It's not a fault of the engine. Its by design.
- Stop the engine. Shift the outboard into the forward gear position.
- Take hold of the top cowl grip and raise the outboard to the full up position.
- Pull out on the tilt lock knob and move it to the lock position. The outboard cannot be lowered while the tilt lock knob is in the lock position.
- To lower the engine, move the tilt lock knob to the unlock position.
The forward position is governed by interlock, so its more than just words in the manual. However I do understand that unofficially this interlock can be temporarily defeated, but I'm not in to defeating safety features for convenience.
However, just read that shallow water positions can be done in neutral. I have not had chance for practice yet to see if this covers my needs when coming along side the slip although I would rather do this in neutral with engine running rather than undertaking it with no power then having difficulty restarting the engine.
Taking engine out of shallow drive seems then to require it being taken to full tilt to release, which of course you would not want to do with engine running.
So I guess that there is some method to their madness and hopefully someone will say that you can drop engine out of shallow drive without having to pass through full tilt.