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Coming to grips with the versatile Suzuki DT15A outboard motor could not be easier, as the owner of a 3.4m Takacat discovered.

We wanted more horsepower than the previous outboard without sacrificing light weight or economy. The DT15A turned out to be the ideal answer for our 3.4m long Takacat inflatable boat. It is easy to handle, thrifty, and once run in, we could zip our inflatable up to an impressive 21 knots.

With a displacement of 284 cm³, this two-stroke, two-cylinder, 15 horsepower outboard develops 11 kW of power. It is sure to appeal to a wide audience of boatie owners, not only because of its practical qualities but also because of its solid performance and surprisingly good torque. Lightest in the class at just 33 kgs, we’ve found the Suzuki is remarkably economical, boosted by the dome-shaped pistons and cylinder head that help move more air and fuel into and exhaust out of the cylinders. Keystone piston rings deliver more power to the crankshaft with less energy loss.

Exploring shallow waters around the Mangawhai estuary, the three-stage programmed tilt adjustment of the outboard has proved invaluable. A reverse lock automatically engages when the engine is returned to its normal operating position, thus preventing the power unit from kicking up. The DT15A is easy to carry with the retractable carrying handle that folds down out of the way when not needed.

It is also proving easy to keep in tip-top condition, and the anti-corrosion finish applied to the aluminium alloy will keep the motor looking smart. The 15hp Suzuki means we can now easily accommodate three adults in our watercraft. As well as being easy to start, cold or hot, the motor warms up rapidly and is sweet-running across the entire rev range. We are finding the Suzuki a quiet runner, helped by the prop hub exhaust that also improves combustion and performance. It’s the perfect compact workhorse for our boating needs.


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