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News & Events

A lightweight solution for a sailing world record

2023-06-20 10:00 Uhr

A lightweight solution for a sailing world record

Exolon Group supplies polycarbonate sheets for speedboat cockpit

Munich/Tielt/Nera Montoro 20 June 2023. A sailboat powered solely by the wind that glides across the water at a speed of 80 knots: this is what the designers of the SP80 speedboat promise. The vessel will have its first test "drive" along the French Mediterranean coast this summer. The goal: to set a new world speed record for sailboats. As a member of the Record Club, the SP80 team’s partner network, the Exolon Group is supporting the development and construction of this sustainable speedboat.

Both weight and safety play a major role when it comes to achieving the desired speed record. The cockpit is made of 12-millimetre-thick solid polycarbonate sheets manufactured by Exolon Group and thermoformed by the French company Vitalo/Starplast. The highly transparent sheets provide optimum visibility thanks to their high optical quality, are resistant to environmental conditions, and are extremely impact resistant and lightweight. They can be hot and cold formed, meaning they can be adapted optimally to the aerodynamic requirements of the boat.

The SP80 is 10.5 metres long and 7.5 metres wide and has space for two pilots. Together with the sail and the power module, the cockpit is one of the three most important elements of the sailboat.
The development plan for the SP80 project as a whole is also highly innovative. The contracting company is working in cooperation with EPFL (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne), which enables the engineers to develop the boat together with the laboratory teams of the renowned Swiss university and allow its students to learn from the process.

The team is confident the SP80 will reach its goal during the initial tests this summer and break the current world speed record of 65.45 knots (121.21 km/h), which was set in 2012. The actual record-breaking attempt is planned for 2024.

The Exolon Group supports forward-looking and sustainable study projects throughout Europe and provides sheet materials along with more than 40 years of experience.

Image: The Speedboat SP80.

About Exolon Group:

Exolon Group is a leading supplier of plastic sheets for a wide range of applications in the areas of building & construction, industry, visual communication, LED lighting and medical technology. The medium-sized group of companies boasts more than 40 years of expertise in the extrusion of thermoplastic sheets made of polycarbonate and polyester. The solid and multiwall sheets are sold to customers worldwide under the well-known brand names Exolon®, Axpet®, Vivak®, Inspria® and Exoblend®.

The material is always manufactured according to high quality standards at production facilities in Belgium and Italy.

The consistently high product quality and spirit of innovation are reflected in the performance promise: “Going Beyond”. Professional service expertise and strong customer focus make the Exolon Group a reliable partner for industry and commerce worldwide.


Exolon Group is part of the Serafin group of companies based in Munich.

Serafin Group:

Exolon Group is a part of Serafin Group, whose philosophy is based on more than 150 years of entrepreneurial tradition of its shareholding family. Serafin invests into companies with the aim to foster their long term development in accordance with all stakeholders.


Press contact:

Exolon Group GmbH
Nicole Meyer-Kurczyk
+49 173 9650104