While Yamaha Marine introduced earlier prototypes of the Harmo electric boat-control system in European markets as far back as 2016, the company today announced its 2021 version is ready for the United States. Right now, American boat manufacturers are testing applications for Harmo to determine on which models and in which markets it will be offered. Yamaha estimates consumers will begin seeing Harmo-equipped boat packages within the next 18 months.
“Harmo is the perfect system for horsepower or internal-combustion restricted waterways,” says Ben Speciale, president, Yamaha Marine U.S. Business Unit. “Ultimately, it is up to our boat-builder customers to decide how to integrate it into their boats, and we are eager to see the result.”
The 3.7 kW motor runs off a 48-volt power supply. It delivers 225 pounds of static thrust, equivalent to a 9.9 hp gas outboard. The motor unit weighs 121 pounds and runs almost silently.
Propulsion comes from the rim-drive electric motor, a version of which has been popular as a thruster. The motor is mounted around the outside edge of the specially encased four-blade aluminum impeller.
Run times depend upon battery type and vessel size, but Yamaha testing on a Skeeter hull showed that the motor can troll 7 to 8 hours at 2 to 4 mph. At wide-open throttle, the run time is still in the range of hours, Yamaha says.
Harmo features integrated digital electric steering and Helm Master EX controls, including a joystick, but also comes with a wheel and helm-, side- or top-mounted throttle. Harmo turns in a 140-degree arc in forward and reverse, giving it spin-on-a-dime capability. The motor completely tilts out of the water.
Harmo can be mounted in single or twin applications, the latter can maneuver a boat up to 32 feet in length. Yamaha says pricing for the system is not yet available.
Courtesy Yamaha Marine