Yamaha Still Growing

Outboards released to enhance your fun

April 2015 Feature

Yamaha is one of the most trusted names for outboards, with an impressive series of engines to fit any and all pontoon, deck boat, and other watercraft needs. Yamaha released new additions and upgrades to its popular series of four-cylinder in-line product offerings. The new Yamaha in-line outboard models include the F175 and the F115, rounding out the series with the F200 that was released in 2012.


The F200 has garnered a lot of hype since being released, earning the outboard an International Boatbuilders Exhibition (IBEX) award in 2013.

“This highly versatile four-stroke power platform featuring a narrow footprint and ability to retro fit has a very broad appeal for both the end user and the marine industry,” IBEX Judge Beth Leonard stated.

To appreciate her praise of the outboard, it’s important to look at the outboard motor in aggregate and evaluate the performance and features of the F200.

The F200 is one of the lightest 200hp four-stroke engines available. Targeted for mid-sized boats, the F200 easily replaces engines with lower horsepower and still performs when coupled with mid-sized boats when replacing V6s. When combined in tandem, two F200s are able to boost performance, while reducing stress and weight on a craft’s transom. Additionally, the new F200 is able to use 89-octane to achieve 200hp, not requiring a higher octane to achieve performance benchmarks.

The F200 weighs in at 487 pounds earning it one of the most impressive power-to-weight ratio of any 200hp, four-stroke outboard. Its 2.8-liter four-cylinder 16-valve dual overhead camshaft (DOHC) powerhead aspirates easily and is equipped with Yamaha’s Variable Camshaft Timing System, delivers extraordinary acceleration with a noticeable midrange punch. A 50-amp alternator increases the charging capacity of the V6 F200 by 13 percent.

The F200 utilizes Yamaha’s Reliance Shift Dampener System series propellers with twin counterbalance shafts for smooth shifting, and vibration-free operation of the watercraft. The F200 interfaces with digital electronic controls, was manufactured to operate with the Command Link Plus rigging system, and is NMEA 2000 compliant. The F200 can also be operated with mechanical controls. Mounting is simplistic using 26-inch mounting centers and a standard bolt pattern to fit onto any pontoon or deck boat. For fishing, the F200 comes equipped with the popular feature of the Variable Trolling RPM Switch (VTS), which controls and adjusts the trolling in 50 RPM increments.


The V MAX SHO 150 is one of the best-performing 150hp in-line outboard motors in its class. With a great hole shot response, acceleration and top-speed performance, the VF150 is a four-stroke outboard with an aggressive torque curve that defines the Yamaha V MAX SHO brand. In fact, the power performance of the VF150 outperforms most two-stroke engines consistently. Featuring DOHC, four valves per cylinder, and smartly placed and weighed counterbalance shafts, the VF150 offers smooth performance, and the quiet, clean operation and fuel efficiency of a four-stroke engine. 

The VCT’s intake camshaft angle is changed to add impressive power and response to the throttle’s response in the low to mid RPM ranges, which is a critical component to the hole shot punch the VF150 delivers. Competitively, the VF150 outperformed Yamaha’s F150, and outraced numerous competitors’150hp outboards currently available in the market.

The VF150 tips the scale to 480 pounds, which is more than 10 pounds lighter than Yamaha’s VZ150. Further comparisons to the 2-valve-per-cylinder VZ150 are noted by finishing within a tenth of a second in hole shot tests and a higher top speed over that of the two-stroke. Additionally, the VF150 boasts an impressive 50-amp alternator, charging 11 percent more power than that of the VZ150.

The VF150 rigging is comparable to the F200 and the F175, compatible with analog, 6Y5 digital and Command Link gauges, and can link with NMEA 2000 compatible displays.  The VF150 uses Yamaha’s V MAX SHO series of propellers, for increased dialed-in performance of single-inch pitches. The 22-inch and 23-inch propeller pitches are also available. Plus the VF150 also offers greater fuel efficiency with a 30 to 40 percent improvement over traditional carbureted two-stroke motors. 

The VF150 is currently available, with an optional upgrade to include the Yamaha Customer Outboard Protection system, or Y-COP theft deterrent system.


The F175 is a new addition to the Yamaha in-line family of outboards, which includes the V MAX SHO 150 and the F200 and is targeted for lightweight transoms restricted to 175hp. Similar to the award-winning F200, the construction of the F175 comprises a similar 2.8-liter, four-cylinder 16-valve DOHC powerhead opening and increased engine response. A knock sensor enables the engine to perform at peak efficiency and top performance at any and all RPMs to which the engine is set.

Like the F200, the F175 is wired for a large variety of electronics and accessories to ensure the best possible performance and use of the outboard. The F175 is mechanically remote controlled, which helps for simplistic and easy rigging, and of course it is standard compatible with all of Yamaha’s Command Link hardware and gauges. As an additional bonus, the F175 is protected from theft by Y-COP. Keeping fishermen in mind, similar to the F200, the F175 is equipped with the VTS, giving enhanced control over trolling.

Yamaha also understands the need to protect and maintain outboards from the constant exposure to the water, and therefore the F175 has been treated with the Phaze Five paint system, which protects the engine block through the addition of electro-deposition of anticorrosive paint.


The F115 is the lightest, most compact, and the most powerful model of in-line outboard engine in the four-stroke class offered by Yamaha. Weighing a paltry 377 pounds, the newly redesigned F115 is almost 25 pounds lighter than its predecessor of the previous generation, the F115LA. Reducing the weight wasn’t an easy challenge for Yamaha, and was achieved through use of a variety of new materials, including a new composite lower pan and cowling, upgrades to a single ram power trim and tilt mechanism, and even a reduced weight mounting bracket. Increasing the bore and stroke, the F115’s powerhead measures a full 1.8 liters. 

Increased exhaust valves and a larger intake allow better breathing with more power and better midrange torque attributed to the DOHC four-cylinder design. The throttle was rethought, and to complete the new valves and cylinder head, a 60mm single-throttle body featuring a new free-flow exhaust manifold, and Yamaha’s long-intake track system. At peak performance a knock sensor allows the engine to maintain constant operation. The new model F115B’s acceleration outperforms the F115LA by 0.7 seconds when comparing the zero-to-200-foot time. Anglers will also be excited to note that the F115 comes standard with the VTS trolling system and the award-winning multifunction tiller handle.

As are all models in Yamaha’s in-line four-stroke series, the new F115 is mechanically controlled and designed to work with Yamaha’s Command Link gauges and other assorted hardware, and features the Yamaha antitheft deterrent system Y-COP.

Not sparing expenses on shielding the engine block, the F115 is protected with the Phaze Five paint system, using the same electro-deposition of anticorrosive paint as the F175.

For more information on the Yamaha lineup visit www.yamahaoutboards.com.

  • Like what you read?

    Want to know when we have important news, updates or interviews?

  • Join our newsletter today!

    Sign Up
You Might Also Be Interested In...

Send to your friends!

Click here to read the current issue.

Already a subscriber? Please check your email for the latest full issue link.