Evinrude has unveiled a new joystick piloting system for its E-TEC G2 engines that it believes will position the company to grow its market share both as an OEM and in the repower segment. With a MSRP of $5,999, the company’s new iDock joystick system comes to retail at less than half the cost of its nearest competitor.
“Evinrude iDock connects with the existing internal hydraulic steering system that’s already built-in to the E-TEC G2 engines, which is a big reason we can offer it at such an attractive price,” said Evinrude Global Product Manager Jason Eckman. “It leverages that existing architecture. All we needed to do was create the joystick and develop the interface with the engines. This approach means we don’t have to install hydraulic pumps in the boat or add any extra rigging, while keeping the transom clean and uncluttered.”
Because iDock requires specific architecture within the engine midsection, the system will not retrofit to existing G2 engines. iDock is compatible with new Evinrude G2 150 HO, 200, 200 HO, 250 and 300 models, with iDock-model engines sold in pairs and identified by a small iDock logo. Shipping is scheduled to begin this fall.
The iDock system incorporates advanced aircraft gyroscope sensor technology to automatically compensate for wind and current. A two-stage joystick is pressure-sensitive and increases power the farther the joystick is pushed, allowing boaters to instantly double the thrust if needed. The simplicity of the system is said to require less time for users to become accustomed to, creating a more positive first-time boating experience.
The system simplicity is also designed to facilitate handling for dealers and engine installers in boat plants. iDock-compatible G2 engine models follow the same installation process as standard Evinrude E-TEC G2 engines, and typically requires less than one hour of on-the-water setup.
“Our goal with the Evinrude E-TEC G2 engines was to design a platform with unlimited potential for continued technological enhancement and innovation,” said Olivier Pierini, Evinrude director of global marketing and strategic planning. “The intuitive nature of the technology will give even a novice boater immediate confidence in their ability to dock any boat equipped with Evinrude E-TEC engines easily. And by using technology that is already built into the engine, it is significantly more affordable than any other joystick system on the market. This all adds up to a level of on-the-water confidence you can’t live without.”