In what the company is calling a ‘game changer’, RS Electric boats has launched its next generation Pulse 63 electric RIB with a new, more efficient motor and increased battery capacity.
The motor is a 40kW unit from the UK’s RAD Propulsion, which is available as an outboard electric motor but for the Pulse 63 is integrated into the hull. The companies have been partnering since 2018 and RS Electric calculates that this in-hull RAD40 offers 45 per cent more efficiency than the previous configuration, which was already a significant leap in terms of electric RIBs.
Lower leg/unit swivels 180º
The battery capacity has been boosted by almost 40% – from 46 kiloWatthours to 63 kWh – all of which translates into what electric boaters say they are looking for: more speed and range.
The new set-up also offers dramatic manoeuvrability. This is a result of the unique RAD40 design. It is almost like a stern drive in that the head unit remains stationary while the lower leg (lower unit) of the motor swivels. The propeller can turn 90 degrees in each direction – a combined 180 degrees – which enables the 6.3 metre (20.6 ft) boat to spin within in its own length.
RAD’s drive-by-wire throttle and steering system offers exceptional control and precision. The motor supplies 40kW of continuous power (~55hp) and its 400V architecture means it’s compatible with fast charging.
“This is the next generation of the Pulse 63,” says Alex Newton-Southon, RS Marine Group co-CEO. “It’s the place we always wanted to get to. It’s super easy to manoeuvre and the new 63kWh battery version will further increase the range.
“It provides an effortless driving experience, produces minimal wake, and is impressively quieter than ever before. Its handling remains unparalleled at any speed. Alongside its remarkable acceleration and capability to reach speeds exceeding 20 knots, the Pulse 63 boasts an exceptionally slow ‘tick-over’ speed, achieved by the propeller rotating at speeds as low as 258 RPM. This results in a calm, controllable manoeuvring/mooring speed of 1.5 knots.”
The Pulse 63 is available in four configurations, all of which use the same RIB and RAD40 system: Workboat, Coachboat, Tender and Leisure Boat.
RS Electric Pulse 63: Four models
The Workboat version is attractive for marinas, ports and other commercial operators for a few reasons. One is the time (and money) saved on day to day maintenance. The other big saving is in energy cost. Because those operators are constantly paying out money to refill with fossil fuels, the price of the battery is recovered in a short time and the daily (and annual) price to run the boat drops dramatically.
For Coachboats, no one in or around the electrically powered Pulse 63 has to breathe in the noxious fumes and stench of burning fuel, nor does anyone have to yell instructions over the noise of an internal combustion engine. Tenders and Leisure Boat owners also benefit from the quiet, clean propulsion, and the fast charging capabilities of the new battery are a feature all can enjoy.
A real-life trial with the MDL Ocean Marina in the UK proved the Pulse’s credentials as a fully electric workhorse. As for ease and control of steering, the Pulse 63 placed 3rd in the Open Sea Class Manoeuvrability competition at this year’s Monaco Energy Boat Challenge.
RS Electric boats has expanded their dealership network in the past year, and now has demo boats in the UK and across Europe, including the Netherlands, Spain, France and Italy.
The new iteration of the Pulse 63 will be on the market starting in August 2023.