That's the prediction of a report from IDTechEx estimates that “the market for hybrid and pure electric boats and ships will rise rapidly to over $20 billion worldwide in 2027“.
While EClass Marine has been one of the first manufacturers, and still the only electric outboard manufacturer in Australia, the report says there are now more than 100 marine electric manufacturers worldwide.
These companies are working on everything from electric ferries and new hybrid container ships, to the small kW trolling motors now loved by fisherfolk.
The first electric ferry in the Southern Hemisphere (NZ) had its maiden voyage just last week.
And Outboard giants Mercury and Yamaha have unveiled their first fully electric concepts. Although these seem to be lower kW offerings and not available to the market as yet, it is a sign of the industry direction.
At EClass Marine we think that once the marketing might of the large manufacturers gets behind electric boats, a lot of the skepticism will wash away.
Having said that, there is a lot of work to do for the mainstream adoption of electric outboard motors. Buyers have battery range anxiety (interesting as it is no different from having a fuel gauge and planning your trip), are not used to paying upfront for batteries.
Also, not many manufacturers are producing the 20kW (40hp) and higher electric outboards so common on many craft. EClass has put a lot of work into this segment with our 20kW Ultra electric outboard engine
The report also indicated that access to parts may be a barrier to electric outboard motor adoption. That's why at EClass we are using tried and proven 2 stroke outboard casings. Any corresponding Yamaha part and accessory will fit. No waiting for a proprietary part to be shipped, and a competent marine technician should be able to install it. We have a 3-year warranty on our electric outboard engines for private use.