Mercury Marine plans for new engine rollout

Posted on Written by Reagan Haynes

New Brunswick Corp. president Mark Schwabero thinks people will be impressed by the new sterndrive engines Mercury Marine plans to introduce soon.

The man who was named as Brunswick CEO Dusty McCoy’s eventual successor said the engines will come with “a whole array of features.”

Although the company hasn’t specifically said whether the engines will be debuted at Mercury’s media event June 16-18 in Fond du Lac, Wis. — and in fact has not specified any engines to be debuted — it has announced that multiple engines will be introduced at that time.

The company also has said it soon plans to debut a sterndrive engine for which it has built its own engine block, instead of procuring it from the automotive industry as Mercury had in the past.

“I think when the timing is right and the product is launched, you’ll see there’ll be a whole array of features that are going to come with that new product,” Schwabero told Trade Only Today. “It gets as fundamental as, when you have the opportunity to start with that engine block and have complete control of integration, the product is offering things not offered in the past. I think you’ll be impressed when that new product comes to market.”

The same group of engineers that came up with Mercury’s wildly popular 150 FourStroke are using the same development processes in creating the sterndrive product, so it’s reasonable for consumers to expect some innovations, Schwabero said.

Some industry insiders have wondered whether the rapid innovation in four-stroke outboards has helped shift some of the public’s desire for sterndrive propulsion in that direction. McCoy has alluded to upcoming innovations in that space during earnings calls and analyst meetings and said manufacturing its own sterndrives can help the company pull costs down by making its manufacturing processes more efficient.

“You’ll be hearing about it soon,” Schwabero said.

Look for more from Schwabero on his new role in the July issue of Soundings Trade Only in a Q&A by Reagan Haynes and coverage of Mercury’s media event from Trade Only executive editor Chris Landry.

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Comments

5 comments on “Mercury Marine plans for new engine rollout

  1. BayBoater

    “pull costs down”. Since when has a newly engineered product for a niche market lowered the price? R & D costs have to be paid by someone. They won’t be producing millions of those engines, so the R & D costs will have to be absorbed by the minuscule amount of buyers that the marine industry has versus the automotive industry. “manufacturing processes more efficient”? What is easier than uncrating a long-standing, well established engine, then marinizing it and installing it in the boat? And then there are the warranty costs. The cost of a bad engine block which was supplied by GM for instance, would be thrown back to GM by Brunswick, whereas, if Brunswick is the mfg of the engine, they will have to absorb the costs themselves. Spread those potential costs over each engine produced (and you know the bean-counters will) and I don’t see the costs being lowered, but actually increased to cover their own future liability. Also, who wants to be a guinea pig for a complete new engine? Not me. Brunswick will be putting a lot of potential sterndrive buyers into the “let’s wait and see” mode, versus the current and past buyers comfort zone of having an engine which was produced by an established automotive mfg. This isn’t like an established outboard mfg redesigning one engine out of an entire line. From what I have read, this new process will involve a complete replacement of automotive engines being used in Brunswick’s sterndrive boats. That’s really “rolling the dice”…

  2. Bill

    Less expensive with their all union workforce. They got a knack for throwing baseballs in a glass house.

  3. Brian Mcdermotte

    So would you rather have a non union chinese slave labor quality built product ? I personally would rather have a well paid worker that cares, building my engines instead of a lower paid worker that produces monday engines everyday !!!
    Its pretty sad when Americans minimize the work of someone just because they earned the ability to have a union job. The same unions that fought for fair wages and benefits for all Americans !!!
    Those that do this should be viewed as communists and banished to Gitmo for life !!!

  4. Fred Schaffener

    This is not a new thing for Mercury Marine. They did the same thing in 1987 with their own four cylinder engine. It had so many weird parts like a water cooled alternator that they couldn’t sell it. It flopped and this will too.

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