Motorguide Xi5 Trolling Motor Review

If your preferred fishing holes are large rivers and lakes, it’s a trolling motor that you need, but finding the right one can be easier said than done. Today we are here to help you find a good trolling motor, and right now we want to review a specific one, the Motorguide Xi5 Trolling Motor.

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Motorguide Xi5 Trolling Motor: Review

The Motorguide Xi5 Trolling Motor, is a mid-high-end trolling motor with a heck of a lot of features, all for a moderate price.

Who is This Product For?

The Motorguide Xi5 Trolling Motor is designed for the serious fisherman on a budget. Yes, this trolling motor comes in different sizes and thrust options, so it’s a good choice to go with if you need a bit of variety. Moreover, this is a fairly durable and powerful trolling motor with decent battery life, so it’s a good option if you plan on spending a lot of time out on the water, you need something that can fight some pretty strong currents, all without killing the battery too quickly.

Moreover, if you need great navigation features and fish-finding sonar, all for a reasonable price, then the Motorguide Xi5 Trolling Motor is definitely an option to investigate further.

What’s Included?

What’s nice about the Motorguide Xi5 Trolling Motor is that it comes with a whole lot of goodies and extras. For one, you can choose between sizes, thrust, and power options, so there’s that to keep in mind. The Motorguide xi5 Trolling Motor also includes a great GPS feature, that comes with awesome digital technology to help maximize battery life.

The GPS allows for other features such as course setting, anchor mode, and more. There are a few other things included here, such as the mounting hardware. Let’s move on and talk about the main features.

Click here to see the Freshwater Motorguide Xi5 on

Click here to see the Saltwater Motorguide Xi5 on

Overview of Features

The Motorguide xi5 Trolling Motor has quite a few features that are worth talking about, so let’s do that right now. It’s a high-quality model that actually doesn’t cost all that much considering what it can do.

Power, Thrust, and Size

One thing to note about the Motorguide Xi5 Trolling Motor is that it comes in a variety of sizes and thrust options. First off, you can choose between a 12 volt, 24 volt, and 36 volt motor. We appreciate that we can choose between these various voltage levels.

Each voltage directly relates to thrust; there is a 55-pound, 80-pound, and 105-pound thrust motor. Choosing the thrust of a motor normally comes down to size and loaded weight of your boat, but it can come down to matching the current voltage of your boats trolling motor system.

There are also five different shaft length options to choose from, ranging from 45 to 72 inches, so you can choose the one that works best for your size of the boat and the depth of water you will be fishing in.

Now, what we can say here is that the peak thrust and power variations of the Motorguide Xi5 Trolling Motor are indeed very strong, and they are more than able to fight against strong currents and winds, so you can get to your destination without having to fight too hard. If you are fishing in relatively strong currents, we would recommend the 36 volt 105-pound thrust model.

Click here to read our article on Sizing Your Trolling Motor

Durability – the Composite Shaft and Housed Components

Another thing that can be said about the Motorguide Xi5 Trolling Motor is that it is a very durable option to keep in mind. Everything on this motor is made with very high-quality parts that should last for many years. This is especially true of the shaft, which is made with composite materials that can take a serious beating.

This thing can fight strong currents, and even bang into some obstacles, and it should not warp, crack, or break. For the moderate price which the Motorguide xi5 Trolling Motor comes at, it sure does have a very high level of durability. Moreover, all electronic and other important components are housed in a marine-grade composite housing to keep out moisture and dust, thus adding another layer of protection for this trolling motor.

A Low-Profile Mount

The next aspect of the Motorguide Xi5 Trolling Motor worth mentioning is that it comes with a very low-profile mount. In other words, while it is a fairly decent sized motor, it features a low profile mount which helps to reduce bulkiness and keep it out of the way, all without sacrificing power, speed, or stability.


Alright, so this is an electric trolling motor, which means that you have to worry about its battery life. However, what can be said about the Motorguide xi5 Trolling Motor is that it has some pretty impressive power and longevity considering that it’s not nearly the most expensive trolling motor out there.

When using 105 amp hour batteries, the trolling batteries can easily last a few days before they need to be recharged, which is no small feat to accomplish. Moreover, the Motorguide xi5 Trolling Motor comes with special digital technology that increases battery efficiency by up to 50%, thus substantially increasing the battery life. The digital display is also useful in this sense because you can keep track of exactly how much battery power the Motorguide Xi5 Trolling Motor has left before it needs to be recharged.

The Display, GPS, and Steering

In terms of steering and navigating, the Motorguide Xi5 Trolling Motor definitely has you covered. For one, it comes with an advanced bearing system combined with a protective housing and rigid shaft support to help increase motor efficiency and help to increase motor performance, especially when heavy steering is required.

Moreover, the Motorguide Xi5 Trolling Motor also uses a variable speed system that allows you to easily control the speed of the trolling motor, which is something that helps make steering easier, plus it helps preserve battery life. To help make life a little easier, the Motorguide Xi5 Trolling Motor also comes with a wireless foot pedal, which you can use to control the majority of the motor’s functions.

In terms of the display, the Motorguide Xi5 Trolling Motor does not include a display but rather connects to a list of compatible fishfinder/chart plotters through a NEMA 2000 unit. Lowrance offers a large number of compatible units. For the advanced sonar features, you will need a motor mounting transducer. The Xi5 does have a good LED light display that indicates power on and battery life.

Using this GPS, you can anchor your boat in position, track-specific courses, and lock in a heading and speed. That’s right — you can lock in a heading and speed, and let this thing do the work for you — it comes with an autopilot and cruise control feature.


The Motorguide Xi5 Trolling Motor comes with a standard sonar transducer built-in, which can be connected to your compatible fishfinder/chart plotters. With the proper NEMA 2000 connector cable, the transducer is compatible with most units.

Now, the transducer is pretty decent, and it does fine when it comes to down imaging, but it does not do side imaging; however, it’s still a pretty advanced system and better than not having any sonar at all.

Recessed Trolling Motor Tray

Motorguide makes a high-quality recessed pedal control tray. This tray can be used for many other pedals. However, it is nice to know if you chose to get the optional pedal control that is popular with bass fishermen your control pedal will fit. You can use this link to see the tray on


There is a bit of knowledge that you will need to get under your belt to properly use the Motorguide Xi5 Trolling Motor, but it’s honestly not quite that difficult. There is a lot to go over here, more than we have time to discuss, but what we can say is that you will want to read the owner’s manual(link here to pdf). You have to familiarize yourself with the mounting and deployment, the GPS, and the sonar.

For more in-depth information in terms of how to get the most out of your Motorguide Xi5 Trolling Motor, take a look at the videos which we have included below.


  • Extremely tough and durable
  • Sonar transducer compatible with most brands
  • Good battery efficiency
  • Multi-functional GPS
  • Comes in various sizes and power options
  • Easy to mount and deploy
  • Includes sonar transducer
  • Nice LED indicators
  • Great price


  • Anchor mode eats through battery
  • Somewhat of a gap in peak thrust models
  • Sonar transducer does not have side imaging
  • A NEMA 2000 unit is required to connect to fishfinder/chart plotters

Click here to see the Freshwater Motorguide Xi5 on


In case you are not interested in the Motorguide Xi5 Trolling Motor for whatever reason, there are other great options you can take a look at. Both of the options below are a step up and will cost you more, but if you are looking for all the bells and whistles, you should check them out.

The Minn Kota Ulterra 80 is a top of the line motor from the industry leader in electric trolling motors. This motor features auto-deploy, and you can purchase just about every accessory under the sun for Minn Kota products.

New to the market is the Garmin Force Trolling Motor looks to be a great trolling motor to look into, although it is very pricey. Garmin is a top-rated manufacturer of marine products and has a full line of compatible electronic devices.

Click here for our article about Tips on installing an electric trolling motor?


Although the Motorguide Xi5 Trolling Motor is not the cheapest option around, it’s also not the most expensive, and considering that it comes at a fairly moderate price, it has a lot of power, variety to choose from, and a lot of cool features, such as the PinPoint GPS, sonar, and more. It’s a good option if you need something strong, durable, and efficient to keep you on the water.

Editor’s note

I always recommend buying the saltwater version of a motor if it is available. Even if you don’t fish in the saltwater, the extra corrosion resistance will be worth the extra money.

My main trolling motor is a Minn Kota Riptide Terrova 112 with i-pilot link, and I have never had a problem with any type of corrosion.

Click here to see the Saltwater Motorguide Xi5 on