Published in: Friday, 01 November 2013
Features > Riviera 565 SUV (Page 1/1)

Riviera 565 SUV

Adding to the outstanding success of the 445 SUV, Riviera has now added the 565 SUV, which continues the new look and style for the venerated Australian builder

When I reviewed the 445 SUV in Sydney last year, I was impressed with the fresh approach that Riviera had given the boat and the styling departure from Riviera’s norm. The beachy look and warm colours created by interior designer Giorgia Drudi were refreshing and exciting. Being different and straying from the conventional can have its issues, but in the case of the 445 SUV, it’s all been positive. Riviera’s bold initiative has certainly worked and since the first boat was released around 12 months ago, 15 have been sold. 

Riviera 565 Suv 9

The successful 445 SUV was based on the 43 flybridge model, and Riviera has used the same concept with the 565 SUV by utilising the existing 53 flybridge hull mould. Obviously from the chines up and internally everything is very different, but the proven hull, with its known performance, has been retained. 

I had to wait until the day after Sanctuary Cove boat show to have a sea trial in the first 565 SUV, and after a very informative and detailed walkthrough of the boat with Chris McCafferty, Riviera’s International Sales Director, I was able to experience the boat in some very confused and rather nasty seas off the coast of Surfers. 

Firstly, the 565 SUV is a pod-drive-only boat, either twin Volvo Penta IPS or Cummins Zeus. Our test boat was powered by the standard pairing of IPS 900s at 700-horsepower each, through IPS2 pod drives. In the calmer waters, the 565 SUV topped out at around 32 knots at 2420 RPM, which is respectable for a boat that displaces over 22 tonnes. The sweet spot was around 24.5 knots at 2000 RPM, which is also extremely fuel efficient with a burn of around 161 litres per hour (both engines) for 6.6 litres per nautical mile and a range of over 470 nautical miles. Drop to a leisurely 1000 RPM and you will get around 8.5 knots and a fuel burn of 32 litres per hour (or 3.8 litres per nautical mile) and a range of over 850 nautical miles.  

Riviera 565 Suv 4

There was a good sea running outside the entrance and it didn’t take long to get the 565 SUV into the right trim mode. Heading into the breaking two metre swells, with about half tab, the boat felt comfortable at around the 17-knot mark. Turning and running with the swells and with no tab on, I found I was gradually sneaking up the RPM, and it wasn’t long before we were running almost flat out. It was a great ride, with great handling while staying extremely soft and dry. 

Back in the marina, the boat manoeuvered with ease, thanks to the IPS joystick controls. The boat had a set on either side of the cockpit as well as at the helm, so they were readily at hand when required. 

Riviera 565 Suv 6

The idea of the SUV line is to give a family a sensible alternative to a flybridge boat, with single-level living. It is a perfect amalgamation of Riviera’s sport yacht and flybridge lines, that brings them together in one very exciting and well conceived package. 

A key design feature is the open and uncluttered cockpit, with both wet and dry storage areas in the coamings and under the optional teak sole. These include three large fish bins for the anglers. The mezzanine seating to port has to be one of the best spots on the boat if you want to be outside when underway and it’s perfect to keep an eye on activities around the transom when at anchor. While it is well protected under the sleek cabin overhang, there is extended overhead protection available with an optional awning and side clears. 

Riviera 565 Suv 7

The standard 565 SUV has a transom moulding that incorporates a built-in barbeque, but in our boat we had a central island unit which was equipped with a large electric grill. Riviera will try to make the changes necessary to customise the boat to suit your personal requirements. The 565 SUV is available with a Davco positive lift rise and fall transom platform, which doubles as the tender stowage. This is a marvelous addition and in my opinion should be the first thing you tick on the option list. 

But to really appreciate just how good the interior is of the 565 SUV, you need to step inside. Oversized windows and narrow forward mullions give the saloon a glasshouse effect, with natural light enhancing the fresh décor, a mix of high gloss varnished cherry timber (standard is oak) and exposed stitched macromarine upholstery. 

There is only one floor plan for the saloon, with the forward area dominated by the port side helm, a carry over from the 445 SUV. The helm is big enough to mount three 16-inch screens, and there is plenty of space still available for all the rest of the controls and electronics. The raised helm station has two high quality chairs (your choice of Macromarine suede or leather) plus two more on the starboard side. Visibility for the skipper is exceptional all round. 

McCafferty pointed out that other seating options are possible, such as a bench seat replacing the twin starboard side chairs and they are also looking at incorporating an L-shaped chaise lounge for a client. “Some customisation is possible, as long as it is within the parameters of the basic layout,” says McCafferty. An electric hi-low TV is neatly hidden away and can be swivelled around. 

Riviera 565 Suv 3

The L-shaped dinette, with hi-low table and the U shaped galley complete the layout on the port side. The dinette also doubles as an extra berth and another great storage space. The aft galley has a large hopper window, and with the sliding glass door open, the interior and cockpit meld together as one massive area for entertaining. 

The galley serving space is large, so there’s no shortage of area to prepare a meal. Top quality appliances are used, with a four-burner ceramic cooktop, under-bench and above-bench cupboards and lockers, rubbish bin, dishwasher, sink with cutting board and convection microwave oven. Opposite is a bar area with a pair of drawer fridges and freezers, plus an icemaker. In all, there are three freezers and three fridges inside, plus the option of more in the cockpit. 

Riviera 565 Suv 8

The 565 SUV is a three-stateroom two-head/bathroom yacht with a VIP forward, starboard side guest and full-beam aft master. The two guest cabins share a generously sized ensuite with two-door access. The VIP can be configured with a walk-around queen size bed or, as an option, two extra wide singles. Both offer storage options below to go along with the two cedar-lined hanging lockers, shelves and drawer storage throughout the rest of the cabin. Overhead, a Bomar hatch lets in extra ventilation, with the fixed side ports providing extra light. 

The starboard side bunk room has two over-width single berths, a deep hanging locker with drawer storage below and the lower berth lifts to expose another large storage space. 

Riviera 565 Suv 5

But it is when you get to the master cabin that you get the WOW factor – this cabin is the pièce de résistance of the 565 SUV and would single-handedly sell the boat to a lot of people. The interior volume is more than you’d expect, and is probably more akin to a 60-footer. Centre of the stateroom is the fore-and-aft king-size bed, with flat-screen TV on the forward bulkhead complete with a DVD and Fusion entertainment system. There’s plenty of storage space, including a full walk-in closet. Aircon is standard throughout the yacht, and all cabins have their own temperature controls. 

There is much to commend this new entry from Australian builder Riviera, a company largely associated with sport fishers. With the 565 SUV, Riviera has again hit on a winner and like the smaller 445 SUV it is truly a boat for all reasons.

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Technical Specifications – Riviera 565 SUV 

LOA:    18.52 metres

LOH:    17.20 metres

Beam:    5.13 metres

Draught:    1.3 metres

Displ. (loaded):    22.3 t

Max Speed:    32 knots

Cruise Speed:    25 knots

Construction:    GRP

Fuel Capacity:   3,500 litres

Water Capacity:    750 litres

Engines:    2 x Volvo Penta IPS 900

Electronics:    Raymarine