Yamaha Marine announced that it developed an electric boat control system, known as Harmo, that combines advanced propulsion technology for high thrust with joystick control for maneuverability.
The unit comprises a rim-drive electric motor that turns a large impeller. Yamaha said in a statement that this is the first application of rim-drive motors, which are used for thrusters and other applications, with a dedicated outboard.
Yamaha said the virtually maintenance-free unit weighs 121 pounds and can maneuver boats up to 32 feet. Harmo is available in single or twin configurations.
“Harmo is the perfect system for horsepower- or internal-combustion restricted waterways,” Ben Speciale, Yamaha Marine U.S. Business Unit president, said in the statement. “Ultimately, it is up to our boatbuilder customers to decide how to integrate it into their boats.”
The system is available in European markets and through U.S. boatbuilders; increased U.S. availability is expected within 18 months, according to Yamaha.
Harmo includes integrated Digital Electric Steering and Helm Master EX joystick controls. A 48-volt power supply is coupled with a high-yield, low-drag 3.7-kW motor to produce 225 pounds of static thrust, Yamaha said, the equivalent of a 9.9-hp gas outboard. It allows a 140-degree steering angle.
Yamaha said pricing will be based on the configuration, and run times depend on battery type (sourced separately) and size, and operational parameters.