Review: All-Electric Boat Launched by RI Builder


eCraft Yachts, a division of Cay Electronics, Inc. of Portsmouth, Rhode Island, introduced its all-electric 20′ launch at the 2013 Newport International Boat Show. The boat was conceived and developed by electronics engineer Rufus Van Gruisen and his yacht designer son, Rogan, along with naval architect Matt Smith of Barrington, Rhode Island.

The eCraft 20’s efficient hull shape, combined with modern electric propulsion and control technology, enable the boat to cruise up to 30 nautical miles on a single charge. Production models will feature a vacuum-bagged fiberglass hull with foam core, and will be manufactured in Bristol, Rhode Island.


The boat comfortably seats 8 adults, cruises at up to 8 knots and has enough battery capacity to last a full day on the water. The motor controller indicates remaining battery capacity, as well as how long battery power will last at the present speed. Should battery capacity approach the low end, motor speed is automatically reduced to increase efficiency and range. An optional second battery bank can serve as a reserve supply. Recharging is as simple as plugging into a marina shore-power outlet or, if trailering, any 115-volt, 15-amp household receptacle.

Designed for easy handling, the eCraft’s speed and steering are controlled by a single joystick. Options include a GPS chartplotter/fishfinder, a refrigerator, a grill and interior courtesy lights.


Borrowing from many modern, performance sailboats, the eCraft 20 has an open transom design that can be used for easy boarding or as a swim platform. Forward of the platform, a step keeps the rest of the interior dry and secure. The 2 seats mounted over the step swivel 360 degrees to provide an aft-facing view when desired. Three bench seats with full backrests fill the rest of the boat and are arranged around a removable table with sunshade.

Price: $78,000 (dealer direct)

Contact: eCraft Yachts

(401-683-3520, x103)