Suzuki 2.5 HP Outboard: A New Mini-Might

A 2.5 HP engine may not get many headlines, but this new mini-might from Suzuki is worth paying attention to. Why? Simply put, because it’s just about the lightest gasoline-fueled outboard around. At 30 pounds – yes, 30 pounds! – it still features perks like pointless engine ignition, Suzuki anti-corrosion, and easy-pulling recoil starting. Compare that to 38 pounds for a 2.5 HP Mercury, and 37 pounds for a 2.5 HP Yamaha.

Yes, 2.5 horses is awfully small. But at 30 pounds, this is an outboard worth paying attention to.

The 2.5 is a DOV two-valve, carbureted, single cylinder engine, with 68 cc displacement and a 1.89″ x 1.50″ bore and stroke. The prop it spins through a 2.15:1 reduction is a whopping 7.5″ x 5.5″ three-blade. Yes, this thing is tiny. So, what’s it good for? Truth be told, Suzuki plans to sell these little motors mostly to folks who use tenders and inflatables, either to get to boats on a mooring, or as dinghies. But you and I know better. Their better use will be with canoes that have an engine mount, or with one-man pond-prowling fishing minis like those made by Sea Eagle, Colorado, and Sun Dolphin. On mini-boats like these, you can expect the new 2.5 to net you a steady jogging-speed cruise and a half-dozen fishing trips on a single gallon of gas.

As you’d expect from a miniaturized four-stroke, it’s ultra-quiet. It’s also surprisingly smooth for a single-cylinder engine. Plus, the motor has a few smart features added, like an external shut-off valve for the fuel (so you can stop the supply and run the carb dry after use), and a sight-gauge for the crankcase oil level. Unfortunately it doesn’t have reverse – just forward and neutral – and like many tiny outboards, to go backwards you have to actually spin the motor 180-degrees around on the transom. No huge deal, but it can get a bit confusing when you’re trying to maneuver into a slip or stop from hitting an obstruction.

What about pricing? You can find the Suzuki 2.5 HP for under $800. Cost is about the same for the closest competitors. Visit Suzuki, if you want to learn more.

Lenny Rudow: