REVIEW: SURTEES 575 PRO FISHER

By: KEVIN SMITH, Photography by: KEVIN SMITH

Presented by
  • Trade-A-Boat

Set up for serious fishing and family boating, the Surtees 575 Pro Fisher epitomises the centre console juggernaut

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HIGHS

  • Typical hardcore Surtees build
  • Quality finishes to aluminium
  • High performance from Yamaha F115
  • Very economical

LOWS

  • T-top great for shade but needs fine tuning – remove the rear grab handles and add rocket launchers
  • Bait-board encroaches on rear seat

REVIEW: SURTEES 575 PRO FISHER priced from $49,971

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Centre consoles are no doubt the new rage or trend in Australia with numerous imported brands flocking our shores and even the local manufacturers getting onto the bandwagon to compete, and most certainly doing a job of it in both glass and alloy.

So why the popularity-show of centre consoles? Well that’s a simple one as there was nothing to them back in the old days, they were literally a bare hull with a console chucked in the middle. Those days, well they are long gone and history so to say, with the new age centre consoles sporting sexy lines, plenty of bling and accessories onboard, they have dedicated hulls suited to offshore conditions, and the most important factor – they are being designed and set up to suit serious fishing and family day-boating alike.

MILITARY BUILD AT RECREATIONAL PRICES

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Surtees Boats need no introduction to the marine industry in Australia as they produce some of the finest aluminium plate boats in the world. A bulletproof, stylish and innovative aluminium boat is what you get out of these guys and being produced in New Zealand, they are built and designed to suit the harshest of ocean conditions.

When it comes to centre consoles the Surtees Pro Fisher range from 495-700 is gaining quick traction locally and after testing its latest 575 Pro Fisher it’s not surprising. At a glance this mid-range centre console sports the typical attributes found within the Surtees range, and that being a hull with modern and sleek lines, refined finishes throughout, and a hardcore military styled build that’s going to last for a very long time.

A closer look at the internal layout of the 575 Pro Fisher offers a good all-round workstation to suit the serious fisherman including; a nice bait-board station set up with tackle trays, a livebait well with front glass, big side pockets for storage, rod-holders, non-slip tread decks, console seat storage, T-top, and good-sized cast deck in the bow with heaps of storage space for gear – basically everything you need for big days fishing.

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One particular Surtees feature that I do like is the wider than usual coamings as standard on all their models – they work well as a side seat when at rest, allow for larger side pockets below and can be walked on if need be.

Catching the eye within the layout is the console being noticeably narrower than standard, and that's due to maintaining the walk-around space to the cast deck up front. I think it’s a good enough size or width and although there’s not much room to flush mount large sounders, you can bracket mount to the top of the console. The binnacle control box was also in an odd spot on top of the console, however this has already been changed to a lower position on the side of the console. Remember this test boat was a genuine test boat and everything that’s needed improving on has already been modified and improved.

The cast deck up front is also a good size and stretches from the front of the console to the bow, maximising on usable deck space and storage. Surtees have kept the cast deck slightly higher than the standard deck and this works well for both lure and bait fishing, as well as gives more freeboard suited to offshore angling. As tested the cast deck was ply with carpet, but that has been changed to a full alloy tread deck with heaps of gear storage available – better idea all round.

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Another popular feature found on most smaller centre consoles would be bow-mounts for electric motors An 80-pound does the job on the 575 and when it comes to lure angling, the new spot lock systems are a big win and a definite advantage and must for the avid lure chucker. I even use mine offshore on the low current days to maintain top-to-bottom drifts and even holding on spots if need be rather than anchoring.

Overall the fishing layout is good on the 575 and when it comes to family boating it can easily be used to tow the kids around, or shoot out to the bay islands. Surtees also have numerous and innovative extra add-ons to suit, so tricking it up to suit would not be hard at all.

BRING ON THE ROUGH

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As for performance the Surtees hulls are synonymous with sharp entries and a fair dead rise to create soft rides, however the loss of stability can also be the compromise. In this case not, as having the flooding keel system irons out that issue and the 575 is pretty good when it comes to stability at rest. The flooding keel can also be shut off to add extra weight directly to the keel and this can also make a big difference to the ride in rough conditions.
Underway the hull is responsive, it turns on a dime and like all Surtees hulls, slices through chop like butter. They really do have a top-class ride and can handle rough conditions with ease. These attributes on a relatively small hull are a big bonus and allow for comfortable and long-distance travel on the water, as well as eliminates the fear of being bashed around in harsh conditions.

THE WRAP

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What would I change or add? A set of trim tabs would be great to have on the 575, just to manipulate the ride to suit the conditions and to compensate for the windage on the T-top – any monohull can benefit from tabs. I would also opt for the new Yamaha 5in LCD gauge display rather than the standard digital gauges – yes it’s all more of a cost but well worth having.

The rest, well this 575 is the first one and is pretty much a prototype so to say. Surtees are one step ahead and everything that I have mentioned that could be tweaked has already been dealt with. So, the new models will have the full alloy cast deck and dedicated storage hatches up front rather than ply – the control box position has been moved to a more comfortable position – and I’m quite sure that they have also added a few other tweaks to make it an even better medium-sized and multi-purpose centre console.

At the end of the day the Surtees 575 Pro Fisher is competitively priced, it’s easy to tow, the build quality is superb, it has great rough water handling capabilities for its size – it’s suited to bays, dams and offshore alike, and it’s well suited to serious fishing and a bit of family boating alike. Let’s not forget that the Surtees brand also holds a decent resale value.

SPECIFICATIONS

PRICE AS TESTED

$67,990

OPTIONS FITTED

Yamaha F115XB 115hp four-stroke outboard motor, Redco Surtees special RE170-MO galvanised braked trailer, Tasman Blue painted sides (Nyalic the rest), Hydraulic steering, T-top with windscreen & canvas top, Casting platform with storage, Fold-away back bench seat with deck grip, Bait station deluxe model with seven-drawer tackle box, Rod holder clip on shelf, Dual battery system, Wash-down pump, Electric bow mount plate, Minn Kota bow mount electric motor, Five-person safety gear kit, 12 months’ Qld boat & trailer registration.

PRICED FROM

$49,971

GENERAL

Type Open fishing / family

Material 5083 marine grade aluminium

Length 5.75m

Beam 2.15

Weight 1150kg (dry)

Deadrise 18˚

CAPACITIES

People 5

Min HP 70hp

Max HP 115hp

Fuel 100lt

MANUFACTURED BY

Surtees Boats New Zealand

SUPPLIED BY:

Northside Marine

2294 Sandgate Road

Boondall QLD 4034

Phone (07) 3265 8000

Email billh@nsmarine.com.au

Check out the full review in issue #498 of Trade-a-Boat magazine. Subscribe today for all the latest camper trailer news, reviews and travel inspiration. 

 


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