Mercury Marine has succeeded in its ambition of creating a joystick piloting control for single-engines. The company seated in the Big Apple has presented the first piloting system for boats equipped with a single inboard at the Boot Düsseldorf. The Joystick Piloting for Inboards (JPI) allows to steer the boat through a single control lever acting on both the engine and the bow thruster and integrated in controls for a better manoeuvrability when a the boat is equipped with a stern thruster. The aim is, in fact, to make the management of low-speed manoeuvres in the ports or tight spaces simpler and more intuitive. The system is compatible with both diesel and gasoline Mercury propulsion systems.
The JPI is the last evolution of the joystick piloting control presented by the brand of Fond du Lac 10 years ago, when it was still exclusively associated with Zeus pods. The fact that a portion of the 730 million dollars spent in research and development investments since 2009 in Wisconsin were also dedicated to the improvement of this control method became clear about one year ago, when the group presented the Joystick Piloting System (JPS) for Verado outboards and Axis inboard-outboard engines, together with Zeus pods, at the Miami Boat Show.
The system certainly brings important advantages to those who have to steer fast in tight spaces, such as ports, or while enjoying water skiing, wakeboarding or wakesurfing ( a water sport in which a rider trails behind a boat, riding the boat’s wake without being directly pulled by the boat), for example to recover the fallen rider.
The Mercury’s attention to everyone involved in these water sports is also evident in the improvement of the so-called Smart Tow function, which allows to sail comfortably and under power at an appropriate number of revolutions and accommodate the lower speeds required by wake surfers. This feature also allows tow sports boaters to choose a preset launch profile and cruise speed.
Mercury’s JPI includes the same functions of JPS, such as the led indicator which changes colour according to the status of the Joystick operating mode: Route, Heading (direction) or Skyhood (when you want to maintain the same position compared to the bottom). It also allows to change direction with variations ranging from one to 10 degrees.
The system is perfectly compatible with VesselView Mobile, the App available for both Mac Os and Android devices. It provides Mercury Marine SmartCraft users with more information and data on boat and engine functions than any other on-board system. The total functions are available if combined with the Bluetooth Low Energy VesselView Mobile hardware module which transmits wireless data from the engine to the mobile device. The data supplied are: rpm, battery charge status, engine temperature and operating hours. Users can check speed directly from their mobile phone while the maximum speed is memorized and can be shared with friends and on social channels directly from the App. Moreover, users are constantly informed about consumption and they can even set the best speed according to the scheduled distance or the time to sail with the fuel available. Of course, in case of failures or problems, the VesselView Mobile provides users with the necessary information, retains a record of the assistance file and recalls the next deadlines. The App is very “social”: the boat’s position is displayed on a map where also local dealers are shown and users can also take photographs or memorize fishing places and weather forecast.
Finally, Mercury Marine has presented its new Go Boldly campaign focused on enhancing the boating experience regardless the way, place, time and what sailors do. To promote this new approach, Mercury Marine has created the video below. Do you find it convincing enough?