January 13, 2022
Vision Marine Advances the Electric Transition Conversation
Consumer interest and demand for boating continues to soar to record levels. Vision Marine Technologies (VMAR-NASDAQ) is a leading educational voice regarding the electric transition of global waterways in order to create an environmentally sound future and aid in the path towards climate change.
When thinking of boating excursions, many people are not immediately thinking about associated environmental drawbacks, such as pollutants, greenhouse gases, CO2 emissions, and the damage to aquatic life. As Vision Marine helps guide the boating industry into a new era of green technology, educating the consumer to have a better understanding of the positive environmental impact we are making has become a priority.
To start a conversation about what it means to move into an electric era of boating, it is important to understand the basic differences between a traditional internal combustion engine (ICE) and an electric outboard and powertrain.
When an ICE burns fuel, it releases carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, and hydrocarbons. The pollutants and particulates contained in engine emissions cause damage not only to the environment, but can also be harmful to the respiratory systems of human beings. Electric outboards produce zero pollution and zero emission while maintaining a quiet atmosphere. Simply put, no dangerous fumes and no loud motor disrupting conversation.
Electric boats also require very little maintenance. The cost of electricity is considerably lower than the cost of fossil fuels. A typical day on the lake for a family would cost approximately $150, as opposed to less than $5 from 110 or 220 power available at virtually every marina, producing a highly competitive total cost of ownership (TCO). Unlike its thermal cousin, the electric motor has very few moving parts, which allows for far fewer operating constraints and a far greater service life.
Another aspect of moving the marine industry into the electric phase is the preservation of the aquatic ecosystem. The marine environment is a vital resource for the Earth’s survival. As gasoline and diesel engines continue to dump harmful emissions into the water, it adversely impacts aquatic lifeforms, and negatively impacts climate change.
State governments, cities and municipalities across the globe have begun to change course for the better. Many have implemented various regulations and directives related to environmental protection, including banning or restricting the use of traditional gasoline and/or diesel powerboats (ICEs) from local waterways, lakes and rivers. Europe seems to be ahead of North America, with many cities, including Venice, Amsterdam, and Copenhagen to name a few, announcing plans to outright ban the usage of ICEs. This has made a profound impact on the boating world and has directly boosted the demand for electric boats and electric outboards.
Ahead of the competition
Vision Marine Technologies is years ahead of the competition, concentrating its efforts on the high end of the outboard market, and ready for the heightened demand. Started in 1995, originally as Canadian Electric Boating Company, Alexandre Mongeon and his team have been developing its groundbreaking fully electric E-Motion™ powertrain technology to disrupt and change the legacy boating industry. Virtually none of the large boating OEMs have any noticeable electric footprint yet, and just a few have recently only started their transition into electrification.
These companies will be Vision Marine’s customers, not our competitors. Most electric technology that has been developed thus far by other companies has been low voltage and low horsepower, whereas Vision Marine technology boasts unrivaled performance. Vision Marine’s E-Motion™ powertrain technology produces great horsepower and torque, while offering an eco-friendly solution with zero pollution, zero emission, and a noiseless environment.
The E-Motion™ will also be coupled with a high density lithium-ion battery designed by Octillion Power Systems, a global leader in battery design and technology. This battery will be the first battery designed and manufactured solely for the boating industry, for the exclusive use of Vision Marine. The Octillion transaction also serves to secure Vision Marine’s supply chain, as there is presently a two year waiting time for battery deliveries.
One of the boating industry’s largest players is Brunswick Corporation (BC-NYSE), a public company currently valued at $7.6 billion. Brunswick has recently announced certain acquisitions that would indicate its transition into electric boating. The industry rumor mill speculates that its initial product will be a low power, low voltage electric outboard.
Virtually any powerboat between 16 to 29 feet can be rigged with Vision Marine’s fully electric powertrain system. In anticipation and preparation for the launch of commercial deliveries by the first quarter of 2023, Vision Marine has recently announced a manufacturing deal with McLaren Engineering, a wholly owned subsidiary of $7.4 billion revenue Linamar Corporation (TSX: LNR), which adds yet another level of expertise.
After the cancellation of all boat shows for the past two years due to COVID, Vision Marine has once again began to showcase it’s E-Motion™ powertrain worldwide at all of the big boat shows, including the upcoming Miami International Boat Show, The Nautic Paris International Boat Show, Düsseldorf International Boat Show, Marine Equipment Trade Show Amsterdam (METS), IBEX Tampa, Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show (FLIBS), Toronto International Boat Show, and the New York Boat Show.
In 2019 and 2021, Vision Marine took the E-Motion™ and its own Volt180 and Bruce 22 boats to the prestigious Lake of the Ozarks Shootout. Both years, the audiences were stunned to witness Vision Marine set new world electric boat speed records. For the 2022 Ozarks Shootout, Vision Marine will return with a goal of exceeding 100 mph, with Formula 1 boat racing champion Shaun Torrente at the helm of a 32-foot Hellkat catamaran.
As Vision Marine Technologies continues to captivate audiences at boat shows, the company has been referred to by industry trade as “The Tesla of the Seas”. In recent years, highly regarded publications have taken notice, sparking TV and other media coverage such as the CBS Miami affiliate, as well as published articles by Forbes, The Washington Post, Associated Press, Yahoo! Finance, Fox Business, and Motor Boat & Yachting Magazine, to name a few.
Vision Marine continues to spearhead the recreational boating industry’s shift into clean technology. In the future, this will inevitably lead to new job opportunities in this sector. Currently, there are already an estimated 691,000 jobs in the United States marine manufacturing industry. Marine products and related services has become nearly a $50 billion industry.
Frank Hugelmeyer, President of the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) stated in an interview with Yahoo! Finance, “Following record sales in 2020, recreational boating remained the leading outdoor recreation activity in the U.S. in 2021, with new powerboat sales exceeding 300,000 units for only the second time in 15 years,”. The NMMA expects that figure to soar to 1.4 million units by 2025. With governments ramping up their focus on reducing fuel emission and promoting zero emission power, the recreational boating industry will have no choice but to evolve and shift to electric power, which will only help fast forward Vision Marine’s mandate.