There are “tuners” out there that offer supercharger kits for Mercury Racing 525 EFI engines (and others). Some of these kits reportedly boost horsepower and torque as much as 50 percent. They reprogram our engine controller to override its logic and limits. Yes, there is more power to be had – for a time. We program our ECUs to keep engines within their physical limits and offer good power with reasonable reliability and durability.
One tuner just offered a “price reduction.” Their claim is to make power upgrades more affordable. Beware of the sales pitch, “Step right up! It’s on sale!” Alarm bells should be ringing in your head when you hear those words. If you’re tempted by that offer (and your warranty has expired), please proceed with your eyes wide open because just the opposite is the likely result. Here’s why “affordable” may prove very expensive.
A 50% boost in power and torque, if true, would put a 525 between 785 and 795 hp. Our engines are tough, but they are not designed to operate at these power levels, nor at a higher RPM “red line.” And IF a modified engine survives, its torque output would be well beyond the capacity of any Bravo drive. BOOM! Instant, unhappy boater. More “Gee, I was just driving my boat at cruise and the damned Bravo…” (It seems the drive always gets the blame even when the engine is modified beyond drive capacity.) This makes me crazy. We develop engine and drive-lines as a system – matched to live together – and warranted because they do.
Racing limits the Bravo XR to 600 hp so consumers have a good experience. At 662, our engineering technicians can break Bravo XR drives almost at will. That is why 662s and 700s come with NXT drives and warranties. We believe people should know what they’re getting into and get the value they pay for. If you want more power, buy a boat or re-power with a matched engine/drive package. Then you get dependability, not frustration, embarrassment and unexpected expense. Our goal is to keep you enjoying the water. We don’t want you driven (or pulled) from it.