The Long Wait for the 200-HP Mercury FOURSTROKE (NOT VERADO)

A conversation among Whalers
jimh
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The Long Wait for the 200-HP Mercury FOURSTROKE (NOT VERADO)

Postby jimh » Sat Sep 09, 2017 6:18 pm

Several years ago, around the time that Mercury introduced a 150-HP FOURSTROKE (NOT VERADO) engine, there was a great deal of talk about how this engine was just the beginning of an entire new family of engines to come from Mercury that would be derivatives or variations or enhancements of the 150-HP FOURSTROKE and would have higher horsepower, perhaps 200-HP or even 225-HP. Talk about these new-but-yet-to-be-seen engines to come soon from Mercury became so prevalent that I started a thread on that topic, asking for help in finding any actual public comments from Mercury about these engines--not that they were available but comments that they were being developed. That was back in July 2013, more than four years ago. (The discussion is archived, like 99.99-percent of all forum discussions going back over 15 years are archived, and is still available.)

The (at that time called "NEW") Mercury 150-HP FOURSTROKE was based on a 3.0-liter in-line four-cylinder engine with a very simple eight-valve (or two-per-cylinder) (or one intake and out exhaust valve per cylinder) design, with none of the modern enhancements associated with cam phasing or variable valve timing, features then and still common on most competitors' engines. But some participants were certain that Mercury could build on this engine and its sales success--which was also described as being very good or exceptional--and turn out 200-HP engines.

I was just checking at the fine Mercury Marine website on outboard engines to see if they had, indeed, developed some new version of the 3.0-liter in-line four-cylinder block with a total of eight valves and made it produce 200-HP or more. I did not find any new engines at 200-HP that could be in any way be attributed to being developments of the 3.0-liter block--really no new engines at all.

The Mercury outboard line at the 200-HP level seem to be just as it was more than four years ago; there are two choices, both VERADO engines. One is the smaller 1.7-liter displacement FOURSTROKE VERADO 200, and the other is the larger 2.6-displacement FOURSTROKE VERADO 200 PRO.

One prediction made four years ago about the Mercury engine line that has come true: my prediction that the (then called "NEW") Mercury 150 FOURSTROKE (NOT VERADO) would completely cannibalize sales of the (then) Mercury 150 FOURSTROKE VERADO. That seems to have happened, as a 150-HP FOURSTROKE VERADO engine is no longer available.

I find that you can get a 175-HP FOURSTROKE VERADO, and that seems very interesting, on this basis: if the 150-HP FOURSTROKE (NOT VERADO) was able to be enhanced for more horsepower, the next tier up from 150 would be 175-HP. That the 3.0-liter 150-HP block has not been tuned-up to be a 175, and Mercury still sells the smalll-displacement four-cylinder 1.7-liter VERADO at that horsepower seem like evidence that the "NEW" 3.0-liter block is just not going to get scaled up to more horsepower.

Although it has taken four years for the air to clear, I think it is safe to say that all those guys talking up the 200-HP version of the 3.0-liter {then called "NEW") 150-HP FOURSTROKE were just blowing smoke; I think their enthusiasm for the Mercury brand overcame their rational thought. But perhaps the story is not over. Once again we are entering the end of model year production and a new year begins. Maybe Mercury this Fall will add new models, based on the 3.0-liter block, with more than 150-HP. The long wait continues.

Whalerdog
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Re: The Long Wait for the 200-HP Mercury FOURSTROKE (NOT VERADO)

Postby Whalerdog » Fri Sep 15, 2017 8:05 pm

The motor was touted as big displacement for the HP when released. How would you then pump up the HP with the same displacement without contradicting yourself? Not sure if more cubes could be added to that particular block.

pcrussell50
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Re: The Long Wait for the 200-HP Mercury FOURSTROKE (NOT VERADO)

Postby pcrussell50 » Sat Sep 16, 2017 1:06 pm

Whalerdog wrote:The motor was touted as big displacement for the HP when released. How would you then pump up the HP with the same displacement without contradicting yourself? Not sure if more cubes could be added to that particular block.


It may have been touted as big displacement for the power. A dubious enough distinction as it sits. But the real concern, especially for owners of classic Whalers (or any classic boats), is the big weight for the power.

I guess in the era of obsession with electric cars, where due to the horrendous energy density of batteries, a compact weighs as much as a full-size (and still only has half the range), the notion of obscene weight has fallen by the wayside of concerns in modern society. Strange irony, in a technologically advanced society, as engineering and material advancements are enabling lighter and stronger construction... in areas where it is desired, that is. Which apparently excludes hobby-level motoring aspirations based on the obsession with heavy outboards and heavy battery cars.

-Peter

Jefecinco
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Re: The Long Wait for the 200-HP Mercury FOURSTROKE (NOT VERADO)

Postby Jefecinco » Sat Sep 16, 2017 7:26 pm

It's often surprising how much more horsepower Mercury is able to get out of an engine without a displacement or weight increase by remapping the ECU. It is also possible to increase displacement without adding any meaningful weight by increasing the cylinder diameter. Increasing the stroke may also be possible on some engines without a meaningful weight increase.
Butch

sraab928
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Re: The Long Wait for the 200-HP Mercury FOURSTROKE (NOT VERADO)

Postby sraab928 » Sun Sep 17, 2017 7:30 am

pcrussell50 wrote:
Whalerdog wrote:The motor was touted as big displacement for the HP when released. How would you then pump up the HP with the same displacement without contradicting yourself? Not sure if more cubes could be added to that particular block.


It may have been touted as big displacement for the power. A dubious enough distinction as it sits. But the real concern, especially for owners of classic Whalers (or any classic boats), is the big weight for the power.

I guess in the era of obsession with electric cars, where due to the horrendous energy density of batteries, a compact weighs as much as a full-size (and still only has half the range), the notion of obscene weight has fallen by the wayside of concerns in modern society. Strange irony, in a technologically advanced society, as engineering and material advancements are enabling lighter and stronger construction... in areas where it is desired, that is. Which apparently excludes hobby-level motoring aspirations based on the obsession with heavy outboards and heavy battery cars.

-Peter


I too believed Mercury was planning a 200 HP release based on the 150 - It seemed logical.

If the concern is weight (which for many classic boat owners it is) - the new Evinrude E-Tec G2 150 in its lightest trim is the heaviest 150 on the market (496 lbs) - if Evinrude continues their path of discontinuing the G1 models (the 150 is currently the largest G1 E-Tec you can buy) the Mercury 150HP outboard line (fourstroke and PRO XS) would the lightest 150's on the market (Pro XS - 431 lbs - Fourstroke (not Verado) 455 lbs). This would bother me personally as I am not a Mercury outboard fan. I still do not understand Evinrude's apparent abandonment of the lightweight advantage they had. It got me to purchase two 90hp E-Tec's that honestly were bought based on weight savings alone.

Repowering classic Whalers will continue to get harder if this trend continues. A 1985 Evinrude 150 outboard weighed approximately 385 pounds.
Scott
1971 Boston Whaler Outrage 21 - under restoration