New Suzuki DF200A “The Super”

The Japanese builder launched the new Suzuki DF200A, a four-cylinder outboard engine which promises to be light, frugal and powerful. We tested on Lake Geneva: here’s how it works

When looking for top performance, you don’t necessarily have to go for more cylinders. At least, not anymore. So Suzuki follows the trend and introduces this 200 HP unit as an evolution from the same block of DF175: four pots, 2.8 liters. So, the new DF200A claims to be super: super powerful, super light, super efficient, super quiet and even super stylish. Super everything, “the Super” according to the Japanese technicians that introduced it in a world press conference on Lake Geneva.


Beside and beyond official words, the main principle for this new Suzuki DF200A is very simple: power-to-weight ratio. Or, why looking for so many horsepower when the engine is too heavy. This is the first reason why four inline cylinders have been preferred to six on a V. When compared to the previous unit, this Suzuki engine delivers the same 200 HP with two pots, one liter and 31 Kg less. The “old” DF 200 V6 is still on the market, but we’re sure customers will prefer this new DF 200A.

suzuki-df200 suzuki-df200 suzuki-df200 suzuki_df200a_airflow

“A” is the difference in the name. But there’s also the DF 200AP, to indicate the model with Selective Rotation, the feature that allows to use the same engine and chose a clock- or anticlock-wise rotation.
Exclusive for this AP unit, the Keyless Start System for stress-free starts, the immobilizer to prevent thefts and the Precision Control for an accurate and linear management of the power.
The four cylinders of DF 200A displace a total of 2867 cc (175 cubic inches) with perfectly square bore and stroke (97×97 mm or 3.82 in). The high compression ratio of 10,2:1 grants a good torque at low revs, therefore fast acceleration. The aesthetic restyling comes also from the need of changing the air intake flow: the shape of the cowling lets fresh air in, while the cooling system can work in the best conditions all the time. The exhaust line has been redesigned as well, for maximizing efficiency and lower noise emissions.
Needless to say, the engine features the Suzuki Lean Burn system completed with multi-point injection and variable valve timing (VVT) for the 16 valves on a double overhead camshaft (DOHC).


All in one gauge, and goodbye starting key

The launch of DF200A has been the chance to introduce a new multi-function instrument: it’s a 3.5” touch screen that clusters in a very clear graphics all the data about rpm, speed, fuel consumption, trim position, gearbox, hour-counter, alarms.
The top version DF200AP boasts also the Keyless Start System with a proximity transponder to send a confirmation code to the engine: it’s enough to keep the device within a one-meter range from the dash, insert the secret code, then turn the switch and push a button: easy but also secure, as the engine doesn’t start without the code.

The test of Suzuki DF200A

It’e then time to put on test the new Suzuki DF200A. We pick a boat and a rib: it’s a Beneteau Flyer 6 Spacedeck and the Nuova Jolly Prince 21. Similar crafts according to size, but very different on the scale (the Flyer reads almost 400 extra kilos) and for the propellers: 21” for the Beneteau and 23” for the Nuova Jolly. Same for both, the passengers and the water conditions (smooth, with 10-20 cms waves due to the wind).
The Beneteau Flyer 6 Spacedeck feels perfectly at ease with the new engine on the transom. Progression is great and performance second to none. The engine proves to be very quiet as well, trespassing 80 dB only at top speed when surely wind has its great share of noise. Fuel consumption is below the average reckoned in previous tests (with the older engine): 30 liters per hour at 25 knots which is a reasonable cruise, dropping down to 12 lph at 2800 rpm and 8 knots, the minimum planing speed.

Acceleration is as fast as you can think of: less than 4 seconds to be planing, up to 40 knots and 6000 rpm with a little help from the trim. And all of this, without ever getting the feeling of forcing the pace. It’s indeed a first, strong confirmation of what the Suzuki guys said during the press conference: the new DF200A is exuberant yet cheap.


Time to get back to harbor, and straight away get out with the Nuova Jolly Prince 21. In this case, acceleration is even quicker, maybe too much: as our rib doesn’t feature anchor winch (and chain), and the water tank abow is empty, there’s no weight in the front so the sensation at top speed is of being quite unsteady. We are passing 6000 rpm and 46 knots, but as we slow down a bit the feeling is good again. Still, I believe that 200 HP maybe even too many for this rib. To confirm that, we reckon a planing time of less than three seconds: isn’t it racing performance?
The minimum plane speed is 8 knots as on the Beneteau, but in this case 2300 revs give a fuel consumption under 10 liters per hour. The cruising pace (25 knots) is obtained with the engine revving at 4000, 500 less than on the Flyer, with 25 liters burnt every hour. Stunning indeed, still leaving us the feeling that some horsepower less or a meter more would give the best match.


Technical features Suzuki DF200A

Power200 HP (147 Kw)
Full-throttle operating range    5500/6100 rpm
Cylindersinline 4, 16 valves
Displacement    2867 cc (174.9 cu in)
Gear ratio    2.50:1
Starting systemelectric
Weight    226 Kg (498 lbs.)
Pricefrom around € 16000 + VAT

Technical features Beneteau Flyer 6 Spacedeck
Length overall    6.43 mt (21 ft 1 in)
Beam    2.50 mt (8ft 2 in)
Weight with no engine    1207 Kg
Fuel tank    170 lt (44.9 US gal)
Water tank    100 lt (26.4 US gal)
Engine power    200 HP
Passengers    8
CE certification    C
Price€ 16.500 + VAT, excluding engine

Technical features Nuova Jolly Prince 21
Length    6.20 (20 ft 4 in)
Beam    2.70 (8 ft 10 in)
Internal length    5.60 (18 ft 4 in)
Internal beam    1.52 (5 ft)
Tubular diameter    60/42 cm (2 ft / 1 ft 4 in)
Chambers    5
Fuel tank    240 lt (63.4 US gal)
Dry displacement    950 Kg
Max output    200 HP
Passengers   12
CE certification    B
Price€ 26.600 + VAT, excluding engine

Performance Beneteau Flyer 6 Spacedeck
1000 rpm          3,7 knots       4.3 mph            2,2 lph           0.6 gph        60 db
1500 rpm          5,1 knots        5.9 mph             4,3 lph          1.1 gph         63 db
2000 rpm         6,2 knots         7.1 mph             7,0 lph         1.8 gph        66 db
2500 rpm         7,1 knots          8.2 mph            11,0 lph         2.9 gph       70 db
3000 rpm         9,0 knots         10.4 mph          16,6 lph         4.4 gph      72 db
3500 rpm         16,9 knots        19.5 mph          20,0 lph        5.3 gph      76 db
4000 rpm         22,0 knots       25.3 mph         25,0 lph          6.6 gph      78 db
4500 rpm         25,2 knots        29.0 mph         30,4 lph        8.0 gph      78 db
5000 rpm         29,3 knots       33.7 mph         41,8 lph         11.0 gph     80 db
5500 rpm         32,2 knots        37.1 mph        64,0 lph         16.9 gph     81 db
6000 rpm         39,6 knots       45.6 mph         72,5 lph         19.1 gph     83 db

Prestazioni del Nuova Jolly Prince 21
1000 rpm           4,0 knots        4.6 mph       2,5 lph           0.7 gph         62 db
1500 rpm          5,1 knots          5.9 mph       5,0 lph           1.3 gph          64 db
2000 rpm          7,3 knots         8.4 mph        7,2 lph          1.9 gph          67 db
2500 rpm         8,2 knots          9.4 mph        12,6 lph         3.33 gph       71 db
3000 rpm1       4,4 knots1        6.6 mph        14,0 lph         3.7 gph        73 db
3500 rpm         21,2 knots        24.4 mph       16,4 lph        4.3 gph        77 db
4000 rpm        25,0 knots        28.8 mph       24,4 lph        6.4 gph        80 db
4500 rpm        31,1 knots         35.8 mph       30,6 lph         8.1 gph       81 db
5000 rpm        35,2 knots        40.5 mph       37,5 lph         9.9 gph        81 db
5500 rpm        38,3 knots       44.1 mph        58,5 lph        15.5 gph        82 db
6200 rpm        46,0 knots        52.9 mph         74,0 lph      19.5 gph       83 db

Test conditions
Calm lake, temperature 12° C (54° F), full tank of fuel, no water, passengers 4, clean hull

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