These past 10 years have seen such amazing improvements in technology that has made boating more fun and more reliable.
This is the biggest change I have witnessed in my time in the industry, outboards were smelly, thirsty, noisy and very stinky! I’m not sad to see them gone. I know we represent Evinrude, Mercury, Suzuki & Tohatsu but I also want to acknowledge the others as well. Yamaha and Honda (we can’t sell every brand!) The advancements made in such a short time to clean them up and make them user friendly is astounding. This is an exciting time for outboard motors. Whether you have a favorite brand or not you simply can’t go wrong on any of them. Manufacturers have to say they are the best, showing us graphs that show theirs on top and that’s Ok but it has been my experience that they are all great and all have some flaws. Keep in mind that they are all machines designed by humans and built by humans (for the most part) so every once and a while one is a dud. This happens less and less now days.
2 Stroke vs. 4 Stroke
Well to get the outboard cleaned up an easy reliable way was to go 4 Stroke for sure. Early 2 Stroke direct injection was not a great success initially (we all remember FICHT – that’s 3 years of my life I can’t get back!) but Mercury Optiimax worked well for the most part. Portable engines went to 4 stroke to clean them up – Honda just started that way – but with the advantage of cleaner running and smooth quiet operation came the “dreaded” weight and “don’t lay it down on the wrong side” issue. Manufacturers have since lightened them up and many fixed the storage problem. I am thrilled to be able to put my small engine down in the trunk without having to worry the oil will run out! I’m sure every manufacturer will get this added to theirs if they don’t have it yet.
2 Stroke engines have a power stroke every time the crankshaft goes around so they tend to have more torque for faster hole shots. Don’t sell the 4 Stoke market short cause they can now keep up with the 2 strokes in torque and weight – these new Mercury V6’s are a testament to that! – light and powerful.
I digress because the 2 vs. 4 stoke argument is like a room full of pickup truck lovers who can’t see eye to eye on which brand is better. Go with the one you like, you won’t be disappointed. I could go on and on but the point is all are great!
I can’t wait to see what else is down the road – I know it will be cool!