Review: Evolution 600 Apex Extreme


We water test and rate the Evolution 600 Apex Extreme, a contender in the fibreglass fishing boats category at the 2014 Australia’s Greatest Boats awards.

Evolution is no stranger to Australia’s Greatest Trailer Boats. The original 600 first walked the AGB carpet in 2010 and although pipped at the post, Evolution returned in 2011 with the new 552 and walked away with the silverware.

EVOLUTION 600 APEX EXTREME

 

EVOLUTION 600 APEX EXTREME REVIEW

AGB Finalist Award Evolution 600 Apex ExtremeThe 2013-model 600 Apex Extreme sports more than just a new hardtop and a snazzy wrap. Taking onboard the judges’ comments from 2010, the Evo’ R&D team extensively revamped the hull, spending liberal hours on the water in an effort to reduce the slightly hard ride into a sea. The entry is now finer and the strakes have been reduced in size, minimising drag and creating a more efficient under-hull profile.

What the team didn’t fiddle with was the generous fishing cockpit and the abundant storage that’ll keep even the most obsessed tackle junkie happy. Another obvious nod to its fishing intent is the substantial removable dive door that aids with crew accessing the boat and also dragging large fish into the cockpit.

Motivation for the new 600 Apex Extreme is courtesy of a 250hp Evinrude E-TEC and with more than enough grunt for any activity. One characteristic that we couldn’t fail to notice was the impressive seakeeping in a following sea. The judges weren’t sure if it was purely down to hull design or if the additional grunt helped hold its line. The truth is, it’s probably a bit of both but either way, it’s a very fine thing indeed.

 

EVOLUTION 600 APEX EXTREME RATING

Fishing suitability

9.2

Innovation

8.2

Design and layout

8.6

Quality of finish

8

Handling and ride

7.6

Stability at rest

9

Ergonomics

8.2

Standard equipment

8.2

Value for money

7.6

X-Factor

8.8

TOTAL SCORE

83.4

 

UNDERSTANDING THE RATING SYSTEM 

BOAT AT RAMP Boat judges  
Meet the judging panel

The rating criteria
explained
 

 

THE JUDGES’ NOTEPAD

Angelo Sangiorgio: "It was my first experience with a 6m Evolution and it’s built quite tough. When you look at it from the outside it looks a bit bluff, but it’s all about the internal packaging. The cabin’s got a good head height, loads of fishing room, great beam – it’s a really workable platform.  What surprised me was when we did hit a little bit of swell out there, the owner of the boat encouraged us to trim it up to feel how softly we landed. It’s really got a nice attitude – we sort of bunny-hopped, rather than launched ourselves into outer space."

John Ford: "It really comes down softly over big waves – it’s sensational from that point of view. This is a pretty serious offshore fishing boat. It’s a ripper. The hardtop looks great, too – it’s well-made and from a weight point-of-view, you don’t even know it’s there. But it’s got great protection, it looks good and you can stand on it – that’s a bit of a bonus."

Kevin Smith: "What I really like here is they’ve taken a lot of what we’ve said in past years and made quite a difference all around. You can see the hardtop is really solid – there are no rattles and it’s quiet too. This is the ideal game-fishing boat – that’s the winner for me on this one, but you could use it for bottom-bashing too – the space is just phenomenal."

Matt Jones: "It’s an impressive fishing boat. I love the cleanliness of the cockpit. It’s easy to clean, everything is solid and practical –it just works. We came through the bar today with a following sea and it was just awesome. Nice and safe and predictable – we tried throwing it around a bit but we couldn’t do anything wrong with it. We even saw Angelo standing on the hardtop – apparently it’s rated to 200kg and I don’t think he’s quite there, but everything looked very solid."

John Willis: "The big innovation here is they’ve redesigned that hull to make it a softer ride and boy, didn’t we have some fun in it? They’ve made a softer-riding package all-round, to go with that traditional Evolution appeal. Does anyone build a fishing boat like Evolution? It’s an absolute fishing weapon. And you know what? I like that two-stroke engine note. It hasn’t got that harmonic and perhaps they’re a bit more noisy in the top frequencies than a four-stroke, but I like a bit of V8 growl. And you know why it’s got that big shark on the side of it? To keep the seals away."

TRAILERBOAT SHARK ARTWORK

 

EVOLUTION 600 APEX EXTREME SPECIFICATIONS

LOA: 6.5m

BEAM: 2.49m

WEIGHT: 1200kg (hull)

MAX. HORSEPOWER: 250

BASE PRICE: N/A

PRICE AS TESTED: $120,000

 

MORE ON AUSTRALIA'S GREATEST BOATS 2014

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Fibreglass
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Aluminium fishing boats

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fishing boats 

 

Family boats

Family boats

 


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