Boat Review - March 2019

Tiara yachts are U.S. Built in Holland, Michigan by S2 Yachts and have received many awards for customer satisfaction and product development. Our 2018 39 Coupe is a fine example of Tiara′s intelligent design and top notch fit and finish. The layout of the Coupe is as nautically pleasing and also efficient. Tiara is known for uncompromised quality and the perfectly-sized 39 Coupe should be on your comparison list.

Stepping aboard at the generous swim platform and moving forward through either port or starboard twin gates into the aft deck we find a well-padded center bench settee with a high-gloss teak table. Beneath the transom island is a huge fiberglass-lined storage compartment accessible from the swim platform and is the perfect location for storing lines and fenders. Also down here is a hatch that provides easy access to the IPS pods. The side decks are reasonably wide, and moving between the cockpit and the foredeck is safe and easy thanks to well-placed handrails and guardrails. Up at the bow, the windlass and anchor are hidden under a large anchor hatch so no more toe kicking the ground tackle.

Access to the twin 370 HP Volvo IPS 500s is via a hatch in the cockpit sole. It is a cozy engine room with crawl around space, but you can access the fluid checks, the filters, the Onan 7.5kw diesel generator, the batteries and other regular maintenance gear fairly easily.

The 39 Coupe like many recent express cruisers is designed to have a seamless transition between the same level saloon, galley and cockpit, divided only by a wall of glass with wide sliding doors. This results in a significantly larger entertaining space than when the spaces are all on different levels. Just forward in the cockpit are the aft glass doors that slide open to the large saloon complete with teak flooring and satin wenge wood. Tiara′s sliding glass saloon doors are a unique design.

The doors are cross linked so that opening one door opens the other door an equal amount. The action is smooth and being counterweighted the doors will not slide on their own regardless of the amount of roll. The galley is aft and to starboard and is open to the cockpit with the glass open. The galley is the center point of entertainment for both inside and outside making the chef part of the action.

Inside, the styling is modern and elegant with a combination L-shaped settee and dinette, linear galley, and ample helm area. The solid teak sole and teak and dark brown wenge wood cabinetry blends well with the white Ultraleather upholstery and dark brown mullions and helm station. You can bring in the sun by opening the standard sunroof. One of the unique design features here is the forward portion of the companion lounge, which flips down so a passenger can stand comfortably and face forward to take in views beyond the bow.

The portside settee is used as the dinette area and a table with gloss varnished teak leaves that flip open. This area is raised and allows for good views out the expansive windows. The fully equipped galley has a two-burner recessed cook top, a deep stainless steel basin sink with a designer pull out faucet, Isotherm combination refrigerator/freezer, and a Sharp convection microwave. The white Corian countertops over the galley drawers provide a good color contrast to the teak. The 28-inch flat screen TV is ceiling mounted and hidden behind the cabinet. Simply pull it out when needed.

Forward and to starboard is the helm, styled like a pod with everything the skipper needs within easy reach and not intrusive into the living space. The two Garmin 12-inch displays are part of the Volvo Glass Cockpit and are fully integrated, no other gauges or dials are required. The engine controls and gauges can be displayed on the same multi function displays as the Chart plotter, radar, and fishfinder screens. A VHF radio, throttle controls, trim tabs and rocker switches are located on the console and dash. To the right is a molded armrest that holds the Volvo Joystick Control and the remote Garmin chart plotter controller. This is a clean and sleek helm design with a minimalist at heart. Location is everything, and the helm is right across from the large L-shaped dinette settee and table. Serve a meal or kick back and lounge the day away from this comfy seat.

Down below are two staterooms and a single head. The companionway is open to above and Tiara calls this the atrium. This is where the primary electrical control panels are located. It is also where the central vacuum and reverse-cycle air conditioning equipment are housed.

The accommodation spaces are stylish, with a tasteful blend of gloss white fiberglass, wenge wood, dark brown accents, textured beige wall treatments and carpeted decks.

Down a few steps and forward is the master stateroom, which includes an island queen berth, a cedar locker, and side cabinets. There are narrow ledges along the hull sides which are great for keys, phones and other loose items. The bed hinges up to reveal a very large storage area. The portholes open for ventilation and so does the overhead screened hatch.

The head is to starboard and sports a separate shower stall with a glass door, a teak counter, a Kohler faucet with a raised basin sink, a VacuFlush toilet and an opening porthole.

The full beam aft stateroom includes a full sized mattress, a hanging locker, an opening port and a portside settee. The headroom back here is not full height, six feet at the entrance and around four feet elsewhere, but there is plenty of space for the occasional guest or for a kid′s hideaway. A linear settee against the hull can double as an extra berth if needed.


When we ran the sea trial of the new Maritimo M51 for the October 2018 issue of the Bay & Delta Yachtsman we used this Tiara 39 Coupe for the camera boat. She made a great platform for four persons to run circles around the Maritimo in the calmer waters of Richardson Bay and shoot video and stills. After I finished running the M51 west of the Golden Gate in fairly snotty seas, I traded boats and had some time on the 39 Coupe.

I took the boat out of the lumpy waters of Kirby Cove transitioning easy onto a plane and set a course for Sausalito running the four-foot short ocean swells at nearly 18 knots right behind the blue water Maritimo. I was immediately impressed with her composure when being pressed into the big stuff.

Not only did I have to deal with the ocean swell, the M51 threw quite a wake behind her, but the 39 was up to the task and just kept begging to go faster. Finally around Yellow Bluff the swell disappeared and I had the opportunity to open her up and overtake the camera boat. Setting just a bit of down trim and 3200 RPM she shot up to 30 knots almost instantly and easily flew past the now seemingly lumbering flybridge motoryacht.

Finally in the clean water abeam the camera boat I pushed to wide open at 3600 RPM and saw the Speed over Ground climb north of 33 knots. Bring the trim tabs to zero it was time to put the helm hard over and take a pass across the slowing Maritimo into a steep left turn. The turning radius at this speed was just over two boat lengths and she healed as much as 40 degrees. So far over that I could look out the open convertible top and see the gaggle of photographers pointing their tools my way. Wow, what a ride with no slipping or cavitation, the Volvo power plants hardly lost any RPM and that Tiara hull just dug a groove. Having crossed the bow it was time to snap the helm hard to the right and see if I could land some serious spray on the cockpit full of cold and already wet photographers. After successfully landing a full blast just where I wanted it on the first try, I came back on the throttles to a more sedate cruise speed and looked out the forward window to see that the windscreen was still dry, a testament to solid comfortable and confidence inspiring handling of the baby coupe.

Wrapping up my day of hard work I cruised the coupe around Tiburon for a few beauty shots and then slow cruised back to Sausalito. The afternoon was still windy at the dock so I decided to use the joystick docking controls to slip the Coupe sideways into a slot just barely a foot longer than the length overall. Tiara did another great job of integrating the Volvo IPS to produce a confidence inspiring boat.

The 39 Coupe was introduced in 2016 and it follows the lead set by its larger siblings the 44 Coupe, the 49 Coupe, and the 53 Coupe. All four are solid, well built, well performing yachts. See my review of the 44 Coupe in the April 2016 issue of the Bay & Delta Yachtsman. The 39 Coupe′s hull is based on Tiara′s successful 36 open hull, which provides a confident ride in any conditions. Tiara was one of the first builders to utilize Volvo IPS drives, however their engines are located in nearly the same location as they would be with a traditional direct drive system. Although the compact design of the Volvo IPS allows engines to be placed further aft than with shaft drives and opens up more accommodation space, on shorter boats performance often suffers. Placing the heavy engines aft moves the center of gravity further aft and as a result the vessel is stern heavy making it more difficult to get onto the plane. Optional power on the 39 Coupe is twin Cummins QSB 6.7 425 HP direct drive diesels. The factory performance data shows the Cummins power option to be less efficient with a lower WOT speed.

Measured Performance With Full Fuel Tanks And One Person On Board

Time to plane — less than 7 seconds. Time to 22 knot cruise speed — 12 seconds

Max speed — 33 kts (averaged) burning 41 GPH total and WOT of 3600 RPM

Best cruise speed — anywhere from 9 to 24 knots and provide a 270 nautical mile range

Performance By The Numbers

600 RPM 4.1 knots 0.6 GPH 7.1 MPG (idle speed)

1000 RPM 6.0 knots 2.0 GPH 2.7 MPG

1300 RPM 7.5 knots 3.9 GPH 1.9 MPG

1800 RPM 10.9 knots 10.1 GPH 0.9 MPG

2200 RPM 16.5 knots 15.0 GPH 1.1 MPG

2500 RPM 22.2 knots 20.0 GPH 1.1 MPG

2800 RPM 24 knots 24.1 GPH 1.0 MPG

3600 RPM 33.1 knots 41.3 GPH 0.8 MPG (wide open)

Based on my data, the fuel economy in nautical miles per gallon is nearly the same from 11 knots to 31 knots. The most efficient cruise RPM is 2500 making 22.1 knots and is in line with Volvo guidelines for continuous maximum operating RPM.

2019 Tiara 3900 Coupe Specifications:

LOA — 40′ 10″ with standard swim platform

Fuel — 300 gallons

Beam — 13′ 03″

Potable water — 100 gallons

Draft — 3′ 04″

Black water — 38 gallons

Air Clearance — 13′ 0″ waterline to anchor light

Power — Twin 370 HP Volvo IPS500

Displacement — approx. 24,300 lbs.

Maximum measured speed — 33 kts

I have tested and cruised on Tiara yachts before, and I hold them not only in high regard but also to a higher expectation and the 39 Coupe did not disappoint. Tiara′s uncompromised quality and luxury combined with top of the line integrated electronics systems make the Tiara 39 Coupe a perfectly sized and powerful package. Twin Volvo IPS drives, paired with the proven Tiara hull, deliver an exceptional experience. Joystick controls and glass cockpit instrumentation provide easy navigation and increases the enjoyment of your yachting experience. In addition it was a very quiet ride. To arrange your personal sea trial on the Tiara 39 Coupe contact Silver Seas Yachts in Sausalito. Unfortunately just after my sea trial this beautiful Bentley Blue Coupe found a new home, however, by the time this article is published her replacement should have arrived. I would love to put the first 15 hours on this one as well. H

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