Sunsation Powerboats’ popular 29CCX model has been chosen as the latest addition to Mercury Marine’s test fleet.  Dating back to the 1950’s under the direction of Carl Keikhaefer, Mercury has conducted year round engine tests on various model designs of the world’s major boat manufacturers. Since that time it’s been an uninterrupted exercise in gathering data for ongoing performance and reliability improvements of their propulsion products.

In June of this year, Sunsation Powerboats was commissioned by Mercury Marine Engineering to build a base model 29CCX as a test platform for twin configurations of its 150 -300HP outboard engines. Company owners Joe & Wayne Schaldenbrand and Jared Morris were contacted by Phillip Magee, Manager of Mercury’s Environmental Research Center located at the X-Site Facility in Florida. Magee, laid out the requirements for the build and Sunsation delivered the boat by October.

In the following  Q&A,  Magee explains Mercury’s criteria for choosing the Sunsation 29CCX as one of it’s newest test platforms.

Why did Mercury engineers choose the specific Sunsation model 29CCX ?

Mercury – “The boat has a trailerable beam and is at the high end of the speed range for it’s class and has an open recreational style seating design. Plus,  the quality of the hull will insure long term testing of our engines.”

What specific tests are planned for the boat?

Mercury- “We will perform performance, NVH, and various Engine tests & Calibrations. We’ll also  provide demonstrations of how this boat performs with the different outboard horsepower configurations and setups.”

Where will the testing take place and for what time period?

Mercury – “Primarily In Oshkosh, Wisconsin  and Panama City FL over the next few years. “

Phil Magee continues, “ Mercury has had a long time relationship working with the Sunsation Team . Both with their line of performance V-Bottoms and for the past few years, their new CCX center console designs. They were one of the original manufacturers to qualify for Mercury’s T.E.A.M. program and have provided us valuable data over the years from their own R&D efforts.

For more information on Susnsation’s complete line of high performance V-Bottom and center console boats visit us at

Photo and content credit American Performance Media