With more auto manufacturers joining the race almost every day, the auto industry is riding an electric wave.
The boating industry is far behind the rest, hampered by low-horsepower motors and batteries that take up almost half of the boat.
This is changing.
The new technology has enabled electric boats to be faster, smaller, longer-ranged, and emit zero emissions.
Alex Mongeon from Vision Marine Technologies, Montreal’s CEO, said that electric boats were once good for cruising. They are more powerful and last longer.
Vision Marine is a pioneer in the development of more powerful electric boats. Other companies that are riding the electric motor wave include X Shore, a Swedish luxury boat builder, and Arc. Both were started by SpaceX ex-employees.
Vision Marine and Mongeon are avid boat racers and electricians. In 2015, Mongeon began work on developing an electric outboard motor that is more powerful and efficient.
The E-Motion 180 was the first electric boat motor to be powered by lithium batteries.
The electric outboard can reach speeds up to 60 mph and boasts 180 horsepower, which is a new standard in electric boating. The E-motion 180 is about $5,000 less than an internal combustion engine and can be used with any boat that uses a 180 HP outboard gasoline engine. Typically, the boats are between 18 and 26 feet.
The engines can be fully charged overnight. All that is required to charge them is a 220-volt plug — a boating version. Because there are fewer moving components, maintenance is much lower than ICE engines.
Electric engines are silent, odorless, and smokeless. There’s no need to shout at one another or leave a trail of smoke behind you.
The E-Motion 180 was sold in May, with delivery to follow later this year.
Randy Truesdale is the chief operating officer at SBX Marine, a Florida-based custom builder and brokerage firm. You might see electric motors that claim it is 50-70 horsepower equivalent. But nobody has done what we are doing with the new 180.
Vision Marine reports that celebrities such as Robert De Niro, Greta Thunberg and Drake have adopted electric boating. Many tour operators are now using electric boats.
According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, 26% of the United States’ marine protected areas have been designated. These waters prohibit motorized boats. Electric boats are allowed because they emit little sound and are cleaner.
Mongeon stated that the only sound you will hear is water hitting the hull, and people having fun.
During the pandemic, a lot more people were enjoying the water.