The 64 million dollar question is who built it and there keeping that quite
They even have defender selling the stuff right now and there is NO dealer service/parts network
I own a 5hp LEHR Short Shaft Outboard, and it is indeed a Chinese Knockoff of an older Yamaha 4 stroke.. It uses the same prop spline, powerhead looks like a yamaha too, just different shape cowls.
I live in WA and well not sure about my motor, might be a lemon of the bunch but it is that awesome unfortunately. It had idle issues right from the box when I purchased it, it wouldn't Idle correctly and would die if I put it in gear. I ended up calling and getting instruction on how to get it idle correctly, keep in mind I have owned old 2 strokes to newer 4stroke since about the 90s, 20 years or so. It was simple to adjust the "carb" but it would just not run correctly. It would only idle fine in gear if neutral was idling really high. I fish rivers and around the Everett Area, and I wanna be able to have the motor running the whole time I'm fishing so I can go against the current and adjust my angles on drifts, but alas I can't with this one.
Next Problem is, the ability to refuel compared to a regular gas motor is terrible. I have a canoe so carrying a BBQ tank is not ideal. It does take a 1lb tank but it wont last very long if you're fishing. I have to carry about 3 or 4 little tanks, switch em out everytime it runs out and having to purchase these tanks for $5 each. It doesn't make sense to me to have to purchase these little tanks over having a nice Japanese Outboard with its own tank and have a couple gallons (that you can easily get at a fuel dock!) in a compact container for much less money each trip.
Another issue is it's Too loud because of high idle and motor itself is pretty clunky, the gears inside sound terrible changed the oil a few times to at least kill that sound and best for me was high mileage Castrol GTX. When at Full throttle the tiller handle feels like it's going to break off because of the cheap material its made out of. The handle flexes really badly when your steering the motor.
The Electronics on this motor. If you take a look at all the parts used, quality isn't there. The power packs and spark plug boots feel and look like cheap generic parts. I have a miss here and there on full throttle but not enough for me to notice. I believe it's just a slight short going on.
Going to cosmetics and non mechanical parts, The Cowl and Latches. When taking off the cowl and putting it back on, it just won't sit correctly. You have to pound it down on from the top to get it to sit straight and for the flimsy little latches to hold it down. The flimsy little latches, self descriptive. Any kind of wave or movement on the boat can unlatch it easily. The latches look like they cost $0.05 to make and feel just as cheap as every other part.
If I could re-do my purchase I'd get a nice Merc/Nissan 5 or 6hp 4stroke and just call it a day. Sure the Lehr might not have carb issues, but I'm sure my motor will give me more issues. It feels very fragile compared to my previous Mercury 3.5hp 4 stroke. It's also a PITA to get fuel for this motor and a lot of the metal parts including my fuel hose is starting to change color and slightly corrode.
So there's my 2 cents guys, thanks!!