Go-fast boat engines pumping out 1,000 hp and more aren’t tough to find these days. All of the top engine builders including Chief, Crockett, Mercury Racing, Sterling Performance, Teague Custom Marine and more offer them. But 25 years ago, engines making that kind of power weren’t so common. And stern drives that could handle that much output? Those were rarer still.
That’s what the made the “Stern Drive by Kiekhaefer” so impressive when it was introduced in 1988. At the Key West Offshore World Championships that year, Bill Sirois, Gus Anastasi and actor Don Johnson piloted a Scarab V-bottom with triple turbocharged Gentry engines rated between 900 and 1,000 hp to a world title. Putting the power to the water were three Kiekhaefer Drives from a company then called Kiekhaefer Aeromarine and owned by Fred Kiekhaefer.