While it’s far from potent by high-performance powerboat standards, Mercury Marine’s latest five-horsepower FourStroke is noteworthy for anyone with an interest in marine propulsion. That’s because the 7.5-cubic-inch, 59.5-pound outboard designed for aluminum boats, skiffs and inflatables runs on a propane.
Mercury Marine’s latest five-horsepower outboard runs on propane (click image to enlarge to full frame).
“This is Mercury’s first outboard to run on clean-burning propane fuel,” said Jim Hergert, Mercury’s category manager of outboards 60 hp and lower, in a press release from the Fond du Lac, Wis., marine engine and accessories company. “Propane doesn’t degrade or contain ethanol, so you don’t need to worry about what type of fuel to run or how fresh it is. The pressurized fuel system eliminates priming, making the outboard easier to start, and the auto shut-off valves are there for safety.”
According to the release, the 5hp Propane FourStroke can run “on the same conventional propane you’re probably using in your backyard grill, so there’s no gasoline to haul with the engine” and is environmentally friendly with “30-percent lower exhaust emissions compared to gasoline.”
Designed with “a safety-first approach,” the outboard comes standard with a propane auto shut-off valve on the engine and in the fuel hose connector. The standard six-foot fuel hose threads quickly and easily to the outboard and comes with a standard US POL connector on the tank side. A 20-pound, five-gallon tank of conventional propane provides approximately 10 hours of boating at full throttle.
“In short, it’s a very eco-friendly, easy-to-use, reliable and intuitive outboard,” said Hergert.