Yamaha is starting sea trials on Aug. 7 on its revolutionary electric drive system that provides greater maneuverability, faster turning, and less vibration and noise than possible on most conventional drives.
Yamaha says its new HARMO drive package is a “next generation control system platform” with an electric motor, a remote-control box, and a joystick. It generates about 10-hp and is available in single or twin applications.
A major innovation is that the prop is not driven through a central axle, as it is in conventional motors. Instead, HARMO has a Drive By Rim motor, where a ring of sequentially-activated electromagnets surrounding the steel prop are used to spin it in either direction. Yamaha says this produces greater thrust at lower speeds.
The new Yamaha looks pretty much like a traditional outboard. But it doesn’t swivel from side to side as most outboards do. Only the vertical section moves, pivoting almost 90 degrees and producing almost instant turning. In twin installations, the driver can operate the joystick to move the boat sideways, or rotate the boat in place.
You can see how the HARMO system works in Yamaha’s video below: