Tohatsu 4-Stroke 6HP reviews

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Tohatsu 4-Stroke 6HP S/shaft
★★★☆☆
3.0
44.0% of users recommend this
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  • Value For Money

Tohatsu 4-Stroke 6HP S/shaft Summary

The Tohatsu 4-Stroke 6HP  is a well equipped motor for a jon boat or sailboat with Ultra-low emission, EPA and CARB 3-Star approved rating at affordable pricing. The motor is light and compact with a 12L external Fuel Tank and can be stored in 3 different positions. The front and back handles are designed ergonomically. Vibration and induction noise is reduced at all speeds for a quieter ride.

All Tohatsu outboard motors are produced in Japan. Tohatsu is Japan’s oldest outboard manufacturer and has been producing outboard motors since 1956

Reviewers have expressed issues when starting the motor at colder temperatures in which up to 20 pulls were needed to start the engine but also mentioned no issues when starting at higher temperatures.

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Latest Reviews

“Difficult to start; In-gear-no-start mechanism poor...”

★★★☆☆

written by Claymm221 on 05/05/2020

We bought this Tohatsu 6 HP 4 stroke S/S in 2018 and it's a female dog to start. Sometimes it will start from cold with no choke (ambient temp about 18 C). Other times not at all without up to 20 pulls. Have tries all sorts of routines but there is no standard method that works. Usually starts fine when warm. Then, there is the in-gear-no-start mechanism. When the supplier (in Martinique)tried to start it, this failed. We watched the engineer open the lid and tweak the mechanism. I should have walked away then (the engine was brand-new and on offer). We use rthe engine every couple of days (liveaboards) and the mechanism locks up about once a week. Last week I had to talk my wife through the tweak over the phone! The cam/detent rotates too far and the connectong rod from the gear lever is insufficiently stiff. Also, when starting it frequently kicks ack hard on the starter cord - painful and my wife hates it. Don't buy. I'd buy a 2 stroke next time. My 15 yrs old Mariner 2.5 is still going strong!

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“Great engine, VERY hard to start”

★★☆☆☆

written by Hagan12 on 07/05/2018

Bought my 6HP Tohatsu from Defender to replace a 10 year old one that had a blown lower unit. This 2017 6hp motor came from the factory almost impossible to start. (now at 10 hours total) Floods easily and always takes at least 5 pulls, sometimes 20 pulls to start from cold. Starting hot with no choke usually OK though. I'm a very experienced sailor and have torn down and rebuilt outboards, I/O's and inboards and know how to get a carb. to work properly, but this engine is just too, too sensitive to minor fuel/air variations when cold. I'd never buy another. All that being said, once it's running, it has been reliable and powerful and more than enough to power my precision 23 at hull speed, even in a chop. But sometimes.....it's next to impossible to get this new motor to start.

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“Motor had multiple problems with 6hp Tohatsu. ”

★☆☆☆☆

written by Bridget386 on 13/06/2017

Tohatsu sells motors any dealer. I bought mine from Defender Marine who sells them without checking them out called a PRe-Delivery Inspection (PDI). The first time I used the motor it was had to start and then stalled when I was coming into a dock. Tohatsu said they would pay to have the PDI performed. A week later I was told the engine had a defective carburetor. A week later after using the motor again I discovered a significant oil leak. I asked Tohatsu for a new motor but was told they would only fix the motor. It is now over 2 weeks since the motor was put in the shop for the oil link to be repaired. I'm still waiting. I have contacted Tohatsu by phone and letter. They think it's just fine to sell motors without PDI's which would have found the defective carburetor. They will pay dealers to perform them but they will sell them to dealers who won't perform the PDI. I have an internal document to substantiate my claim. There are many good motors made by quality companies. Yamaha, Honda and Suzuki are a few names. Any one of these companies stand behind their products. Tohatsu doesn't. Steer clear of this low end manufacturer.

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“Tohatsu 6hp reliable and great on gas”

★★★★★

written by on 04/01/2013

My Tohatsu 6hp has been great and is running strong for nearly 2 years without any issues. The fuel economy is awesome. She starts first or second pull every time. I too was surprised by the reviews on power as it is plenty adequate for me. I have it on an inflatable rated for 7hp and it does just fine. There is some vibration but it isn't any more than other single cylinder outboards I've owned over the years. It is a fourstroker so it is a bit quieter than twostrokers in the past. I'm planning on buying a larger outboard for a jon boat that I have and I will likely get another Tohatsu. They make the engines for nearly everyone else anyway so why pay more for a brand label? The price I paid online for a brand new MFS6C could not be beat!

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“I just bought a 2011 6hp 4-stroke short-shaft Tohatsu...”

★☆☆☆☆

written by on 18/05/2011

I just bought a 2011 6hp 4-stroke short-shaft Tohatsu outboard, and after breaking it in, wish I hadn't wasted my money. It has excessive vibration, is noisy, the steering stiffener and throttle stiffener don't work well at all, and it won't idle at slow rpm. The tiller is too short. And when you let go of the tiller, the motor immediately steers to one side -- very poor. At trolling speed, the throttle jumps up and down unexpectedly.

It was inexpensive, but when something doesn't work, it doesn't matter how good a deal you got, it isn't worth it.

Pros: it's very economical on gas, and it's lightweight so is easy to remove and service or transport.
Cons: vibration, noisy, steering, throttle, idle, throttle

Since my troubles, I've read LOTS of other bad experiences with this motor online. BOTTOM LINE: DON'T BUY THIS MOTOR!!

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Guest's Comment

Written on: 28/09/2011

I suggest you read the menu throughly especially on the section regarding the steeering . I have no problem for either steering or low speed idling. But I agree that the power is not feel like a 6 but something like a 4.5, and is quite noisy and the vibration is quite obious.

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Robfaith's Comment

Written on: 10/10/2012

We are not alone! Our new longshaft 6hp Tohatsu bought for our 25ft Tophat yacht is also a complete lemon with EXACTLY the same list of problems which could be catastrophic in tight situations. Total lack of after sales interest at local and regional level.

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“I'm puzzled at the statement that the 6 hp Tohatsu 4...”

★★★★★

written by on 02/12/2009

I'm puzzled at the statement that the 6 hp Tohatsu 4 stroke is down on power. I have a new one and it's a strong runner. It replaced a 5 hp Suzuki 2 stroke that was stolen, and I'd say the new 6 is as strong or better. It planes my 12' aluminum with ease.

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Guest's Comment

Written on: 23/01/2012

A 6hp could not plane a canoe man! Do you work for tahatso? On commission?

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“I bought this motor to replace a 32 year old, still...”

★★★☆☆

written by on 27/11/2009

I bought this motor to replace a 32 year old, still running but hard to start, 6hp Johnson Seahorse that I use as a kicker for my 23' sailboat. This motor is very similar to the Seahorse with the benefits of being lighter so easier to carry, starting every time on the second pull, being quieter ( although not as quiet as I was hoping for) and using less fuel. Note that with a boat over 3000 lbs you will need to request a prop with a lower pitch than the standard.

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“My 6HP Tohatsu produces less HP than the 5HP Tohatsu...”

★★☆☆☆

written by on 10/09/2009

My 6HP Tohatsu produces less HP than the 5HP Tohatsu 2-stroke I have.

I've had good experiences with the Tohatsu/Nissan 2-strokes (3.3 and 5 HP) but am miffed about the 4-stroke 6. I can't believe it produces 6 HP. It will barely plane one person in a dinghy, something the 5HP did with ease.

Otherwise it starts reasonably easily and for a 4-stroke, it's reasonably light weight. But the power output is underwhelming.

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“This motor is a good solid motor that is well equipped...”

★★★★★

written by on 09/03/2008

This motor is a good solid motor that is well equipped for service on a small jon boat or sailboat. excellent reliability and starts from cold on second pull. I would recommend the Tohatsu 4-Stroke 6HP outboard motor

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Asked by Bsparrow on 25th September 2017 Report this content
Hi I have owned about 10 outboards over the last 20 yrs.i bought a near new Tohatsu 6hp ( badged as Evinrude) with maybe 50 hrs on it as part of a trailer sailer set up. I have had nothing but trouble with this unit - cannot get it to start! Have had carb off ( spotless) replaced plug x 2 , replaced fuel pump . I get the usual carb che k response .Any other ideas ? PLEASE !

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Asked by phillips4 on 16th July 2014 Report this content
Has anybody else had over heating problems? The red light flashes a couple times. The motor stops running most times if your near any weeds. 

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