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Author Topic:   News about new Mercury 4-stroke motors
Plotman posted 10-14-2003 10:42 AM ET (US)   Profile for Plotman   Send Email to Plotman  
This was in my local paper today:

(providing a link rather than a copy to avoid copyright issues)

Duluth Tribune Article

hauptjm posted 10-14-2003 10:58 AM ET (US)     Profile for hauptjm    
Now this should start some buzzing.
lhg posted 10-14-2003 02:16 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
This article is about the new Mercury in-line six-cylinder four-strokes. Looks like we'll finally get to see them at the Miami Boat show this Feburary.
prm1177 posted 10-14-2003 02:18 PM ET (US)     Profile for prm1177  Send Email to prm1177     
$18k. Yipes! These had better be bullet-proof at those prices.
13DAUNTLESS posted 10-14-2003 07:04 PM ET (US)     Profile for 13DAUNTLESS  Send Email to 13DAUNTLESS     
Bombardier uses Merc Opti power in the form of a 250 as well as Merc efi power in a 240 in their sport boats. They will continue to da so until their contract runs out with Merc. By that time they should have their OMC/Bombardier motors ready to work with a jet drive.

Polaris also uses a 240 and 250 Merc in their sport boats. Interestingly enough they also contracted Baja to build the hull. There is a whole lot of Brunswick in the Polaris sport boat.


jimh posted 10-14-2003 08:10 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
[Changed TOPIC; was "News article about new Mercury E-TEC motors (sic)". Deleted comments regarding inappropriate headline, as E-TEC is not a Mercury name, but a Bombardier product line--jimh.]

When asked about pricing, Mercury Marine President Patrick C. Mackey said that customers will "receive value for money."

jimh posted 10-14-2003 08:14 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Here is a pair of the new Project-X engines on a Boston Whaler:


Barney posted 10-14-2003 08:23 PM ET (US)     Profile for Barney  Send Email to Barney     
lhg posted 10-14-2003 08:34 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
Thanks, Jim. That is one strange looking engine profile, another Darth Vader looking machine like the 300 EFI. It's going to take some getting used to. Only the lower unit is recognizeable with conventional Mercs.

My Mercury mechanic told me the two lower cylinders of the in-line 6 are actually in the engine mid section.

kglinz posted 10-14-2003 09:01 PM ET (US)     Profile for kglinz  Send Email to kglinz     
I was told by my dealer that the installed price after you buy the DTS throttle, the Smartcraft Displays and harness you will be way over 20K.
Perry posted 10-14-2003 10:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for Perry  Send Email to Perry     
And I thought Honda's were expensive!
jws posted 10-15-2003 08:34 AM ET (US)     Profile for jws  Send Email to jws     
Well over $20,000!!!! For that kind of money I would also like seating for 5, air conditioning, 4 doors, automatic transmission, stereo CD sound system, disc brakes, power steering, etc. etc. It better be bullet proof, run on fumes and never need any maintenance. Where is the value in these engines?
jimh posted 10-15-2003 09:01 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
The goal of Mercury Marine in developing this engine was not to make another "Me Too" 4-stroke. They set out to make a new engine that would have outstanding performance--better than any current four stroke outboard--yet also have very low emissions. They have often used automotive brand names like Porsche and Ferrari as examples of the level of engineering and performance they wanted in this motor.

The last time I checked, Porsche and Ferrari products were priced at the very high end of the range for automobiles, and apparently the Project-X engines will be located in that same segment of the outboard motor market.

The engines include many refinements unavailable in any current outboard motor.

For example, the engine is reported to contain a built-in hydraulic steering system. One needs only to connect a Teleflex helm pump via hydraulic cables to the engine. The actuator mechanism is apparently built into the mounting assembly of the motor. This avoids purchasing hundreds of dollars of hydraulic steering actuators, link arms, mounting brackets, etc., and also removes significant clutter from the installation.

The use of fly-by-wire remote controls is another innovation.

The SMART-CRAFT instrumentation is more advanced than any other.

There is a price point in the market for many different types of products. Look at wrist watches. You can buy something that tells time from $5 to $5,000 (or more!).

Plus, they look cool:

Family Three Engine

bsmotril posted 10-15-2003 09:26 AM ET (US)     Profile for bsmotril  Send Email to bsmotril     
My first thought when I saw the profile of the motor was that it looks like a big husky Shrimp curled around the transom. So Who's going to be the first one to add a couple of antennae to the top of the cowling and paint it to look like a big shrimp?


ShrimpBurrito posted 10-15-2003 10:11 AM ET (US)     Profile for ShrimpBurrito  Send Email to ShrimpBurrito     
Hmmm.....I have yet to hear of a 4-stroke burrito.
13DAUNTLESS posted 10-15-2003 11:32 AM ET (US)     Profile for 13DAUNTLESS  Send Email to 13DAUNTLESS     
Does anyone know the aspiration configuration of the new motors? Could they be using a turbo or supercharged setup?
lhg posted 10-15-2003 02:18 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
Reportedly, they are supercharged. Whether the whole family of 6 engines, 135-250 will be, remains to be seen.
I have heard that the 135-175's will be four of the 6 cylinders. I have heard that they weigh the same as current 2-strokes, but are faster, both top end and acceleration.
To be able to outperform Mercury's current 2 stroke EFI's is saying something. My guess is that one will actually be able to buy one, once the waiting list demand dies down, for the same as the new Suzuki 3.6 LITER 250. It certainly will be interesting to see what the new Whalers will look like with these things bolted on.

If you currently have a high HP 4-stroke, you don't want to run into one of these at a stoplight, or offshore either.

Jim, that's a first. How did you get the picture up on the forum?

13DAUNTLESS posted 10-15-2003 04:20 PM ET (US)     Profile for 13DAUNTLESS  Send Email to 13DAUNTLESS     
Any plans for the same technology in the 75-115 range?
lhg posted 10-15-2003 04:29 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
Have no idea. But I would agree that all manufacturers need something better in 4-stroke offerings in these mid-range horsepowers. Currently the Merc 115 EFI offers the best HP to weight (386#'s) ratio, but it's still high. Weight is a continuing problem for twin engine installations in these ranges.
alkar posted 10-15-2003 10:59 PM ET (US)     Profile for alkar  Send Email to alkar     
My motors (Hondas) weigh in at 1010 for the pair. I'll be tickeled pink if I can swing a pair of these new Mercs in a couple years - even if it only drops my motor weight 200 or 250 pounds.
trask posted 10-15-2003 11:55 PM ET (US)     Profile for trask    
Way to go Merc!!! Other than the price (remember, that's retail) they gotta be awesome.
jws posted 10-16-2003 02:45 PM ET (US)     Profile for jws  Send Email to jws     
It'll take a brave man to pony up the big bucks to buy one of these the first year they are made. Sounds like lots of new technology and ideas all concentrated on one engine. That tells me lots of consumer testing on lots of new and different components with lots of dealer techs doing "learning work" when problems arise. I hope Mercury really did wring it out good.

I'll give Mercury a "Way to go" after they have been out on the market a full year with rave reviews from the actual owners.

lhg posted 10-16-2003 02:50 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
I guess trasktroll just did a 180, considering his recent obnoxious post about Japanese engines! But wait, trask, in three or fours years they'll have out the copies, then Regulator buyers can try to catch up with the Whaler Outrage guys. But in the meantime, they'll get their doors blown off.
Mercury says there will be 7 versions of this engine, 135-250HP, with 95% parts interchangeablilty. So my comment above about the 6 versions was incorrect. Now I'm trying to guess HP's.

Could it be 135, 150, 175, 200, 225, 250 & 275 or 300!

jimh posted 10-16-2003 03:22 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
The engines have been extensively tested on a world wide basis, in different climates, in fresh water, in salt water, in salt water of varying salinity and temperatures.

It has been reported that over 30,000 hours of testing has been done. Over $100,000,000 has been invested in the development of this technology, according to reports by Brunswick senior management to financial analysts and investors.

The initial development was done at the highest horsepower range. This was intentional because it was thought that if the technology could be successful at higher horsepowers it would be easier to scale it downward to lower horsepower engines, rather than begin development at low horsepower and try to scale the technology upward to 250 or more horsepower.

The initial production will be in the high horsepower engines but the entire range is promised for delivery in 2004.

Peter posted 10-16-2003 04:14 PM ET (US)     Profile for Peter  Send Email to Peter     
Couldn't agree more with the big husky shrimp comment. Instead of antenna and paint to match the color of live shrimp, I was thinking someone's going to paint it to match the color of cooked peeled shrimp and paint the cockpit sole to match the color of cocktail sauce and calling such a rig "Shrimp Cocktail".

Seriously, it sure doesn't look like a light weight outboard so they must be using some exotic materials. Also, because they are integrating things such as the hydraulic steering actuator, for example, it will become a bit more difficult to compare its weight to the weight of a conventional outboard without the integrated components.

If the fly-by-wire controls are anything like the electronic controls I played with at the Mercury booth at the boat show earlier this year - NO THANKS, I'll pass.

lhg posted 10-16-2003 04:37 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
I would think that a small displacement 2.6 liter in-line six would be an inherently lighter weight engine than a 3.3 or 3.6 liter V-6 when it comes to dual overhead cam 4-stroke complexity.

I note that they are showing the engine with Mercury's brand new 5 bladed propeller. This could be part of the enhanced acceleration they are claiming?

trask posted 10-16-2003 06:31 PM ET (US)     Profile for trask    
You guys can arm chair quarterback Merc's decision to death. I'll bet they will be awesome motors. Maybe need a tweak here one year and a tweak there the next, but by year three - look out! I'll take the new technology any day. Carbs suck.
Mumbo Jumbo posted 10-16-2003 08:12 PM ET (US)     Profile for Mumbo Jumbo  Send Email to Mumbo Jumbo     
You guys are just too negative. This engine looks like the perfect companion for the Bayliner-SeaRay/Whaler bloats. If Merc will put some bright red NASCAR slash graphics on the cowling and guarantee me a manly "holeshot" and 80+ top end, I'll put one on my '73 Whaler 13. Just because it's horribly ugly and nasty black doesn't mean it can't be a good engine when rigged with a reverse cupped nine blade geranium prop and given a few years intensive tweaking to get it up to1997-99 OMC Ficht standards. Guys, let's be positive; this is a serious engine.
Marlin posted 10-16-2003 08:18 PM ET (US)     Profile for Marlin  Send Email to Marlin     
Well, technically, carbs don't suck. It's more like the low manifold pressure caused by a piston on its intake stroke creates a pressure gradient across the throttle butterfly, causing a net airflow from the external ambient pressure into the reduced-pressure manifold. ;-)
alkar posted 10-17-2003 12:47 AM ET (US)     Profile for alkar  Send Email to alkar     
Mumbo Jumbo, I think you are aptly named. :)
jws posted 10-17-2003 11:52 AM ET (US)     Profile for jws  Send Email to jws     
So what does this mean for the Optimax? If Mercury is going to produce a "full lineup" of these engines then they will go head to head with the Optimax line. Can Mercury or dealers for that matter contend with the cost and complexity of all the various parts and keeping them in stock for two seperate lines that directly compete with one another? Not to mention tech training to go along with everything else. Seems like a big order. So is the Optimax on the way out in a few years when the new lineup gets established? Look what happened to the 2 stroke Suzukis, gone, no longer, nada, zip.
trask posted 10-17-2003 02:36 PM ET (US)     Profile for trask    
jws, just a guess but I'll bet the end is near for the 2 stroke outboards. way too much emphasis placed on 4 stroke power now.
Perry posted 10-17-2003 06:47 PM ET (US)     Profile for Perry  Send Email to Perry     
The end may be near for classic 2 strokes but the new generation DFI 2 strokes have a place in the market for now.
trask posted 10-17-2003 07:19 PM ET (US)     Profile for trask    
I agree, for now. 10 years from now? I don't think so. What's the talk of Bombardier and jet drives? Thought a jet drive always lost 30% thrust as compared to a prop.
jimh posted 10-17-2003 08:34 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
As far as the status of the Optimax engine, Mercury's senior management have stated that the current Optimax technology represents about the limit to which 2-stroke engines can be taken in reaching low emission exhaust output. In the 4-stroke engine there is apparently more room for future refinements of exhaust emissions.

I also believe that Mercury will probably not be selling any outboards that are not compliant after model-year-2005. Since we are now in model-year-2004, we only have one model year left before sun down on the old 2-stroke technology.

If further constraints are imposed by regulatory agencies on the exhaust emissions of newly manufactured recreational outboard motors, it appears that the 4-stroke engine will offer the best approach to reaching those emission goals.

lhg posted 10-17-2003 08:37 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
From what I understand, the conventional carb and EFI 2 strokes will legislated out in a few years, and the Optimax will replace them as the lower priced line when compared to the Project "X" 4-strokes.

The reason the Optimax, HPDI and Ficht/E-Tec will still be relevant is that the current high HP 4-strokes, except (supposedly) for these new Mercs, aren't up to the same performance capabilities, and the DFI's are faster in acceleration and top speed. Plus cost is less. And now, in 2003, all three brands are as good reliability wise, also.

Perry posted 10-17-2003 10:06 PM ET (US)     Profile for Perry  Send Email to Perry     
Larry, you forgot to mention another reason why the Optimax, HPDI and Ficht/E-Tec will still be relevent: the EPA. They are much kinder to the environment then the conventional 2 strokes.
trask posted 10-18-2003 01:25 AM ET (US)     Profile for trask    
Gentlemen, Mercury's new 4 strokes will surpass the Opti-max 2 stroke technology in ALL areas. Acceleration, quietness, fuel economy, emissions, every category. The writing is on the wall; just a matter of time.
jimh posted 10-18-2003 09:07 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
It has also been reported that the noise output of the new Mercury engines is extremely low, not only at idle speeds (as is the case for many current four-stroke engines) but at high speed operation as well. Observers on test rides report being able to have conversation at normal voice levels while underway at high speeds with the new engine. Apparently special engineering attention was given to muting of exhaust noise.

By the way, the "Project-X" name was the "public" code name for the engine. Internally at Mercury the project was known as "family three" engines.

The engines are being built at Mercury's main plant in Fond Du Lac, Wisconsin where about 3,200 people are employed. There has been some talk that production of engines below 60 horsepower in the Mercury line will be transfered to offshore manufacturing, possibly in Asia and possibly in China.

In August of 2003 a number of gentlemen of Asian descent were being given a plant tour of the Mercury production facility, and this was well-noted by the workforce there. The employees are represented in collective bargaining by a machinists union, which asked for an explanation of the situation with regard to sending engine production offshore. According to reports, Mercury explained the gentlemen were actually agents and representatives of Mercury products in Asian markets.

I must also note that both George Buckley and Patrick Mackey, if judged by their accents, must be of Scottish descent. Scotland has a long history of producing wonderfully engineered products, and the reputation of the Scotsman as an engineer was, of course, sealed in stone for all time by the television series STAR TREK and its casting of the role of the spaceship's engineer as a gentleman of Scottish descent.

Seriously, the Scots have been figuring out engineering problems and their solutions for many centuries, and I am sure that Messrs. Buckley and Mackay have created something worthy of their heritage with these new Family Three engines.

jimh posted 10-18-2003 09:08 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Also see this article, now with some images of the plant and test facility:

Toad2001 posted 10-18-2003 09:53 PM ET (US)     Profile for Toad2001  Send Email to Toad2001     
Who would buy any outboard made in China? I wouldn't. In fact I will boycott Mercury when they shift any production there. Its sad to see more lines shut down in the States.
At least with Canada, Japan and Mexico its a completely different economic and democratic ball game.
I cringe every time I have to buy running shoes because nobody makes them but the Chinese...(at less than 50 cents/hour)
jimh posted 10-18-2003 11:10 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
People buy outboards made in Asia all the time, and in fact they rave about them and appear to not give a tinker's damn about the fact that the importation of these Asia-made products have caused a loss in manufacturing jobs for Americans. Thus, I am totally astonished that someone would find that importation of an outboard made in China would somehow constitute something different.

Are you saying that it is perfectly fine to import outboards made in other Asian countries to the United States and to purchase them in lieu of products made here, but somehow if an outboard is made in China it is a different ball game?

I think this sudden interest in protecting American manufacturing is about twenty years too late--where were you when Yamaha, Honda, Nissan, Toyota, and Suzuki were making outboards in Asia and importing them to the United States?

ryanwhaler posted 10-18-2003 11:24 PM ET (US)     Profile for ryanwhaler  Send Email to ryanwhaler     
I don't know anything about the motor itself. . . .but the cowling sure looks like a Jofa hockey helmet.
Toad2001 posted 10-19-2003 03:31 AM ET (US)     Profile for Toad2001  Send Email to Toad2001     

Isn't China is a Communist country? I'd say that makes it a completely different ball game...

jimh posted 10-19-2003 09:30 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
I believe that during the Clinton Administration--very democratic bunch--that CHINA was granted "most favored nation" trading status.

See .

What I hear in this line of discussion is that somehow it is perfectly fine for companies that are from Asian nations to take advantage of lower manufacturing costs by building their products in Asia, but if an American company does this it is not acceptable.

Let me ask you this: If you go to the outboard motor store and want to buy a 25-HP motor, are you willing to pay more for a motor of equal quality just because it was assembled in Fond Du Lac?

Experience has shown that the vast majority of consumers in the United States will ignore these little problems of national origin, manufacturing location, where the profit from their purchase ultimately flows, and just about all other questions of politics and global economic policy, and instead buy the product that they perceive to be the best value for their money.

In the case of Mercury, they are the only American company in the outboard manufacturing business. They sell into a global marketplace, and they are currently the industry leader in that marketplace. In fact, they sell more outboard motors (on a unit basis) outside of the U.S. than they do here.

And you want to BOYCOTT the only American manufacturer of outboard motors?

Every American who purchases an outboard motor made by an Asian company ultimately sends the profit from that sale to a foreign country. Their dollars flow from America.

If you purchase an outboard motor made by an American company, the profit from that sale ultimately stays in America. Your dollars stay in America.

If you wish to inject politics, global economic, and foreign trade considerations into the purchase of outboard motors in the United States, I ask that you apply your preferences on an equitable basis to all brands, foreign and domestic.

jws posted 10-19-2003 11:44 AM ET (US)     Profile for jws  Send Email to jws     
Wow! From the new 4 stroke Mercury to a discussion on the politics of world trade. Interesting. China has a most favored nation trade status yet it is still illegal for USA citizens to go to Cuba under most circumstances! Amazing. Hey, what about building Mercury engines in Cuba? Mercury advertising pictures of Fidel as "Black Max"? I also own a Honda outboard built in Japan and a Honda auto built in Ohio. Both are great. I do like the fact the auto is built in the USA. I would certainly buy USA with equal quality and close price.

I hope Mercury really has it right from the start with the new engine.

Toad2001 posted 10-19-2003 04:24 PM ET (US)     Profile for Toad2001  Send Email to Toad2001     
Maybe boycott was too strong a word. But I would buy the Honda, the Rude etc., etc., as I would trust the quality over what I suspect would come from China...In addition to the slap in the face of production shift.
PS-I',m Canadian, but still support the States whenever I can. I can't beleive nobody else seems to give a rip.
ryanwhaler posted 10-19-2003 07:01 PM ET (US)     Profile for ryanwhaler  Send Email to ryanwhaler     
I thought Johnson and Evinrude where american made, are you saying that the only outboard motors made in the USA are Mercury's? Since when?
Peter posted 10-19-2003 07:21 PM ET (US)     Profile for Peter  Send Email to Peter     
Actually, when I bought my last new motor, the only question I asked is which brand is the most likely to get me where I want to go and home time after time.

I don't give a damn about global politics and price wasn't a major factor.

Barney posted 10-19-2003 08:15 PM ET (US)     Profile for Barney  Send Email to Barney     
It's too late. The manufacturing shift has been made to China. Everything I've bought at Autozone lately has been made in China, from disc brakes rotors to power steering pulleys. Some of it's better quality than OEM.
I'll take a new 4 HP 4-stroke for $500 please. Watch and see.
Toad2001 posted 10-19-2003 10:26 PM ET (US)     Profile for Toad2001  Send Email to Toad2001     

The problem with feeding China an economic windfall of manufacturing product is that sooner than later, their economy and military expenditure, combined with the fact that their population is already 5 times that of the States, they will supercede the US as the dominant world (super) power. Under communist rule, I don't want any part of contributing to that.
I'd rather pay $900 for that motor, 30% more for running shoes, and 25% extra for my kids' toys.
Call me crazy.
You're right though, it probably already is too late.
captbone posted 10-19-2003 10:49 PM ET (US)     Profile for captbone  Send Email to captbone     
I guess since Jimh says that the merc 225 four stroke is American made than the yamaha 225 four stroke (same engine) is O.K. too. I guess that means that Evinrude and Johnson are O.K. too. Since Johnson and Suzuki have the same engine, I guess suzuki are o.k. too. I guess then that Hondas are the only NON-american engine. All of these companies are in bed together!
jimh posted 10-20-2003 09:23 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
I happened to mention that Mercury was talking about shifting some production to Asia and a boycott broke out. I am not suggesting a boycott of anyone. I just point out inconsistencies in attitude.

Bombardier is a Canadian firm. They make their engines overseas, well overseas to them, in Wisconsin.

As mentioned, it is hard to avoid products "Made In China" these days.

By the way, the reason Mercury wants to move production to Asia for engines less than 60-HP is the market has driven the price of these engines down to the point where the profit margins are slim.

lhg posted 10-20-2003 01:26 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
Capt - In reading back, I don't see where JimH said the Mercury version of the Yamaha 225 4-stroke is made in the US. It's made in Japan, since Mercury made a deal with Yamaha to buy 4000 of these engines, evidently to tide them over in the large 4-stroke market until the supercharged 4-strokes were ready for release. But Mercury evidently did re-engineer some portion of the engine soundproofing, since the Merc versions, according to boating mag reports, run quieter than the Yamaha originals.

As for Johnson 2-strokes and Evinrude Fichts, they are made in Wisconsin, near Milwaukee. And now with the spin-off by Bombardier, the new operation, as yet un-named (but obviously can't use the Bombardier name) will be 65% American owned,(silent investors in Chicago) and 35% owned by the original Bombardier family from Quebec, who I'm sure will be calling the shots.

Getting back to JimH's subject at hand, I'm interested in a pair of these new engines for my 25, but I think I will have to wait for versions less than 250 HP. I expect new Whalers, like the 320 Outrage, will have some of these engines factory installed on them by next Spring.

What I am most interested in hearing is engine weights, hopefully no heavier than the Honda 115 at 505 lbs, or the current Optimax 250 weighing same.

prm1177 posted 10-20-2003 06:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for prm1177  Send Email to prm1177     
I asked my dealer/marina owner about these. He mentioned he went to the dealer event in Tennesee. When he went out on the demo boat, the marketing man in charge told him to hold on. Like most of the dealers there, he pooh-poohed the idea of neck snapping outboard accelerations (Outrage 24 with single engine), but he held on with one had because he didn't want to look like an a**. He said a second later he had to fight to bring his other hand forward just to hold on after throttle up.

On the other hand, he said it was possible to hold a normal conversation at WOT.

Got me interested in looking at one of the 150's for my 17...

jimh posted 10-20-2003 10:59 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
More information on the move to offshore production of the less-than-60-HP Mercury engines is in the article (hyperlink) below. Note that another less obvious reason for locating manufacturing in China is the enormous potential market in China for small outboards.

And those guys at Fond Du Lac will be working overtime trying to keep production up with demand for these new Family-Three engines.

GlennGlenn posted 10-21-2003 06:47 PM ET (US)     Profile for GlennGlenn  Send Email to GlennGlenn     
Bombardier uses Merc Opti power in the form of a 250 as well as Merc efi power in a 240 in their sport boats. They will continue to da so until their contract runs out with Merc. By that time they should have their OMC/Bombardier motors ready to work with a jet drive.

** Actually, Bombardier is SELLING the rec products division which is sno-mos, Boats and PWC;s; I believe that after the Mercury contract, we'll see someone new getting their hands on these engines and boats. Go to the web site for Bombardier. Its been up since April 2003 on the block************

Polaris also uses a 240 and 250 Merc in their sport boats. Interestingly enough they also contracted Baja to build the hull. There is a whole lot of Brunswick in the Polaris sport boat.

*** Isn't that actually a Baja hull with merc motor???? I think we'll be seeing more of the homegenization of boats in the future to keep down costs. Hey, even GM is buying motors from honda*************8

GlennGlenn posted 10-21-2003 07:00 PM ET (US)     Profile for GlennGlenn  Send Email to GlennGlenn     
Gentlemen, Mercury's new 4 strokes will surpass the Opti-max 2 stroke technology in ALL areas. Acceleration, quietness, fuel economy, emissions, every category. The writing is on the wall; just a matter of time.

How so Trask, according to Bombardier, the E Tec, when it does get off the shelves in a few weeks, will put out one tenth of the emissions at rest that a four stroke does. If this is true, then it is NOT then end of the 2 Stroke, just the beginning of its developement. I thought the same as you a few years back, BUT for power/weight etc, teh two stroke cannot be beat. One of the all time highs for power to weight is still the Kawasaki Mach III 500 two stroke engine. Comparatively, not a clean engine BUT fast as hell, eevn by todays standrads. Maybe 4 strokers will beat
2s in the Optimax category, but the new E Tec looks promising.


lhg posted 10-21-2003 08:21 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
Mercury is now advertizing that their new 2-stroke Optimax 75-115's are 3 star rated and have the idle sound of a 4-stroke. Supposedly, they are also the fastest in their HP classes, all technologies. But I have also heard that 3 star is about all that can be achieved from a 2-stroke DFI. Jimh indicates something to that effect, above. Maybe Evinrude E-tec will change those assumptions.

I don't give trask credit for much other than trolling, but he is, maybe inadvertantly, on the mark with the new Mercury large 4-stroke comment. Evidently they will be able to eventually achieve better than the 3 star rating, and will be the first 3 star large 4-strokes.

When it comes to acceleration and power output, word is the in-line 6 can evidently outrun Mercury's, and everybody else's, best 2-strokes, in spite of the small cube block.

I think anybody contemplating a new 135-250HP engine for their Whaler should hold off, if they can, to see how this new 4-stroke technology actually performs. I think a pair of them can make the fairly heavy 270 or 320 Outrages go very fast.

jimh posted 10-21-2003 08:58 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
It seems silly that Mercury Marine spent $100,000,000 developing the new Family-Three 4-stroke engines if all they had to do to improve the exhaust gas emissions of their Optimax 2-stroke engines was get on the internet are read a few discussion forums that had the answer for them.

I think the stock holders are going to be upset when they find out the dollars wasted on this project when the answer was right there all the time.

Perry posted 10-22-2003 03:10 AM ET (US)     Profile for Perry  Send Email to Perry     
From what I have read, these new Mercury 4 strokes will be big sellers if they perform as promoted. It may take a couple of years to gain consumer confidence though.
BTW, all the large 4 strokes are currently 3 star rated.
lhg posted 10-22-2003 02:47 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
Perry - Mercury's new 2004 catalog shows the Yamaha built 225 4-stroke as only 2 star rated. So I assume the Yamaha catalog would show the same for theirs. Honda's 225?

Merc's 25-115 4-strokes get 3 stars, as do the 75-135 Opti's.

Perry posted 10-22-2003 03:27 PM ET (US)     Profile for Perry  Send Email to Perry     
Larry, according to their respective web sites, Yamaha, Honda and Suzuki all have 3 star ratings for their large 4 strokes. Actually every outboard Honda makes from 2 to 225 hp has the 3 star rating.
lhg posted 10-22-2003 04:01 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
Yamaha's 2003 catalog shows the 225 with a 2-star rating.

It could be that Yamaha upgraded the engine for '04, and that the 4000 that Mercury bought were all '03 models, and must still have some left over to sell as '04 models.

Chesapeake posted 10-24-2003 05:08 PM ET (US)     Profile for Chesapeake  Send Email to Chesapeake     
This has been one of the best and most informative posts I've had the pleasure of watching. Thank you. There is no reason to doubt that Mercury will execute flawlessly. If it does so, these motors will change the industry. The Japanese (Yamaha) will have to do a whale of a job reverse engineering and catching up.

Had an interesting conversation with John at Lauderdale Marina last week on this very topic. Although Yamaha was scheduled to launch their 150 4-stroke in August, he has yet to even see one and doubts that he will before the first of the year. Went as far to say that he wouldn't be surprised if Mercury caught up and got their new 150 out at the same time or before. So much for first mover advantage.

This is a very exciting topic. The 150 4-stroke Mercury should be the absolute perfect motor for you classic 18/19 Outrage / Guardian owners. This should get really exciting in 2004. Plus... more paid OT for Packer fans.

Tom2697 posted 10-24-2003 05:10 PM ET (US)     Profile for Tom2697  Send Email to Tom2697     
That Merc will be the ultimate motor for the 18/19 Outrage fans...IF the price is right!
lhg posted 10-24-2003 07:07 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
I think one gets what one pays for, and the Mercurys will be competitively priced. If it's a superior piece of equipment when compared to the Yamaha 150, it should cost more.

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