Spider 40, intrepid reliability. The test of the new open from Rio Yachts

Freedom is the first sensation onboard Rio Spider 40. Large spaces and smart solutions are the keys which Rio Yachts and the designer Marino Alfani have introduced, to make of this “small” cruiser a bigger yacht.

Rio Spider 40 Navigazione 2
Freedom even in navigation, if we think that on the long wave waves I found during the test the Spider 40 proved to be very responsive in the maneuvers and never out of control at all speeds. But I was pleasantly surprised by the good work done by the yard to lower the noise on board, which allows you to talk at a normal volume when cruising.

A responsive and
safe boat even
on a proving sea

During the test unfortunately I could not take the boat to the limit for the meteorological conditions: I could ‘t exceed 34 knots despite the yard declared a top of 38 with two Volvo Penta D4 300, But it was a lot of fun as I could test the boat in a rather chopped sea and realize she behaved very well. It is not given for a boat to maintain a good stability under those conditions and to be very responsive in directional change both in displacement and at speed. At the bottom of this article you can find all the figures.

An open air cockpit and spaces proper of a “party boat”

In its spirit of a “spider” boat, the cockpit doesn’t feature any hard top, but a removable awning instead. I frankly don’t like much the awning arrangement when closed, as it seems to be be there by chance. A bag aligned with the glass would in my opinion be preferable, but it is certainly not an imperfection that deserves much attention.

Rio Spider 40 pozzetto dall'alto
The cockpit is wide and without steps, with an L-shaped sofa to port; it’s just a pity that it does not have any lockers underneath.
Also confirmed on the Spider 40 the cool solution of an hydraulic table at the corner of the couch, which rises from the cockpit to form both an extended sun bed or a table for up to 8 people.

Rio Spider 40 dinette pozzetto

On the right is the only galley on board, hidden inside a fiberglass cubic cabinet and consisting of two induction hobs and a rectangular fiberglass sink (it’s good Rio didn’t go for steel, which inevitably gets scratched and worn over time). Below are some drawers and a refrigerator, but in the whole I find this choice a bit sacrificed, and I would have preferred a galley belowdecks to be able to use it even in bad weather: Anyway the yard’s managers confirm that it was a choice of the owner and therefore it is possible to have the galley into the cabin without any problems. The freezer is placed under another small settee port of the companion door.

Rio Spider 40 Pozzetto da poppa 2           Rio Spider 40 cucina pozzetto

But the outdoor spaces do not end here. Another area, large and teak-lined, is the bathing platform, accessible from the starboard passage. A large settee in the cockpit faces the sea, with a modular solution to turn it into a sofa with backrest or, by moving it, a chaise longue with headrest, or even to join the sofas and become a single, large sundeck.

Rio Spider 40 Plancetta bagno          Rio Spider 40 Pozzetto da poppa
The helm station is to starboard, accessible via a step. The two seats are very comfortable, but above all is the large windshield (with steel frame), which allows wide visibility during navigation regardless of driver’s height. The dashboard takes on the original style of the latest generation of Rio, with a peculiar arrangement of elements that sees a central cube suspended from the rest of the console, where the multifunction plotter screen is installed, and a flat console with the two, small Volvo Penta digital displays that provide engine info (speed, rpm, etc.) and diagnostics in case of problems. Then again, there’s the joystick governing the bow thruster and the flap controls, as well as a row for all the switched of the onboard features (bilge pumps, lights, water pump, etc).

Rio Spider 40 plancia di comando

The layout of the buttons is net although not intuitive, so you have to browse them all before finding the function of interest: still, it’s easy and quick to memorize everything.
Of the two passageways, the better one is the port one, because it has a step that makes it easier to use, still, pay attention because it is rather narrow and the guard rail is ankle-tall. Fortunately there’s the thick profile of the windscreen that allows a firm grip. The bow is very wide and has a non-slip diamond surface. Two pillows are hinged so they can be removed and stored when the boat is at berth. The only issue is the lack of handles for passengers when they lay on the pillows, making the use of the sun bed a bit difficult while cruising as soon as the sea gets a little shaky.

Rio Spider 40 prendisole di prua

Much space in the cabin, with a refined and informal elegance

Even in the cabin, as in the cockpit, I am impressed by the large and bright spaces. To starboard a C-shaped sofa can turn into a double bed, while to port there’s a six-door cabinet with a refrigerator and another freezer. From the dinette one door takes to the bathroom, and the other one opens to the cabin.


Rio Spider 40 Quadrato
The heads is simple but there’s nothing missing: an oval sink is completed with shelves below and above, while a glass door to port separates the shower and toilet space from the rest. The shower is fixed, with a square faucet sporting a scenographic waterfall effect.

Rio Spider 40 Bagno

The cabin’s bed features a locker under the mattress and a nice mirror on the bed head to increase the feeling of airy space, while on both sides two cabinets and shelves with gas springs complete the furnishing.

Rio Spider 40 Armatoriale
The atmosphere looks elegant yet informal all around, just as you would expect from a real spider boat with a sporty feel and a classy spirit.

The verdict

The boat impressed me for her returning to simplicity and open spaces, favoring the livability without giving up the comforts, all with an aesthetic balance between classical and sporty, revisited in a modern key.
In case of day cruises and charters, 8 people is the limit to enjoy all the space on board, while in the case of weekends I recommend 4 people maximum, unless you want to compromise with comfort.

The numbers of Rio Spider 40

  • Length overall                          13.05 m (42ft 10in)
  • Length                                       LH 9.98 m (32ft 9in)
  • Beam                                          3.70 m (12ft 2in)
  • Draft                                           0.64 m (2ft 1in)
  • Height                                        2.41 m (7ft qqin)
  • Dry displacement                    7.500 Kg
  • Engines                                      Volvo Penta 2×300 HP with sterndrives
  • Fuel reserve                              780 l (206 US gal)
  • Fresh water reserve                300 l (79 US gal)
  • Passengers                                12
  • Berths                                        2+2
  • Ce design category                  B
  • Designer                                   Marino Alfani


    rpm        knots     mph      lph         nm/l         range*       dB

  • 700         4,8         5,5         1,7         2,82           1762          56
  • 1000       6,5         7,5         4            1,63           1014          56
  • 1500       9,1         10,5       12           0,76           473           60
  • 2000      13,4       15,4       23          0,58           364           64
  • 2500      21,5        24,7      35          0,61            383           68
  • 3000      28,5       32,8      45          0,63           395           68
  • 3400      34,0       39,1       50         0,68           424           74

*(20% reserve)

Test conditions

  • Moderate sea with dwell, clean hull, fuel 350 l (92 US gal), water 150 l (39 US gal), 7 passengers

Indicative price (VAT not included)

  • With twin Volvo Penta D4 300              € 315.000

Notizie correlate

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