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Have you ever found yourself struggling to navigate through the water while fishing? If so, you’re not alone. Many anglers face this challenge, but fortunately, there’s a solution – i-Pilot technology on a trolling motor. This advanced feature is designed to make fishing easier and more efficient by providing unparalleled control and navigation capabilities.

But what is i-pilot on a trolling motor and how does it work? In this blog post, we’ll explore the ins and outs of i-Pilot on a trolling motor, including its features, benefits, and how it can help you catch more fish with less effort. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a beginner, i-Pilot technology is a game-changer that you don’t want to miss out on. So, let’s dive in and discover what i-Pilot is all about.

what is i-pilot on a trolling motor
i-Pilot for Trolling Motor

How i-Pilot Works: A Glimpse into the Tech

The i-Pilot system is a marvel of modern marine technology, designed to make your life on the water as smooth as a calm sea. But what sorcery is behind this nautical wonder? Here’s a peek behind the curtain:

  • GPS Technology: At the heart of the i-Pilot system is its GPS-based navigation. By harnessing the power of satellites, i-Pilot can pinpoint your boat’s location and track its movements with uncanny accuracy.
  • Wireless Remote Control: The i-Pilot remote allows you to steer your boat, set and follow routes, and control your trolling motor’s speed from anywhere on your vessel. No need to be glued to the helm!
  • Software Integration: i-Pilot works seamlessly with your trolling motor and other onboard electronics, allowing for smooth operation and coordination between all your gadgets.

Key Features of i-Pilot: The Captain’s Treasure Chest

The i-Pilot system is chock-full of nifty features that will make you feel like the captain of a futuristic vessel. Here are some of the highlights:

  • Spot-Lock: This virtual anchor holds your boat in place over a specific spot, allowing you to focus on fishing instead of constantly adjusting your position.
what is i-pilot on a trolling motor
Spot Lock Feature of i-Pilot
  • AutoPilot: Set a course, and i-Pilot will steer your boat along that path, compensating for wind, current, and other factors to keep you on track.
  • iTracks: Record and retrace your favorite routes with ease, so you can revisit your most successful fishing spots without having to rely on your memory.
i-Track Feature of i-Pilot
  • Advanced AutoPilot: This upgraded version of AutoPilot allows for more precise course adjustments and improved navigation around obstacles.
  • CoPilot: Control your trolling motor’s speed, steering, and on/off functions remotely, for ultimate convenience and control.

Compatible Trolling Motors: Finding Your Perfect Match

While i-Pilot is an impressive piece of technology, it’s not compatible with every trolling motor on the market. Fear not, though, for here are some popular options that will gladly welcome i-Pilot into their electronic embrace:

  • Minn Kota PowerDrive Series: These versatile motors come in a range of thrust levels and are designed for freshwater use, making them a popular choice for i-Pilot compatibility.
  • Minn Kota Terrova Series: With more power and advanced features, the Terrova Series is perfect for serious anglers seeking a trolling motor that can handle both freshwater and saltwater environments.
  • Minn Kota Ulterra Series: The crème de la crème of trolling motors, the Ulterra Series offers top-of-the-line performance and features, including automatic stow and deploy capabilities that work seamlessly with i-Pilot.
  • Minn Kota Riptide Series: Designed specifically for saltwater use, the Riptide Series boasts durable construction and corrosion-resistant materials, making them an ideal partner for i-Pilot.

i-Pilot Installation: From Landlubber to Trolling Motor Pro

Now that you know what is i-pilot on a trolling motor and how it works, it’s time to install i-Pilot on your trolling motor. Follow these steps, and you’ll be navigating the high seas like a seasoned mariner in no time:

  • Preparation: Make sure your trolling motor is compatible with i-Pilot and gather all necessary tools and materials.
  • Mounting: Attach the i-Pilot control head to your trolling motor, following the manufacturer’s guidelines for proper placement and alignment.
  • Wiring: Connect the i-Pilot system’s wiring to your trolling motor and boat’s electrical system, ensuring proper grounding and power supply.
  • GPS Receiver: Install the GPS receiver in a location with a clear view of the sky for optimal satellite reception.
  • Remote Sync: Pair your i-Pilot remote with the control head, following the manufacturer’s instructions for synchronization.
  • Testing: Power up your i-Pilot system and test its functions to ensure everything is working correctly. If all goes well, it’s time to set sail with your new i-Pilot-equipped trolling motor!
i-Pilot Installation

Navigating the i-Pilot Remote: A Remote Fit for a Captain

The i-Pilot remote is your key to unlocking the full potential of your trolling motor. With a little practice, you’ll be wielding it like a true sea captain. Here are some tips for mastering the remote’s functions:

  • Power: Turn your i-Pilot system on and off with the press of a button.
  • Directional Arrows: Use the arrow buttons to steer your boat in any direction or adjust your course while using AutoPilot.
  • Speed Control: Adjust your trolling motor’s speed with the “+” and “-” buttons.
  • Spot-Lock: Activate and deactivate Spot-Lock mode with a single button press.
  • AutoPilot and Advanced AutoPilot: Toggle between standard AutoPilot and Advanced AutoPilot modes using the designated button.
  • iTracks: Record, save, and retrace your routes with the touch of a button.
  • Menu: Access additional settings and features through the remote’s menu button and screen.

Pros and Cons: Weighing Anchor on the i-Pilot

As with any piece of technology, the i-Pilot system has its share of advantages and disadvantages. Let’s weigh anchor and examine the pros and cons:


  • Increased Control: With i-Pilot, you’ll have unparalleled control over your boat’s movements, making navigation and fishing more efficient and enjoyable.
  • Hands-Free Operation: Free yourself from the helm and focus on other tasks while i-Pilot takes care of steering and positioning.
  • Improved Fishing Success: By holding your boat in place and allowing you to retrace productive routes, i-Pilot can help increase your chances of landing the big one.


  • Compatibility: i-Pilot is currently only compatible with select trolling motors, which may limit your options if you’re in the market for a new motor.
  • Price: The i-Pilot system can be a significant investment, especially if you need to upgrade your trolling motor to a compatible model.
  • Learning Curve: While the i-Pilot remote is user-friendly, it may take some time to master all of its functions and features, particularly for those less tech-savvy.

Conclusion: Charting a Course with i-Pilot

There you have it, sailors – answers to your questions, what is i-pilot on a trolling motor, how it works, and what it does. With its impressive array of features and the promise of increased control and efficiency on the water, i-Pilot has the potential to revolutionize your boating and fishing experiences. So, whether you’re a weekend angler or a seasoned sea dog, consider charting a course with i-Pilot and see where the wind (and GPS) takes you.