Major industry announcements continue to unfold at the Miami International Boat Show as Volvo Penta has launched an extension of their ultra-popular Forward Drive.
Known as Twin Forward Drive, the new platform will focus on wakesurfing, towsports, and larger boats by offering a significant upgrade in power and versatility.
“The introduction of the Twin Forward Drive and additional enhancements to our portfolio serve as strong proof points to our dedication to making boating more intuitive, accessible and customizable,” said Fredrik Högberg, president of Volvo Penta North America, in a company statement. “We’re confident that by removing the complexities and expanding the capabilities, we’ll attract more people to the water and improve the experience for boaters across the world.”
The Twin Forward Drive package will include a matching pair of sterndrive engines, each producing 400 horsepower from a V8 powerhead. Since their introduction in 2015, the sterndrive platform has been exceedingly popular, and will only become more so with the additional power and utility provided by a twin forward arrangement.
The latest expansion includes the twin forward-facing counter-rotating prop design paired with a soon-to-be released Volvo Penta V8-400 hp gasoline engine. The combination enables all the benefits of the standard Forward Drive – superior maneuverability and fuel efficiency, fast acceleration and time to plane, powerful thrust and performance, low emission levels, and noticeable onboard comfort – to now be applied to larger vessels. This equates to bigger wakes, additional passengers, and more options for watersports enthusiasts and those with larger boats.
The fully integrated Twin Forward Drive and dual V8-400 HP engine package will be available beginning in August 2023.
Another enhancement to the Twin Forward Drive setup includes Volvo's new Watersports Control system. For 2023, the operating system and touchscreen control include an upgraded and simplified menu, improved user interface, and expanded diagnostics for more in-depth vessel management. System options include the ability to create user wake profiles for up to 20 riders, and quick ballast control for simple customization of the wake or surf waves. The new system also includes Tow Mode, which automatically accelerates to the pre-set engine speed and compensates for any changes in load. Even at full throttle, with Tow Mode engaged, the engine will not exceed its pre-set speed limit even when accelerating.
The Watersport Control system will be available across the complete Volvo Penta Forward Drive range, including twin and single installations.
You can watch the full launch video from Miami below: