Honda Marine’s New Outboard Pair to Debut in Europe 2014

By George Backwell at September 21, 2013 00:18
Filed Under: Outboard motors

Two new 4-cylinder outboard engines from Honda Marine soon to be introduced to the recreational boat market share the same specs, but the power rating of one is 20% more than the other, how come? Well, the more powerful of these two hi-tech engines, the BF100, which produces 74 kW, comes with Honda’s patent VTEC ™ feature whilst the lookalike BF80 does not, and that penalises it 15 kW at full throttle.

The new outboard engines: Image courtesy of Honda Marine

In a nutshell VTEC ™  (Variable Valve Timing and Lift Electronic Control), cleverly dubbed by Honda ‘replacement for displacement’ (a standard in the Honda automobile sector) varies the lift and duration of the intake valves by using two cam lobe profiles to operate the intake valves as shown in the sketch below:

VTEC ™ image courtesy of Honda Marine

  • The low-lift, short duration cam lobes (shown in red) provide strong torque at low rpm.
  • At higher rpm, a synchronising piston engages the third rocker arm on a high-lift cam (in blue).  All three rocker arms are locked together. The intake valves are open for a longer period of time to produce more power.
  • This results in a superior combination of power, torque and fuel efficiency

Otherwise both these SOHC-4 cylinder, 16 valve newcomers to the Honda Marine outboard range share a compact, light weight design as follows:

Displacement: 1496 cc
Rated Power: BF80/58.8 kW, BF100/73.6kW 
Full Throttle RPM range: BF80/5000 - 6000, BF100/5500 - 6300                           
Cooling system: water-cooled with thermostat
Fuel Delivery: PGM-FI (Programmed Fuel Injection)
Ignition system: electronic PGM-IG
Starting system: electric start
Exhaust system: propeller boss
Gear ratio: 2.33

The engines come from the manufacturers with a slew of enhancements including Honda’s exclusive BLAST™ (Boosted Low Speed Torque) technology which adjusts air/fuel ratio and ignition-timing to boost engine horsepower and torque to provide rapid acceleration. The result, they say, is strong hole-shot performance to get the hull up on the plane more quickly. From fast to slow, fishermen will appreciate the trolling control feature which gives precise slow speed with automatic adjustments in 50 rpm increments.

These new outboards are designed to exceeds all European RCD environmental requirements, and also have Honda's proprietary Lean Burn Control technology, embodied in their proprietary ECOmo ™ (Economy Controlled Motor) which uses sensors to monitor air/fuel ratio in cruising mode, adjusting it to achieve optimum fuel economy. This, in combination with with Honda's PGM-Fi™ (Programmed Fuel Injection) technology gives best fuel efficiency and and hence low emissions.

NMEA 2000 ® connectivity
Both outboards are fully compliant with NMEA 2000® allowing simplified connectivity to a range of NMEA 2000® devices, as well as the optional new Honda digital multi-function gauges which are designed to provide display information on key functions: engine rpm, trim angle, maintenance reminders, engine temperature, battery charge levels, oil pressure and engine management. These new gauges also feature Honda's unique 'Eco Light' which informs the boat operator when the engine is in ECOmo / lean burn mode, and therefore at its most fuel efficient.  

Honda say they plan to make the new models available across Honda's European network of Authorised Marine Dealers from early 2014, with pricing to be confirmed.



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