|Max Headroom||open||Bridge Clearance||N/A|
|Std. Power||1 x 150-hp Mercury OptiMax|
|Tested Power||1 x 150-hp Mercury Optimax|
1 x 150-hp Mercury L EFI
1 x 175-hp Mercury Pro XS OptiMax
1 x 135-hp Mercury OptiMax
1 x 175-hp Mercury OptiMax
1 x 200-hp Mercury OptiMax
Even though it’s offered as a complete package, the Nitro Z-7 has a good options list as well. One item, seen here is the port side console.
The Nitro Z-7 has just about all of the features that much larger and more expensive bass boats have. It comes packaged with a 150-hp Optimax, but will handle up to 200-hp, for those who want to go a little faster and spend an extra $3500. For 2010, Tracker is pushing the Nitro Z-7 with the 150 Optimax and we think they are wise for going with a 150-hp 2-stroke outboard.
The layout offers plenty of storage in removable storage bins that are a snap to take off the boat for security.
The Z-7 is a sharp-looking boat with its rounded, slightly reversed transom and just a touch of tumble home in the stern quarters. She is built very low to the water, only 22’ (6.7 m) at the transom (according to the builder), so that not only gives the boat a cool look it also puts you closer to the fish. It might also make the boat a bit wet in sloppy conditions. That, plus our top speed of 56.4 MPH (90.8 KPH), make a strong case for adding the optional removable port side console (add $695 for dealer installed w/ hardware)
The 2010 Nitro Z-7 is 18’8” (5.73 m) long and has a beam dimension of 7'10” (2.39 m). She has a hand-laid, all-fiberglass hull with a foam-filled grid stringer system providing built-in floatation. The transom is an anti-splash, reverse flow design. The decks are covered in a marine-grade cut pile carpet.
Without the optional port side console, your fishing buddy is completely exposed to the elements.
The casting decks are elevated, and there’s a bike seat forward and a fold-down fishing seat aft. (If you would prefer a conventional seat forward, add $65) Fore and aft you’ll find large storage compartments with welded aluminum lids, making maximum use of all the boat’s interior space. The large bins have plastic bins that sit neatly inside. I like these bins because you can take them out with all of your stuff and just throw them in the back of the truck.
The helm console is simple and clean. The Lowrance depth sounder and water temp gauge comes standard. A removable passenger console is optional for 2010.
Under the Deck
Under the expansive foredeck you’ll find two large lockable rod lockers with power-lift mechanisms on the hatches. In the center is a large, deep compartment and underneath the foredeck step-up is a cooler and a nested trash bin.
Three comfortable seats with well-done upholstery make the Nitro Z-7 comfortable to ride in.
Underneath the aft deck is a 34 gallon (128.7 L) divided, aerated, re-circulating livewell. It’s equipped with a 500 gph re-circulating pump and a 500 gph fill/aerating pump, both fitted with timers. Two removable bins with molded slots for tackle trays are aft, as well. All the way aft you’ll find access to the 45 gallon (170.3 L) fuel tank and the batteries; they’ve included a cranking battery and two trolling batteries as standard equipment. A three-battery set-up is a bit unusual as standard. Those trolling batteries are there to power the 24-volt, 70 lb. thrust trolling motor.
More Standard Equipment
Complementing the trolling motor is a dedicated bow panel with a receptacle for the trolling motor, an anchor light switch and a motor trim switch. Additional electrical equipment in the package, include a 1000-gph bilge pump and removable navigation lights. The trolling motor foot pedal is recessed, just as pretty much every other bass boat has these days.
On the way out to your favorite spot the three-across seating provides a comfortable ride, and the color-matched upholstery is nicely finished, too, and features a stain-resistant top coating. The Nitro guys are attentive to details, and they didn’t forget to put beverage holders in the right places.
The bicycle seat or leaning post comes standard for the forward position. It you want a standard seat there, it can easily be arranged.
Dual Console is Cool
Our test boat was set up with the optional port console, and I think it’s a worthwhile addition. When seated underway as the passenger, you’re definitely more protected from the elements. That can be a big “plus” for some of your friends and family if you’re out on a cold day. Both consoles are fitted with a tinted Plexiglas windscreen. The helm includes automobile-inspired analog instruments and splash-proof switches give the console an aggressive, “race car look.”
The centerpiece of the layout is a Lowrance X96 Fish Finder with 240 pixel resolution and surface temperature readout. This is a nice unit, but there are a number of factory-installed upgrades available if you’re looking for something more complex. Frankly, I like keeping things as simple as possible because that way there are fewer things to go wrong.
Power Options from Mercury
Factory power options include four different outboard rigs which consist of a 150-hp or 200-hp and both sizes in California compliant versions, all from Mercury. We tested the Z-7 rigged with a 150 OptiMax. This baby delivered some impressive numbers, and the 200 is even more so, I’m sure. Comparatively lightweight, the 150 OptiMax features outstanding power to weight ratio to complement her hydrodynamic efficiency. And the direct fuel injection system delivers increased performance and better fuel economy with every drop of gasoline.
Our top speed was 56.4 mph at 5000 rpms. Our best fuel economy was calculated to be at 3500 rpm where we clocked 37.2 miles an hour resulting in an impressive 6.45 mpg and a range of 261 miles. That mpg figure will be hard for you to beat with any rig.
She gets on plane 3.9 seconds and goes 0 to 30 in 7 seconds flat. Yes, other boats with more hp might go a tick faster, but so what? The difference in fishing time at a honey hole 3 miles away between the Nitro Z-7 with a 150 and a boat that will go 70 mph is only 42 seconds each way! Hardly worth and extra $3,500, in my book.
With her standard painted trailer, the Z-7 has got an overall length of 21’9” (6.63 m) so you can keep her in the garage and out of the weather. And, by the way, the trailer is color-matched, and offers the convenience of EZ Lube hubs. Just like the rest of Nitro’s line-up, this boat comes complete and all ready to hit the lake. Grab your buddies, the fishing gear, some bait, and a cooler full of lunch and refreshments, and you’re on your way. All for a no hassle no haggle price of $21,995.
Nitro performance bass boats can trace their roots back to 1978 when founder Johnny Morris introduced the first Bass Tracker, a complete fishing package sold for a nationally advertised price. Today, the Tracker Marine Group is one of the world’s most popular boat builders in the industry. Bass boats, runabouts, houseboats, and pontoon boats, fiberglass or aluminum, salt or fresh water, if you’re looking for a boat under 35 feet, chances are that there’s a boat in this family to fit your needs.
Building bass boats gave this company its start, and today it’s become an art form for these folks. Not only do they know what it takes to catch fish, but they also like to get to the fish fast. That “need for speed” has manifested itself as Nitro; builder of performance bass boats. Each one of their “Z” models is a performance matched package of boat and motor, aimed at the fisherman with an eye for boat performance – combined with affordability.
|Outlet: 12-Volt Acc|
= Standard = Optional