Why Aussie boat brands should have true blue names

As a fair dinkum, dinky di, true blue bloke from the land down under, it cheeses me off to see our home-grown boats – what few we have – being branded with fancy-pants foreign names.

If it’s not bad enough that two of our iconic sportscruisers are tagged Caribbean and Riviera, now there’s Belize, which is a tiny country squeezed between Mexico and Guatemala. The name apparently means 'muddy water'.

The Hudson Bay 50 could just as easily have been called the Wineglass Bay 50 ...
Clipper Marine

I also had to consult Google Maps to find where Brissie-based Clipper’s new 'Hudson Bay' was derived from. Like, who the heck cares about some frigid lake washing the godforsaken shores of Nunavut, Manitoba, Ontario and Quebec??

Maritimo is a Portuguese soccer club. Mustang, which Bill Barry-Cotter also owns, is named after a feral American horse … like our brumbies aren’t good enough!

Adelaide will get its first look at the new Mustang 32 - Adelaide Boat Show
Imprint Media


It’s not as if we don’t have some magnificent waterways and beaches of our own. OK, so Lake Disappointment, Lake Cadibarrawirracanna, Lake Nugga Nugga and Lake Wobby may not grab the world's fancy, but there are plenty of others.

To the best of my knowledge there’s never been a boat brand called Whitehaven. Why? Wineglass Bay – from Tassie – is a fabulous name. If some metrosexual vet can use the name Bondi in a TV show, why the hell can’t some hairy-bummed shipwright?

I’m sure builders are looking for quick global recognition but, honestly, I wonder what it says to the rest of the world. Does imitating our international opponents merely flatter them? Does it say we’re not good enough to stand on our own feet. That, as a country, we're hicks?

These days, when repetition is rife and local brands are an endangered species, surely we should be celebrating their Aussie uniqueness. Palm Beach Motoryachts has done just fine in the US with its Ocker moniker. Sydney Yachts never suffered for lack of recognition either.

The term 'Made In Australia' carries with it connotations of quality, seaworthiness, craftsmanship. Let’s give them the good, butch Aussie name (like Monara) that they deserve ... before Bill B-C has to change his name to Wilhelm Bari Kottre to gain some Euro cred himself. (just joking Bill)