2011 Nitro Z-7
From our 2011 Test issue
By Matt Spencer
Growing up I thought bass boats were the coolest thing… truly the rock stars of the boating and fishing world. Well, I’m all grown up now, but the kid in me was awakened as I set out to test drive a Nitro Z-7.
Members of the Tracker family, Nitros not only inherit the same core values across the company’s brands, but also come out of the showroom with boat, motor, trailer and features ready to fish.
At first glance, you may not think there’s much to the Z-7, but you’d be surprised how much form and function comes into play. The bow casting deck is wide open with an adjustable bicycle seat, Minn Kota trolling motor and room to mount another fish finder.
Underneath the casting deck there are two, massive lockers that can fit rods, PFDs or any other gear. To centre, there is another giant tackle storage compartment with organization slots. And all of these lock for additional security. Even the step up to the deck has a trash receptacle and insulated cooler.
There’s a similar layout at the aft deck, with a fishing seat and access to your batteries and oil, along with the divided livewell behind the centre seat. On each side of the deck there are large storage bins that actually slide out, which is great for tournament conditions. The bilge is all finished fibreglass with no rough edges.
But let’s get back to the flash for a moment. With Mercury’s new 150-hp OptiMax Pro XS, this Z-7 literally leaped out of the water to 20 mph in 5.1 seconds. The Z-7 was redesigned with Nitro’s exclusive rapid planing hull, which was built to get maximum performance and hole shots, especially in shallow water.
The ride was exhilarating all the way up to our top speed of 59.7 mph at 5500 rpm, with the Nitro hull stable and predictable. Turns were tight as a snare drum, confirming Nitro’s reputation for great manoeuvrability.
Performance bass boats aren’t your every day boat. They have a specific design in mind: make it easy to catch fish and get you there faster than everyone else. With this Nitro Z-7 I can assume the first one is true, but that second one, well, I think we can both agree that one is true.
Full performance data and specs: Available at BoatTest.ca.
View the video online: coming soon!
PowerBoat Television: This boat will be featured on Episode 8 of the 2011 season. For broadcasters and airtimes, please visit powerboattv.com.