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Historically, the technology and metallurgy of sterndrives often failed to measure up to the rigors of saltwater service.
Volvo Penta’s Coastal Series seeks to draw boaters back to sterndrives with an anti-corrosion package and an included seven-year warranty, offering saltwater boaters sterndrive propulsion they can count on with great reliability and longevity. In fact, Volvo Penta offers its Coastal Series package with seven-year/480-hour transferable protection, with full coverage of the engine, drive, transom shield and controls.
I got firsthand info aboard a Regal Boats 38 Fly powered by twin 430 hp Coastal Series sterndrives with twin Duoprop DPS drives on the transom.
Coastal Series drives, engine blocks and exhaust are made from aluminum, not cast iron, and a special paint is applied to the transom shield and drive. Multiple engine flush ports clear saltwater from the system, and the Easy Drain feature makes extending the season easy. The titanium-ceramic coating is applied using a state-of-the-art electro-deposition paint process and covers the entire drive assembly for maximum protection of the aluminum castings against galvanic corrosion.
To further block galvanic corrosion, standard Active Corrosion Protection (ACP) applies impressed electrical currents through a transom unit. The system continually measures and automatically adjusts the electrical output for ideal protection in both brackish and salt water.
Maintenance is key to longevity in salt water, and Volvo Penta simplifies tasks, equipping its engines with front- or top-mounted service points color-coded for easy access, visibility and identification. Engine-flush ports located on both the engine and he drive, make flushing the engine with clean water easy to do, whether you trailer your boat or keep it in a slip or on a lift.
The Coastal Series package includes freshwater cooling as standard. Additionally, the Coastal Series package enhances serviceability even further by electronically monitoring key areas for water entry, especially those most prone to corrosion.
For example, an active system uses sensors to monitor the quality of the drive gears’ lubricant, looking for a low oil level or water in the lube. Another sensor monitors the presence of water in the bellows area. Yet another monitors the fuel filter for the presence of water. These sensors deliver audible and visual warnings at the helm, prompting the action required to prevent damage. Whether repowering an existing boat or buying a new one, the available Volvo Penta Glass Cockpit and engine-monitoring displays offer diagnostics and constant monitoring on a color screen.
Cost for the Coastal Series Protection Package was not available at press time. It might vary by the boat make and model, and the engine selected. It is available for 300 to 430 hp V-8 DPS and FWD gasoline sterndrives.
Sterndrives offer a set of advantages many boaters seek. These include a layout with an unobstructed transom as compared to an outboard, plus increased speed and efficiency, shallower draft and added maneuverability versus an inboard. Further, Forward Drive adds the ability to safely wakesurf.
Volvo Penta’s Coastal Series allows saltwater boaters to leverage the sterndrive’s inherent advantages with increased confidence.