Best Bow Mount Trolling Motor

Best Bow Trolling Motor

A bow mount is a great device that does more than boosting the speed of your boat.

Many of them today come with GPS systems and other high-tech features to make your fishing adventures smooth sailing.

And as competition between brands continues to grow, we are going to see more innovative and tech-savvy trolling motors.

Which, for an avid fisherman, is something to look forward to.

But having said that, there are a few reasons buying a bow mount motor is essential. And one of those reasons is control.

Bow mounts give you the ability to control your boat using a foot pedal or remote control. It does not matter at what speed the boat is, you can comfortably control your boat with ease.

Other reasons include precision steering, improved speed, and more. So the question is, how do you determine which trolling motor is suitable for your boat?

To get an answer to this question, read and also check out our top 5 best bow mounting trolling motors

Top Pick

Minn Kota 1082341 Ulterra

Minn Kota 1082341 Ulterra

  • Sonar System
  • GPS Control System
  • i-Pilot Remote Control
  • Spot-Lock & Autopilot

Bow Mount Trolling Motors Comparison Chart

PhotoProductFeaturesPrice

Minn Kota 1082341 Ulterra

Minn Kota 1082341 UlterraThrust: 80 lbs
Shaft Length: 45 inches
Voltage: 24v
GPS System: Yes
Check Price

AQUOS Haswing Cayman

AQUOS Haswing CaymanThrust: 55 lbs
Shaft Length: 48 inches
Voltage: 12v
GPS System: No
Check Price

MotorGuide Xi5 Wireless 80LB

MotorGuide 941700110 Xi5Thrust: 80 lbs
Shaft Length: 48 inches
Voltage: 12v
GPS System: Yes
Check Price

Minn Kota 1358790 Powerdrive

Minn Kota 1358790 PowerdriveThrust: 45 lbs
Shaft Length: 48 inches
Voltage: 12v
GPS System: No
Check Price

Garmin 010-02025-00 Force

Garmin 010-02024-00 ForceThrust: 80 lbs or 100 lbs
Shaft Length: 57 inches
Voltage: 24v or 36v
GPS System: Yes
Check Price

5 Best Bow Mount Trolling Motors (as of October, 2020):

1. Minn Kota 1082341 Ulterra – Best Bow Mount Trolling Motor With GPS and Sonar Review

Minn Kota 1082341 Ulterra

The Minn Kota 1082341 Ulterra 80-pound thrust motor is very popular with boat owners because it comes fully packed with innovative capabilities.

And one of those capabilities its ability to stow and deploy automatically at the push of a button.

Not many trolling motors have this function, so it does put the Ulterra at the very top of the best bow trolling motors you can buy for your boat.

On top of that, it comes with an i-Pilot GPS system that has a Spot-Lock function.

This function is a favorite with many boat owners who own an Ulterra because of how precise it is. Once you use the function to lock your boat on a particular spot, it’s not going to budge.

Another amazing function is cruise control which allows you to keep your boat at your preferred speed. The unit comes with a variable speed feature, so you have a choice of how fast or slow you want to move.

And once you dial to that speed, the cruise control maintains that speed while compensating for waves and wind.

Other functions include the i-Track function that allows you to save a total of 16 fishing routes and the Jog function which moves the Spot-Lock 5 feet in a direction of your choosing.

Minn Kota 1082341 Ulterra Review, Pros and Cons

And the best part is that you can control all these functions using a remote control which comes with the motor. The remote has a touchscreen to make it easy for you to navigate from one function to the other.

To add to these high-tech features, the motor is fitted with a battery indicator that shows you how much of your battery power is left. It also comes with a sonar system that displays clear images to help you find fish.

All these features are housed in a sturdy construction that is durable and long-lasting. The one drawback is that this motor is a freshwater motor, so you cannot use it for saltwater fishing.

The other drawback is the cost. Compared to similar models, this motor is quite expensive. But given the feature all the high-tech it comes, that could explain the price tag.

Main Features

  • GPS Control System
  • i-Pilot Remote Control
  • Auto Deploy and Power Trim
  • Multi-Function Foot Pedal
  • Heading Sensor
  • Sonar System
  • Spot-Lock and Autopilot
  • Weedless Wedge 2 Prop
  • Battery Meter

Pros:

  • 80 pounds of thrust
  • i-Pilot GPS system with advanced capabilities
  • Stows and deploys automatically
  • Durable and sturdy construction
  • Ideal for freshwater fishing
  • Comes with a sonar system to help you locate the fish
  • Sturdy 45-inch shaft
  • Uses two 12v batteries
  • Easy to use foot pedal
  • Battery indicator to keep track of battery power
  • Ideal for boats that weigh 4000 pounds

Cons:

  • Extremely expensive

2. AQUOS Haswing Cayman – Best Bow Mount Trolling Motor For Money Review

AQUOS Haswing Cayman

This AQUOS Haswing Cayman is a 55-pound thrust trolling bow motor that is designed for small and lightweight boats.

It’s built to run boats that don’t weigh over 2750 pounds when fully loaded.

So it’s a great motor to install in kayak or canoe.

The shaft length of the motor is 48 inches long, which is ideal when you are operating in choppy waters. But you can adjust the length to shorten it when you want to fish in shallow waters.

And when you want to fish in water filled with marsh grass or weeds, this shaft comes with an unbreakable three-blade propeller that cuts through dense vegetation as a hot knife cuts through butter.

So you can forget about your boat getting stuck because of heavy vegetation.

The propeller is extremely quiet that there is no way the fish can hear you coming.

And that’s not all, the unit is controlled using a foot pedal that comes with a variable speed feature that you can dial to whatever speed you want giving you more control on how fast or slow you want to move.

AQUOS Haswing Cayman Review, Pros and Cons

And to check how much battery is left, the motor has an inbuilt LED battery indicator that comes with three LED lights that indicate when you are at full, half, and low charge.

The foot pedal is not the only way to control the boat. You can control it using the wireless remote control, which is lightweight, waterproof, and user-friendly.

AQUOS Haswing Cayman motor has Wired Foot Control & Depth Collar

To protect the metal parts of your boat from rusting and corrosion, the motor comes fitted with a sacrificial anode. And the electronic parts are encapsulated to protect them from dirt, dust, and moisture.

And what’s great about this motor besides being reliable and efficient is that it comes at an affordable price. So if you are on a budget, this would be a great option for you.

Main Features

  • Suitable For Both Salt & Fresh Water
  • Quick Release Bracket
  • Wireless Remote Control
  • Wired Foot Control
  • Quick Release Bracket
  • Variable Speed
  • Display 3 Levels Of Battery Power (100%, 50%, 20%)
  • Stow / Deploy Pedal
  • Ergonomic Lifting Handle
  • Depth Collar & Motor Fin
  • Aluminum Alloy Shaft
  • 3 Blade Propeller

Pros:

  • Encapsulated electronics
  • Easy to use wireless remote control
  • Responsive foot pedal
  • LED battery indicator for battery power monitoring
  • 55 pounds of thrust
  • Uses a single 12v deep cycle battery
  • Sacrificial anode to prevent rusting and corrosion
  • Variable speed function
  • Strong shaft with an unbreakable 3-blade propeller
  • Extremely quiet
  • Affordable

Cons:

  • The mounting part break away easily

3. MotorGuide 941700110 Xi5 – Best Bow Mount Trolling Motor With GPS For Saltwater Review

MotorGuide 941700110 Xi5

This MotorGuide 941700110 Xi5 saltwater bow trolling motor is one of the best saltwater motors with GPS you can buy for your boat.

That is if you have a boat that weighs no more than 4000 when fully loaded because this unit delivers 80 pounds of thrust.

The motor is operated using a wireless foot pedal that is not hard to use.

The buttons on the pedal are clear and straightforward. And the pedal itself is sturdy and shock-resistant.

Like most GPS motor systems, this one comes with a pinpoint GPS system that has advanced features, which you can control using a remote control.

MotorGuide 941700110 Xi5 motor has a wireless foot pedal & pinpoint GPS

Some of these features include a Spot-lock function that allows you to anchor your boat in a particular spot. And the function works so well that even in bad conditions, your boat is not going to move.

Furthermore, you can use the Jog function to shift the spot lock 5 feet in whatever direction you like.

There is an i-track feature that is capable of saving a total of 8 routes. So you can always go back to a particular route as long as you record it using the i-track feature. If you don’t record and save the route, then there is no way of retracing it.

MotorGuide 941700110 Xi5 Review, Pros and Cons

Another great feature is the cruise control. The motor comes with a variable speed feature that allows you to have control over how fast or slow your boat moves.

And when you want your boat to move at a certain speed consistently, just activate the cruise control.

Besides having many useful features, the motor is built for saltwater. It comes with an adjustable shaft that is 48 inches long. And the shaft features a 3-blade propeller that is extremely quiet.

Main Features

  • Wireless Handheld Control
  • Easy-to-Read LED Dashboard
  • Digital Power Management
  • HD+ Universal Sonar Compatible
  • Pinpoint GPS Compatible
  • Advanced Navigation
  • Proprietary 3-Coat Corrosion Protection
  • Wireless Foot Pedal
  • Powerful 3-Blade Machete III Propeller
  • Unbreakable Composite Shaft With Lifetime Warranty

Pros:

  • Made from corrosion-resistant materials
  • Ideal for both freshwater and saltwater
  • Comes with a sturdy 48-inch shaft
  • Strong three-blade propeller
  • LED dashboard that helps you monitor varying motor functions
  • Variable speed feature
  • 80 pounds of thrust
  • Uses a single 12v battery
  • Ideal for medium size boats

Cons:

  • It’s costly

4. Minn Kota 1358790 Powerdrive – Best Bow Mount Trolling Motor Minn Kota With Foot Control Review

Minn Kota 1358790 Powerdrive

You can always rely on Minn Kota to make high-quality trolling motors.

They might be expensive, but you do get your money’s worth.

The Minn Kota 1358790 Powerdrive bow mount is designed for boat owners who want to buy a quality trolling motor without denting their pockets.

It might not be as cheap as many similar models, but its one of Minn Kota’s cheaper models.

The motor features a simple design and easy to use features. It’s a 45-pound thrust motor that is operated using a foot pedal.

The waterproof pedal comes with an 18-foot cable that allows you to control the motor from any place on your boat’s deck.

If you prefer to use a wireless foot pedal, check with the company to see if the cabled one can be modified or if you can buy one that can work with the pedal.

Unfortunately, like many of Minn Kota trolling motors, this one does not come with a GPS system or other high-tech features. But it does come with a battery meter which is operated using a button to check how much battery power is left.

Minn Kota 1358790 Powerdrive Review, Pros and Cons

It also comes with a digital maximizer that helps preserve battery power increasing the runtime. And since the motor comes with a variable speed feature, you can control the speed of the boat.

The motor is going to deliver only the amount of power the boat needs, thereby preserving your battery power.

And to make it possible to move through heavy vegetation, the motor comes with an indestructible shaft and propeller.

Lastly, the motor is built using corrosion-resistant materials. So you can use it confidently in both saltwater and freshwater.

Main Features

  • Deploy Assist Lever
  • Side-To-Side/Electric Foot Pedal
  • Push-to-Test Battery Meter
  • Digital Maximizer
  • MKP-2 Prop
  • Indestructible Composite Shaft
  • Corded Foot Pedal
  • Corrosion-Resistant Construction
  • Cool, Quiet Power

Pros:

  • Simple design
  • Digital maximize to help preserve battery power
  • Corrosion-resistant construction
  • Strong and durable shaft and propeller
  • 45 pounds of thrust
  • Ideal for boats that weigh 2000 pounds when fully loaded
  • Waterproof foot pedal
  • Battery meter to keep track of battery charge
  • Affordable

Cons:

  • No pinpoint GPS system
  • Takes time to learn how to use the foot pedal

5. Garmin 010-02025-00 Force – Best Bow Mount Trolling Motor For 24v and Remote Foot Control Review

Garmin 010-02025-00 Force

The Garmin 010-02025-00 Force is a heavy-duty trolling motor that is extremely powerful.

And if you want to know how powerful it is, this beast requires two or three 12v deep cycle batteries to run. That is 24 volts or 36 volts.

It’s not designed to move small lightweight boats, but large heavy boats.

With 36volts, you can generate enough power to move a boat that is over 6000 pounds when fully loaded.

If your boat weighs between 4000 and 6000 pounds, 24volts is more than adequate to start and run your boat.

Its a bow mount, so it’s operated using a foot pedal. And this model uses a wireless foot pedal, which is quite large. So you need a boat with adequate space because the motor and its components take up a lot of space because of their size.

But the great thing about this motor despite its massive size is that its ideal for fishing in deep and shallow waters.

This is possible because it comes with a 57-inch shaft whose length you can adjust to be shorter when you don’t need it to be that long.

Besides that, the motor comes equipped with a Chartplotter that requires WIFI connectivity to work. And this feature allows you to hold your boat in a certain spot, put your boat on autopilot, improve navigation, and much more.

Garmin 010-02025-00 Force Review, Pros and Cons

All in all, this motor is reliable and efficient despite its size and weight. And if you are willing to fork out some extra cash for a quality trolling motor, consider buying this one.

Main Features

  • High Efficiency Brushless Motor
  • Wireless Foot Pedal
  • Full Color Floatable Remote
  • Wireless Chartplotter Connectivity
  • Integrated High Definition Sonar
  • Gas-Piston Lift Assist
  • Coiled Spring Shaft Guard

Pros:

  • Wireless foot pedal that is extremely responsive
  • Scanning sonar systems to help you locate fish
  • Brushless motor that is reliable and quiet
  • Adjustable shaft that’s 57 inches in length
  • Comes with an easy to use remote control
  • Uses two 12v or three 12v batteries to run
  • Chartplotter with advanced features
  • Ideal for big boats

Cons:

  • Large and heavy
  • Extremely expensive
  • Not ideal for saltwater fishing

Buyers Guide

What’s a Bow Mount Trolling Motor?

A bow mount trolling motor is a motor that is installed on the front of a boat. Usually, they are designed for medium and large-sized boats. They are capable of generating adequate power to run boats that weight over 6000 pounds.

And unlike transom mounts, many bows mounts especially the ones that are designed to move large boats use two or three 12v deep cycle batteries.

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So the mount and the batteries take a up a lot of space, which is why they are not ideal for small boats like canoes and kayaks. Also, small boats don’t need much power and thrust to move.

Most bow mounts are operated using foot pedals. The foot pedals are either wireless or cabled. Some bow mounts also come with a remote control to make it even easier to steer and navigate a boat.

Many of the ones that come with a remote control are equipped with GPS systems that have numerous capabilities. But they are more expensive.

Some advantages bow mounts have over transom mounts is that they are extremely precise and accurate. They also make it easy to maneuver a boat.

But on the flip side, bow motors are more expensive than transom motors. They are also heavier and difficult to install. But this does not deter anglers from buying them because they offer more advantages over transom mounts.

How to choose the Best Bow Mount Trolling Motor?

Choosing a trolling motor is not that easy as some boat owners presume. You need to know what to look for when deciding which one to buy. And one determining factor is the size of your boat.

The two most common styles of motors are transom motors and bow motors. If you have a large and heavy boat, you need a bow motor. But if you have a small and lightweight boat, you need a transom motor.

Transom Motor and Bow Mount Motor

When you know what style of motor is suitable for your boat, then you are going to need to get into the nitty-gritty details of the motor. And these details are going to determine the size of the trolling motor to buy for your boat.

So let us look at some of them.

Power

The amount of power you need to move a 2000 pound boat is much less than the amount of power you need to move a 5000-pound boat.

Trolling motors come in 12v, 24v, and 36v configurations. If your boat weight less than 3000 pounds, you don’t need 24 volts or 36 volts to run the boat.

Usually, 24v motors are designed for medium-sized boats and 36v motors are designed for large boats. Both of these motors are much larger in size than 12v motors, and they are also heavier and more expensive.

They also take up a lot of space and are difficult to install. So when you are shopping for a motor, the size of the motor is going to be determined by how big and heavy your boat is.

If you attach a 12v motor on a 5000-pound boat, chances are your boat is not going to go anywhere. So make sure that the motor system you want to get can generate enough power to run your boat without a problem.     

Thrust

Thrust is the amount of power a motor has to have to move a boat through the water. And the bigger the boat, the more thrust it requires. There is nothing more frustrating than getting a motor that doesn’t have adequate thrust.

Then again, you also don’t want one that has way too much power, otherwise, you may find yourself and anyone else on the boat in the water.

To know just how much thrust your boat needs, take the weight of your boat when at maximum capacity and multiply it by 100. Then divide the result by 2. That should give you the exact amount thrust in pounds your boat requires.

Another factor that determines how much thrust your boat needs is your fishing style. If you usually fish in calm water, then you don’t need much thrust.

But if you fish in waters that have significant waves and currents, then you need a motor that can generate enough thrust to move your boat in such conditions.

Shaft Length

Most bow motors come with adjustable shafts, which is great because you have the option of fishing in both shallow and deep water.

But you have to select a motor system with a suitable shaft length. And to do that you need to measure the length or distance between the water’s surface and the where you intend to attach your motor. Then whatever you get, add 20 inches.

https://www.instagram.com/p/CCJZewlhU9F/

If you plan on fishing in choppy waters, you should add another 5 inches. If you are not sure how to work out the shaft length, we recommend talking to an expert who knows about trolling motors.

Saltwater or Freshwater

Some bow mount motors are designed for saltwater fishing others are designed for freshwater fishing. Deciding on which one to buy depends on your style of fishing.

If you like fishing in saltwater, you need a saltwater motor. This is because saltwater motors built using rust and corrosion materials and freshwater motors are not.

So you can use a saltwater motor in freshwater, but it would not be advisable to use a freshwater motor in saltwater.

Conclusion

Trolling motors make fishing easy and more enjoyable. Which is why it is important that you get a motor that is the right one for your boat.

You may choose to go with one that is simple yet efficient or one that comes with all the bells and whistles. In the end, the type of trolling motor is going to depend on the how big your boat is and what you can afford.

Best Bow Trolling Motor

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