Introducing the Cruise Lite: our new lighter weight all-round SUP

lighter weight all-round SUP

Another SUP season, another new product launch! This time, it’s the turn of the Cruise Lite. We caught up with our Product Development team ahead of its release to find out how (and crucially why) it came to fruition.

Why did you decide to create the Cruise Lite?

The people have spoken! We listened to customer feedback and quickly understood that a super light weight board was something that our customers would be very much interested in. Looking at the market, several other brands have attempted to produce a lighter board but we felt these boards had more compromises than benefits and that we should innovate where other brands have missed a trick. 

How are these boards different from the other Cruises?

Reducing bulk and weight was our main objective so we had a look at the construction of the board. Its build is lighter, using more compact PVC construction in a single woven layer. The board’s width is thinner, with a 5” dropstitch depth – again to minimise weight. We’ve used much lighter hardware in the bungees, handles and action cam mounts and there’s also an integrated split deckpad to further reduce bulk when stored away. We’ve managed to reduce the size of the packed bag to around half that of the Cruise, so it’s easy to store in the back of the car along with all your other gear. 

In terms of performance, we’ve updated the board profile to maximise glide and stability and created a central stringer to maintain the board’s stiffness. An extended centre carry handle improves portability, making it easier to shift your grip when carrying to keep the board centred. A single touring fin with a flexible US fin box is included in the package to maximise board tracking and again, to reduce bulk. 

Finally, there’s two new sizes available, in 10’ and 11′ 4 (so as not to overlap the current board sizes) and we’ve designed it in our New Horizon colourway to better harmonise with wild backcountry SUP locations. 

lighter weight all-round SUP

We’re starting to see a trend of lighter weight inflatable SUPs on the market. How does this board compare to its nearest competitor?

We chose to innovate in areas where other brands tend to compromise. To maximise board SUP performance (speed, tracking, stability) a large centre fin is crucial. Other brands with similar boards on the market decide to use a dual fin box setup with smaller side fins, to reduce the bulk of the SUP but this often sacrifices the performance of the SUP itself. 

Rather than use the same SUP hardware and features that are present on all the SUPs in our range, we chose to replace them with a lighter alternative and to reduce the amount all together, constantly considering the impact on the board’s weight. This is not commonly found on other SUP brands in the market.

To produce a truly universal and multi-use SUP package, we selected to include a compact, flexible US fin box setup on this SUP – it helps to reduce the bulk of the SUP and to improve its compatibility to allow the user to use any different type of US fin for any environment.

There’s been a lot of thought put into every aspect of this. Exactly how much lighter are the new boards? 

In comparison to the Cruise 10’8 inflated to 15 PSI, the Cruise Lite 10’ weighs 3.7kg less at 7.50kg. 

That’s a big improvement for anyone looking to take their SUP on longer excursions. Would you say the Cruise Lite is compatible with air travel? 

Yes! The total package weight of the Cruise Lite 10’ is only 11.40kg and 12.20kg for the 11’4, so it’s compatible with most airline baggage allowances. As we mentioned before, the Lite package is way more compact to carry than our original Cruise, so it’s perfect for paddlers looking to up the ante in the adventure stakes, passing through airports and train stations to reach warmer waters abroad.

Okay. How about a location that has no car access? 

It’s not a problem! Because of its low weight and improved portability, paddlers are able to comfortably carry this board and its accessories to remote SUP locations that are normally out of reach with a conventional SUP package. 

Speaking of accessories, what’s included in the package?

With the Cruise Lite package you get premium accessories including an ultra compact SUP pump, a carbon fibre paddle, touring fin, plus all the things you’ve come to expect from a Bluefin package including an ankle leash, waterproof phone case, repair kit and of course, a waterproof roll-top PVC rucksack to carry it all in. 

What makes this package premium?

In addition to the SUP board itself which has an ultralight, considered design, you get a universal and flexible US fin box and touring fin for exceptional tracking – something that’s missing from a lot of other brands. The carbon fibre paddle, as well as being lightweight, is designed for high performance and reduced flex. It’s also a five piece paddle, so it’s super compact to store. The high quality roll top rucksack is multi-purpose and easily doubles up as a dry bag if you need it. 

lighter weight all-round SUP

You mentioned there’s two new sizes for this board. Which size should I get?

For larger paddlers – those who use a 10’8 or our Carbon boards should choose the 11’ in the Cruise Lite. For smaller/lighter paddlers who tend to choose a 10’8 and below should select the 10’. Just as a side note, the max user weight on the 10’ is 125kg and 150kg for the 11’.

Thanks to Bluefin’s Product Development for their expert knowledge and wisdom in compiling this Q&A! Check out the Cruise Lite for yourself here or leave your thoughts in the comments below.

Discover what others have to say about our product! Our affiliates have poured their expertise into crafting comprehensive articles, guides, and reviews to help you unlock the full potential of Cruise Lite. Gain valuable insights into our Cruise Lite by exploring the detailed review here, written by Stand Up Paddling.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.