Evinrude has added four new horsepower classes to its E-Tec G2 stable of outboards, including a 150, 150 HO, 175 and 200 hp. These engines feature 2.7-liter V-6 blocks and carry over a number of features from the first round of G2 outboards (which range up to 300 hp), including the bold G2 styling.
As with all Evinrude engines, the new engines are two-strokes — the direct-fuel-injected variety. While bucking the popular trend toward four-stroke outboards, this technology affords a number of performance advantages, says Jason Eckman, product marketing manager for Evinrude.
“G2 is the perfection of E-Tec,” Eckman states. When pitted against comparable four-stroke outboards, Evinrude’s G2 technology offers 20 percent more torque, 15 percent better fuel efficiency and 75 percent fewer emissions, according to Evinrude’s comparison tests.
Eckman acknowledges that overcoming today’s four-stroke bias is a challenge for Evinrude. At the same time, he sees great potential in offering something distinctly different and, as he views it, better. “You can’t make a me-too product and delight enthusiasts,” he says.
Many boaters abandoned the older two-strokes because of the smoke and smell, Eckman admits. Yet the new generation of Evinrude outboards has advanced far beyond the old-school perception, eliminating earlier objections while retaining key advantages, including a better power-to-weight ratio and more low-end torque than comparable four-strokes.
The new G2s integrate a number of conveniences, including built-in power-assist steering developed exclusively for Evinrude. Unlike other power-steering systems, the components are concealed inside the engine housing with electronic steering input from the helm telling the outboard where to turn. This is complemented by electronic throttle and shift. As a result, there are no hydraulic lines or throttle cables — a single rigging tube conceals it all.
Eliminating hardware in front of the outboard also allows for a higher tilt axis, which permits the lower unit to trim completely out of the water when docked, minimizing corrosion. For boaters who want to repower with a G2 but keep their existing Evinrude mechanical throttle-and-shift controls, an available module converts cable input to electronic signals.
A beltless magneto delivers 70 amps, 40 percent more amps than the first generation of Evinrude E-Tec outboards, says Eckman.
An undercowl 3-gallon oil tank supplies two-stroke lubricant to the oil-injected engine, but you can also equip the new G2 outboard with remote tanks for two-stroke oil.
The new G2 outboards also offer i-Trim, which can automatically trim the outboard for optimum hole shot, fuel efficiency and speed. You can turn it on or off using the Evinrude Icon touchscreen display. Pressing the trim/tilt button on the throttle control lever overrides the automatic function in favor of skipper-controlled trimming.
In our testing, we found that the i-Trim worked well in most applications, though we had to take back control on an Alumacraft Edge 185 with the new 150 HO because it began to porpoise in choppy water. To be fair, we were testing a prototype G2 during a sneak peek in mid-April.
On the lower unit, the ventilation plate extends farther aft to improve prop thrust while “wings” on the clamp bracket help to deflect spray. A slight camber on the skeg helps to compensate for the effects of prop torque while underway.
As with the bigger 3.4-liter G2 models, cosmetics of the new outboards can be customized to match your boat’s colors thanks to the availability of special panels and accent decals. There are hundreds of combinations from which to choose.
Evinrude E-Tec G2 outboards carry a five-year limited warranty for the engine and corrosion. Also, there’s no scheduled maintenance required for the first five years or 500 hours. For boaters in the Snowbelt, the G2s offer an automatic winterization function to further minimize maintenance.
With the performance advantages, innovative features and wide array of colors, the new Evinrude E-Tec G2 outboards are tough to ignore. Even for boaters with a four-stroke bias, this might be a ’Rude awakening.