Success for Volvo Penta’s new KAD300s

Short TextVolvo Penta is advancing its position as a leading supplier of diesel engines for pleasure boats. The KAD300, which was introduced last summer, has exceeded all sales goals and become a great success. The package, featuring a powerful diesel engine and Duoprop-drive, has proven that it fits perfectly with the very popular Sportscruiser boats of from 27 to 40 feet.

Volvo Penta’s introduction of the Aquamatic-drive at the end of the 1950s represented a revolutionary change for the entire pleasure-boat industry. Suddenly, there existed a product that combined inboard reliability with outboard maneuvrability. With the KAD series, which provides enormous performance from a reliable diesel engine, Volvo Penta was able to replace gasoline engines with diesel engines in what are classified as performance boats.

Over the years, Volvo Penta has unveiled an increasing number of even more powerful engines in this segment. The latest addition is the KAD300 family and is the most powerful to date. It is a product that fits in perfectly with today’s trend toward larger pleasure boats with ever increasing on-board power.

“Until now, we have sold three times as many as we budgeted for, a mildly incredible success. In Europe, Australia and many parts of Asia, it can be stated that the KAD300 has more or less taken over the market within its segment. In the US as well, the engine has won market shares, despite fierce competition from domestic suppliers, and even from gasoline engines that traditionally are much more common for American boats. It is mainly Sportscruisers from 27 to 40 feet where twin KAD300s provide excellent performance, but is also being installed on many flybridge boats,” says Kenneth Norlén, who heads Marine Leisure Europe at Volvo Penta.

Improved performance
UK-based Sunseeker, which manufactures some of the world’s most exclusive performance boats, has had very favorable experience using KAD300.

“It can actually be stated that our performance boat Superhawk 48 appeals to a wider audience thanks to KAD300,” says Nick Lean, sales manager for Sunseeker. “We forecast increased sales for this model due to the higher performance. It is primarily the improved performance that attracts customers, but KAD300 is also a new product with a range of attractive advantages. Increasingly, customers are also selecting diesel to obtain high reliability and low maintenance requirements. We are even noting a marked increase in diesel use in the US where previously the choice had been exclusively gasoline engines.”

The experience of the competing boat manufacturer, Fairline, in the UK, is similar.

“With KAD300, we have for the first time exceeded 40 knots with a diesel-powered standard boat. Our Targa 34, with twin KAD300s, can exceed 40 knots at top speed. More importantly, it can maintain top speed even with a full load. Targa 34 is a Sportscruiser from which owners desire assured performance, even with a full load. KAD300 has the power to deliver excellent performance in all situations,” says Alan Masters, sales director at Fairline.

Duoprop and inboards
KAD is a series of diesel engines with turbo, mechanical compressor and charged-air cooler. This combination provides extremely powerful torque at low RPMs which, in turn, ensures rapid acceleration and high output for maximum speed. The engine is delivered in a complete package together with Duoprop-drive. It has been developed, manufactured and marketed in its entirety by Volvo Penta.

“We take charge of the entire package. This is a feature that confers major advantages to boat-builders when everything fits together smoothly from the beginning, and everything is included in one and the same delivery. We have performed tests that demonstrate that the KAD series has a 30% shorter installation time compared with competitors’ products,” says Kenneth Norlén.

The KAD300 is also available as an inboard, and designated the KAMD300. This is an engine that has achieved success in markets in which, traditionally, inboards with shafts are selected in preference over engines with drives.

KAD series facts
KAD32 4-cyl; 2.4 lt; 170 hp/125 kW
KAD43 6-cyl; 3.6 lt; 230 hp/169 kW
KAD44 EDC 6-cyl; 3.6 lt; 260 hp/191 kW; electronic diesel control
KAD300 EDC 6-cyl; 3.6 lt; 285 hp/210 kW; electronic diesel control

All are delivered with Duoprop-drive.

KAMD series facts
KAMD43 6-cyl; 3.6 lt; 230 hp/169 kW
KAMD300 EDC 6-cyl; 3.6 lt; 285 hp/210 kW; electronic diesel control

Both inboard engines are delivered with reversing gear.

All engines with electronic diesel control are delivered with integrated electronic control system for throttle and transmission.

For more information, please contact
AB Volvo Penta,
Ann-Charlotte Emegård,
phone: +46 31 668418