I've got a Go-Devil 23hp longtail. It's been a good reliable motor, 2002 model I believe. Replacing parts is easy.
I use it on a 15/38 riveted boat and got a little over 20mph with a new prop.
Friend of mine has a 14' Lowe and gets about the same speed with his 23hp.
It gets the job done and I've gone a lot of places I normally couldn't with an outboard.
Lot of weight in the back of the boat though, just gotta come to a gradual stop instead of just killing the motor, good possibility you'll get swamped in the back.
No reverse is something to get used to, but it's never bothered me a much.
Turning radius will be cut short with a long tail, and you will be standing up most of the time to drive the thing, once again, never bothered me much.
You can dig a hole with a long tail when you get in a bind, can also use the tail as a paddle to spin yourself around.
I've enjoyed mine and plan on keeping it for a good while at least.
As far as brands go these days I'm kind out of the loop. It's been a while since I looked into all of them.
I used to order my replacement props from these guys http://www.backwaterinc.com/
and I always thought they were very helpful people.