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First Anniversary Review 2021 Nitro Z19 Pro

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Pat Dilling

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First picture is on it's first birthday. We wipe it down after every use. We took delivery of our Z19 Pro on October 7, 2020. We ordered it July 30, 2020. I picked out a few options, custom Red,White & Blue colors, passenger console, travel cover, anti-fatigue mat, driver side cleat, auto-bilge pump, x-grip phone holder and the dealer installed the vessel view module. I have since added a few things. Starting with a 10" Helix 4GN DI at the bow, mounted on a Bass Boat Technologies dual mount along with the original 8" Helix. We also installed a Dexter E-Z Flex Tandem equalizer kit. Installed a remote drain plug and Loc-R-Bar. I replaced the metal diamond plate on top of the fenders with rubber no-slip pads. I installed a simple velcro strap to replace the useless passenger rod strap. I installed a pair of LED back up lights on the trailer to help back down my long driveway. The boat also has a name: "Freedom!" to go along with the custom colors.

After one year of frequent use, the Pro XS has 94 hours on it. It has been pretty much flawless. It starts instantly, idles smoothly and is very responsive. It is very quiet, we can have a conversation while cruising down the lake. It has great mid-range power and sets you back into the seat when you punch it from mid-range speeds. Perhaps a better indicator of use would be the 582 hours on the console Humminbird Helix 8. I can say I am very happy with the boat. I am very happy with the 24v 80 lb thrust Ultrex. The power steering is very quick and I love the spot-lock With the I-pilot link you can "jog" left-right or forward or back either through the Humminbird unit or bluetooth remote feature. I also use the Constant on & Nav features. Makes it very easy to fish down a bank without a foot on the trolling motor. Having it linked to the Humminbird graphs and GPS is a great feature. With the Lakemaster map software, you can set it to follow a contoure, though I have not used that very much. I like the hand-held control, but have not used it very much either. Both the Pro XS and the Ultrex have been trouble free and work as expected.

Issues: It has been mostly trouble free. Bass Pro Shops in Rocklin, CA replaced the Interstate 31 Series AGM cranking battery after about 4 months, it is beginning to act up again. The fuel gauge sticks at just under 3/4 of a tank, fortunately I can keep track of my fuel with Vessel View. That's it. Everything else has worked as expected.

Performance: It has a Fury 23 pitch prop and I have the motor set at 3.5 inches below the pad. With the boat lightly loaded and just me in it I have seen 68 mph at 5850 rpm. More routinely it will run 64-65 mph at 5680 rpm. But most of the time I cruise around at 50-55. At those speeds it really sips fuel. The boat really jumps up on plane and accelerates quickly. The sweet spot for trim is just above the first mark or 1/4 of the gauge. At that setting I am even able to make pretty tight turns without a problem. I find the boat easy to drive, I have not experienced much chine walk, but I am not trying to squeeze every mph out of it. It is sensitive to trim between 35-40 mph. If you over trim, it wants to porpoise a little. I am very impressed with the rough water ride. It will cruise in a white capping 2 foot chop at 50-55 mph without beating us up. I credit some of that to the seats, they are well cushioned and give excellent support. Because of the hull design, that pushes spray outwards, it also has a very dry ride. I have arrived back at the ramp completely dry while I have seen people in other boats come in soaked. I fish a lot with my 71 year old wife and she also agrees that the boat rides well and has yet to tell me to slow down or take it easy.

Storage: I love the layout of the boat. With the tackle storage system in the center box I am able to easily able to keep track of my frequently used tackle, Then less often used stuff goes in the driver side box along with life vests, rain gear, paddle and other misc. stuff. It came with rod storage system. I removed the rod tubes, but kept the butt holders. Using rod sleeves I have had up to 20 rods in there. The cooler is great/huge and I love the trash can and sandwich tray. In fact, it is almost too big. They could have lowered the top of it about 3-4 inches and still have plenty of room in it. That would also make the step up to the front deck easier. One of my older fishing partners complains about how high the step/cooler top is. The glove box is also huge, we call it the cavern. I got a 3 x 6 open plastic box and velcro'd it against the front wall to put wallets, phones and keys in. Otherwise they get lost in there. I really like the lift out rear boxes and I especially like the way the rear storage compartments open front to back instead of middle to side. That makes it much easier to access the contents from outside or inside the boat. The tray under the step between the seat is perfect for glasses, gloves, face masks and other small stuff. It lifts out to access the top of the fuel tank and all the fittings too. I am not all that thrilled with the passenger rod storage. I would prefer horizontal slots to the individual rod butt holes. And as previously mentioned, the rod hold down strap is useless.

Maintenance: I like the wiring channels in the gunnels, I used them when I installed the additional Helix. The Humminbird network switch in the driver side front box is also easy to access. I also like the way you access the fuses and dash wiring by removing 4 thumbscrews and lifting off the windscreen. No more laying on your back trying to squeeze under the console. In the battery compartment I like the hinged door that gives access to all the pumps and the bilge without messing with the batteries. This was helpful when I installed the remote drain plug.

Fit and finish: The gelcoat is good, I have found one small area where it is a little wavy, buy it is mostly very good. The carpet is well fitted to all the edges and well trimmed inside all the compartment lids. The carpet inside of the front side compartments could be finished a little cleaner, but that is out of sight most of the time. I found some clear adhesive plastic to shield the gelcoat in the splash well from the steering hoses and wiring tube. Would have been nice, and not too expensive, for Nitro to do that.

Livewells: I don't fish many tournaments any more. When I have had a need to use them, the livewells have worked very well and the TH Marine culling clips are very nice. I especially like the pump out system that uses the recirculation pumps and the push-pull aerator nozzle to switch between recirc and pump out.

Trailer: I love the 6 year maintenance free trailer hubs, so far so good with those. It is a little noisy with clunks and pops in tight turns, even with the EZ-flex. It pulls easily and tracks down the road well. I think the metal step plates should be rubber or vinyl, so I changed mine. It is very easy to unload and load the boat, as long as you have it in the water the right depth. I prefer the metal fenders to fiberglass, much easier to step on an more durable. The finish on the trailer is just about bullet proof. I had to sand it some in order to get some required mussel stickers to stick to it. I really like the bow steps up into the boat and the swing-away tongue, The 4 wheel disk brakes work extremely well. I have made couple very hard stops and they do the job.

Cover: Fits well, stays tight even when towing. Keeps thing dry inside.

Value: We are very happy with the boat. We were out the door for $54,454. That includes a 7 year "hitch to prop" warranty, travel cover, all prep and delivery charges, taxes and registration. Comparing to other brands, I would have spent anywhere from $7-15k more for a similar boat that may not perform as well or have some of the innovative features.

Wow, this got long, hope it is helpful to others.

Cheers

Pat
Last Edit: October 12, 2021, 11:49:40 AM by Pat Dilling
I knew I shoulda re-tied!!


Mike Cork

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Awesome break down and review!!! Makes me want to go get a new boat  :surrender:

Thank you for taking the time to write this all down ~c~ ~c~
Fishing is more than just a hobby

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WTodd

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I have a 2018 Z-18 single axle and 2 things that will pop up are; bunk boards and tires. Depending on the tires that came with it (mine were Carlisle) and they’re complete junk; I had to replace mine after 2 years. I replaced them with Goodyear Endurance (the only trailer tire made in the US).

I had to replace all of my bunk boards after 2 1/2 years so I highly recommend that you replace the boards when it’s cooler outside. I installed Gatorbak and got rid of carpet.

Very nice looking boat.


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Deadeye

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Great Review!

The Nitro Line was once the "laughed at" boat on the water, which some of the issues with the older models earned that title.

But these newer models are very very nice and offer a great platform to fish out of. I don't know if I will ever buy another boat, but if I do I will be looking at the Nitros for sure.

Oldfart9999

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Pat, congrats on a very nice boat, looks very nice and sounds like it rides as nice as it looks!!!
Rodney
Old Fishermen never die, their rods just go limp.

Pat Dilling

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Realized I had not said much about the Mercury or the Minnkota, so added experience with those.
I knew I shoulda re-tied!!

Princeton_Man

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Great review Pat!  ~c~
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Dark3

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For the prices ive been seeing lately that seems like you got a pretty good deal. Sounds like a great boat.


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Pat Dilling

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I agree, prices have really gone up.  It's coming up on it second "adoption day" now.  Hass 144 hours, so seems like less use, but we are still going out a couple days a week.  I think we are fishing smaller lakes and spending more time fishing and less time running.  Saving cost on fuel.  The second Interstate Group 31 AGM failed.  I do not think they are up to the task for the big 4 strokes.  Not enough CCA to meet the Merc specs.  I invested in an Odyssy group 31 AGM.  Not a single problem since doing that.  I also just installed a Stealth DC charger that will keep my trolling motor batteries charged.  With that I can go for days without having to plug in.  Great for multi day trips.  Still very happy with the boat and we enjoy all the complements we get, especially about the colors.
I knew I shoulda re-tied!!

 


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