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ZF Announces the North American Launch of Next Generation Electronic Control System, Showcases Leading Pleasure Craft Technologies at FLIBS 2021

ZF Marine Innovation Continues to Lead the Way

  • ZF offers unrivaled vessel control and maneuverability with newest electronic control system – TotalCommand
  • Presents a brand-new “smart transmission” for pleasure craft yachts – ZF 400 transmission series
  • Highlights the industry’s first two-speed transmission for outboards; technology is a gamechanger

FORT LAUDERDALE, Florida. ZF is showcasing its latest innovations for the pleasure craft market at the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show (FLIBS). During the show, ZF will showcase for the first time in North America, TotalCommand, an all-new propulsion control platform that includes advanced functionalities to complement ZF’s industry-leading transmission technology. TotalCommand intelligence enables adaptive gear engagement and near-instant clutch responsiveness through optimized proportional control valves. During FLIBS 2021, ZF Marine technologies will be on display in Booth 1078.

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ZF Announces the North American Launch of Next Generation Electronic Control System, Showcases Leading Pleasure Craft Technologies at FLIBS 2021

TotalCommand also provides telematics data (temperature, pressure, and output speed) via embedded sensors in ZF transmissions so the captain has complete visibility to the health and function of the entire propulsion system. ZF TotalCommand provides both recreational and professional vessels unprecedented control and precision with smooth shifting and seamless transitions between operating modes.

Coupled with ZF’s new Smart Transmission family (ZF 400), TotalCommand delivers a new level of vessel control. “Never before has the vessel control system been more tightly integrated with our latest transmission technology,” explained Keith Stanley, Senior Manager, Pleasure Craft North America and Central America, ZF Group.

“TotalCommand intelligence works in concert with SuperShift 2 and an optimized Proportional Control Valve to deliver fingertip control of the driveline. With infinite control of the output shaft speed, trolling valves are no longer needed for maneuvering in tight quarters.” Not only does the system deliver unmatched vessel control, the new family of control levers is as rugged as they are elegant – suitable for both luxury yachts and commercial vessels. Commissioning and troubleshooting can be performed at the helm through a small, discreet LCD display integrated into the control head. The new compact processors can be installed in a traditional manner or mounted atop the new Smart Transmission family for easy system installation and space savings.

“The new TotalCommand system is an exciting addition to ZF’s marine product portfolio, explained Drew Orvieto, Senior Manager, Commercial Fast Craft and Engineering, for ZF in North America and Central America. “First, the system features brand new control levers that will look equally great at the helm of a Motoryacht or a commercial vessel. In addition, there has been tremendous emphasis placed on reducing complexity and increasing the robustness and redundancy of the system and its components. TotalCommand is really the best of both worlds: aesthetics to match the demanding standards of the world’s most luxurious yachts, combined with the robustness, safety, and redundancy you’d expect in a commercial application. We feel this combination will be very compelling to customers, so we are excited to show them the new system and all it has to offer.”

For manufacturers and designers, ZF has implemented a plug-and-play architecture. With fewer harnesses and the option for a transmission-mounted processor, installation time is reduced considerably. TotalCommand is future-proofed by being Wi-Fi ready – allowing electronic manuals, diagnostic and maintenance data available via smartphone. As it is standard for ZF’s marine technology, the system is rigorously tested to the highest industry standards and developed according to rules of classification societies such as AMSA, Maritime NZ, ABS, DNV, Lloyds, USCG, ABYC and more.

ZF 400 Transmission Family: flexibility for all propulsion configurations

The ZF Marine transmission range for pleasure craft applications includes a wide variety of transmissions for engine outputs of up to 1,500HP for all installation configurations – vertical offset, down-angle, coaxial and vee-drive. With the latest SuperShift 2 technology and an optional proportional control valve, the ZF 400 transmission series is our first “Smart Transmission” family for pleasure craft and yachts of up to 1,000HP. The transmission series features lightweight and robust aluminum alloy casing, case hardened and precisely ground gear teeth for long life and smooth running, output shaft thrust bearing designed to take maximum propeller thrust, as well as the possibility to integrate further smart alert functions for predictive scheduled maintenance.

Industry-first two-speed transmission for outboards

During FLIBS, ZF Marine will present its new two-speed transmission, an industry-first, as part of the new V12 Verado outboard engine developed by Mercury Marine. After four years of partnership and collaboration, the new outboard engine was officially launched on Feb. 11, 2021. Two-speed technology for marine applications is well-known by ZF but had never been applied to outboard applications. This two-speed transmission delivers maximum torque and acceleration in the first gear, and then silently shifts to the second gear for cruising efficiency and thrilling top speed; shifting is almost undetectable.

ZF Marine, a global market leader in the design and development of complete propulsion systems for all ship models

ZF is recognized as an outstanding and reliable partner for both marine propulsion components as well as complete systems for all types of vessels. ZF Marine provides transmissions (reversing, non-reversing and hybrid), propellers, thrusters, steering systems and electronic control systems for a comprehensive range of applications (speedboat, yacht, sail, sportfishing, and related watercraft, among others), with a power range from 10 to 12,000 kilowatts in commercial and fast crafts as well as in pleasure crafts and yachts. ZF Marine is located in Booth 1078, outside of the engine tent at the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show, Oct. 27-31, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.


Press Release


Ashley Van Horn

North America Divisional Communications

+1 517-290-0186

Sebastian Daza

Senior Marketing & Communications Specialist, Industrial Technology, North & Central America

+1 954-540 5243