On Test

Wallywhy100 Review (2023 Edition)

The smallest yacht in the Wally WHY range is aimed at the owner-operator thanks to its compact footprint and pod-drive propulsion system. Is this the most useable Wally in the range and what is it like out at sea? Read our in-depth review to find out 

Measuring 21.3m (70ft) in length and weighing in at 45 tonnes, the Wally WHY100 is designed with a focus on being a bit more approachable and manageable. It's tailored for owner-operators, making it a more hands-on experience rather than relying on a full crew.

Wally has emphasised indoor-outdoor living across all the WHY series and it's no different here with a huge swim platform and a semi-enclosable cockpit. She has a three-cabin layout and space for the crew. We had some very interesting conditions to test drive her in — far from flat and calm — so let's kick off by exploring what it's like to drive.

Wallywhy100 Key Facts

Wallywhy100 illustration
  • LOA 21.46m
  • Model Year 2023
  • Cabins 3
  • Crew 2
  • Max Speed 25 knots
  • Status In Production
  • Yacht Type SUV (Sports Utility Vessel)
  • Use Type Cruising

Test & Review Video

Performance & Handling

Wally-wallywhy100-overhead
Nothing looks quite like a Wally
Wally-wallywhy100-drone-shot
With a relatively narrow beam, the platforms make a big difference
Wally-wallywhy100-overhead-drone
The DPS is great when you need to hold station

Around the Marina

With only Volvo Penta IPS available, slow speed control is made all the easier thanks to joystick control. Our test boat had the optional Dynamic Positioning System, too, which holds the boat in position using the GPS if you need to be stationary for a long time. 

This ease of slow speed control builds into Wally's ambition to make the why100 more useable for an owner/operator and this Volvo Penta technology certainly goes a long way to taking the sting out of berthing. Having the second control station in the cockpit is useful, too, especially when mooring stern-to.

It's an easy boat to crew, too. The symmetrical decks are safe to negotiate and the starboard side helm door allows the skipper to quickly head on to the side decks or call to the crew. There are no guardrails to be seen so the fenders are dealt with using pins and sockets that are dotted evenly along the bulwarks. 

Mooring side-to would be a bit trickier given the freeboard and height of the side decks/mooring gear but mooring with the stern to the dock is a pretty simple process. 

Wally-wallywhy100-running-towards
Wally-wallywhy100-running
Wally-wallywhy100-running-profile
Progess through the water is smooth and refined
Wally-wallywhy100-running-away
The boat is good for around 25 knots flat out

At Sea

On the water, the quiet 1,000hp IPS1350s provide remarkably smooth and refined performance. Topping out at a healthy 25 knots, this boat cruises happily between 15 and 19 knots. Here, you should expect a cruising range of 300-350nm.

Thanks to the hull design, there's no massive change in sensation across different speeds; it simply pushes through the water smoothly as the revs increase.

Handling the wallywhy100 is incredibly intuitive. The trim assist will adjust the Interceptor blades automatically, and single lever mode allows you to use one throttle to push through the water. It's an easy boat to drive that feels very happy trickling along at 8 knots or romping around closer to its top speed.

Wally-wallywhy100-running-wake
The why100's profile is unmistakable

The driving experience is not necessarily about the dynamics but more the theatre of being at the helm of a boat that looks so unique where you are pressed right up against the forward end of the boat looking through the spaceship-like windscreen. We'll go into more detail about the helm and driving position later in the review. 

The IPS brings familiarity and it has the usual light steering which reacts keenly to the compact carbon fibre steering wheel. Despite those clean hull lines and the lumpy conditions on the test, the ride was commendably dry, though there was the odd lash of spray across that big windscreen.

The twin Seakeeper gyros weren't active for our sea trial and there was some wallowing to contend with but at rest, they should eradicate the worst of the rolling. It doesn't feel like a boat that you'd want to contend against big rollers with and has the vibe of a fair-weather cruising machine. 

Wally-wallywhy100-Jack-at-helm
The driving experience is unique, as is the helm position

Design & Build

The why100 was designed in-house Wally/Ferretti Group engineering team, with Studio A. Vallicelli & C. taking charge of the interior look. This boat, despite its 70-foot length, cleverly plays with your perception of space thanks to its novel twin-deck layout. You struggle to get a sense of scale initially because the layout makes you feel far higher above the water than you'd expect for a yacht of this size.

Wally-wallywhy100-wally-logo
Wally-wallywhy100-aft-deck-dining
The indoor/outdoor main deck is a stroke of genius
Wally-wallywhy100-sunset-aft-deck
The cockpit seating is angled towards the water

Wally identified a gap in the market for a more voluminous cruiser in the sub-70ft range. The why100 combines the qualities of an 18-21m (60-70ft) coupé boat with the benefits of a large volume. Wally has called her a 'jack of all trades', so whether you want a spectacular day/weekend vessel, a support boat for a larger yacht, or a vacation home on the water with generous cabins, crew quarters, and living areas, the why100 should have you covered.

The why100's layout, which, much like the larger why150 and why200 models, establishes a strong connection between the outside and inside. Instead of splitting the space into multiple levels to create an illusion of more room, Wally opts for a one-level, stern-to-bow approach. This results in a hybrid area on the main deck level that can be enjoyed either closed or fully open for relaxed alfresco dining.

Wally-wallywhy100-terraces-open
Twin Seakeepers provide stability at rest

Inside, the split staircase is a clever touch that enhances the usability and privacy of the space. The guest areas kick off with a day head that connects to a twin cabin, ensuring convenience and comfort. The forward end of the lower deck houses the crew accommodation, complete with a separate staircase.

Interior Accommodation

The sliding door is a three-part door system that allows you to enclose the saloon completely. Air conditioning adds to the comfort and the door muffles the noise from the engines, which are positioned far back thanks to the IPS setup, which naturally positions the engines further towards the transom. 

Inside, you find a sociable seating arrangement where guests can sit opposite each other. There’s a television tucked away on one side, which pops up for use and can be stowed away when not in use.

The split stairways are a clever design, one for guests and the other for crew, allowing crew members to move around without interfering with guest activities.

Wally-wallywhy100-saloon
The saloon area can be fully enclosed
Wally-wallywhy100-saloon-seating
Wally-wallywhy100-staircase
There are separate guest and crew staircases

Owner's Cabin

The amidships owner's cabin has a full-beam layout and it looks lovely. The woodwork in the ceiling is particularly impressive, complemented by integrated speakers and a cleverly designed escape hatch. The lighting is also a real treat, with a cool strip light that mimics the windscreen above, adding a stylish touch.

Big hull windows flood the space with natural light while under-lighting beneath the sofa and bed adds to the cabin's warm look. The panelling hides a wealth of storage options, including hanging space and lockers on either side — and it looks good too.

And the why100 has a neat trick up its sleeve. The ensuite features electrically regulated glass that can switch from transparent to opaque, making the room feel more spacious when not in use. The bathroom itself is well-designed with a big separate shower cubicle, a seat, and a carbon fibre sink.

Wally-wallywhy100-owner-cabin
The fulll-beam owner's suite

The VIP cabin has incredible headroom and tasteful décor and the bed itself is a healthy size, with plenty of room to walk around. 

The lower deck's woodwork is truly lovely, from the beautiful flooring in the lobby to the detailed finishes in each cabin. Guests will appreciate the televisions and the ability to control the sound system independently from phones or tablets.

The VIP cabin also boasts a large bathroom, complete with a separate shower cubicle that's generously proportioned. On the other side, the twin cabin has a sliding bed configuration, allowing for flexible use of the space. This cabin also enjoys private access to the dayhead via a hidden door.

Wally-wallywhy100-VIP-cabin
The VIP ensuite (feat. surfboard!)
Wally-wallywhy100-twin-or-double-cabin
The berths slide in the third cabin

Crew Space

The crew space is both practical and surprisingly well-appointed. Opposite the staircase, which offers separate access to the main deck, is the galley. It's a pretty good size, boasting big induction cooking, an oven above, and a fridge below. A decent slice of hull window brings in some natural light, although you can close this off if needed.

The sleeping area features a bunk cabin with a separate bathroom, providing everything the crew needs for occasional overnight stays. While it’s not a huge space, it’s perfectly adequate for a yacht that primarily functions as a day boat. 

Helm Station

First impressions at the helm of the why100? Typical wacky Wally. You’re positioned so far forward that it feels like you're sitting in the nose of a fighter jet. The massive central mullion running down the windscreen and the stubby bow in front of you create a unique perspective. The boat is entirely behind you; you’ve got no real perception of the yacht’s size from this forward position on the upper deck.

The lovely carbon fibre Wally wheel takes centre stage, with triple MFDs displaying all necessary information. Carbon fibre is everywhere, reinforcing the helm's high-tech, high-style design.

Wally-wallywhy100-helm-overview
No one does a helm station quite like Wally...

An open-back design means you can hear the sea and engines a bit at the helm, but it’s not intrusive. It’s a fantastic place to helm from — you sit nice and high, with the option to stand, and you’ve got these wonderful high-backed carbon fibre chairs that are classic Wally. The IPS system brings familiar steering and handling — light to the touch, with not too many turns lock to lock. It’s not a sports boat, and it’s not designed to be. Instead, it offers a cool, smooth sensation.

Wally wanted this yacht to be more manageable and easier to run for an owner-operator, and the IPS system is perfect for that. The helm is incredibly user-friendly, and you can even walk through it to access a starboard side door leading onto the foredeck.  

On Deck

At the hydraulic bathing platform, when it's up, you're a fair distance from the water, but when it's dropped down, it transforms into the perfect spot for launching a tender. There's even room for a smaller inflatable tucked beneath the sun pad. Push a button, and the whole thing elevates on its own. The passerelle is a clever bit of kit that doubles as a stairway into the water and to exit onto the quay.

Extending the living space even further, you have terraces on either side of the bathing platform. They’re perfect for setting up a few chairs, creating a spacious area that’s ideal for soaking up waterside views.

Wally-wallywhy100-aft-deck-terrace
Wally-wallywhy100-aft-deck
The hydraulic bathing plaform drops down into the water to launch the tender
Wally-wallywhy100-aft-deck-lounge

The cockpit design is particularly smart. Wally wants you to connect with the surrounding water, so all the fixed seating faces aft. There's a sort of mezzanine effect — exposed to the sun in parts but offering shaded, well-protected spots as well. Thanks to the surrounding windows, you get a nice buffer from the wind, making it a comfortable place to relax no matter the conditions.

The dinette area is semi-enclosed and it's a really cool piece of design, featuring glass doors that slide back to open the space. When open, the breeze flows through, and even when closed, the glass keeps a great connection with the water and sky, with overhead glass panes flooding the area with natural light.

This is the only dining space on this deck, and it's flanked by serveries, complete with cooling space and an integrated sink. The detailing is spot-on, with a tasteful mix of wood and carbon fibre — the wood is used sparingly, but when it is used, it's special.  

Wally-wallywhy100-aft-deck-sunset-running
The seating is angled aft to take in the view

The why100 keeps the Wally commitment to clean lines, and this is evident in the design of the side decks and foredeck. The side decks are symmetrical so you can easily walk around the wheelhouse there and are plug-in fenders, no traditional rails, to maintain those uninterrupted lines.

Design is a primary focus of any Wally, and why100 is no exception. The emphasis here is clearly on maximising the space aft, which does mean the foredeck is a pretty simple arrangement. You’ve got a couple of seats up front, which are ideal for lounging and catching some sun. These seats can be extended to provide room to stretch out,  perfect for sunbathing.

A carbon fibre canopy can be deployed to provide shade over this seating area. However, space forward is limited — primarily reserved for sunbathing and for the crew with anchoring and mooring lines.

Wally-wallywhy100-foredeck
There isn't much space on the foredeck

Engine Room

Access is through a hatch in the cockpit, where a ladder leads down into a large void in front of the engines. The headroom between the engines isn't great, thanks to the tender garage directly above, meaning that crawling is the only option once you're between the engines. However, it's all well-insulated, keeping things remarkably quiet.

When you first drop down into this space, you can stand fully upright at the front of the engine room, but past this point, it's down on your knees or sitting. Underneath the section, you'll find the two Seakeepers mounted. The access to inboard components is pretty good, which is a blessing for daily checks and maintenance. Fuel filters are also mounted inwards, within easy reach.

The IPS pods are completely open and easy to visually inspect and work on if necessary. Often, these can be covered, but not here. True to its Ferretti Group lineage, the underlying engineering is spot on.

A wandering light is provided to inspect the far corners, and all the raw water filters are easily accessible. While the space isn't enormous, it's a well-engineered area thoughtfully designed for practical use. 

Wally-wallywhy100-engine-room

Our Verdict

I wasn't quite sure what to expect out of the Wally why100, as I had only seen the renderings and there was not much information available. However, in the flesh, it has proven to be a well-thought-out and innovative yacht. The idea of having a fully covered space that can open up and connect everyone onboard is truly novel. Whether you're enjoying the water, lounging on the sunbeds, or dining, it ensures a shared, intimate experience that is incredibly appealing.

The propulsion system is worth a mention as well. It feels like a yacht that an owner could easily manage and that's a significant plus in this sector. However, the galley does feel more like a crew galley, which might not be what an owner would want to use regularly.

The why100's quirky design works really well and manages to bring its unique concept to life. This boat is a living space where everyone can feel connected, no matter where they are on board.  

Reasons to Buy

  • Spectacular day/weekend boat
  • Impressive helm station
  • Indoor-outdoor flow
  • Natural light throughout
  • Unqiue styling

Things to Consider

  • Galley feels isolated
  • Engine room headroom low

Rivals to Consider

When it comes to choosing the perfect yacht, it's a deeply personal decision influenced by various factors. For those whose primary focus is power and performance, the why100's semi-displacement hull delivers a solid performance with speeds up to 27 knots. But how does it compare to rivals?

If accommodating guests overnight is your main concern, the Wally, with its three-cabin layout, comfortably sleeps up to six guests. However, many of its competitors, like the Pardo Yachts E72 and Absolute 64, outdo it slightly by providing accommodation for up to eight guests across four cabins. This makes them a better bet for those looking to maximise the number of family and friends onboard. Despite this, the why100 offers a full-beam owner's cabin that boasts an ensuite bathroom, hull side windows, and a sofa, providing maximum comfort for the owner. Similarly, the Arcadia Sherpa 60 and Bluegame BGX73 feature three cabins but can accommodate an extra guest, offering a fantastic level of comfort for longer stints on board.

In terms of cruising speed, the why100 achieves a steady 24 knots, emphasising stability and comfort over outright speed. This approach may not appeal to those who crave the higher cruising speeds of yachts like the Bluegame BG74 and Bluegame BGX63, both of which hit an impressive 27 knots at cruising. For those not in a hurry, the Arcadia Sherpa 60 offers a more leisurely pace with a cruising speed of 16 knots.

The Arcadia Sherpa 80 impresses with an extensive range of 1,550 nautical miles, making it ideal for longer voyages and has a shallow draft. Talking of shallow drafts the Arcadia Sherpa 60 and Bluegame BGX63 also have this as a feature, allowing them to navigate waters inaccessible to deeper vessels. 

Specifications

  • Builder Wally
  • Range WHY
  • Model wallywhy100
Wallywhy100 illustration
  • Length Overall 21.46m
  • Beam 5.73m
  • Draft 1.7m
  • Hull GRP
  • Cabins 3
  • Berths 4
  • Crew 2
  • Yacht Type (Primary) SUV (Sports Utility Vessel)
  • Use Type (Primary) Cruising
  • Cruising Speed
    Max Speed
  • Fuel Capacity 900 Litres
  • Fresh Water Capacity 4,600 Litres
  • Engine Model 2x Volvo Penta D13-IPS1350
  • Engine max range (speed type) 400 nm

Wallywhy100 Layout

  • Main Deck Wallywhy100

    The flow of the main deck is a standout feature 

  • Lower Deck Wallywhy100

    Three guest cabins on the lower deck with space for two crew in their quarters forward