A whole new boating category begins – electric boats
March 8, 2005 American company Johnson Outdoors has launched a significant new line of electric boats that creates a new category of watercraft – whisper quiet, pollution free and very easy-to-use. Designed to be used by boaters and non-boaters alike, the new Escape brand Electric Touring Boat, Electric Chaise Lounger and Electric Fun Boat all feature a simple “flip-the-switch-and-go” electric propulsion system, intuitive steering and lots of comfort features.
“The Escape watercraft line leverages our technical expertise in boats and electric motors and our unique ability to turn consumer insight into innovation,” said Johnson Outdoors CEO Helen Johnson-Leipold. “These easy-to-use products remove many of the barriers that prevent people from boating. This isn’t just a new product line – it is a whole new category of boat.”
The sleek, slender Escape Electric Touring Boat is a versatile two-person craft ideal for “round-the-lake” excursions, shallow water explorations, romantic evening cruises and even for reaching remote fishing hot spots. The Escape Electric Chaise Lounger, which can hold two adults and two children, is perfect for leisurely on-water time with family and friends.
The oval-shaped Escape Electric Fun Boat features a water cannon capable of spraying 30 feet – offers an adult and child (or child alone) the opportunity to spray, dodge, or spin for hours at a time. The Electric Fun Boat is 7-feet long with a 4-foot beam, weighs 125 pounds and has a total weight capacity of approximately 250 pounds. With the ability to accommodate an adult and child, two children or one adult, the boat’s simple steering makes it easy for kids to maneuver and spray – or to dart away from oncoming water cannons.
Powered by a Minn Kota custom electric marine motor with 30-pound thrust propulsion capabilities, the craft reaches speeds up to 3.5 mph and runs up to six hours before needing a recharge, as designated by the built-in battery charge indicator. Motor-lifts for safe on-shore parking, lift handles on the hull and an ergonomic handle provide mobility for the boat in and out of the water.
The boat’s speed and maneuverability, not to mention the captain’s agility, are put to the test with the Electric Fun Boat’s obstacle course and for an all-out family water fight, the water ball launcher and dock-mounted water cannon are necessities. Additional optional accessories include an anchor, mooring cover and trailer, all adding to the suggested retail price of US$1,999.
The new Escape line boasts a number of technological innovations that make them extremely easy to use. Each of the boats features a reliable Minn Kota electric propulsion system. The new line is also equipped with battery status lights, which tell users when to head to shore for a recharge; easily tilted motor/prop shafts for worry-free beaching and trailering; and intuitive joystick-style steering controls, designed for both children and adults.
In addition to the models mentioned above, the Escape brand line also includes the roomy Deck Boat, a 13-foot electric powered craft with an 800-pound capacity; and the versatile Mobile Water Platform, an 8-foot, 8-inch pedal boat with an 850-pound capacity.
All Escape models meet applicable US Coast Guard standards and can operate for up to eight hours before requiring battery recharge. Multiple options are also available, some purely functional (such as trailers, mooring covers, portable snack/picnic table or towable cooler) and some of which are just for fun (such as the water ball launcher or dock-mounted water cannon.)