Mercury Racing

Subscribe to Mercury Racing feed
High Performance Marine Engines
Updated: 22 min 30 sec ago

Don’t Knock It!

Fri, 11/17/2017 - 06:43
Engine knock (aka “detonation”) is an undesirable phenomenon that occurs when a “left over” pocket of air-fuel mixture in the combustion chamber ignites after the spark plug has already fired. When this happens, cylinder pressure jumps as high as 25 times that of normal combustion, and in doing so creates a sharp metallic noise audible to the human ear.

So, what exactly is engine knock?  Well, put on your engineering hats for a moment, as we’re going to get a little technical here.  Simply put, engine knock (aka “detonation”) is an undesirable phenomenon that occurs when a “left over” pocket of air-fuel mixture in the combustion chamber ignites after the spark plug has already fired. When this happens, cylinder pressure jumps as high as 25 times that of normal combustion, and in doing so creates a sharp metallic noise audible to the human ear.  This noise is referred to as “knock”, and left unchecked, it can lead to engine damage ranging from relatively mild to complete engine failure. The extent of engine damage that can occur from knock is highly dependent on the specific output of the engine (horsepower/cubic inches or liters) . . . the higher the specific output, the more extensive the knock damage may be.  In addition, external factors influence an engine’s propensity to knock.  For example, higher air and/or water temperatures make it harder to cool the engine, and therefore create an easier environment for knock to occur, while higher humidity helps reduce the chances for knock.  By now you’re probably wondering “how can I protect my engine from the weather?”

Using high quality fuel with an octane rating that complies with your engine’s requirement is your single best defense against engine knock.

The good news is using high quality fuel with an octane rating that complies with your engine’s requirement is your single best defense against engine knock.  This is why certain Mercury Racing consumer outboards and sterndrives require a minimum of 91 octane (98 RON) pump fuel.  The higher-octane fuel allows your Mercury Racing engine to safely produce maximum power while protecting against engine knock.

Octane ratings at the pump are typically determined by the following equation: (RON + MON)/2; commonly written as (R + M)/2. This is called the antiknock index (AKI).

Octane, in fact, is a measure of gasoline’s antiknock performance. There are two test methods used to measure gasoline octane rating. One method results in the Research Octane Number (RON); the other produces the Motor Octane Number (MON). Octane ratings at the pump are typically determined by the following equation:

(RON + MON)/2; commonly written as (R + M)/2. This is called the antiknock index (AKI).  In general, a higher-octane fuel, such as 91, provides greater protection against engine knock than a lower octane fuel, such as 87 or 89.

400R and Automatic Knock Protection

The 400R produces its advertised horsepower at 7,000 RPM on 91-octane (98 RON) pump fuel; however, the engine control unit will automatically adjust spark timing on individual cylinders should it start to detect engine knock.

All Mercury Racing outboards and sterndrives require a certain minimum fuel octane to protect against knock while maximizing performance. The Verado 400R outboard takes it one step farther with an advanced computer controlled knock protection system. The 400R produces its advertised horsepower at 7,000 RPM on 91-octane (98 RON) pump fuel; however, the engine control unit will automatically adjust spark timing on individual cylinders should it start to detect engine knock. The amount of spark removed and subsequent power reduction is highly dependent on ambient conditions (water and air temperature, humidity) and other factors.

The 400R’s knock protection system provides the ultimate flexibility by allowing you to maximize performance on 91 octane without having to compromise where you run your boat based on available fuel grades at the gas dock.

The great thing about the 400R’s knock protection system is it is designed to always give you as much power as possible under all conditions while still protecting the engine from knock damage.  Running your 400Rs with the recommended 91 octane fuel will help ensure you always have the full 400 horsepower at your fingertips, but sometimes on the water, 89 octane or Rec 90 is the best you can find.  Don’t sweat it . . . your 400Rs will run safely and reliably on this fuel as well, you just may not see the same top speed you will with the premium fuel.  This knock protection system provides the ultimate flexibility by allowing you to maximize performance on 91 octane without having to compromise where you run your boat based on available fuel grades at the gas dock.

What About Other Race Product?

Currently the 400R is the only Mercury Racing engine with a built-in knock protection system.  This means with other Mercury Racing outboards and sterndrives, it is absolutely necessary to comply with specified fuel requirements for each engine. Using a fuel with an octane number lower than an engine’s specified rating will likely result in engine failure, which is not covered by Mercury Racing’s limited warranty. While most fuel grades are readily available for boats that are trailered, it is important to understand what is sold at the gas docks for boats that are kept in the water or run for long distances.

The 600 SCi is one of three Mercury Racing sterndrives designed to run on 87 octane fuel.

Fortunately, all but three of Mercury Racing’s outboard and sterndrive products are designed to run on 87 or 89 octane (see chart below for octane requirements by engine model).  Since most gas docks carry 89 or Rec 90, the vast majority of Racing product may be operated virtually anywhere.  The consumer Race product which requires 91 octane includes the 300XS outboard and the QC4 1350 sterndrive.  Finally, the dual cal 1350/1550 QC4 consumer model requires 91 octane in 1350 mode and 112 octane race fuel in 1550 mode.  Typically race fuel (112+ octane) is not readily available and must be ordered in advance for speed runs or competition race activities.  Recommended race fuels per the chart below are Sunoco Supreme 112 AKI or Sunoco 117 MON, VP C16 or equivalents.

Can’t I Just Add Octane Boost?

As previously mentioned, most marinas today are carrying Rec 90; a cross between 91 and 89 octane pump fuel. In other areas, the highest available fuel rating is often 89 but sometimes 87-octane. This is a huge gamble if your engine requires 91-octane fuel and is not equipped with knock control, one that often leads to serious engine damage.

As a result, it comes as no surprise that many of our customers turn to aftermarket products (fuel additives) promising to raise the octane in their boats to acceptable levels which comply with our specified fuel requirements.  Internet forums are full of discussion threads arguing whether these products actually work.  Here at Mercury Racing, we are frequently asked for our opinions on these additives. To date, we have not been able to validate the effectiveness of any aftermarket octane boosting products on any Mercury Racing product.  Thus, we do not recommend or support using them as a substitute for using the specified minimum octane fuels our products require.

Higher volume fuel tanks found on most powerboats or center consoles would likely require a substantial amount of octane booster, and even at that, there is risk the final octane in the tank may still not be enough to meet the specified requirement.

Many of these products advertise that they boost the octane by a certain percentage or factor when mixed with the fuel at a certain ratio.  It is unclear how much of the product is truly required to boost the fuel octane in the tank by a full point.  Higher volume fuel tanks found on most powerboats or center consoles would likely require a substantial amount of octane booster, and even at that, there is risk the final octane in the tank may still not be enough to meet the specified requirement. This is a major risk to take with your high dollar investment, and one that would not be covered by Mercury Racing’s limited warranty.

Our advice?  Don’t risk it.  Top off your tanks with the correct fuel grade specified for your Mercury Racing engines prior to your day on the water. Plan your route to ensure you have access to your required fuel when needed. Your engines will thank you with top performance and unwavering reliability.

 

 

 

 

 

Celebrating 25 Years of Performance Boater’s Paradise!

Wed, 11/08/2017 - 08:00

Greetings from Key West! We are here to support and celebrate the Florida Powerboat Club’s  25th anniversary Key West Poker Run. We are proud to again be the Presenting Sponsor of this prestigious event which has over 180 registered poker teams from around the globe taking the 170 mile scenic tour from Miami to Key West.

We are proud to again be the Presenting Sponsor of this prestigious event which has over 180 registered poker teams from around the globe taking the 170 mile scenic tour from Miami to Key West. Photo Credit: Pete Boden Shoot 2 Thrill Pix

“Congratulations to Stu, Jackie and the entire Florida Powerboat Club on 25 years of this signature poker run. You have set the bar for safe, well organized events and we are honored to be affiliated with such a quality organization. We wish you many more years of success;” Mercury Racing General Manager Erik Christiansen.

Mercury Racing Experience

The Mercury Racing Experience Truck is again a featured display in the Poker Run Village.

The all-new, naturally aspirated QC4 860 sterndrive in standard Super Silver Metallic. The 860 display motor, transom plate and M6 sterndrive are painted Hulkin’ Green Pearl. A total of 12 color options are available.

The truck is packed with exciting products including the all-new, naturally aspirated QC4 860 sterndrive. Other featured products include the 8.6 Liter 540 sterndrive and a cutaway of the venerable 400R outboard!

Performance Propeller Manager Scott Reichow (right) is ready to talk props!

Factory reps will be on hand to answer questions and provide details regarding our Race to Repower program. Scott Reichow is available to provide advise regarding  propeller applications.

Get you Race Gear Here! 

Official Mercury Racing Merchandise is available for purchase. Don’t miss out! Quantities are limited. The Experience truck and merchandise tent will be open 3 pm to 10 pm Thursday; 10 am to 10 pm Friday and Saturday.

SEMA 2017

Tue, 10/31/2017 - 07:13
Designed, developed and manufactured in-house, the naturally aspirated, 7.0 Liter DOHC V8 Small Block Four Valve (SB4) engine features Mercury Racing’s exclusive aluminum four-valve cylinder heads and dual overhead camshaft valve train integrated with an LS cylinder block packed with Mercury Racing-designed and specified hardware.

Greetings from the Las Vegas Convention Center – home of the 2017 Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) show.  We are excited to promote our new SB4 7.0 (Small Block Four Valve) automotive aftermarket crate engine. The SB4 earned two Global Media Awards upon its 2016 SEMA debut.

Mercury Racing designed, Edelbrock® cast DOHC , four-valve cylinder heads provide significantly improved air flow over conventional 2-valve heads for improved drivability, idle quality, and torque compared to a high lift 2-valve design. Anti-backlash ground, high spec camshaft timing gears for enhanced engine durability and minimized engine Noise, Vibration and Harshness (NVH).

Designed, developed and manufactured in-house, the naturally aspirated, 7.0 Liter DOHC V8 Small Block Four Valve (SB4) engine features Mercury Racing’s exclusive aluminum four-valve cylinder heads and dual overhead camshaft valve train integrated with an LS cylinder block packed with Mercury Racing-designed and specified hardware.

The naturally aspirated SB4 produces a staggering 750 horsepower at 8,000 rpm on pump fuel.

This proven valve train, which greatly enhances engine durability over a standard two-valve design, enables the engine to produce a staggering 750 horsepower at 8,000 rpm on pump fuel.

The SB4 is intended for use in pre-1968 muscle cars, street rods and an array of road track and off-road competition vehicles.

 SB4 Fast Facts

  • SB4 7.0 engines are sold as turnkey, ready-to-run engines, including a Mercury Racing engine control system. Engine front drive components (alternator, air conditioner pump, pulleys, belts and related brackets) are included.
  • Available accessories include a carbon fiber intake manifold cover and a breather gas separator kit.
  • Carbon fiber intake cover adds instant flare to the top of the engine.
  • SB4 cylinder heads and valve train are available only as part of the complete SB4 7.0 engine.
  • MSRP for the SB4 7.0L engine package is $32,995.

Road Trip

Kiekhaefer Mercury dominated NASCAR from 1955-1957.

This isn’t Mercury Racing’s first road trip. The late Carl Kiekhaefer, founder of Mercury Marine, revolutionized NASCAR from 1955-57. Kiekhaefer dominated the sport by winning 80 percent of the races he entered and capturing three national championships.

 ZR1 Corvette

General Motors came to Mercury for its expertise in the design and manufacturing of aluminum engines for the marine environment.

In 1990, General Motors approached Mercury Marine to produce the all-aluminum, 5.7- liter LT-5 engine for the Chevrolet ZR-1 Corvette. GM came to Mercury for its expertise in the design and manufacturing of aluminum engines for the marine environment. The ZR-1 was a world-class sports car in its day. The DOHC, 32-valve V8 produced 405 horsepower at 5,800 rpm.

21330 – Central Hall

Mercury Racing’s SEMA display booth features a working SB4 four-valve cylinder head display flanked by two SB4 7.0 static engine displays, one fully dressed and one cutaway to reveal its exclusive features.

Roadster Shop SB4s

Roadster Shop  debuted their all-new RS4R – IFS 4WD Bronco chassis fitted with our high performance SB4 7.0 engine package.

Roadster Shop is featuring two fully dressed SB4 7.0 engines. The Mundelein, Illinois based company has been an industry mainstay in performance chassis fabrication and custom car building for over 30 years. They produce innovative, performance-based vehicle specific chassis & suspension components for top tier street rods, trucks and pro-touring muscle cars. Available for immediate delivery, the Mercury Racing SB4 offers Roadster Shop customers a turnkey, fully calibrated high-performance engine package.

The all-new RS4R is a full independent front suspension, 4WD chassis developed for 1966-77 Ford Bronco SUVs. Designed and developed in-house, the custom chassis offers 12″ travel in the front and 13″ in the rear.

Roadster Shop’s C07 Central Hall booth features a Mercury Racing SB4 engine fitted in their all-new RS4R – a full independent front suspension, 4WD chassis developed for 1966-77 Ford Bronco SUVs. Designed and developed in-house, the custom chassis offers 12″ travel in the front and 13″ in the rear. Dual rate springs, combined with  2.5″ Fox Factory series twin tube bypass shocks and coilovers optimize ride quality and overall performance.

A second SB4 is displayed in Roadster Shop’s Upper South Hall booth, #30280.

The SEMA show runs October 31 through November 3.

Power Couple!

Mon, 10/30/2017 - 08:52
Roadster Shop has been an industry mainstay in performance chassis fabrication and custom car building for over 30 years.

We are pleased to announce we have partnered with Roadster Shop of Mundelein, Ill., for the distribution of our SB4 7.0 (small-block, four-valve) automotive aftermarket crate engine. The announcement comes one day prior to the opening of the annual SEMA Show in Las Vegas. The show runs October 31 through November 3.

Mercury Racing’s advanced four-valve cylinder head combustion system and dual overhead camshaft valve train provide significantly improved performance and durability compared to a standard two-valve design.

The 32-Valve DOHC SB4 7.0 engine adapts Mercury Racing’s proven high-performance valve train to a customized LS-based engine that produces a staggering 750 naturally aspirated horsepower. Mercury Racing’s advanced four-valve cylinder head combustion system and dual overhead camshaft valve train provide significantly improved performance and durability compared to a standard two-valve design.

The Mercury Racing SB4, available for immediate delivery, offers Roadster Shop customers a turnkey, fully calibrated high-performance engine package.

Roadster Shop has been an industry mainstay in performance chassis fabrication and custom car building for over 30 years. It produces innovative, performance-based vehicle-specific chassis & suspension components for top tier street rods, trucks and pro-touring muscle cars. The Mercury Racing SB4, available for immediate delivery, offers Roadster Shop customers a turnkey, fully calibrated high-performance engine package.

Water Gene

“Being avid powerboaters for three generations, we are extremely familiar with Mercury Racing’s offshore marine products and the incredible rigors they are built to withstand while maintaining top-level performance. We are excited to partner with a company that can provide that level of durability in a 750 HP automotive engine package,” said Jeremy Gerber, Roadster Shop vice president of operations.

Roadster Shop owner Phil Gerber agreed.

“We are excited to partner with Mercury Racing on bringing the SB4 engine to the hot rod industry.” “The SB4 is an incredibly unique package that fits perfectly with the direction of high-end custom cars being built today. This engine will certainly be a game-changer and we couldn’t be more thrilled to be a part of it.”

The feelings from Mercury Racing are mutual.

The Mercury Racing booth, #21330 Central Hall features both a fully dressed SB4 and a cut-a-way model featuring an inside view of the advanced four-valve cylinder head combustion system and dual overhead camshaft valve train.

“We are excited to partner with Roadster Shop,” said our General Manager Erik Christiansen. “They are highly respected and passionate veterans of the automotive aftermarket industry. Our capabilities are complementary and we appreciate their approach to providing innovative, high-quality products and services.”

SEMA SB4s

Roadster Shop’s C07 Central Hall booth features a Mercury Racing SB4 engine is fitted in their all-new RS4R – a full independent front suspension, 4WD chassis developed for 1966-77 Ford Bronco SUVs.

Roadster Shop’s C07 Central Hall booth features a Mercury Racing SB4 engine is fitted in their all-new RS4R – a full independent front suspension, 4WD chassis developed for 1966-77 Ford Bronco SUVs. Designed and developed in-house, the custom chassis offers 12″ travel in the front and 13″ in the rear. Dual rate springs, combined with  2.5″ Fox Factory series twin tube bypass shocks and coilovers optimize ride quality and overall performance.

Designed and developed in-house, the custom chassis offers 12″ travel in the front and 13″ in the rear. Dual rate springs, combined with 2.5″ Fox Factory series twin tube bypass shocks and coilovers optimize ride quality and overall performance.

The RS4R is configured to accept Coyote/6R80 or LS/4L80 drive train packages with an Atlas 2 Speed transfer case. The design allows the use of 285 series tires and +17″ wheels on all four corners without the need for fender mods.

Call 847-949-7637 or email info@roadstershop.com for additional information.

Roadster Shop is also displaying a fully dressed SB4 engine along with our DOHC SB4 cylinder head in their Upper South Hall booth, #30280.

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for SEMA Show updates throughout the week.

Whole LOTO Fun on the Strip!

Tue, 08/22/2017 - 05:50

We are excited to to once again support the Lake of the Ozarks Shootout on the Strip. The show gets underway 5 p.m. CST Wednesday. Check out the Mercury Racing spot on News Talk KRMS 1150 AM/97.5 FM/104.9 FM/Live Streaming Audio – the official Shoot Out Radio Station.

/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/MERCURY-RACING-SHOOTOUT-2017-1.mp3 Be sure to check out the all-new, naturally aspirated QC4 860 Sterndrive and 400R Carbon Edition outboard.

Be sure to stop by the Mercury Racing Experience Truck to see the all-new QC4 860 sterndrive and 400R Carbon Edition outboard. Factory reps supporting the event include National Sales Manager Kevin Skiba and Performance Propeller Manager Scott Reichow. Mercury service rep Chris Moore is set to answer service related questions. Nick Petersen will complete his Mercury Racing Propeller summer intern experience at LOTO.

The Race to Repower program expires December 31.

Be sure to ask our team about the unprecedented Race to Repower program which features a cash rebate, free DTS rigging kit and Zero Effort Control with the purchase of a 520, 540 or 565 sterndrive engine package. The program offer expires December 31.

The official Mercury Racing LOTO Event T-shirt features a Playcraft Pontoon and Doc Jansen’s OC4 Experience Outerlimits.

Official Mercury Racing Merchandise, including a custom LOTO Shootout event T-shirt, will be available for purchase.  Don’t miss out! Quantities are limited.

Doc Michael Jansen will showcase his QC4 Experience Outerlimits at the Strip Meet & Greet and at the Outerlimits customer appreciation party.

The Mercury Racing Experience continues on Thursday with the Marine Technology customer appreciation event. Outerlimits’ customer appreciation event follows on Friday. Our Product Integration Manager Mike Griffiths will represent Mercury Racing at both events.

We hope to see you there!