Scarcity of New Outboard Engines

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jimh
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Scarcity of New Outboard Engines

Postby jimh » Fri May 07, 2021 10:16 am

An undated "special report" from Power and Motor Yacht magazine (PMY) that appeared on their website in May 2021 includes interviews with outboard engine dealers and factory representatives on the subject of the difficulty to buy new outboard engines due to lack of supply.

A dealer for KEY WEST boats in Florida is quoted as follows:

Barton Holmes wrote:The situation is totally unprecedented. I’ve got five Key West Boats here, for instance, without the Yamaha [engines] that should go on ‘em. And I have no idea when I’ll be able to get those [engines]...We’re getting about a dozen calls a week about re-powers, and if the customer wants a Yamaha, for instance, we tell them it’s going to be at least six months before anything happens. In terms of 150-HP through 300-HP engines, there simply are none in dealer inventory right now. Quite frankly, in my entire life, I have never seen anything remotely like what’s happening today in the boat business. It’s a kind of buying frenzy, and I feel bad for the customers. I feel bad that they want to get into boating or change things up a bit and they can’t. It’s only April, and we’re almost out of boats!


A representative of Mercury Marine is quoted as follows:

Lee Gordon wrote:Spring is always when everyone orders, and demand is strong around the industry. We have more people working at Mercury in manufacturing today than ever before and have hundreds of job openings right now—as well as running 24/7. Forecasted orders are fine. New ones will always be delayed a bit, but that isn’t a new thing this year.


A division manager from Yamaha is quoted as follows:

Scott Higgins wrote:Timeline is very hard to discuss because of the uncertainty of the supply chain to get our product from Japan. We’ve asked customers to be patient and make sure they know that we’re working around the clock. We have been working tirelessly, trying to get back to where we want to be.


A completely different situation is described by a Suzuki representative, who reports that Suzuki likes to operate with many engines in inventory:

Gus Blakely wrote:It’s a part of our growth strategy.The last time I looked at our inventory we had about 250 units in stock...There are some classic cars out there that I’d like to have, but I wouldn’t want to be out on the water with an old outboard. I look at our product as the best we’ve ever made. The customer that is getting a new boat or a new engine, they’re going to be happy with that product.

jimh
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Re: Scarcity of New Outboard Engines

Postby jimh » Fri May 07, 2021 10:20 am

If there is a scarcity of outboard engines, Boston Whaler would be presumed to be at the head of the queue for getting Mercury engines. This may be an advantage for Boston Whaler over other boat builders at this time. I have not heard any mentions of the supply of Boston Whaler boats being constrained by lack of a Mercury engine to power them.

dtmackey
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Re: Scarcity of New Outboard Engines

Postby dtmackey » Fri May 07, 2021 11:16 am

The decision for Evinrude to exit the market was made at the wrong time. They could have enjoyed selling motors since others are carrying significnat backorders.

D-

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Phil T
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Re: Scarcity of New Outboard Engines

Postby Phil T » Fri May 07, 2021 12:09 pm

The lack of availability of loose engines has been a problem since the beginning of the year. I started hearing about it last fall.

Actually there are many Suzuki dealers that do not have any inventory and an"order" to the distributor will take several months.

Lack of manufacturing capacity is a larger concern for Boston Whaler. While any engine shortage will resolve itself in the coming months. Ramping up hull production will take years.
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ConB
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Re: Scarcity of New Outboard Engines

Postby ConB » Fri May 07, 2021 12:37 pm

https://www.tradeonlytoday.com/columns-blogs/off-the-charts

And my old Johnson is on its death bed—going the way of the dodo bird.

Con
!987 Outrage 18 / 1987 150 hp Johnson & 1969 13 / 30hp Johnson tiller

Duckmanreno
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Re: Scarcity of New Outboard Engines

Postby Duckmanreno » Fri May 07, 2021 1:18 pm

I am caught up in this, too. About three months ago [February 2021] I made a down payment on a Yamaha F70 engine. I am buying from a large outboard engine dealer who sells Yamaha boats and normally has a large number of outboards in stock. I thought he would have a better chance to get [a loose engine for re-power]than would a much smaller dealer. We will see.

To make matters worse I got in a hurry: I removed my still-running outboard so I could check the transom and plug the old lag-bolt holes. Now I can’t fish!

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Phil T
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Re: Scarcity of New Outboard Engines

Postby Phil T » Fri May 07, 2021 1:25 pm

Oh, and to make matters even worse, good-condition used outboard engine are also nonexistent.
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Jefecinco
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Re: Scarcity of New Outboard Engines

Postby Jefecinco » Sat May 08, 2021 10:14 am

Our Gulf Shores, AL MarineMax dealer has no Boston Whaler boats in the front display yard. The store's parent in Pensacola, FL may have some in-stock.
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Re: Scarcity of New Outboard Engines

Postby Oldslowandugly » Sat May 08, 2021 11:06 am

I am glad I kept my old 30hp around. My 48hp is down and I just swapped the 30hp on in it's place. My Evinrude guy said if he could locate a new 50hp it would cost $10,000.00 by the time it was rigged. And that was a big "IF".

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Re: Scarcity of New Outboard Engines

Postby jimh » Sat May 08, 2021 11:34 am

I just talked with Dave at Lockeman's, who is now an authorized Suzuki outboard engine dealer. He ordered 30 Suzuki engines, but he has received only two, with 28 engines on back order. He has three new boats pre-rigged for Suzuki engine sitting in the yard, waiting for an engine.

It sounds like Suzuki engines are not really readily available now, May 2021.

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Phil T
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Re: Scarcity of New Outboard Engines

Postby Phil T » Sat May 08, 2021 11:41 am

I based my comment

there are many Suzuki dealers that do not have any inventory


on my visit with him 10 days ago and working with 8 owners who have done a Suzuki repower this spring. Each had to wait a significant time between order and delivery.
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Jefecinco
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Re: Scarcity of New Outboard Engines

Postby Jefecinco » Sun May 09, 2021 11:05 am

Despite reassurances from Suzuki they also suffer from inventory shortages. Comments in a thread on another boating web site discuss the problem at some length. Comments from Phil T and jimh here reinforce the difficulty in finding an engine for repower. Suzuki engines appear to be in great demand due to their very competitive pricing and perception of reliability and quality.
Butch

dtmackey
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Re: Scarcity of New Outboard Engines

Postby dtmackey » Mon May 10, 2021 10:21 am

The outboard industry has been running backorders on outboards (especially over 200hp) since 2018 after the hurricanes.

D-