World's most powerful electric outboard pushing for world speed record
Back in May, Vision Marine Technologies opened reservations for its all-electric E-Motion 180E outboard, offering boaters the opportunity to equip their vessels with a cleaner, quieter breed of propulsion. Not only is the 180E the world's most powerful electric outboard, but it could soon become the world's fastest. Vision has teamed up with Hellkats Powerboats in an effort to push the all-out electric boat world speed record up over 100 mph (161 km/h).
A year ago, Norwegian company Evoy announced its 150-hp Pro outboard engine as the world's most powerful electric outboard, promising buyers a combination of ultra-quiet, zero-emissions cruising and horsepower they could drop on the back of their boats. The Pro is available now, and Evoy plans to add 300- and 450-hp variants in the future.
Before those more powerful Evoy Pro units get to market, though, Vision Marine is sneaking in and wresting the "world's most powerful" title from Evoy's tense, white knuckles, shipping it over the North Atlantic to Quebec, Canada. Along with its 180 hp, Vision's high-voltage E-Motion 180E tops the Evoy Pro in torque with 288 lb-ft (390 Nm). The E-Motion 180E is meant to be swapped out with a gas outboard of the same output, and Vision suspects most such boats will range between 18 and 26 ft (5.5 and 7.9 m).
Range will ultimately depend heavily upon the design of the boat itself, weight, weather conditions and other wide-ranging factors that aren't easily compounded into a neat figure, but Vision loosely estimates that the 180E could power a compatible boat up to 70 miles (113 km) while cruising at 20 mph (32 km/h). With no mention of the DC fast-charging capability that Evoy plans, Vision's battery takes a full overnight to charge from a 220-V outlet.
Vision steps beyond the "world's most powerful e-outboard motor" title, teaming with Miami-based Hellkats for a run at the world's fastest electric boat title. The partnership will create an all-electric version of Hellkats' 32-ft (9.8-m) Super-Sport Widebody catamaran called the Fulgura l. The boat will be powered by dual E-Motion outboards, and plans call for it to hit the water in November.
Vision estimates that the Fulgura will be able to top 100 mph (87 knots/161 km/h), more than enough to leapfrog the 88.6-mph (142.6-km/h) mark Jaguar Vector Racing set in 2018 with its Formula E-powered water rocket. We've seen another electric speedboat with estimated 100-mph capability make it as far as the trade show floor, but the highlighter-colored 2,200-hp Mercedes-AMG Cigarette Top Gun never proved its mettle on open water.
The average E-Motion 180E buyer won't be looking to set new world speed records but will benefit from the universal advantages of electric boat motor design: emissions/odor-free cruising, near-silent operation, and greatly decreased maintenance and fuel costs. Vision also says the electric drive is more responsive than a gas outboard.
Of course, those benefits do not come without their cost. The full E-Motion 180E package prices in at a cool $78,990 – and that's US dollars, not Canadian. That breaks down to $26,995 for the motor and $51,995 for the battery, charger and user interface kit. The hefty price tag doesn't look quite so expensive next to the NOK698,000 (approx. US$83,900) price of the Evoy Pro with 63-kWh battery pack, but either way, it's a lot of money. At least the $300 reservation fee seems affordable enough.
No speed records set below, but the video does show the E-Motion 180E making things happen on the water.
Source: Vision Marine