Jeanneau NC 895

Confident, comfortable family cruiser.

by John Wooldridge
Sitting on the L-shaped bench in the cockpit of the new NC 895 — a modern and stylish family cruiser from French boatbuilder Jeanneau — I could not ignore the sudden increase in rpm and boat speed that pressed me back into the cushion.


  • LOA: 29'2"
  • Beam: 9'8"
  • Draft: 2'
  • Weight: (dry w/engines): 7,724 lbs.
  • Fuel Capacity: 108 gals.
  • Water Capacity: 43 gals.
  • Power: T-Yamaha F200XCA 200-hp gas outboards
  • Price: $133,061

I had just finished putting the NC 895 through her paces on the water, gathering performance data and evaluating handling, and then dutifully handed her over to another member of our party who wanted to do a few handling tests of his own.

We were cruising at a high speed in the mouth of the South River, which opens into Chesapeake Bay just south of Annapolis, Maryland, when the helmsman punched the bow into the leading edge of a big powerboat’s wake. The NC 895 knifed right through it and caught the second wake right behind it roughly amidships. Reentry wasn’t so much a shock as an auditory event — the kind of momentary bang you might expect when crossing a tall, tightly compacted wake at a higher than normal speed.

During and after the event, there were several key things to notice. Sitting just ahead of the twin Yamaha F200 four-stroke outboards, the sound levels in the cockpit were amazingly quiet when compared with the 200-hp two-stroke outboards of just a decade ago. These engines push the boat to a 44 mph top speed and a cruising speed of 27 mph. At the moment of impact, the aft bench seat was stable and close to the water, and I was not at all tossed around. The NC 895 maintained a side-to-side level attitude and recovered its smooth ride almost immediately after reentry.

A quick look inside showed nothing out of place, no locker doors or drawers were open, and there were no unexpected rattles. From the standpoint of engineering and construction, it was a most impressive event, but not unexpected. Jeanneau has been building power and sailboats since the inception of the company in Les Herbiers, France in 1957. As a member of Groupe Beneteau, Jeanneau continues the tradition of building solid, well-designed boats made to satisfy cruisers and racers on all of the European coasts. The NC 895 — now built in Cadillac, Michigan, expressly for the American boating lifestyle — is a key model in Jeanneau’s multi-line effort to bring outboard-powered contemporary designs to the U.S. market.

The main features

Perhaps the most dominant characteristic of the NC 895’s interior is light, let in by a 360-degree expanse of windows in the salon, with lower edges for increased visibility. Light also floods through the large in-hull windows serving the forward master cabin, as well the large, private amidships guest cabin down below.

Natural ventilation is also prevalent, thanks to a sliding portside window, a sliding door to starboard of the helm in the salon (a great feature for quick access to the side and foredeck when operating shorthanded), twin sliding sunroof panels, and a three-panel opening aft bulkhead door. Dockside reverse-cycle air conditioning (16,000 BTU) is standard, but an optional Westerbeke 3.5kW gas genset can be installed in the massive centerline storage compartment beneath the cockpit sole for those who want relief from excess heat or cold while anchored out.

Versatile seating is a key feature of the NC 895. In the cockpit, the standard aft bench slides forward when it’s time to put the boat away, making room for the engine nacelles and allowing the lower units to lift clear of the water. This conversion, by the way, does not block access to the starboard side boarding platform and swim ladder. There’s even an integral, opening side port for easier boarding from fixed docks.

Two important cockpit seating options include a second bench to port or a third aft-facing bench, both centered around a table that drops down to become a sunpad in the third configuration. On the bow, the forward portion of the large sunpad has an option that pops up to form a comfortable bench seat, creating yet another space for privacy and enjoyment of the surrounding waters.

Cruise in comfort

In the salon, the dinette to port converts easily into a double berth when extra sleeping space is required. The neatest dinette feature is the backrest on the forward bench, which pivots aft to create a forward-facing bench. The well-thought-out galley is located aft on the starboard side so that service to those relaxing in the cockpit is as easy as serving those seated at the dinette. The helm is compact yet complete, with room for an optional Lowrance touch-screen chartplotter/fishfinder (two sizes available), a Yamaha engine display and a twin-lever binnacle.

The Jeanneau NC 895 blends comfort and livability in a two-stateroom package that should more than satisfy the needs of a cruising couple or family. Don’t miss the chance to see one for yourself. And if you get a chance to test drive, do so with the confidence that this boat can take the rough stuff in stride. 



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