Evinrude added 31 new boat manufacturer partners in North America since the introduction of its E-TEC G2 high-horsepower outboards in June 2014, according to parent company Bombardier Recreational Products.
“[Thirty-one] is a big number,” BRP president and CEO Jose Boisjoli told Trade Only Today last week at the Progressive Insurance Miami International Boat Show.
BRP owns the Evinrude, Ski-Doo, Sea-Doo, Lynx, Rotax and Can-Am brands.
“Now our challenge is to expand G2 as fast as possible in the rest of the lineup. Our attention is to implement the G2 technology on all of our outboard engines,” Boisjoli added.
The company says it now has 150 original equipment manufacturer partners in North America.
The Canadian company expects to upgrade the remainder of its direct-fuel-injected 2-stroke fleet within three to five years, Boisjoli said. The rest of the first generation of E-TEC engines consists of at least a dozen models ranging from 15 to 175 hp, said Alain Villemure, vice president and general manager of BRP’s marine propulsion systems division.
Its outboards for its pontoon and jet-drive series will also become G2 engines, bringing the benefits of the technology, such as fuel efficiency and high torque, to these engines, said Villemure.
“G2 is a trailblazer,” he said. “This engine is different in all aspects than anything else. We questioned all of the paradigms in the industry.”
Innovative product leads to success, Boisjoli said.
“If you come to the market with the right product at the right time at the right price, you can really spark an industry,” said Boisjoli. “That has always been our philosophy. We invest 4 percent of our revenue annually in research and development, which is the highest ratio in the power sports industry.”
Since the Evinrude G2 200-, 225-, 250- and 300-hp engines hit the water, Villemure said Evinrude has struck new partnerships with OEMs such as KingFisher, Sea Vee, Scout, Cobalt and Cape Horn.
“We have rigged G2 motors both in twin and triple configurations,” Sea Vee marketing director John Caballero said today. “The powerplant is quite an evolution from the 2-stroke motors that we grew up with — smokeless, odorless, quieter and far more fuel-efficient in a package that weighs significantly less than 4-stroke motors. At Sea Vee it’s the customer who specifies the manner in how the boat is built, including what brand of power gets rigged on the transom.”
For Evinrude, the focus now is working with new boatbuilders to maximize the distribution of G2 engines through dealers, Boisjoli said.
Trade Only met with Boisjoli, Villemure and Christopher Berg, director of Evinrude marketing and strategic planning, at the boat show. Berg said G2 has not only been popular in the red-hot saltwater fishboat segment, but also has made inroads in the pontoon and freshwater markets.