We liked the outboard for several reasons. First, with the outboard, you know before you hit the throttle which way your motor is pointed. That’s helpful when pulling away from the dock or sandbar, or unloading from the trailer. A sterndrive is hidden from view, and you can’t tell if it’s tilted for safe launching or, for watersports, if the helm is straight enough to give your skier a clean hole shot. Outboards are easier to flush after saltwater use, but sterndrives give a full, gunwale-to-gunwale transom platform enjoyed by many families.