, the BAVARIA VISION 42 is the ideal yacht for couples who wish to stay on board for far longer than just a weekend.
Experience the pure joy of yachting.
Sandwich construction ensures longevity.
Isophthalic acid (IPA) resins in the outer layers used during the laminating process ensure that the hull of a BAVARIA is of the highest quality. These offer effective protection against osmosis and thus promote longevity of the BAVARIA. The hull and deck of a BAVARIA is formed by sandwich construction with foam inserts. In sailing yachts the deck is reinforced with aluminium sheets where fittings are mounted. In the so‐called „marrying“ process shortly before the end of production, the deck and hull are screwed and glued together.
Solid wood troughout, yet it is light on board
Over 40 years of experience in boat building craftsmanship are behind the workmanship in the wood inside a BAVARIA. And although modern machines facilitate the boat builders’ work in their own joiner’s workshops, their sense of proportion and their know‐how in dealing with different types of wood is a daily need that only they can satisfy. Mahogany, teak, oak, walnut, chestnut or Ocean Line – a BAVARIA offers individuality and an atmosphere in which you feel comfortable, no matter what type of wood you have chosen. And every BAVARIA encompasses a perfect balance of solid wood and sturdy laminates, because in the end the weight of a BAVARIA’s interior fittings also contribute towards steady seakeeping and excellent sailing characteristics.
Every fitting, every hatch is in its proper place
Before fitting and hatch assembly on deck, the milling and drilling has to be completed. To automate these tasks, BAVARIA developed a CNC system years ago that to date is unique in the global yacht and boat building industry. The deck layout of each type of yacht and the hole patterns for standard and optional equipment are stored by means of CAD/CAM. This requires hundreds of individual operations that are already predefined in the development phase of a yacht, and then optimised. The aim of this automation process was and is to reach a consistently high quality with continuous improvement in productivity. Precise arrangement of the deck openings is crucial in ensuring subsequent sealing.
- Digital edition
The most boat for your money? Bavaria C38 yacht test
- Theo Stocker
- April 26, 2021
Competition is hot for high-volume cruisers, but have Bavaria built a boat that is fun to sail as well as spacious and affordable? Theo Stocker took her for a spin to find out
- Fun and engaging to sail
- Vast amounts of space
- A lot of boat for your money
- Limited stowage in 3-cabin version
- Mainsheet lacked power
- Some exposed systems in lockers
Price as reviewed:.
A job worth doing is worth doing properly, so the saying goes. There’s no doubt that Bavaria have committed wholeheartedly to the concept behind their new C38 and the result is a boat fully confident in its identity. That’s a good job, given the level of competition the C38 will be up against in the 37-38ft production cruiser market.
This boat aims to do three things: create the absolute maximum amount of space on deck and below from the available waterline length; be enjoyable and engaging to sail, if not a race boat; and give a potential buyer the maximum bang for their buck. In practice, the design has added significant volume in both the bow and the stern, introduced a deeper, rounder forefoot to reduce slamming, and has deepened the single rudder, which, coupled with the bow thruster, should give plenty of control in harbour and underway.
A first look at the boat reveals a few significant details. Firstly, her waterline takes up almost her entire length, with virtually no overhangs at the ends. Then there are the chines. This is only the second Bavaria to have hull chines, and they are used to take the significant beam, which is carried all the way aft, down to the water, creating more volume in the aft cabins, as well as providing power to the hull form. Next, there’s the huge bluff bow and vertical stem, again multiplying the volume in the forward cabin. Pretty it might not be, but there’s a certain purposeful muscularity to it.
Bavaria Yachts, the company, gained new owners in 2018, and they’ve been quick to make a fresh start, starting with a plan to update the entire range. Having moved from design house J&J to Cossutti Design, the C38 is the latest, smallest boat in the new lineup. The strongly chined hull shape makes a bold statement about that new direction. I was keen to see how this added up on the water.
If you looked at this yacht and thought the vast volume would make her a poor sailer, you would be mistaken. I was very pleasantly surprised at how much fun we had sailing her. The feel on the helm was direct, responsive and engaging; this boat is fun to sail. She wasn’t twitchy even when overpressed and gave plenty of warning before the rudder started to lose grip. This boat reminds you of why a single rudder makes sense, and is deep enough that she has plenty of grip even when heeled, which is the main reason wide-sterned boats have twin rudders. The benefits when handling in harbour are huge, given that manoeuvring and mooring is the most stressful part of any cruise for most owners.
Granted, the mainsheet purchase needs a bit of improvement, but if I were buying this boat, I’d go for the more easily handled furling main and self-tacking jib, with the Code Zero for the extra sail area to keep the boat moving off the wind. This would seem to fit with the ethos of simple and fun sailing that this boat ascribes to.
WOULD SHE SUIT YOU AND YOUR CREW?
I’d imagine this boat will prove popular with sailing schools and charter companies, but if you’re after maximum boat for your buck for family coastal cruising, this is definitely worth a look too.
The idea of having three king-sized beds on what is really a 36-foot hull is staggering. You’d have to weigh up whether you want an ensuite owner’s head enough to sacrifice some of this bed space in the forward cabin, but given the layout options, there seems little reason to go for the two-cabin rather than three-cabin layout. If you’re not using the third you could still use it for the stowage you’d be missing out on.
Given the price point of this boat, the quality of finish was really very good, and the resurrected Bavaria has upped its game several notches. Arguably, the C38 could now be the boat to beat in this size sector and you’ll struggle to get more new boat for your money than this.
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