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What Size Motor for 16 Foot Aluminum Boat? Find Out the Answer

Written by Anthony Roberts / Fact checked by Jonathan Larson

Owning an aluminum boat puts you ahead of the fishing game. Importantly, having the right motor makes your vessel perform at its best. It can even excellently work for an extended period.

What Size Motor for 16 Foot Aluminum Boat

Hence, you have to be serious in finding what size motor for 16 foot aluminum boat. This craft is a standard size that can operate with a 60-horsepower motor.

Knowing the right size for your 16-foot aluminum boat is not the end of the story. You also need to know how to arrange the boat and the motor together for the finest performance. So do not go anywhere, right here in this article, we have the answer for you!

The Size of the Aluminum Boat Matters

Aluminum boats are deemed versatile motorboats. They can be seen on the open sea for fishing or leisure activities. These vessels are generally lightweight and customization can be done by their owners.

It’s nice that you’ll be able to customize the interiors while you get to utilize its versatility, isn’t it?

With the right size, you keep yourself and the aluminum boat safe outdoors. However, ‘the bigger, the better’ doesn’t apply to this concern. So get a motor that matches the boat size.

The Role of a 16-Foot Aluminum Boat


Boats are sometimes used for island hopping because of the motor that comes with them. However, when it comes to aluminum boats, some owners usually take them for fishing. Despite different purposes, the motor remains an essential part.

Before buying a motor for your aluminum boat, consider your main reason for using this vessel. Other factors that can make a significance in your decision are the speed and the frequency of usage.

Don’t miss one of the factors mentioned above to get the appropriate size of the motor for your aluminum boat.

The Count of Passengers

A 16-foot aluminum boat can properly hold four people. Aside from the count of passengers, you have to include their belongings that they take with them in the boat.

Testing a boat usually takes two individuals aboard. The test drives go at a 10% to 15% speed faster than the rate when having the full boat capacity.

So the boat can be speedy if it doesn’t reach its maximum capacity. Therefore, boat capacity should be included when purchasing the right motor.

What Weight Can a 16-foot Aluminum Boat Take?


You may want to know more specific information rather than the acceptable number of people. Broadening your perspective is a way not to overlook other things that may be loaded in the boat.

If you go fishing, you’ll have to determine the weight of fuel or fuel additive, fishing gear, and the catch of the day. After evaluating these things, you’ll have ideas on getting the motor that suits your aluminum boat when going for a fishing trip.

Recommendation for ‘What size motor for a 16-foot aluminum boat?’

Installing a motor in an aluminum boat is just a piece of cake. To achieve maximum efficiency, you’ll have to give it 50 to 300 horsepower. There’s a range of the required power as you take into consideration the size and usage.

An aluminum boat that is 16 feet long needs to have a 60 horsepower motor. Once equipped, it can have a speed of 25 to 30 miles per hour. That is why when you have the right motor for your aluminum boat based on its size, it won’t cause any disadvantages.

However, the load will affect the rate. Hence, anticipate some changes as passengers and load will set variations on the speed.

Engine and Speed

The aluminum boats with an engine of 250 to 300 horsepower typically have a 55 to 60 mph wide-open throttle. These numbers may be more than enough with two passengers on board.

However, large and expensive engines are not compatible with aluminum boats with 16 to 24 feet. Engines with 115 to 150 horsepower suit these boat sizes. They can have 23 to 28 mph along with the allocated fuel economy.

These engines’ WOT ranges from over 30 to mid 40 mph. A 60 horsepower added to your 16-foot aluminum boat will propel the engine to gain the speed of 25 to 30 mph. There will be a different count as the load varies on every boat.

It’s not always necessary to upgrade to a larger engine. Ask yourself why you need such humongous horsepower, or is it only a whimsical assumption?

For example, a 90 horsepower engine for an 18-foot aluminum boat carries two people who properly cruise on the waters with WOT below 40.

Other Factors to Consider for the Right Size Motor

Passengers, load, and boat size are the main factors in determining the right size motor. But consideration doesn’t end up with them.

You must know that other things can help you mold a bright idea to get the most suitable engine for a 16-foot aluminum boat. Firstly, the manufacturer offers a guide like setting the limit for the motor size.

It’s worthwhile to read the manual or capacity plate. You’ll find the preferred motor in it. The boat’s weight is different from its size and it’s also one of the factors. Professionals weigh the boat’s horsepower per pound or another unit of measurement.

Fuel consumption is a part of the evaluation as the motor won’t work without it. Keep in mind that the amount of power is linked to the engine’s horsepower.

About the Price

Don’t be surprised if the motor that you need is on the pricier side. Substantial onboard engines cost a lot in the current market, and that’s a fact. However, it’s a worthy investment as you can depend on it in the long run.

If ever you sell your boat, the motor will be the hot item and quickly sold out. So there’s no room for regret in spending on it.

Wrapping it Up

Whether you’re just cruising over the water or fishing, it’s essential to reflect on the possible answers to the question ‘what size motor for 16 foot aluminum boat?’.

Underpowering or overpowering a boat kicks you out of the safe zone. It can be detrimental or get you sanctioned. Thus, it’s important to consider the factors such as boat size, passengers, and load. Then, you’ll certainly have the right decision in what motor to purchase. Besides, you can feel interested in the size motor for a 24-long pontoon boat.

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