Did you know that in Australia, middle-class households were more likely to own a boat than rich households? The perception of boating as a hobby for the rich and famous is blown right out of the water (pun intended) with the results of that survey, undertaken by Roy Morgan Research.

Regardless, it’s smart to consider fuel economy when it comes to running your boat. The industry standard is that if your boat is less than 7.5 metres, then your overall fuel costs will be reasonable, although engine size, weather, distance travelled and speed will also play a role. Larger boats and higher horsepower means higher fuel costs.

NRMA estimated the running costs of a smaller sized recreational motor boat to be about the same as owning a car. However, boat fuel consumption has more variables than cars and is harder to calculate.

Fortunately, Mercury has done a lot of the hard work in the design of their FourStroke outboards for you to create superior fuel efficiency. Here is a rundown on how they do it.

Lightest engines

Mercury engineers cut weight from the Mercury FourStroke outboards until many are now the lightest in their class. Less weight improves every aspect of performance and also results in less fuel consumed.

Advanced Range Optimisation (ARO)

Advanced Range Optimization (ARO) and closed-loop fuel control work together to precisely adjust the fuel mixture and deliver the best possible efficiency.

Digital controls (DTS)

Digital control devices help you monitor the fuel and factors affecting fuel consumption such as speed. Mercury’s gem in this department is the Digital SC1000 Gauge.

This little gadget is easy to install and use. You can monitor fuel efficiency from petrol levels, battery, pressure, running temperature, battery voltage, trim, RPM, water pressure, and hours on the motor. Here is the face:

(Source: Mercury Marine)

Adaptive speed control (ASC)

Mercury has come up with an outboard with ASC, the V-8 Verado. These outboards automatically maintain the set RPM even as load or conditions change, which is a factor adding to fuel consumption. Even in rough water, partaking in tow sports, making tight turns, and lower speeds on the plane, you’ll significantly reduce the need for throttle changes.

Active Trim – a GPS for engine efficiency

Mercury designed the Active Trim system to adjust engine trim based on changes in boat speed and RPM to improve fuel economy, as well as performance, and ease of operation. It is intuitive and hands-free. There are settings to further personalise trimming profile according to boat and conditions however even those with no knowledge of trimming an engine can take advantage of Active Trim.

*Compatible with all current SmartCraft-capable Mercury outboards and sterndrive engines (40 hp and above). Mercury VesselView screens (903/703/502/403) integrate an Active Trim interface so that the Active Trim dash pad is not required

Smart Craft

Mercury SmartCraft offers a variety of dazzling features but the main one in relation to fuel economy is Eco-Screen. A fuel gauge with extra capability (the smart part) monitors engine trim, boat speed and engine rpm and fuel consumption. Then it adjusts itself (the extra smart “craft” part) to the most fuel-efficient settings, saving up to 20% (in consumption, the dollar saving will be different).

Command Thrust

A Command Thrust (CT) will help cut fuel and maintenance costs of larger or fully-loaded boats that need more thrust and those used for commercial or heavy work. A CT FourStroke increases manoeuvrability as the gearcase has a bigger footprint in the water without working as hard as heavier engines. They also make boats plane faster.

What Four Stroke Outboard is best for me to save on fuel?

For help deciding what is best for your specific needs, Coorparoo Marine Brisbane are the experts with all the latest information.

Coorparoo Marine specialises in affordable quality Revival Boats, Mercury outboard motors, and servicing all types of outboard motors. With over 40 years serving a loyal customer base from Noosa to Coolangatta, you can be sure of sound advice and attentive service. Shop  new Revival boats and Mercury outboards on our website now or visit our Brisbane boat dealership in Coorparoo.