Although a select number of marine journalists saw Mercury's new Joystick Piloting for Outboards during the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show last October, the company rolled out the finished version at this winter's Miami show. The product, available to consumers in July, works with new Verado 250 and 300 outboards.
In a full-length column in SF's February issue, boating expert Jim Hendricks previewed all the new outboard-joystick technology from Mercury, Yamaha and Teleflex. He reported that Mercury's system can handle more outboards — up to four — and it offers Skyhook, which holds your boat in one place by virtue of an internal GPS.
In a follow-up news report, Hendricks reported on Suzuki's development of similar technology. Yes, all of these systems currently carry a heavy price tag, but like every other new gizmo, this product will eventually decline in price.
As they say, this could be the shape of things to come — and, you have to admit, it IS pretty cool. Check out the video below (shot through the lens of a GoPro):