Latest engine manufacturer to join the IPS and Zeus race

Yanmar Marine is to offer pod drives on a range of its diesel engines.

The electric steering ZF Pod 2500 and 2800 have been designed for engines of 450hp and below.

Like Volvo’s IPS and CMD’s Zeus systems, the ZF Pod uses a joystick for intuitive, one-handed boat control.

Yanmar say: “For twin installations, each drive moves independently, resulting in outstanding turning efficiency and throttle response.

“It allows slow speed manoeuvring and docking with similar ease and precision.

“There are significant improvements in top-end performance, cruising speed and fuel economy, depending on boat and operating conditions.

“Draft is reduced, due to installation inside the hull. Hydrodynamic design and the positioning of the propellers counteract drag to improve performance.

“Rubber mounts reduce gear noise and vibration, giving a quiet, comfortable ride.

“Engine exhaust is virtually eliminated by venting through the propeller hubs.

“Two sacrificial pieces are incorporated into the system. Both are secured by bolts that will break away in the case of impact, absorbing the energy created and thereby avoiding damage to the hull.

“Should the Pod drive hit underwater debris, the aft-facing propellers are protected by the gearcase and skeg.

“Because the Pod is mounted in a tunnel, the torpedo shape of the drive is the same depth as the keel and most floating objects will be deflected downwards and away.”

The Pod drives will be available in early 2009. Further details will be available on www.yanmarmarine.com