MirageDrive 180 system included on all 2017 Hobie kayaks
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Hobie has been changing the game in Kayak fishing since it introduced its MirageDrive propulsion system almost 20 years ago, but the company says its biggest evolution so far is just around the corner.
The Hobie MirageDrive 180 Forward-Reverse system will be integrated into all 2017 model kayaks. The system produces full power in both directions and provides unprecedented maneuverability.
By pulling one or two shift cables the kayak can be propelled from forward to reverse and back again almost instantly. The hands-free propulsion opens up a whole new raft of possibilities, says the manufacturer, such as backing out of cover, fishing closer to obstructions or fishing downstream while holding in the current.
The increased control also helps casting and presentation and assists with handling bigger fish. The shift cables are made of braided Spectra line connected to high-strength, nylon handles.
“The shifters really work well,” said Hobie’s Fishing Product Manager, Morgan Promnitz, who has tested the 180 system. “I found I was using them constantly. The 180 was excellent for backing fish out of rocks. And when trolling I was able to subtly guide baits towards fish that were showing.”
The 180 feature is not the only significant improvement to the new generation of MirageDrives. The new fins are now more durable thanks to high-strength nylon on the leading and trailing edges.
Fin adjustment has been improved and fin shape altered to allow the fins to rotate from forward to reverse. Shallow water can be accessed by using partial pedal strokes to ‘flutter’ the fins. Alternatively the crank arm can be pushed forward so that both fins fold up flat against the bottom of the hull.
The same action also helps avoid obstacles, shed weeds, glide through the water with minimal resistance and land on the beach or boat ramp.
Kayaks that will incorporate the 180 system in 2017 include the Outback and Pro Angler models. It can also be fitted to existing MirageDrive kayaks and is expected to be available as a stand-alone accessory by the middle of next year.
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