If you’re in the market for a new yacht, you have plenty of choices to make — including an option that wasn’t available a dozen years ago. What kind of propulsion system will you choose to power your boat: shaft or pod? The traditional shaft system has been around a long time, and it’s a perfectly good solution. But here are four reasons you may want to consider newer pod technology in your yacht instead.
1. Free up more space for fun
A traditional propulsion system is made up of an engine, transmission, shaft, propellers and rudder — all individual components. Pod technology combines the transmission, propellers and rudder into a single component that takes up much less square footage. That means a smaller (and cleaner) engine room and more space you and your guests can use for sleeping, eating and relaxing on board.
2. Get up to speed faster (and more efficiently)
In a traditional system, some thrust gets wasted due to the angle of the shaft. That doesn’t happen with pod technology. Because the thrust is horizontal, 100 percent of it goes toward moving your yacht forward. The result? It takes less horsepower and less fuel to get up to speed.
3. Dock and maneuver like a pro
Even an experienced captain can find a shaft system challenging to operate in docking or slow-speed maneuvering situations — especially if the winds or currents are strong. That’s because the traditional system requires you to spin the steering wheel and control the throttle on both engines at the same time. With pod technology, you control it all with a single joystick. Just push, twist and go.
4. Anchor without dropping anchor
Maybe you’re cruising an inland waterway and waiting for a drawbridge to raise. Or perhaps you’ve found a prime fishing spot in the open ocean. Holding position with a traditional shaft system requires that you either drop anchor or engage in some intense throttle and steering wheel effort. Pod solutions offer a “station-keeping” feature instead. All you need to do to maintain your GPS position and heading is hit a button.
More compact, faster and simpler to operate — that’s the beauty of pod versus shaft propulsion systems. Want to learn more about putting pod technology to work in your new yacht? Check out the Cat® Three60 Pod 650, designed specifically to match the Cat C8.7 electronically controlled marine propulsion engine.