docjay has posted the most accurate info so far. It was the early, small V6 engines that were problems; '97-99 150/175 hp. The early big V6's 200/225 hp were good but there was some issue with the gearcase. That was updated in 2001 I think. In 2002 when BRP took over just about all of the motors were as problem free as anything else on the market.
Some have not had major issues with the early motors and you'll always have a few lemons for any motor. Give Anderson Marine in Bay City a call and they will tell you more if you want it. Jim is a good guy and he's on the board here as 'andmar'. I bought my 2001 200 FICHT from him in '03 and have had good luck with it. Always get great service there too.
LOL...everyone has different figures. Regrdless, I cant imagine buying a ficht motor in that year range period. Why, when you can get a different brand motor that doesn't have such a bad rep? I understand many are still on the water today with never a problem, but unless you are getting one for a really smokin deal why chance it? I recently bought a Johnson '99 150 60 degree carbed motor. I wanted fuel injection, but for what I was wanting to spend couldn't find a good one in my price range (with the exception of all the ficht motors on the used market). My thinking is that they are there cheap for a reason, and those motors have a bad rep for a reason. Thousands of people didn't just start making up stories about them. May get bombed for it, but that's my .02...
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