You want to take out the kids, the kid’s friends, and the kid’s friend’s family. You want to go day-cruising. You want to go weekending. You want to grill up some burgers. You want to open up the throttles and enjoy speedboat-like performance. You want to wet a fishing line every now and again. You want to cruise up the creek and launch the stand-up paddleboards. You want to kick back on the sunpad and soak up some rays. You want to watch a movie… You, dear boater, need maybe five different boats. Or, check out the Jeanneau Leader WA 12.5.

jeannea leader wa 12.5
There are oodles of options for equipping the Jeanneau Leader WA 12.5, so you can semi customize it to fit the way you like to spend time on the water. Photo by Tom King, courtesy of Jeanneau

The Jeanneau Leader WA 12.5 is one of the few multitasking marine machines up to all of these tasks and then some. In fact, the range of waterborne activities this boat will prove ideal for is rather shocking. With 40’3” LOA and an 11’9” beam you’d expect there to be room for plenty of people, but the way this space is utilized makes it perfect for a multigenerational crowd. The bow cockpit converts between seating for five around a cocktail table to a triple-wide mega-lounger. The aft cockpit boasts L-shaped seating around a dinette table. The helm deck has three forward-facing seats. And belowdecks you’ll find a dinette (which converts into a V-berth) with a sunroof and opening hull side windows to create a cross-breeze. Between all these different social areas multiple age groups can enjoy their own place to converse, mix, and mingle.

jeannea leader wa 12.5
Photo by Jean-Jacques Bernier, courtesy of Jeanneau

As for spending extended time aboard, that forward V-berth is utterly huge, and you’ll have plenty of room for stretching out. There’s a private stateroom located amidships, carved out under the helm deck with a double berth plus another single. The head compartment is roomier than one might expect and has a separate stall shower. And while there’s also a galley in the cabin, you won’t have to leave the abovedeck party in order to cook because there’s also an outdoor kitchen with an electric grill—burgers, anyone?— behind the helm seating. Jeanneau takes a page out of the center console playbook with the arrangement, mounting the kitchen unit behind the seats and mounting hard top supports to its sides. This allows them to provide a rather huge hard top, which has an extending sunshade running aft and can be extended forward over the bow cockpit with a convertible sunshade. In fact, you can shade this entire boat from stem to stern.

There are other boats in this size range that can check all the boxes we’ve addressed so far, but most offer performance that’s more depressing than dazzling. Not so, with the Leader 12.5. This boat can handle triple outboards across the transom, and with three Yamaha F300s cruising speed at 4500 rpm is in the mid-30s. Keep pushing on the throttles and you’ll soon have nine tons of fiberglass charging forth at over 50 mph. Or slam them down from a dead stop and you’ll be planing in a neck-snapping 7.5 seconds. Zippy performance? Youbetcha.

jeannea leader wa 12.5
Photo by Jean-Jacques Bernier, courtesy of Jeanneau

There are also oodles of options for equipping this boat, so you can semi customize it to fit the way you like to spend time on the water. The kids enjoy catching a fish now and again? Opt for the raw water washdown and livewell. Paddling in a remote, unspoiled creek sounds like fun? Add the roof-rack. Additional highlights on the list of optional features include touches like electronics packages, a swim ladder for the fold-down hullside terrace, ice makers and refrigerators, Zipwakes dynamic trim tabs, and even a gyroscopic stabilization system. You could get any one of these goodies, or get all of them. Or, of course, you could always go out and buy five different boats instead of one that does it all.

By Lenny Rudow

Jeanneau Leader WA 12.5 Specifications: 

LOA: 40’3”
Beam: 11’9” 
Draft: 2’8”
Displacement (approx.): 17,999 lbs.
Fuel Capacity: 304 gal.
Water Capacity: 53 gal.
Max HP: 900
Local Dealer: Rudy Marine in Grasonville, MD – (443) 995-3785 and Dagsboro, DE – (302) 945-2254 

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