With the exception of hooking up its 2,500-hp dynamometer and a “few other little things,” Potter Performance Engines’ new 12,000-square-foot facility in Sarasota, Fla., is complete. That’s the word from company principal Ron Potter.
“The plant is absolutely phenomenal—it’s the best thing we’ve ever done,” said Potter. “I wish could have done it years ago, but you have to crawl before you can run.”
In addition to the large dyno cell, the new plant includes a complete machine shop, a paint-booth, a second-story parts department, multiple offices and a dust-free, air-pressurized engine assembly room. Potter said that the timing for the expansion of his operation has turned out to be ideal.
“Business has been picking up,” he said. “People are boating again. People are back to spending money. What we’re seeing most of is people upgrading what they already have, fixing up and repowering their existing boats.”
In response to the increase of marine business, Potter also said he is deemphasizing his custom automotive restoration, modification and engine efforts.
“First and foremost is our marine business,” he said. “The car stuff is just a sideline for customers who want something really nice and are willing to wait. It’s not our priority. We used the car restoration and modification business as filler when the marine engine business got slow.”
At present, the facility has enough capacity to store two 50-foot catamarans, a 50-foot V-bottom and a 38-foot V-bottom. (Potter Performance Engines is the winter home for Speed Racer, a well-known 44-foot-long Marine Technolgy, Inc., catamaran with Potter Performance power.) Potter said he is looking at increasing his company’s boat storage capacity.
“We are going to start storing and maintaining a few more boats,” he said. “I have the ability to lease of few more buildings in our industrial park.”