Mercury / Orbital Press Release

Mercury / Orbital
Press Release

Mercury Makes Further Commitment to Clean Two Stroke Technology

Press Release
08:03 a.m. Jul 02, 1998 Eastern
SAGINAW, Mich., July 2 -- Mercury Marine, the world's largest manufacturer of outboard engines, has signed a six year agreement with Orbital Engine Corporation for the supply of Orbital's direct injection fuel systems. Mercury, a wholly owned subsidiary of Brunswick Corporation is currently selling clean two stroke engines under the "Optimax" brand name on 225, 200, 150 and 135 horsepower models.

Orbital's Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Kim Schlunke said, "This deal has the potential to contribute revenues in excess of US$100 million to the Orbital group within the term of the agreement. The ultimate financial impact is dependent on the market penetration of Mercury's Optimax products."

Mercury President, Mr. George Buckley said, "This highlights the significant success that Optimax direct injection engines are having in the market. The new engines offer smooth running quality, have virtually eliminated annoying exhaust fumes and give an average 40 percent better fuel economy, in addition to emission reductions that exceed EPA 2006 standards. Customer satisfaction with this increased boating pleasure is reflected in our recent decision to increase production in the forthcoming year by around 50% over previous plans."

This announcement follows a similar commitment from Bombardier Inc., manufacturer of about half the world's personal watercraft, in April of this year. Mr. Schlunke said, "These recent commitments by the two most important manufacturers in the marine industry are an acknowledgment that Orbital's technology is the preferred low emissions solution."

The new long term supply agreements directly between Orbital and its customers supersede previous commercial arrangements where, Orbital fuel systems were supplied through a joint venture between Orbital and Brunswick Corporation.

Mr. Buckley said, "Mercury has successfully brought the technology to market. Orbital had formed an alliance with leading fuel systems maker, Siemens Automotive, guaranteeing best quality, lowest cost supply for our customers."

Manufacturing of the fuel rail assembly, a key element of the fuel system is performed by the Siemens/Orbital joint venture, Synerject at the Siemens plant in Newport News, VA.

SOURCE Orbital Engine Corporation

Orbital Engine web site:

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