2015 Boat Motors. Stylish, quieter and more fuel-efficient

It’s interesting to see how outboard motor companies tackle fuel consumption. Some have gone “all-in” on four-stroke technology, while others stubbornly try to make two strokes more efficient (and they’ve succeeded). Both types of technology of course come with their advantages, but there is no question that today’s outboards are quieter, less thirsty, and sexier looking than ever before. Oh, and the same goes for the electric trolling motors on the market. Some models can “anchor” you in 100 feet of water while others are darn near bullet proof, and yes, they can even steer themselves.
Is artificial intelligence the next option? 

 Mercury

The new 75-, 90-, and 115-horsepower FourStroke outboards offer a low profile and less weight – up to 20 pounds less than the closest four-stroke competition. They feature a 2.1-liter, four-cylinder, eight-valve, single-overhead-cam design that delivers more torque and horsepower than ever before. 

An all-new world-class hydrodynamically designed standard gearcase decreases drag by 15 percent to improve efficiency and performance, thus consuming less fuel and increasing operating range. The standard gearcase significantly improves performance on aluminum or fiberglass bass boats, flats boats, skiffs, and smaller (less than 18 feet) deep-vee and runabouts.

The new robust Mercury Command Thrust gearcase delivers unequalled control and power for heavier boats or boats that tend to run “wet” (more hull surface remaining in contact with the water after its planed). The Command Thrust models use the same bigger gearcase housing as the Mercury 150 FourStroke, but with an all-new 2.38-to-1 ratio ideally suited for pontoons and heavier boats. 

A tightly sealed top cowl and idle relief muffler system lessen high-frequency exhaust noise while a top-mounted throttle body fine-tunes intake noise. Even the trim pump is designed to run significantly quieter, and a new clutch system reduces shock while shifting into gear. All of these features deliver a smoother, quieter, more pleasant boating experience. 

These new FourStroke outboards also feature Mercury’s industry-leading anti-corrosion protection that includes Mercury’s exclusive XK360 low-copper alloy, liberal use of stainless steel components and the MercFusion paint process, which is engineered specifically for the harshest marine environments. An industry-exclusive lifetime maintenance-free valve train, no-mess oil-change system, no-tools-required fuel filter, color-coded maintenance locators and an up-front freshwater valve flush system are standard. 

Evinrude

​The Evinrude E-TEC G2 outboard engine delivers unrivaled performance with best-in-class torque and fuel efficiency and lowest total emissions. They are available in 200 H.O. to 300 R.A.V.E., the new E-TEC G2 engine offers the first and only customizable look, the only clean rigging and fully integrated digital controls. These innovations now allow consumers to choose the absolutely perfect combination of boat and engine by selecting top and front panels, as well as accent colors that match your boat.

Bombardier Recreational Products is the only outboard manufacturer offering 5-5-5: five-year engine warranty, five-year corrosion warranty, and 500 hours with no dealer-scheduled maintenance, allowing for the most time on the water.

G2 engines join other Evinrude E-TEC product innovations like the new Pontoon Series engines, the only ones specifically built for pontoons, providing vibration-reducing motor mounts and all the same Evinrude best-in-class performance.

Yamaha

An all-new four-stroke F8, twin-cylinder engine brings more convenience and improved control to the lightweight portable outboard segment. A new cowling with the sleek lines of larger Yamaha outboards offers more features and benefits than ever. 

It’s great on fuel, but its displacement is up 7.5 percent resulting in more torque and thrust. For added convenience, the F8 tiller now offers improved handle-folding characteristics, which allow the stored motor to take up less space. Rear resting pads allow the outboard to be stored with the rear side down, increasing storage options and improving storage stability.

The new V MAX SHO 115 is compact, lightweight and capable of performance typically associated with two strokes, but with the convenience, fuel efficiency and quiet operation of a four-stroke. Like other members of the V MAX SHO family, the V MAX SHO 115 is light, weighing in at just 377 pounds, and it has the added benefit of not needing two-stroke oil or an oil tank.

The 1.8-liter V MAX SHO 115 features Yamaha’s advanced 16-valve double-overhead cam (DOHC), four-cylinder design, which means better breathing for better performance. Its large intake and exhaust valves generate more power and midrange torque. They are fed by a large (60 mm) single throttle body with Yamaha’s long-track intake system and a free-flow exhaust.

The V MAX SHO 115 powerhead is based on proven, advanced Yamaha four-stroke technology. It also uses Yamaha’s Phaze Five paint system, which includes the electro-deposition of anti-corrosive paint on both the inside and outside passages of the engine block.

Because it is a four stroke, the new outboard is quiet by nature. In addition, Yamaha has harmonized all the inertial mass components and added large rubber engine mounts.

The result is smooth and quiet operation.

Suzuki

Suzuki has added two lightweight, fuel-efficient outboards to its compact midrange line, the all-new DF25A and DF30A. At just 136.7 pounds, these new gas-sippers are the lightest in their respective classes and feature Suzuki’s battery-less electronic fuel injection system. This system offers several important benefits, including reliable starting (especially in colder temperatures and at higher altitudes), crisp acceleration and smooth running.

Lightweight and compact, this self-powered system functions without needing a battery, and eliminates the weight and clutter of a battery box and cables. This is an important consideration on smaller boats with limited space. Starting effort is also reduced, thanks to a light recoil starting system, making it easier to pull-start the engine.

Also new is the DF200A 200-horsepower inline-four-cylinder outboard motor that delivers the kind of impressive performance one would expect only from a V6 engine. One look at the cowling of the new DF200A indicates this outboard is something special. The design of the cowling and the special baffling underneath work together to provide a semi-direct air intake system that provides cooler air directly to the engine’s long track tuned intake manifold.

The engine breathes even more efficiently thanks to Suzuki’s proven Variable Valve Timing system and twin intake and exhaust valves for each cylinder.

By allowing the engine to breathe cooler air, both acceleration and top end speed are improved. In fact, Suzuki factory testing reports a 1.5 percent improvement in top end speed and a whopping 12 percent improvement in 0 to 30 mph acceleration when compared to competitive models.

Another contributing factor to these improved performance numbers is the 10.3-to-1 compression ratio. By increasing compression of the fuel/air mixture by 9.7 percent, Suzuki engineers have dramatically improved the power output from its impressive 175-cubic-inch displacement DOHC powerhead.

Suzuki has shown tremendous dealer growth in the Midwest thanks to its growing reputation of performance and reliability.

Minn Kota

​The revolutionary Ulterra bow-mount trolling motor features fully automated stow and deploy. In addition, Ulterra includes power trim, which raises and lowers the depth of the motor, with the push of a button. These innovative functions, controlled wirelessly with either the i-Pilot or i-Pilot Link remote control or foot pedal, make boat control easier than ever. 

All Ulterra motors come with either i-Pilot or i-Pilot Link, and a new multi-function, corded foot pedal with a dedicated Spot-Lock button.

MotorGuide

​The new Xi5 is designed to exceed the expectations of today’s discriminating customer. It’s engineered to be reliable every day– and durable over the long haul. The Xi5 includes wireless capability “right out of the box,” so anglers can command precise motor and steering control from anywhere on the boat.  It’s perfect for moms and dads guiding their kids from the back of the boat or pro anglers needing precise control. 

A wireless foot pedal is standard with freshwater models and a hand-held remote is standard with saltwater models.

A stealthy quiet mode is perfect for fishing clear water and spooky fish.

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