Yanmars Power Universal’s Water Taxis

Friday, June 03, 2011
Photo courtesy Martin Flory Group

The innocent-looking water taxis at Universal Orlando Resort are actually hard-working craft hiding behind their pretty wood finishes, running all day, every day of the year.  Nearly constant use has been no problem for the Yanmar 4JH5E diesels powering four of the taxis, two of which have logged more than 12,000 hours each.  A new boat using the dependable Yanmar 54 hp engine is also under construction, all supplied by Mastry Engine Center.

The free taxis run between Universal City Walk and the onsite Royal Pacific Resort, Hard Rock Hotel and Portofino Bay Hotel.  The 40' canopied boats, accommodating 50 passengers, work from park opening until after midnight, 365 days a year.  Each hotel has a dedicated taxi visiting every 15 minutes, putting heavy demands on the engines.  Adding to the stress is a docking maneuver that includes a hard turn, running the engine forward while taking on passengers, then spinning the drive 180° to reverse the process.
The 4-cylinder, water-cooled 4JH5E yanmar engines, running on a biodiesel blend, have stood up to the test and then some.  The Yanmar powering It’s A Wrap has logged more than 13,000 hours.  Reel Thrill's engine has already helped transport resort guests for more than 12,000 hours, while the newer taxis Silver Screen and Take Two have over 9,000 hours between them.
 
The quiet and fuel-efficient Yanmar 4JH5E diesel serves double-duty as either a recreational pleasurecraft or light-duty, commercially-rated engine.  EPA Tier 3 compliant, the direct injection, naturally aspirated engine offers an excellent horsepower-to-weight ratio and is available with a choice of mechanical clutch or hydraulic disc drives to fit many applications.
 
"We continue to be impressed by Yanmar's outstanding dependability," said Mastry's general manager, Kevin Carlan.  "From our perspective, this is a huge success story, as the engine's performance has exceeded our expectations.  The compact 54 hp 4JH5E diesel proves itself in many high-use applications, and is great for light-duty commercial use."

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