Propane-powered outboard motor manufacturer Lehr Marine showed a prototype of its new 9.9 horsepower outboard at the Western Marine and Transat Marine Dealer Trade Show, held at the Richmond Olympic Oval in Richmond, BC from October 12 through 14 inclusive.
Marking the product's Canadian debut and only the second time it has been publicly shown, the company generates strong interest at the Western / Transat show by exhibiting one of only three prototypes in existence. Said to be shipping by December, the LP9.9 model will be available in six different versions, with either tiller or remote steering, manual or electric start, and a choice of 15-inch and 20-inch shafts.
Lehr created a major buzz at the 2012 Miami International Boat Show with its introduction of its 2.5 and 5 horsepower propane outboards, winning a Green Product award from West Marine as well as recognition from the National Marine Manufacturer's Innovation Awards. Developed by inventor and entrepreneur Bernardo Herzer as an offshoot to his lawn equipment business, the engines were announced with suggested retail prices of about $1,200 for the 2.5 horsepower model, and about $2,000 for the five horsepower motor. The new LP9.9 will reportedly retail for under $3,000.
"The new 9.9 will appeal to a much larger portion of the portable outboard market,' said Jack Malone, Vice President of Lehr's Marine Division. "The 9.9 is one of the most widely used sizes of outboard motor, so we're very pleased to have this new model coming to market.'
In testing the prototypes is said to have run for about five hours wide-open when fueled by a 20 pound propane tank, for a fuel burn rate of approximately 1.0 US gallons per hour. Reducing rpm to 3,000 resulted in a range of over 14 hours, yielding a fuel burn of about 0.44 gallons per hour.
Malone notes the new engine will be sold with a three year limited manufacturer's warranty.