Regal 4460 Express Review

Regal 4460 Express Review(click image to enlarge)

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Regal 4460 Express
Issue: January/February 2006

Polished Performance

She's got the power to keep the rev heads happy but doesn't lose her style and grace.

WORDS + PHOTOS IAN MCRAE

I have lost count of the number of boats I have tested over the years, but by now it would have to be in the thousands. And there's one common thread that links all of them together — first impressions.

When I board a boat I get a gut feeling about the vessel (good or bad) and I'd say that 98 per cent of my gut feelings turn out to be correct. If a boat shows shoddy workmanship in its joinery, or overall finish, it's a fair bet that the same shoddy approach would have gone into its design, which will affect its performance and handling. Sure, most boats are built to fit into a certain price bracket, which means in some cases lower quality components may be used, but that should translate into bad hull design or overall performance.

From the moment I stepped onboard the Regal 4460 I liked this boat. The quality of her fixtures and fittings were obvious, as was the workmanship that has gone into her construction. Close a door, flip a switch, open a drawer, or push a button, there's a smoothness of operation and the solid dependability that Regal Boats are renowned for.

The Kuck family have been building Regal Boats in America for more than three and a half decades. Two generations of Kucks have introduced wave after wave of design innovations and quality directed manufacturing. The result is a beautifully built boat with the ride, performance and handling befitting a boat of this statue.

PERFORMANCE & HANDLING
Regal's OceanTrac hull has been tested, measured and independently documented in every category from speed to fuel efficiency and she performs at the highest levels in almost every class and category.

This boat has a fine bow entry with two strakes below her wide down-turned chines and another two (I suppose you could only call them mini chines) above.

These all combine in operation to force spray down and away from the hull, ensuring a soft and dry ride. This eliminates the need for an excessive flare in the bow to achieve a dry ride, which can reduce interior volume.

The big down-turned chines also deliver a soft ride, because when the boat is underway, air becomes trapped between the outer edges of the chines and the keel. The hull literally rides on a cushion of air.

Out on the water the Regal 4460 put on a polished performance, turning more like a 20-foot runabout than a 45-footer. And why wouldn't she with twin Volvo 960hp TAMD 75P EDC diesels under the bonnet.

Electronic controls ensure smooth, effortless acceleration and make manoeuvring in tight spaces a breeze. She also had a top speed of 37.5 knots.

The boat is fitted with trim tabs and she requires a bit of 'bow down' when underway, because without it she tends to run bow up.

Lowering the bow a tad also helps the keel slice through chop and swells more cleanly, which helps improve the ride even further and cuts out the bangs.

Unlike some of the other big Regals I have driven, the 4460's steering is quite light, but power steering would make this great boat even better.

LAYOUT
The wide-open and light main saloon of the 4460 is finished in cherrywood and fine leather. The nine-foot LeatherCrest lounge on the starboard side is deep and comfortable and provides generous seating for dining and conversation. Handcrafted cherrywood cabinetry provide ample storage above the lounge.

The galley is a ripper. It features a cleverly designed bench that narrows and sweeps around the main cabin's bulkhead, creating plenty of extra bench space without encroaching on room in the saloon.

Rollout draws with bin storage below, side-by-side fridge/freezer, microwave, coffee maker and a hidden two-burner stove are all standard.

A 20" fl at screen TV/DVD, with surround sound, provides the entertainment in the saloon. There are more TVs in the master stateroom and amidships cabin.

The main cabin features an island bed, hanging locker and a spacious en-suite. The guest's cabin amidships has two single beds that convert with an infill into a roomy double. This cabin also has an en-suite and hanging locker, standing head height and a locking door.

The centrepiece of the main cockpit is the stylish helm station. Finished in burlwood with a wooden steering wheel and a dual helm seat, the helm station has all the electronics' and instrumentation even the most fastidious skipper could wish for. The curved windscreen protects all in the helm and aft cockpits from the slipstream when underway, while a bimini keeps the sun off those in the helm cockpit.

To starboard are a large L-shaped lounge and a removable table that's ideal for alfresco dining and entertaining. Wet bar, barbeque, sink unit and ample drink holders, this area is an entertainer's delight. The aft cockpit has a small lounge to starboard and another across the transom.

The swim platform is wide enough to mount a PWC or tender rack on, while up front there's a large sun pad with backrest for those wishing to soak up a few rays.

Regal have a long tradition in boat building and the vessels it builds are second-to-none.

OVERALL
The Regal 4460 Express Cruiser has all the performance and handling to keep the rev heads happy, but she also has the grace and style of a polished performer. Her fixtures and fittings are first class, as is the workmanship that has gone into every facet of her construction. Regals are not inexpensive boats, but for the $782,000 she'll set you back, you get excellent value for money and a vessel that holds her value when it comes time for an upgrade.

REGAL BOATS
Regal is a family owned and operated company that is now celebrating more than 36 years in business. It builds pleasure boats from 19' to 44' encompassing everything from our small runabouts to the world class Commodore express cruisers. Its distribution is operated by some of the top dealers and distributors in the business with locations in more than 45 countries worldwide.

Regal is also a world leader in innovation, receiving the industry's prized IMTEC innovation award for our FasTrac hull design. FasTrac is credited with providing exceptional performance with less horsepower, meaning more efficiency and savings for our customers.

Recently, Regal extended its leadership role in a hallmark event by becoming ISO 9001:2000 certified. As a globally accepted model for quality system standards, ISO 9001:2000 will accentuate Regal's mission by continuing to provide exceptional customer satisfaction. Very few boat companies in the world have achieved this certification.

ENGINE ROOM
The Regal 4460 Express was powered by twin 960hp Volvo TAMD 75 EDC diesel engines.

PERFORMANCE
With three adults and a full tank of fuel onboard she recorded the following performance figures.

KNOTS - RPM
10 - 1000
14.6 - 1500
24.5 - 1800
30 - 2000
5.5 - 2500

SPECIFICATIONS
LOA: 44' 7"
BEAM: 14'
WEIGHT: 9979kg
DEADRISE: 20 degrees
DRAFT: 0.88m
FUEL: 1241lt
FRESHWATER: 382lt
PRICE: $782,000


+ Top finish; Dry ride
- Slightly heavy steering