If you are planning a vacation to Australia, you have to mind the major shift in the country’s legislation concerning boating, even though tangentially. As of July 1, two-stroke carburetor-based engines are effectively outlawed there.
Planned to get a new outboard motor while you’re there? It’s going to be either a four-stroke or direct-fuel-injected (DFI) engine, because they will be the only engines available on sale after the deadline.
Realistically, though, what does make this Aussie news so important to us? It’s all about the apparent tendency. The law was clearly fueled by environmental concerns, and that makes is a change we may yet witness here in the U.S. Maybe not in a few years, but eventually, we might, especially in California.
Is that a bad thing? No, absolutely not. The Outboard Emissions Law does not ban some of the outboard motors just because, as its very name suggests, it’s all about emissions. An outdated technology is something you can hardly call friendly to the environment, but what’s more important, it’s something less efficient than more up-to-date solutions, such as DFI engines, two-stroke or not.
If a law makes the two-stroke engines lose the carburator for the sake of direct fuel injection, that is a law that should not be shunned. It’s one more step away from the old days, which is sad, but that is how progress is made.
For now, we advise that you choose DFI engines when buying a new outboard motor, regardless of the fact the exact same federal law is yet to be passed. It’s not about the law, and it’s not even about the environment, although that is also a factor. DFI engines are much more efficient, they are quiet and soft, and, on top of that, they are also more reliable than carburetor engines. It’s the 21 century, folks. It’s time to lose the technology that was birthed in late eighteen hundreds for the sake of its more sophisticated successor.
Leave the past to past, and you won’t have to worry about the new law, if it is ever passed somewhere else than Australia.