Thursday, June 28, 2007

Electric Outboard - 3HP Equivalent

Briggs and Stratton now produces what they've named the ETek Electric Motor System, which is an electric outboard boating motor that's more powerful and more efficiently engineered (housing, prop design, etc.) than electric trolling motors. The ETek has 150 lbs of thrust, which B&S is calling the equivalent of a 3 h.p. gas motor; this mixed terminology gets tricky though, as thrust lbs and horsepower measure different things, and a 3 h.p. electric motor would produce more "push power" than a 3 h.p. gas motor would. Again, even THAT conversion gets into murky waters, with some claiming that a true 3 h.p. electric motor would give the same propulsion as up to a 5-8 h.p. gas motor.

Here's what we do know: it's available, it's made by Briggs and Stratton, it has a street price of under $2000, it has 150 lbs of thrust (electric trolling motors, which this is NOT, normally range from 20-70 lbs thrust and retail new for $100-$700 or so depending on the thrust and the control mechanism), and there is a less powerful but more expensive version branded by Minn Kota (huge purveyor of electric trolling motors) .

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