Application Dependent: Which Racing V-8 is Right for You?

I thought it would be helpful to share with you  details regarding the two midsection and three gearcase options available for our new  V-8 Four-Stroke outboards.

The Tri-ram midsection features triple trim rams and a trim pump integrated within the die-cast clamp bracket assembly.

The Tri-ram midsection is featured on the 250R and selected 300R models.  Triple power trim rams along with the power trim pump are integrated within the die-cast clamp bracket assembly. A stiffer, high-durometer elastomer upper mount and solid lower mounts are used for enhanced handling at higher speeds. The 250R comes with the Sport Master gearcase. Sport Master and Torque Master gearcases are both options for selected 300R Tri-ram models. The Tri-ram midsection is designed for use on lighter weight hulls on protected waters.

The Heavy duty midsection with ultra robust, forged clamp brackets and a large, single ram trim cylinder.

Heavy duty midsection 300Rs come with solid mounts and robust, forged transom brackets with single ram power trim and a remote trim pump designed to endure the harsh offshore environment. These models are available with the Sport Master and 5.44″ HD gearcases.

Rear tie-bar 300R models feature the heavy duty midsection with a factory installed tie-bar mounting plate.

Rear tie-bar models feature a factory installed tie-bar mount plate. The tie-bar, not included but available from after market suppliers,  provides enhanced engine stability for high speed catamarans and vee bottoms.


The Sport Master gearcase features a crescent leading edge and low water pickups.

Gearcase Options 

The surface piercing Sport Master, designed for boats capable of speeds in excess of 85 mph, features low-water pick-ups and a crescent leading-edge for maximized efficiency and speed.

The Torque Master gearcase features dual water pickups.

The Torque Master, designed to run partially surfaced, carries the load of heavier tournament bass boats and multi-species hulls while maximizing top speed and drivability.

The 5.44″ HD gearcase, featuring dual water pickups, is designed for applications which require a more submerged gearcase.

The 5.44” HD is designed for use on bay boats and multi engine performance center consoles where the application requires a more submerged gearcase.






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47 thoughts on “Application Dependent: Which Racing V-8 is Right for You?”

  1. I have a new 300XS on my Allison but as much as I love it, there may be a new 300 four stroke in my future..

    1. The 300XS is a great engine, James. But your right, the new V-8 300R is going to be a game changer. We can’t wait to get them out for all to enjoy.

  2. building a new 34Z Seavee with triple engines. What kind of differences would i see using the 300R over the 300 Verado 4-stroke V8 ? Are their any negatives or positives of 1 over the other

    1. Hi Michael. Both are great engines. it depends on how you intend to use the boat and with whom. The 4.6L V-8 Verado 300 features Mercury’s Advanced Mid Section which isolates the powerhead from the midsection via a “cradle”. This provides the superior NVH (Noise Vibration Harshness) characteristics for the whisper quiet and smooth operating performance Verado is known for. Both engines share the same 4.6L V-8 block. The 300R powerhead features custom Racing intake cam profiles and a shorter intake runner. Those two items – combined with a Racing exclusive fuel calibration that enables the engine to turn up to 6400 RPM, 200 higher rpm than the 300 Verado results in a measurable performance advantage. The 300 Verado comes with the 5.44″ HD gearcase. The 300R is available with more conventional midsections where the powerhead is more directly mounted to the midsecton. We offer two midsections; a standard Tri-Ram mid with three trim rams and pump mounted within the clamp bracket assembly. the heavy-duty midsection, more suited for your application, features more robust, forged clamp brackets and a large trim ram with remote mounted trim pump. The 300R HD is available with the 5.44″ Sport Master or 5.44″ HD gearcases. NVH will be noticeably higher with the 300R HD as both the upper mount and lower mounts are solid for enhanced performance at higher speeds. You would need to test to see if the surface piercing Sport Masters would work on your hull. In the right application – have the Sport Masters would be another performance advantage.

        1. Hi Michael. Yes. It will be similar. The 300R still may have an advantage on the bottom end torque due to the custom intake cam profiles, shorter intake runners and custom fuel calibration.

      1. To narrow it down a bit, a 300R on a 340Z will deliver higher top speed, but you will notice a bit more felt vibration in the boat. A Verado, as Rick states, will transmit less vibration to the boat, but will not be as fast of a package. If you do opt for the 300R, you will want the models with the 5.4″ HD gearcase, especially if you, like most Sea Vee owners, are an avid angler who will brave rougher conditions in pursuit of your passion.

  3. Thank you Steve, Rick I look forward to the new motor package, been solid with Mercury for over 11 years, Mercury rocks !!

    1. Hello Armando,
      The 300R will outperform both the 300 ProXS and 300XS due to the Racing fuel calibration which enables it to turn an addition 200 RPM (5800-6400). The custom intake cam profile and shortened intake runners enhance acceleration and overall power as well. In fact, the 300R has 44% more displacement than the 300XS and produces 40% more bottom end torque.

  4. Question: I am building a Pantera 24′ speed boat. Plan on mounting a Armstrong Bracket to support a single engine. Looking hard at the 400R.

    Someone help with the gearcase and prop for that boat? Plan to run it off the coast of Jupiter, Fl….open ocean.

    1. Andrew,

      Sounds like a fun project! There are a few things to consider here. Did you have an engine in the boat previously? If so what were the performance numbers? Are you going to be putting a jack plate on your Armstrong bracket? That will help.
      Panteras are a heavier boat so I believe you be in the 75 mph range, meaning you can run an HD gearcase. As for props, there are a few that could work nicely. Our Bravo FS offers great bow lift and would be a good propeller to start out with. Then we have the Rev 4 XP, which offers more sternlift than the Bravo and can also be ordered in a Lab Finish, and finally there is the MAX5 for superior performance and top end speed. It really depends on budget and what your goals are.


  5. Im building a 30 ft Twin engine sportcat ( predator ) and was planning to put on 2 400 r s but now the 300 V8 is available and probably the future i consider to go that way .

    One thing i cant Find out is if the 300 r use the same intergrated elektro hydraulic steering in the HD midsection as the 400 ?

    Thank You


    1. Hi Armand. No the 400R comes with the Advanced Midsection. The 300R comes with tri-ram or heavy duty conventional mid sections.

    1. The Sport Master gearcase is designed for boats with natural bow lift and speeds capable of speeds in excess of 85 mph!

  6. I have a Lund 208 Tyee GL with a 2014 300 verado pro. I have someone interested in purchasing my motor so I was wondering if I would notice any meaningful performance increase by going to the new Pro XS or possibly the 300R? I am considering upgrading but would hate to find myself with a slower rig after going trough with the upgrade. Have gotten info off this site regarding props and am running a 20″ Bravo FS LT and am getting 59-61.8 mph at 5950-6000 RPM light load one angler. 58-59 mph any day of the week so thanks for the help on the prop selection.

    1. Blayne,

      We took a 2017 300 Verado off of a Lund 202 and replaced it with a 300R and it picked up 4-5 mph. And due to the low end torque and transient spark technology, both hole shot and fuel economy were vastly improved as well. The 300R will offer a higher top end speed than the Pro XS, but you will still benefit from the great hole shot and fuel economy with the Pro XS. One thing you would need for the switch is a jack plate, since the 300R and Pro XS do not have the same built in set back that your Verado has.


  7. I am looking at getting a Ranger 621 FS multi species boat and am interested in getting a 300R on it. Can you recommend a gear case and prop? I’ve been told that the 621 takes a 25″shaft. It will be loaded pretty well with normally 1-2 people.


    1. Chris,

      Sounds like an awesome setup. You will be looking at the 25 inch 5.44 HD gear case. If you plan to run wide open I will lean towards the 21 pitch Bravo I FS. If you have a kicker and plan to run with the live well full, the 20 pitch LT may be the better option.


      1. I am looking at the new Ranger 621Pro FS with a Verado 400R, but the dealer is telling me it may not perform properly. Can you help me? What would i gain in top end over a Verado 400? Can i still pull the kids on ski’s, tubes, etc?

        Im also being told availability is 17 months?

        1. Judd,

          Do you mean 300R? The 621 is only rated to 350 hp.

          The lead times on 400R are two to three weeks, and there are many models in stock. For your case, the 400R will be virtually identical interally to the standard 400 Verado. The 400R simply spins 200 RPM high at wide open throttle. Both come standard with a three year warranty. They will both have the same gear case as well.


  8. I have a 22XS Sterling flats boat with a 300XS and a torquemaster with 1.75:1. The most I have ever got out of it was 73 mph with a 25-pitch fury. I want to repower with the new 300r what would be the best application for the boat? I was also wondering are the new digital throttle and shift controls worth the money to upgrade from mechanical? What would be the best prop for all around performance including the most top end
    Thank you very much.

    1. Andy,

      Sounds like an awesome boat. Stick with the Torque Master gear case model if you do the repower. The Bravo I FS performs well on that style of hull. A 26.5 pitch will be a great starting point. As for the controls, I would see if a local dealer has a demo boat that they use with digital controls, after getting used to them, most guys say they will never go back.


    1. Warren,

      The gear case selection is more based on necessity. Most bass boats have a 20 inch transom and will run the Torque Master. The Torque Master is not available in a 25 inch shaft, so the HD becomes the only option on bigger boats that require the longer shaft length.


    1. Massimiliano,

      You need to change the whole foot if you want to switch from Torque Master to Sport Master. The new Sport Master on the 250R, 300R, 400R and 450R is 5.44″, where the Torque Master is 4.88″. For reference, the old Optimax Sport Master was the 4.88″. Most of the internals are different.


  9. Hello, I’m looking at the Crusier Yatch 38GLS. I see I comes with 3 engines 300R’s. As an option there is also the 400R’s. The top speed claims to be 53 knots with the 300’s…what would it be with the 400’s from factor and what gear case is used?

    And If I wanted to make this boat go as fast as possible, and put 3 of the 450R’s and clever CNC props, what top speed could I be looking at? If you could suggest the specs on the props needed as well that would be great. Thanks. (Less acceleration in exchange for more speed is my objective)

    1. Remy,

      Beautiful boat. I think you can expect to gain 6 knots going from the 300s to the 400s and then another 6 knots going from 400s to 450s. In all cases, you will be looking at the Rev 4 or Enertia ECO for props with the HD gear cases. The CNC Cleavers typically do not come into play until an application is exceeding 110 mph. The new V8 300 Verado will give the best fuel economy and great torque. The 400s are high revving inline 6s, great dependable motors. The 450s are the ultimate in torque, still great fuel economy, and best top end speed. Given the size of the boat, I would think the ECOs would work the best.


    1. Griffin,

      The Torque Master and HD Gear Case are only available in the 1.75 ratio on the 300R. The Sport Master is available in a 1.75 or 1.60.


  10. Hi guys I really need some advice .
    I just purchased 42 footer boat with a triple engines setup and just purchased the new 300r .

    I’m gonna use this boat for long distance for fishing 100miles plus and want my cruise speed to be higher .

    Currently a lot of mix reviews on the gear selection as the company installed torque master Or should I go with the hd gear instead .


  11. I’m doing a re-power on my 24ft T-top bay boat, my question is, do I go with a 300 pro xs or the 300R, keep in mind the transom is 25″ and boat is rated at 10″ draft also would like to know which prop to use. The engine coming off is a different manufacturer that turns 5800 RPM 250hp and has a 21″ prop, I’ve never run this boat as it was purchased as a project boat any opinion would be appreciated.

    1. Nate,

      Your gear case, shaft length, clamp bracket, and rigging will be the same between the two. The only difference will be in price and little extra performance on top end from the 300R due to the upgraded cams, intake, oil cooler, and tune to 6400 RPM. Consider starting with a 21.5 pitch Bravo I FS.


  12. i have 2002 Allison boat and a Mercury Racing 2.4 Efi running a Hoss triton 1 turning 8500-8700 RPM the boat runs a solid 112 -114 mph with water temp in the low 60’s . The motor is tire and needing alot of work have tried to find parts for it and Mercury has stopped making them years ago . Talked with Darris a Allison And all of the 4 stroke Mercury motors weigh to much to hang on the boat except a 150. Others has put larger 4 strokes on a allison but have regretted it.. With handling problems and sinking there boats What would be a good choice of a mercury motor to put on the back and still run the speeds for drag racing and just for grins on a sunday at the lake by blowing past squirt boats and v drives
    thanks Warren

    1. Warren,

      I know Darris is not a fan of the new four strokes, but only one guy has put a 300R on an XB2002 so far and he did not have issues. All of the new XB 21’s are running them at 100 mph all day long. I’d give Tim at Fastbass Marine a call for a second opinion.


  13. Hello
    My boat Is a contender 31t
    Now i have 2 verado 300 L6 with Mirage plus 21′ propeller and now the boat reach about 56-57 mph (6400 RPM)
    Now i am looking for new outboards
    The First option Is 2 new 300R (5.44 HD gearcase)
    The second option Is 2 350 verado L6
    I want to know the difference in terms of performance (top end Speed and cruising Speed) and fuel consumption
    As propeller i think a rev 4 Is the best choice…. 21′ or 23′?
    Thank you

    1. Riccardo,

      You could also consider the new 300 Verado V8. The 300R and 350 Verado are very different animals. For pure performance the 350 is typically 2-3 mph faster on top end, the 300R will have more torque and slightly better fuel economy. The Verados, both 300 V8 and 350 L6, will have the advanced midsection you are used to with the hydro electric steering and vibration reduction. The 300R has the conventional mid section, which uses a standard steering system and will have more sound and vibration.


  14. Hello. I’ve placed an order for a 2021 QX 25 Bennington pontoon equipped with a 450r….cant’t wait! I now see there are various gear case and propeller options, not to mention propeller pitch. Any guidance on these options in regards to my boat would be greatly appreciated.


    1. Roc,

      What an awesome setup. To my knowledge Bennington has that setup dialed in. I believe they run a Bravo I FS and 5.44″ HD gear case.


  15. Hi, I have a 7.30 dinghy with mercury 300R outboard with 544HD foot ratio 1.85,
    is it enough to lengthen the propeller pitch by two inches to get the performance like the 1.75 ratio? what do you advise me to do?
    For the mounting of the outboard it is better to mount it high like the Verado L6, since the gearbox is bigger and causes more friction?
    currently I have not been able to reach optimal speeds, dinghies set the same as mine reach the same speed as me with 250 hp. Honda.
    Waiting for your response. Thank you.

    1. Massimiliano,

      Yes typically 2 inches of pitch equates to the RPM change from a 1.75 to 1.85 ratio. And yes they do like to be run high like the L6 engines.


  16. Hi Nick, thank you for answering me, by changing the propeller pitch, turns and knots vary very little, will it be due to the different foot ratio (1.85)? in my opinion the problem that I can not fully exploit the engine is the relationship to the different foot, you who advise me, thanks always.

    1. Massimiliano,

      So you changed the propeller pitch and barely noticed a difference? It is typically only 150 RPM per pitch.


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