If you’re looking for the ultimate in both land and sea adventure, it’s time to check out Iguana Yachts. Founded by three French designers in 2008, the team set out to a build a boat that would do beautifully in the water, yet have the ability to drive itself out of the water and explore dry land. After three years of design and prototyping, the first proof of concept debuted to the public in 2011. Three years later, the Iguana 29 hit the market and is in full production.
While many manufactures have tried to blend land and sea vehicles in the past, the real game changer is the patented Iguana Mobility System (IMS). Rather than using full-time wheels or landing gear like an airplane, Iguana uses rubber tracks that deploy from the sides of the boat. Designed to tackle a variety of terrain while carrying a heavy load, the Iguana’s tracks give it the ability to maneuver in tight spaces and navigate to areas unreachable by similar civilian vehicles of the past. When not in use, the tracks also act as fenders or bumpers when docking the boat. The entire deployment process takes 8 seconds.
While the concept behind the IMS was simple, bringing it to life took years of engineering and testing. The heart of the system is a 2 liter, 4-cyliner electronic injected German engine coupled with three electronic hydraulic pumps. The pumps are controlled via the boat’s primary computer located at the console and regulate flow to the four jacks used to deploy the landing gear. Two hydraulic engines power the tracks used while on land. The frame of the landing gear is made of 5083 marine grade aluminum and is treated with epoxy paint to withstand the saline environment. The wheels are mounted on carbon fiber blades while the custom engineered tracks are made from rubber impregnated with kevlar fibers blended with copper to give extreme strength and corrosion resistance.
In the water, the Iguana 29 uses a 300 horsepower outboard motor to reach speeds of up to 35 knots. It has a nautical range of roughly 100 miles at cruising speed. On land, the Iguana 29 moves at 4.5 mph and has up to 25 hours of operation. While not recommended, the Iguana has been able to climb grades of up to 47% in soft sand. Since the outboard motor and track motor are independent, both systems can be used at the same time for smooth transitions from sea to land or vice versa.
The Iguana 29 is available in three different trim levels: Adventure, Classic, and Exclusive. The Adventure was designed to be robust and efficient with practicality in mind. It features an extended load space and optional roll bar for transporting surfboards, wake boards, or even bicycles. All the surfaces and trim are easily cleaned and built from durable materials. The Classic features topstitched leather appointments, upgraded materials, and unique color and finish options not available in the adventure. The Exclusive, Iguana’s top of the line yacht, was built with pure luxury in mind. It features designer touches like metallic paint, fine crystal, and gold or platinum plating throughout.
While the Iguana may sound like the perfect boat to add to your adventure fleet, you’ll want to get your money straight before giving them a call. The Adventure model of the Iguana 29 starts at $376,000. The top of the line Exclusive will set you back a cool $500,000 after you add upgrades like a carbon fiber hard-top and ski pole. For more information on the Iguana 29 or Iguana Yachts, check out their website. While we don’t foresee owning one of these in the near future given the price tag, we do know what to spend some of the Powerball winnings on if we ever get that lucky ticket!