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Infinyte Marine hopes its electric i4 will be a quiet success


February 25, 2011

The Infinyte i4 is a pure electric 5-passenger catamaran cruiser (Photo: Infinyte Marine)

The Infinyte i4 is a pure electric 5-passenger catamaran cruiser (Photo: Infinyte Marine)

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For many people who own lakefront property, noisy combustion-engined motorboats that leave clouds of exhaust and oil slicks in their wakes have pretty much become a given. Hopefully, however, quiet and clean-running electric watercraft may soon take over a significant portion of the pleasure-boating market. While consumers can already pre-order the planned 8-passenger solar-electric Loon pontoon boat, another option is the smaller Infinyte i4 catamaran, which began production in 2010. Its maker, Canada's Infinyte Marine, also has plans for a larger boat.

First of all, the 5-passenger i4 does indeed look kind of weird – viewed in profile, it's hard to distinguish the bow from the stern. This design reportedly allows for maximum efficiency as it moves through the water.

The 14-foot (4.3-meter) boat is propelled by twin 24 V motors, made by Mercury Marine's MotorGuide division. It manages a top speed of 8 mph (13 kph), and has an estimated runtime of ten hours – depending on use and battery type. It can be recharged from a household 240 V outlet, and also features its own onboard battery charger for getting back to shore, should you need it.

Passengers steer the i4 with a joystick control that displays the remaining battery life, and which allows them to pivot the boat 360 degrees on the spot. With a total weight of 710 pounds (223 kg), the company claims that it's light enough to be towed behind almost any size of vehicle.

The most recent information on pricing puts the i4 at around US$12,999. Infinyte Marine has 12 dealerships in six countries, which can be located via its website.

The company also intends to produce a larger, faster, covered watercraft, called the i8. A 25-foot (7.6-meter) catamaran designed to fill the same niche as pontoon boats, it will feature seating for 10 passengers, and an estimated top speed of 20 mph (32 kph). Integrated rooftop solar panels and an optional biodiesel generator will help lengthen its battery range.

Infinyte hopes to introduce it sometime this year or next.

Via Dragon's Den

About the Author
Ben Coxworth An experienced freelance writer, videographer and television producer, Ben's interest in all forms of innovation is particularly fanatical when it comes to human-powered transportation, film-making gear, environmentally-friendly technologies and anything that's designed to go underwater. He lives in Edmonton, Alberta, where he spends a lot of time going over the handlebars of his mountain bike, hanging out in off-leash parks, and wishing the Pacific Ocean wasn't so far away. All articles by Ben Coxworth

to bad about the low speed, also wondering why they aren\'t using the reverse prop design now being used in many cruisers which is said to decrease fuel consumption dramatically while increasing speed.

David Anderton

would be a lot faster if they would use a Torqeedo

Peter Jacops

The great thing about electric boats, like all EVs, is that you can increase speed by upping battery voltage. This depends on the motor, controller etc, but there\'s always a way to do it, even if it needs a controller upgrade. Controllers are pretty cheap nowadays...

Mr T

Just what you want a 240V AC circuit at your boat dock. Smarter to make a hybrid with a small 4-cycle engine that charges the batteries for the electric motor. This might even work for cars.

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