BRP raising its four-stroke outboard prices

STURTEVANT, Wis. – Bombardier Recreational Products (BRP) was put in a challenging situation when the U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC) made its dumping ruling in August, said BRP executive Roch Lambert in the company’s “The Real Deal” newsletter, released Friday.

Its Johnson engines 25-hp and above are manufactured by Suzuki, a Japanese engine manufacturer, and thus are subject to a preliminary 22.52 duty if imported into the U.S.

In response, the company is raising the dealer price of its 25- to 30-hp and 115- to 140-hp four-strokes, for which BRP does not offer an E-TEC engine of the same horsepower, by 5 percent. The dealer price of those Johnson four-strokes from 40- to 90-hp and 200- to 225-hp, for which it does offer an E-TEC alternative, will increase 12 percent, according to Lambert, BRP’s executive vice president, Product Development, Sales, Marketing North America.

He pointed out that Japanese suppliers have the option of reducing prices in Japan, increasing prices in the U.S., absorbing the duty or a combination of the three. However, because BRP purchases the engines from Suzuki, it can’t adjust pricing in Japan.

“Absorbing the entire duty is not a sound financial option, and the idea of passing a 22.52-percent price increase on to you was simply out of the question,” Lambert added.

The price increases take effect immediately; however, BRP said it is price protecting firm orders provided by September 8.

The engine manufacturer said it would review the situation after the first of the year, once the DOC and the International Trade Commission issue their final decisions.

Johnson four-strokes in short supply

Meanwhile, availability of Johnson four-strokes is limited – and is expected to remain so through December – as BRP has been “conservative” in its ordering from Japan.

“The situation is very volatile,” stated Lambert. “We strongly encourage you to lock in as much of your order as possible before September 30 for delivery in time for many boat shows.”

While BRP’s plan is intended to allow BRP dealers to continue to sell all outboard technologies, Lambert concluded with a final push for the strength of the company’s two-stroke direct injection product.

“We strongly believe Evinrude E-TEC is a superior alternative to every four-stroke engine on the market – regardless of manufacturer,” he stated. “Whatever you seek from a four-stroke, E-TEC does it better.”

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