A phone call from a fishing lodge looking for a particular kind of boat led EdgeWater Boats down a design path that resulted in turning a 22-foot outboard-powered center console into one with a diesel jack-shafted to a sterndrive. And why do that? For one, there’s a whole megayacht segment looking for rugged center consoles to serve as tenders, and going with diesel means dealing with one fuel source. But also, there’s a growing cadre of compression aficionados who prefer a diesel’s durability and efficiency. Plus, between Volvo Penta, Cummins MerCruiser and Yanmar, there is more choice in smaller lightweight diesels. Like the one you’ll find inside the EdgeWater 228 CCD.
The 228 CCD is powered by a Yanmar 4BY2-180z, which is actually a marinized inline-four BMW engine. It’s compact in size and has a relatively light weight. Paired with Yanmar’s ZT370 sterndrive, the little diesel makes the boat do interesting things. Hitting the throttle, we experienced a slight delay as the diesel’s turbo “wound” up but felt no squat as the boat climbed onto plane.
The boat holds plane at 2,500 rpm and around 15 mph, where it burns a paltry four gallons per hour. Its sweet spot is around 3,500 rpm, where it hits 27.4 mph and burns 6.3 gph, which translates into roughly 4.5 mpg. But the beauty of a diesel is you can run one just a hair off wide-open throttle (WOT) for extended lengths of time without damaging the engine. With three people aboard and 48 gallons of fuel, we topped out at around 35 mph at 4,100 rpm, getting just under 4 mpg. EdgeWater’s own performance data shows that, with the Yamaha F225, the outboard version gets 2.7 mpg at 33.7 mph. (Granted, with the outboard the boat exceeds 46 mph.)
Something important to note: With the Yamaha F225, the 228 CCD sells for $73,329, substantially less than the $91,521 base price of the diesel version. When considering small diesel power, you have to ask yourself if the price increase is justifiable. If you’re a yacht owner and want the tender’s fuel to match the mothership’s, definitely. If you’re a 40-hour a year weekend warrior, maybe not. But the more you use it, the more the efficiency gains will accrue. Besides, there’s more to love about this package than miles per gallon.