Gear Review- Pro Drive X40

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Pro Drive Outboards has recently introduced the newest edition to its “X” line of shallow water mud motors; the X40.  

Hunters and Fisherman alike are always craving more power and more speed.  This engine should fit the bill for both of these requirements.

You can tell immediately just by looking at the motor there have been quite a few changes in the tiller handle, front grab handle and side brush guards.  

Here is a list of standard features on the new X40.

  • 40HP Briggs & Stratton Vanguard Big Block Twin with newly redesigned strengthened block
  • Electronic Fuel Injection
  • High performance cam profile
  • Increased compression ratio
  • New head design for better air & fuel flow
  • Newly redesigned performance muffler
  • New ECU Calibration
  • Hydraulic Power Trim
  • Hydraulic Full Power Reverse

Now we have looked at some of the new logistic and performance upgrades, let’s look at the convenience and comfort upgrades.

The older models had the control box mounted on the tiller handle that required you to use your off hand to hit the tilt/trim, engine engage, forward/reverse control or momentary engage buttons.  The new handle has the Ignition switch, circuit breaker, forward/reverse control and2 different positions for tilt/trim controls at your fingertips.

The handle is a much more sleek design than the older model that had the big box with all of the controls in them.  The 2nd button on the very end of the tiller handle has a “on the fly” tilt/trim feature that is exactly what the Dr. ordered.  No more having to lean over with your other arm and trim up or down while taking your eyes off the water in front of you.  

The newly designed heavy duty grab handle is bolted to both sides of the engine so you maximize your leverage to assist you in manually pulling the engine up when the situation calls for it.  

The guys at Pro Drive came up with installing removable brush guards on the sides to keep limbs and grass from hanging things on the side of you engine such as wires and gas lines.  If you hunt or fish around cypress trees, buck brush, cat tails, willows or just about anything else that sticks up or out of the water, these brush guards are a welcomed sight. I used to try and use zip ties and small electrical straps to secure everything from being damaged by limbs and what not.  Now the factory installed brush guards eliminate that need.

Retail Price – $7,395 No Reverse – $8,895 Auto Reverse

Test Ride:

Engine – 40X Pro Drive Tiller Handle

Boat – 18/48 Breaux Custom Mud Boat w 3/16” Hull with Gator Glide coating on hull. (5’ side gun box, 18” square driver side box, front deck w hatch, 10” extended deck, with hydroturf on the floor).

Air Temp – 61 Degrees

Wind – South 3-5 mph.  

Water Depth – 6”-12”

Test Load – 1 man (200 lbs) 1 Lab (75 lbs) 6 Gallons of gas, battery, 2 life jackets, throwable cushion, 2 paddles and a push pole.

When you first turn the key you will hear the fuel pump engage and is now primed and ready to go.  When I turned the key in the ignition it immediately fired up and idled around 1100 RPM’s.

I trimmed the engine down and gave it some gas.  The boat hopped up on step and I slowly began to trim it up.  My test ride began in a deeper river channel, but I was headed to the mud flats to see what she would do when I fed her some mud, grass, stumps and shallow water.  

The engine felt very strong throughout and pushed the boat with authority through the lily pads and matted alligator grass.  I went ahead and run through some stump fields to make sure the engine would kick up and beg for more. It performed just as I would have expected from Pro Drive and was back in the water ready for the next obstacle.  

My top speed in the shallow mud flats was 31 mph.  With a cruising speed in the deeper water around 29 mph.

This engine would still push this rig with another man, guns and gear well into 27-29 mph range all day long.  It was built to handle heavier loads and deliver more power than its previous cousins.

The long & short of it is that the new X40 from Pro Drive is a high performance mud motor that is at the top of its class in the industry and is a force to be reckoned with on the water.  

If you don’t want to take my word for it, get with KP at Pro Drive and they will give you a test ride to see for yourself.  

Shane Smith

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