January 2016

Meet the designer

The striking MTB fourzero Wheelhouse has its origins on the drawing boards of the highly respected designer Guido de Groot. Guido has always had a great eye for innovative lines, having started his career working in the Parisian automobile world before setting up his own yacht design studio in Holland. He has since designed many well-known superyachts for top yards such as Feadship. Guido’s involvement in the MTB fourzero Wheelhouse started five years ago, as he explains in this exclusive interview.


I became involved in the fourzero line on my own initiative after I fell in love with the lines of the Breedendam MTB series. I am a great fan of the motor torpedo look and Breedendam was already doing something very special. I contacted the yard to ask if I could offer some suggestions for the design of those earlier boats. They kindly agreed and I made some enhancements to the MTB threezero range.

In doing so I felt such a connection with these boats that I decided to make a bigger version that might help Breedendam be ready for the future. The lines had so much potential and I simply had to do something with those beautiful hull shapes. Breedendams are unique compared to all other boats in this segment because of their proportions and hull shape. I adore the way the nose has a degree of flair before being pulled in and staying straight on the side going aft. The fast lines and robustness of the hull are a tribute to the founder of Breedendam who spent a great deal of time getting the shape right on the first MTBs. The boats are finely crafted and I tried to get as much of those first Breedendams into the fourzero line.

What touches did you add?
We added extra elements of luxury to the design in order to help move the brand into a higher segment. The fourzero is larger, built in aluminium and fitted with Volvo IPS drives. A unique feature is that the superstructure and cap rails are also made of aluminium while retaining the typical wood look of the original Breedendams thanks to some remarkable paint work by an artist who has worked on major superyacht projects. As well as looking great this makes the fourzero maintenance friendly. The interior of the MTBfourzero Wheelhouse is also a step up with good headroom, luxurious bathrooms, an owner’s cabin, a good galley and a nice lounge which converts into various accommodation options.

What’s your favourite aspect of the new fourzero?
I love the way that we managed to get the proportions right. Building in aluminium opens up lots of extra possibilities in terms of customisation. The launch owner has chosen a wide range of extra options such as diving equipment. As he will spend some time in the north of the Netherlands in the Wadden islands this first MTB fourzero Wheelhouse has been built with three legs that come out of the hull and hold the boat up when the tide goes out. This is important as the IPS drives mean she cannot rest on her keel.

This is really quite sophisticated product isn’t it?
Yes it is. The engine room has been impressively laid out and all the other technical areas are very clean. There is a good amount of storage space plus a washing machine/dryer, something the client specifically asked for. We’ve done a lot of work to make sure everything fits in nicely and the overall build quality is at a high level. I have a good relationship with the owner and wanted to give him the best boat possible: I think that’s what we’ve achieved!

You’ve designed larger yachts but this project has clearly captured your imagination?
Indeed. It is more than just this boat… Breedendam is building such fabulous boats and am to contribute to securing the future of this brand. We already have other new designs in the pipeline – watch this space I say.