Leica has announced its latest compact camera, the Leica V-Lux 40. As previously, the new compact model is based on its existing partnership with Panasonic.

The Leica V-Lux 40 features a 20x optically stabilised zoom lens, offering a range of 24-480mm (in 35mm terms) and a 1/2.33 CMOS sensor with 14.1 megapixels (15.3MP total).  

This lens is set into the typically black Leica body measuring 105 x 59 x 28mm and weighing 210g, with a 3-inch 460k-dot display around the back, which is touch enabled. 

GPS is integrated into the body of the camera, so you'll be able to geotag your snaps from the back of your yacht. You can also look up local points of interest and view your photos as thumbnails on the supplied maps. 

A full range of shooting options is included, from manual controls through to a range of scene modes and creative options, such as miniature effect and HDR.

Essentially this is a Panasonic camera wrapped in Leica livery, however you get a copy of Adobe Photoshop and Premier Elements 10 bundled in the package, worth £119. The camera will cost you £550 compared to £329 for the Panasonic version.

To keep your Leica V-Lux 40 safe, you'll be able to opt for the tan leather case and strap at £80, or the soft leather pouch at £63. 

The Leica V-Lux 40 will be available from Leica dealers from May 2012. If you can't wait to see how it performs, why not check out our Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ30 review for an idea.