Paddleboards with motors really do exist, and they are pretty awesome. While the name sounds contradictory, motor-powered paddleboards are practical crafts; they save time in transit from the put-in and maximize time spent where you want to be. Use the motor to travel out to your favorite spot, and once you get there, let a paddle silently propel the board.
The motor can also provide a bit of extra assistance while you paddle, like an e-bike. These motorized SUPs bridge the gap between boat and board, incorporating the speed of motor travel while accessing hard-to-reach places that only paddleboards can. The stable platforms are safe, and attachments allow for different seated/standing configurations.
Top picks: Best motorized paddleboards for 2024
Best Motorized Paddleboards
Rover 12'6" Aero
Shop motorized paddleboards
Begin your search for a motorized paddleboard here. We’ve organized all the motorized paddleboards on the market by type and brand in our Paddling Buyer’s Guide. Clicking on the boards shows specs, prices, reviews and even places to buy them. Cruise through and see if any catch your eye.
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Shopping for a used motorized paddleboard?
Used motorized paddleboards are still a bit of a niche item, but can be found. Consider posting a wanted ad on a classified site or paddling-specific site. Places popular for kayak and SUP angling will have more used options.
It is essential to see, and ideally try, the paddleboard before buying it. Also, consider how you plan to transport the board. Will it require a trailer? If so, is it being sold with one? If it is inflatable, does it come with the pump? Does the motor run?
Have the owner guide you through the set-up of the board and any specific maintenance that may be required. It is helpful also to have a long-term plan to replace the motor, or at the very least be able to get parts should they fail. Many of these motorized boards have proprietary parts, so figure out if you are able to replace any parts that may fail down the road.
For more tips on what to look for when selecting a used paddleboard, read our article How To Buy A Used Paddleboard.
Motorized paddleboard buying guide
Different motorized paddleboard options are available for different boards and needs. This results in buyers needing to make many different choices. Once you’ve decided to buy a motorized paddleboard, consider whether you want an inflatable one or a rigid one.
There are benefits and drawbacks to both. The main advantage of an inflatable is portability, while rigid boards perform better. Rigid boards made of high-end materials cost more than inflatables.
Next, decide on the type of motor you want. Gas and electric motorized paddleboards are available, and again, there are benefits and drawbacks to each. Gas motors are more powerful, and if you already have a small one from a boat, you can use it on specific boards with appropriate transom mounts.
Electric motorized paddleboards are more common. They are lighter and more compact than gas motors and much quieter.
What is a motorized paddleboard?
A motorized paddleboard is a craft that can be used with motor propulsion or by good old-fashioned paddling – either while standing or sitting. These motor boards are popular for anglers who want to be above the water to sight fish in shallow or tight spaces, where traditional motorboats cannot go.
Recreational paddlers may also enjoy the thrill of moving at a quicker clip with the assistance of a small motor on the back of their paddleboard. Motorized paddleboards use either electric or gas motors and jet or outboard propulsion. The motor is often placed at the tail of the board.
Can you put a motor on a paddleboard?
Some paddleboards are designed with the option to add a motor. They have stiff transoms at the tail where the motor can be attached. Other motors attach directly in the fin slot of the paddleboard.
Are there paddleboards with motors?
For stability, speed and overall performance, purpose-built motor-powered paddleboards are the best option. These boards have been designed with motors in mind, rather than needing a retrofit. They may have thicker sides to increase flotation and a lowered deck to bring the center of gravity closer to the water. Dedicated angling paddleboards with motors have attachment options for chairs, rod holders and other accessories.
There are many options for paddleboards with motors, both gas and electric, rigid or inflatable. Find them in our Paddling Buyer’s Guide.
Can you put a trolling motor on a paddleboard?
Some paddleboards are designed to be equipped with a bow-mounted trolling motor for smooth, silent approaches. Other motors can attach directly to the center fin box. Boards that do not come with mounts can be retrofitted, with some electric motors designed to be attached by glue-on pads that are included with the motor.
How much is a motorized paddleboard?
Motorized paddleboards are more expensive than classic paddleboards, but they come with many more accessories and outfitting. New motor paddleboards cost more than $1,500 for a board, paddle and motor. If you do not have one, you will also need to buy a personal flotation device (PFD) and a leash attachment. Also, consider purchasing a cart or trailer to help move the boat-like board to the put-in, as they can be cumbersome.
Motorized paddleboard reviews
Read reviews for motorized paddleboards here. Real owners describe what they liked about the boards, and what they use the boards for. This is helpful to decide whether a particular motorized paddleboard matches your planned use.