Outboards for larger single and multiple engine boats (continued from Application Dependant – Part 1)
In my previous blog, I focused on smaller, single engine outboard applications where power-to-weight is a very important factor. Here, I will discuss larger, single and multi-engine fishing and sport boats.
Let’s start with the larger single engine boats. If you are rigging a flats or bay boat and intend to use it to pursue fish – an OptiMax works just fine. If you plan on getting a family sport boat for tubing/wake boarding or water skiing, the OptiMax is also an excellent choice. Those who prefer ultra quiet running qualities, with the creature comforts of digital throttle and shift and power steering, should go with a Verado or Pro FourStroke.
Similar options are available when you expand from a single engine boat to multi-engine offshore center consoles or sport boats. Here again, your power of choice depends on personal preference to a degree and – in some cases – where you use the boat.
It wasn’t long ago when twin engine outboard center consoles were the norm. Over time, the popularity of saltwater fishing tournaments transformed the center console. Boat sizes expanded and thus so did the demand for more power. The standard number of engines on a transom grew from two to three, with four engines populating the transoms of premium high performance rigs. In this application, power-to-weight is less of a factor than total power, dependability and fuel economy. If the most power and best high speed handling are your goals, then look to the Verado 350 SCi.
For those boating in areas where 91-0ctane fuel is sometimes not available, a good choice is the Varado 300. It can run on 87 octane fuel by intellegently reducing its own power, or on 91 at 300 hp when the good stuff is at hand. If you’re a die-hard 2-stroke fan, there is always the low-emissions OptiMax 300XS. This versatile engine is available with 20″, 25″ and 30″ shaft lengths and Torque Master, Sport Master or Fleet Master gearcase options. The only limiting factor with a 300XS is that it requires 91-octane fuel.
When it comes to sport boats, there really isn’t a better option than the 30oXS. Depending on the hull type and weight, The Torque Master gearcase will likely fit the bill. The gearcase option for OptiMax 300XS powered catamarans and vee-bottom hulls capable of speeds in excess of 85 mph is the surface piercing Sport Master.
There you have ’em! — your options for recreational outboard applications. Between Mercury and Mercury Racing, we have the waterfront covered. If you think we missed one, please comment.