Nick Burnham takes a first look at the Torqeedo Deep Blue 100i 2500 and asks - is electric boat engine technology finally catching up with the automotive world?
I find it quietly amusing that the recent (and worthy) obsession with recycling and emissions-free vehicles quietly ignores the fact that 40(!) years ago, when I was a lad, our milk came in recycled glass bottles delivered by an emissions-free electric vehicle.
That said, electric vehicles have moved on somewhat from the humble milk float, as the Porsche Taycan rather succinctly proves.
Alternatively, watch this video of a Tesla P100D to see unwitting passengers being treated to 0-60 in 2.5 seconds!
As ever, the marine world is about 10 years behind the automotive one. The first Tesla hit the streets back in 2008 so it’s about time we started seeing some fast electric boats, and Torqeedo’s new Deep Blue 100i 2500 is designed to deliver exactly that.
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Specifically designed to power fast planing motorboats, and available as OEM for new boats or for retrofitting to older models, the 100i 2500 spins up to 2,500rpm, allowing a far wider speed range than models such as the 100i 900, where the 900rpm rev ceiling is aimed at heavy displacement boats.
In fact, it delivers 100kW of continuous, emissions-free power, as well as 437nm of torque. Torqeedo says that this is comparable to a 135hp petrol outboard. All the components of the system are engineered to match each other and are completely waterproof.
State-of-the-art monitoring technology with pilot lines and insulation monitors safeguards the high-voltage system against the risk of short circuits and it’s also monitored by an on-board computer with a 5.7” touchscreen display.
Power comes from two Deep Blue 40 lithium-ion batteries (totalling 80kWh) which Torqeedo is so confident about, it’s offering a 9-year warranty for private users. If needed, capacity can be added for extended range.
Frauscher Boats is one of the first manufacturers to market a boat with this drive system. Its 7.5m Mirage 740 Air can offer a maximum range of 110 km (68 miles) at a 10-knot cruising speed, as well as a top speed of about 26 knots.
Price for the Torqeedo Deep Blue 100i 2500 start from £86,000.