2015 Yamaha Outboard Reveal

Yamaha unveils new outboards for 2015.

The new 2.8-liter VF175 is available only with a 20-inch shaft. Aiming at owners of midsize bass boats — including those ready to repower a V-6 two-stroke — Yamaha says the VF175 delivers a 9 percent (5 mph) increase in top speed over its VF150 when rigged on a Skeeter ZX 190. It is slated to reach dealers in March.
Yamaha gives its most popular outboard, the venerable 2.7-liter F150, a refresh for 2015 with new cowl and pan styling and a new eight-tooth clutch dog that shifts smoother than the previous six-tooth design. The VTS function is enabled if the renamed F150B is rigged with a Command Link gauge.
In April, Yamaha will begin delivering to its dealers a port­able F8 model outboard that will share the 212 cc powerhead that debuted on the more powerful F9.9 motor and will feature a shorter tiller for easier storage, an improved carry handle and resting pads that allow it to be stored rear side down.

A spunky V MAX SHO VF115 model is a highlight of six new outboard models Yamaha will offer in 2015. This new pocket rocket shares a 1.8-liter DOHC (double overhead cam), four-valve powerhead with the F115 model. The key upgrade is a different set of camshafts that enhance air flow and cause a corresponding change in the fuel mapping, which presumably takes this motor to the rating limit for a “115,” or about 126 hp. It’s also dressed out in SHO livery, with a black hood and gear case. I tested the VF115 aboard three different boats and was impressed with its smooth operation, despite its lack of a counterbalancer. The VF115 pushed a G3 Eagle Talon 19 aluminum bass boat to 45 mph and delivered nice midrange power while returning 7.5 mpg at 25 mph. Offered only with a 20-inch shaft, the VF115 has a dry weight of 377 pounds. That’s 18 pounds more than the new 2.1-liter Mercury FourStroke 115, also a “strong” 115 that’s offered in a 20- and 25-inch length. The Yamaha offers the advantage of a 5,300 rpm to 6,300 rpm wide-open throttle (WOT) range, 300 rpm higher than the Merc, which could allow the F115 to run a prop with 1 inch less pitch for better hole shot with no top-speed sacrifice. The VF115 hits dealers in April.