Fisherman’s Channel was a washing machine of chop and bobble, a result of wind, tide, and the wakes from all the Miami Boat Show demo boats heading for the inlet. The torque provided by the Vision Marine Technologies 180e electric outboard allowed me to get the H2e on top steadily without the bashing that comes when you need to make the boat jump up before throttling back to get going. The good-riding 22-footer then settled into a comfortable 21 mph. That was no surprise. Four Winns’ vaunted Stable-Vee hull, designed by Tom Wenstatdt, features stepped and ventilated afterpods. These inhibit excessive bow rise. Also, the width from keel to chine is kept wide farther forward than on other hulls, which adds to stability and easy planing. Introduced in 1993, we’ve run Stable-Vee hulls before with consistent results over the decades.
Engine and Batteries
At 21 mph, we used 60 kW, delivering a run time of about one hour and 20 minutes for our six-person crew in those rough conditions. The boat reportedly hits 35 knots at wide-open throttle, a speed our test conditions simply didn’t allow us to run.
It’s also notable that the 180e’s torque maintains boatspeed in turns. Indeed, the 180e (180 hp or 134 kW) delivers the equivalent of 230 peak hp or 171 peak kW. The “180” on its cowl reflects its continuous output. It’s much more than a motor—it’s an integrated propulsion system.
Twin 43 kWh batteries wired into a control-and-charging system and monitored via two 10-inch touchscreens provide the power. There’s also a phone app. Instant range, state of charge and other vital data display in real time. Therefore, while the H2e won’t do the distance or time at a stretch of the gas-powered H2 OB, there is no reason for range anxiety. You can see how far and how long you can run at a glance. And it’s quieter than a gas boat—70 versus 76 dB(A) at 21 mph, for example—and it leaves no emissions on the water. Plus, there’s the handling attributes of all that torque.
Charging takes place overnight at 120 volts.
We’ve tested the H2e’s stablemate, the H2 OB, and this electric version delivers all the luxury and refinement we noted aboard that boat. The H2e comes with even more standards, including the twin 10-inch glass helm displays and an upgraded JL Audio system.
How We Tested
- Motor: Single 180 hp/134 kW Vision Marine Technologies 180e electric outboard
- Drive: Outboard
- Gear Ratio: 2.08:1 Battery Capacity: 83 kWh Crew Weight: 1,000 lb.
- Fully integrated and connected Vision Marine powertrain system is a techno geek’s bonanza.
- Electric motor torque delivers demonstrable ride and handling benefits, including planing and turning, not to mention low noise levels.
- H2e is a luxury bowrider, with a unique style, a great ride, and excellent fit-and-finish and rigging.
- Price premium for the electric attributes is eye-watering compared to the same boat with a gas outboard.
- Propulsion system does not offer the range or “quick fill-up” ability of a gas-powered boat.
The Four Winns H2 OB ($94,200 with a Yamaha F200) is an obvious comparison, depending upon the range and run time you require from a runabout. Though a sport-type center-console rather than a bowrider, an electric competitor for boat buyers to look at would be the 22-foot Forza X1 with its 180 hp equivalent electric outboard ($120,000).
Pricing and Specs
|Price:||$189,600 (with test motor)|
|Displacement (approx.):||4,870 lb.|
|Transom Deadrise:||18 degrees|
|Battery Capacity:||83 kWh|
|Max Horsepower:||230 (171 kW)|
|Available Power:||Single Vision Marine Technologies 180e electric outboard|
Speed, Efficiency, Operation
Four Winns – Cadillac, Michigan; fourwinns.com