Skip to main content

Battle of the Biggest Outboards Levels Up

Battle of the Biggest Outboards Levels Up
The increasing popularity of longer, faster center-console fishing boats is fueling the drive for more powerful outboards.(Photo courtesy of Yamaha)

The 5.6-liter V8 XTO is the largest Yamaha on the market. (Photo courtesy of Yamaha)

The increasing popularity of longer, faster center-console fishing boats is fueling the drive for more powerful outboards.

By Game & Fish Editor in Chief John Geiger

Yamaha just upped their outboard game by announcing a new 425-horsepower motor for saltwater anglers. The 5.6-liter V8 XTO is the largest Yamaha on the market.


Mercury Marine earlier this year showed off their new V8 400-hp engine. But the biggest boy on the block is 7 Marine's new 627-hp monster.


Yamaha's V8 XTO

That behemoth, called the 627sv, has an all-aluminum block, weighs 1,094 pounds dry, displaces 376 cubic inches, and can push a big boat at astounding speeds. The 627sv was released in February.

Outboard manufacturers are responding to increasing popularity of large, fast open-cockpit center-console fishing boats. These vessels are changing the face of offshore fishing. Anglers are able to get farther offshore, quicker, and fish places they had not in the past.

The new Yamaha V8 XTO is the latest in the rush to super-powerful outboards. (Photo courtesy of Yamaha)


Off Florida's West Coast, anglers are now able to access Louisiana's oil rigs in a reasonable amount of time with multiple 425-plus outboards on the transom of sleek boats like Yellowfin's 42 Offshore, Contenders, Freemans or a 53-foot HydraSport Sueños.

Northeastern anglers off the East Coast can now access distance canyons in less time, and that opens new opportunities for bluefin tuna, makos and marlin.

The new Yamaha outboard, unveiled this summer, has many impressive new innovations in addition to speed. The Yamaha XTO actually is excellent at going backwards.


Anglers know there are many times when you must go in reverse fast. Backing down on a game fish to let the angler gain line is a huge part of offshore tournament fishing.

A new exhaust-gas relief system lets the V8 XTO Offshore propellers bite clean water — that is, exhaust is now released above the cavitation plate so the prop pulls at "new" water, not aerated, exhaust water like all other outboards do. The result is an immediate response and power like never before.

Anglers are now able to access Louisiana's oil rigs from Florida's west coast in a reasonable amount of time with multiple 425-plus outboards, such as the Yamaha V8 XTO.

"It's amazing how responsive this outboard is," said Capt. Sean Gill, who has run charter boats on the East Coast. "More speed is always better. And I love being the first boat on a spot. But when I first backed down with this motor, I was frightened. It's so powerful."

Gill also noted several new upgrades to Yamaha's Helm Master system, which puts control of the outboards into a joystick, but also uses complex computer algorithms to control boat positioning. Helm Master is made for multiple-outboard setups and adjusts the position and speed of each motor automatically to match joystick input.

Yamaha's Helm Master

"If you're drift-fishing, working jigs over a wreck or fishing live bait at the surface, you can now set your boat to follow patterns and variations to keep you in fish longer," said Gill.

A few other innovations from this massive new Yamaha include electronic steering, which is an industry first. This eliminates hydraulics completely, and I noticed it frees up a lot of room in the transom area – which can be taken back for storage or a larger cockpit, where we anglers spend an awful lot of time!

Although hidden from view, the new direct injection system delivers its fuel-air mixture not to the intake, but directly into the cylinders. That increases responsiveness and torque.

Get Your Fish On.

Plan your next fishing and boating adventure here.

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Yo-Zuri Mag Popper & 3D Inshore TopKnock Pencil

Yo-Zuri Mag Popper & 3D Inshore TopKnock Pencil

Yo-Zuri pro Carter Andrews discusses new saltwater fishing lures with Florida Sportsman's Jeff Weakley as part of our 2020 ICAST New Fishing Gear Guide.

Humminbird CoastMaster - A Closer Look

Humminbird CoastMaster - A Closer Look

Patterned after Humminbird's LakeMaster charts for freshwater anglers, CoastMaster charts bring the same features for salt anglers. CoastMaster delivers unrivaled nearshore and offshore fishing performance.

Yakgear Basic Kayak Angler & Deluxe Anchor Trolley Kits

Yakgear Basic Kayak Angler & Deluxe Anchor Trolley Kits

New products from ICAST 2020 included the Yakgear Basic Kayak Angler and Deluxe Anchor Trolley kits. Bill Bragman highlights the features of each kit.

Daiwa J-Fluoro Samurai Fluorocarbon Fishing Line

Daiwa J-Fluoro Samurai Fluorocarbon Fishing Line

Pro angler Cody Meyer calls Daiwa's J-Fluoro Samurai the best fluorocarbon he's ever fished. Meyer spoke with In-Fisherman associate publisher Todd Ceisner as part of the 2020 ICAST New Fishing Gear Guide.

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

When it comes to fishing baits, you won't find a more unusual variety than the strange brews of smelly ingredients often used to catch catfish. How To Make Your Own Catfish Dough Bait Catfish

How To Make Your Own Catfish Dough Bait

Keith Sutton - August 04, 2015

When it comes to fishing baits, you won't find a more unusual variety than the strange brews...

Dozens of different bait types are commonly used for catfish, including these great options.12 Great Catfish Baits Catfish

12 Great Catfish Baits

Jeff Samsel

Dozens of different bait types are commonly used for catfish, including these great options.

As most catfish anglers know, blue cats, channel cats and flatheads will eat darn near anything that fits in their mouths.5 Ways To Catch Catfish on Lures Catfish

5 Ways To Catch Catfish on Lures

Keith Sutton

As most catfish anglers know, blue cats, channel cats and flatheads will eat darn near...

While catfish are still catfish, the difference between day and night tactics and strategies can be profound, even when fishing the same lake or river.How to Catch Catfish Day and Night Fishing How-To

How to Catch Catfish Day and Night

Terry Madewell

While catfish are still catfish, the difference between day and night tactics and strategies...

See More Trending Articles

More Boats

We take a look at the latest self-propelled fishing crafts unveiled at ICAST 2019 in Orlando.New Breed of Fishing Kayaks Packed with Features ICAST

New Breed of Fishing Kayaks Packed with Features

Drew Warden - July 19, 2019

We take a look at the latest self-propelled fishing crafts unveiled at ICAST 2019 in Orlando.

As we gear up for spring, we checked out the newest multi-species vessels for serious anglers.2019 Boats: 4 Multi-Species Fishing Machines Boats

2019 Boats: 4 Multi-Species Fishing Machines

G&F Staff - February 20, 2019

As we gear up for spring, we checked out the newest multi-species vessels for serious anglers.

We got an advanced look at 8 new fishing boats — What sets them apart?2020 Boats, Motors and Electronics Reviews Boats

2020 Boats, Motors and Electronics Reviews

Dr. Jason Halfen - March 09, 2020

We got an advanced look at 8 new fishing boats — What sets them apart?

Stripping a reel and adding fresh line is a breeze if you know the drill—literally.How to Quickly Re-Spool a Fishing Reel Playbook

How to Quickly Re-Spool a Fishing Reel

Game & Fish Staff

Stripping a reel and adding fresh line is a breeze if you know the drill—literally.

See More Boats

Magazine Cover

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE Arrow

Buy Digital Single Issues

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the Game & Fish App

Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All Game & Fish subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now