X Shore‘s CEO and founder, Swedish serial entrepreneur Konrad Bergström, trademarked the company name globally in 1996, a long time before the technology for electric boating was ready.
“I first had the idea in the nineties, but at the time, the technology to deliver this vision wasn’t available,” he said.
“Now that the technology has caught up, and the demand for sustainable mobility has skyrocketed, there has never been a more logical time to bring our first generation of boats to the market.”
X Shore is one of the first electric boat-makers to target the consumer market.
Transport is a huge contributor to carbon pollution, but the world has been focused on the modes of transportation frequenting the lands and skies rather than the seas.
A 2019 report by the Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute found that shipping between Swedish ports actually produces more air pollution and greenhouse gases than the country’s domestic flights.
It also estimated that just over a quarter of the country’s shipping emissions came from privately owned boats.
“Through new technology, innovative research and smart design, X Shore will propel the maritime industry into the age of sustainability with climate smart crafts,” the company says.
X Shore launched its first boat model, the Eelex 6500, earlier this year, and drove it in UK waters last month to accompany environmental activist Greta Thunberg‘s transatlantic trip to the UN Climate Summit in New York aboard the sailboat Malizia II.
“This was an epic moment to accompany the Malizia II into the ocean. We are in awe of Team Malizia – Yacht Club De Monaco, Boris Herrmann and Greta Thunberg, who are on their zero-carbon, wind-powered transatlantic to NY for the UN Climate Action Summit,” X Shore announced on Facebook.
“The voyage symbolises: ‘It’s not easy to replace fossil fuels but it’s absolutely possible and it can be a great adventure.’”
Sustainable sea travel is a tricky area with big obstacles including slow speeds, poor range and lack of charging.
Eelex holds up to 12 people, allows travel up to 100 nautical miles on a single charge and is capable of travelling at speeds of 40 knots.
While maintaining a consistent speed of 25 knots, X Shore crafts are capable of travelling for more than two hours on a single charge, making them ideal for leisure boating.
The X Shore hull features a groundbreaking design that has been tested to optimise distance and speed by minimising weight and resistance. The hull’s distinctive ridges allow for air insertion between the craft and the water, decreasing friction. These design improvements to the hull reduce energy use by approximately 35 percent.
The X Shore propulsion system also sets it apart from other crafts. Through cutting edge engineering, its single shaft construction propels the boat with greater efficiency.
The company says that to fully charge an X Shore battery costs between €10-20, as opposed to fossil fuel engines that can cost an average of €200 for a full tank of gasoline meaning that X Shore’s electric boats are 1/10th of this cost.
Aside from the environmental and cost-saving benefits of their boats, X Shore draws attention to the sleek wooden design of their boats and their ability to move through the water silently, allowing sailors to have a greater connection with nature.
“Once you try X Shore and you’ve experienced the sea without noise and fumes there is no way back! The experience can’t be put into words and is just magical. We are getting a huge amount of interest from all kinds of customers. This is why we are so strongly committed to contribute to a fossil fuel-free shift on the maritime market,” Bergström told Wallpaper earlier this year.
X Shore is planning to launch a second model, the Eeltrek, with a closed roof and cabin with sleeping capacity, this autumn.
Robert Scott Lazar