May 16, 2011
Suzuki Taps into Small Boat Market with New 4-Stroke Outboards
Suzuki's Dave Greenwood about to take a spin near Englewood, Florida's Stump Pass in a Porta Boat with a Suzuki DF9.9.
Suzuki Marine has unveiled three new outboards for 2010 which should excite small-boat anglers. The DF60A 4-stroke will be of special interest to flats anglers looking to power a technical poling skiff, or the casual boater looking for the perfect match to the small family runabout. The release of this 60 horsepower 4-stroke comes on the heels of last year's introduction of Suzuki's second-generation 70-, 80- and 90-h.p. 4-strokes, all of which featured decreases in size and weight, and improved fuel consumption.
“We are committed to providing the most advanced technology to the greatest number of boaters,” says Larry Vandiver, Marketing Director for Suzuki Marine. “The DF60 is the logical next step as we continue developing motors that are lighter, stronger and more fuel efficient in every horsepower class.”
Drawing on its vast experience in 4-stroke motorcycle engines, automotive and marine use, Suzuki has turned out the most compact and lightest outboard in its class, at 229 pounds. Last year's Suzuki 60 weighed 340 pounds.
“We did water trials pitting last year's 60-horse 4-stroke against the DF60A, on an identical boat, and we were able to achieve a 3 mile-per-hour top speed increase,” says Dave Greenwood, Suzuki's Quality Research Manager. “Despite the fact that the new 60 is a 3-rather than 4-cylinder, the 100-plus-pound weight reduction certainly had a hand in that.”
A smaller cowling makes it possible for “mini” flats boat anglers to mount smaller-profile, lightweight poling platforms, keeping their rigs lighter overall.
“We also engineered a safeguard, a tilt-limit sensor, that disengages the full upward tilt to prevent damage caused by striking the underside of a poling platform,” says Greenwood.
For anglers fishing from johnboats, square-back canoes, and small runabouts, or boaters carrying an inflatable or tender, Suzuki offers two portable 4-strokes—the DF8A and DF9.9A. They both featuring small profile cowlings, choice of manual or electric start, and the Suzuki Function Tiller Handle, which combines all operating functions.
For more information on the new Suzuki DF60A 4-stroke outboard for 2010 — or the company's leading line-up of advanced 4-stroke outboards from 2.5 to 300 horsepower, contact Suzuki Marine at (714) 996-7040 or visit www.suzuki.com
A cutaway view of the Suzuki DF60A cowling shows its 3-cylinder configuration, plus a self-adjusting timing chain relocated to the base of the power head rather than the standard topside position, which allows for a more compact, “:shorter” cowling.
The DF60A should prove to be an economical powerhouse for the lighter class of bayboats designed for shallows and tight backcountry waters. Suzuki claims this outboard gets 45 percent better fuel efficiency at cruising speed than its predecessor.
The Suzuki DF9.9A 4-stroke weighs in at 87 pounds (10 pounds less than Suzuki's previous 9.9 hp) so will suit bass or small-boat saltwater anglers perfectly. Best of all, the operator can concentrate on what's ahead thanks to the tiller handle that combines gear-shifting, throttle, and throttle adjustment. Electric start models have a 10-amp alternator to keep batteries charged.
The Suzuki DF9.9 features the multi-functional Suzuki Function Tiller Handle. The shift control is at the tip, with the throttle control and throttle friction adjuster immediately behind that. It allows you to keep your hand on the tiller at all times.
Weighting in at 229 pounds, the Suzuki DF60A balances out well with 15- to 16-foot skiffs, and at wide-op[en throttle, gets 30 percent better fuel efficiency than the company's previous 60-horse 4-stroke.
Looks like we have ourselves a high noon standoff between a jet skier and some anglers packing Suzuki heat. If a chase ensues, here's betting the new Suzuki 4-strokes make it a short one due to good top-end speed.