Mercury Marine officially introduced Verado at the Miami International Boat Show. The launch is the pinnacle of a five-year, $100 million effort to produce the most sophisticated marine propulsion system in their history. Verado – formerly known as Mercury’s Project X – offers acceleration, speed and durability never before seen from a four-stroke engine, yet it is nearly silent. Additionally, Verado isn’t simply an outboard – it’s a completely integrated propulsion system with steering and control systems. Also, it offers long-term emission-compliance with a three-star California Air Resources Board (CARB) rating. During the past two years, selected guests and members of the media have viewed Project X engines at various evolutionary stages through exclusive sneak previews. Little specific information about the engine was released, but the response was always the same – “Unbelievable!” Verado is the world’s first production outboard to feature a supercharger! Its remarkable torque and acceleration are results of an exclusive supercharged induction system with charge-air cooling and electronic boost pressure control. Verado’s supercharger, co-developed by Mercury and highly regarded IHI Turbo America, significantly boosts power by forcing a higher air volume into the combustion chamber than that delivered by a naturally aspirated system. Supercharging provides Mercury the best possible combination of packaging, throttle response and thermodynamics management. The supercharger system enables Verado to create outstanding horsepower with a smaller-displacement block. Traditionally, a minimum of 3.0 liters has been required to mass produce a 250 hp outboard engine. Verado’s smaller-displacement/higher-horsepower strategy allows it, in many cases, to outperform two-stroke engines of equal horsepower. That clearly differentiates Verado from standard, V-block four-stroke marine engines. This in-line six-cylinder power plant has a displacement of 2.6 liters, or 158.5 cubic inches. The general configuration will be used for the 200, 225, 250 and 275 horsepower models. Mercury will begin volume production of all four models in April to assure that our partners will receive adequate supplies for 2005 model-year commencement. The remainder of the Verado family will be available within the 2005 model year. Verado’s valve train features four valves for each of its six cylinders with a double-overhead cam (DOHC) design. Supplying fuel to this state-of-the-art engine is a computer-controlled, sequential, multi-port fuel-injection system. Precise fuel-delivery and metering provides Verado maximum fuel efficiency, no-smoke operation and outstanding acceleration. The injector system also eliminates the need for a primer bulb, a first for the marine industry. Verado is designed to be a perfect fit for all applications, from single, dual or triple offshore fishing rigs to bass boats. All models will be available in 20-inch (L) and 25-inch (XL) shaft lengths. Also, 30-inch (XXL) configurations are available in 225, 250 and 275 horsepower models. The 25-inch and 30-inch models will be available in both right- and left-hand propeller rotations. Verado is backed by a three-year limited warranty and the industry’s only three-year limited corrosion-failure warranty.