Round Italy 2017 is the double challenge Suzuki Marine and Avila are preparing to face. A Tuono rib powered by two DF200AP outboards will attempt to break the round Italy circumnavigation record trying to use the least possible amount of fuel. It’s a double record which would formally enshrine, at least until the next new record, the superiority of the boat-engines couple in the Endurance B-Group which includes boats up to 9 metres in length.
The course is the typical one of both the traditional offshore challenge and great series racing boating even if reverse: from Montecarlo to Venice; moreover, it’s the first time that the record is attempted by a rib – acronym of Rigid Inflatable Boat, which means an inflatable boat with rigid keel and powered by outboards.
Thanks to her astonishing design, the Tuono Type 9 won’t certainly go unnoticed. Built by the Italian Avila shipyard, she’s a completely standard boat, except for on-board electronic equipment. 8.85 metres long, the boat features a redan-equipped hull (in practice, the hull features some “steps” that, making air enter under the hull, reduce friction while improving performances) built in a unique piece.
As for motorization, the shipyard has chosen a couple of Suzuki DF200AP outboards. The hull-engines pair has already been tested under different weather and sea conditions and in different versions, from the civil
recreational one to the military one, for which the shipyard is well-known since it is considered the most suitable one to experience the circumnavigation of the Italian peninsula with the least possible fuel consumption. The reasons for that are essentially two. First, the lightness of engines that, where power and volume are equal, (we’re talking about two four-cylinder 16 valve VVT – Variable Valve Timing – engines with 2867 cc displacement) are 30 kg lighter than a V6 model.
On the other hand, the Lean Burn system allows to use the least possible amount of fuel without compromising performances. More precisely, a 32-bit central unit constantly monitors and analyzes all the data coming from a multitude of sensors positioned in different parts of the engine. Then, information are processed real-time in order to determine the best air/fuel ratio to be used in the powder chamber. This technology ensures a significant reduction in fuel consumption. Compared with a V6 model of equal power at a range of about 5,000 rpm, the Suzuki DF200AP will use -32.6% of fuel according to the information provided by the Japanese manufacturer.
The two outboards installed on the stern of the Tuono rib are at the top of the four-cylinder range of Suzuki and, among the main characteristics that make them so unique, it is worth mentioning: the Suzuki Selective Rotation, a system which allows to decide whether to make the engine left or right-handed without involving mechanic parts; the Precise Control, that is the Drive-by-Wire electronic throttle and shift system with no cables; the Keyless Start system which features a key fob that transmits an access code to the engine when the skipper is within one metre of the console (so, it requires no mechanical key); and a completely renovated direct air intake.
The composition of the crew adds a further challenge element to the already hard double record attempt. The Type 9, in fact, will sail the 1,122 miles which separate the capital city of the Principality of Monaco from the equivalent of the Serenissima Republic with no professional experienced pilots and team aboard.