Boat Test Videos
Content courtesy ofWith a draft of just 6" and a weight of only 1,400 lbs. (less power), the Tiburon 25 ZX floats remarkably shallow for a 25-footer, making her an effective flats boat. She also has the length and width to function as a capable bay boat in calm conditions. The elevated console gives the skipper a better view of the shallows ahead, and standard Lenco tabs help her to get on top quickly and keep her there at low rpms.
Prices, features, designs, and equipment are subject to change. Please see your local dealer or visit the builder's website for the latest information available on this boat model.
Mission Impossible -- For Most Boats
Many boats built today are designed to be multi-functional. On the other end of the spectrum is the Tiburon ZX-25, which is laser-targeted for fishing in ultra-skinny water. The main feature of this boat is that she allows a shallow water angler to access areas of the flats that other boats simply can’t. The hull design that affords this craft an extremely shallow draft is patent pending. It was computer-designed to be extremely efficient and reduce drag while providing lift.
Tiburon Boats utilized aerospace CAD and CAM software to design their hull, deck, and console. They were able to send that digital information to a CNC machine to make precision-cut plugs and molds.
Shallow Water Performance
It’s not enough for a boat to just float shallow for exceptional shallow water performance. It also needs to have the ability to jump up on plane in the same water it drafts. If not, an angler may be faced with having to travel a great distance with the electric trolling motor in search of a channel or hole deep enough to take off and clear the flat.
The Center Console
The same CAD/CAM process used for the hull also created the console, which is a “stand-on-top” design. This allows the angler to climb up and actually stand on the top of the center console, gaining a better vantage point for seeing fish in shallow water. If used in conjunction with a remote-controlled bow-mounted trolling motor, one could actually fish from that elevated position.
Steering Platform Riser
Much like how a sportfish with a flybridge gives the captain a better view down into the water column, the use of a riser to mount the center console on has the same effect for this flats boat. Navigating in shallow water, the higher the captain is at the helm, the more easily he will be able to stay in the channel or spot fish up on the flats.
For any boat to be used as a serious fishing boat, it must have fore and aft casting decks. Fishing from the elevated deck gives an angler a better view and an unobstructed area to cast from.
One of the biggest oversights on many boats is the seating. If the desired fishing spot requires a long run, a comfortable seat will make a huge difference with not being fatigued at the end of the day. From a safety standpoint, a seat that can help hold the occupants in place is a good choice, and the two seats at the helm do just that.
The ZX-25 is stable enough to walk the wide gunnels from bow to stern without having to step down into the cockpit. This is especially useful when fighting a large fish that runs around the boat.
The max horsepower rating for this vessel is 300, which was how our test boat was powered. The 300-hp Evinrude E-TEC G2 has a 25-inch shaft and a gear ratio of 1.85:1. It was propped with a 15 1/8” diameter by 20” pitch R4, 4-blade stainless steel propeller.
Top Speed. Our test boat had an estimated test weight of 2,717 lbs. (1,232 kg). We hit a top speed of 48.6 mph (42.2 knots) at 5500 rpm.
Best cruise was 29.3 mph (25.5 knots) with a fuel burn of 3.2 mpg. The boat got on plane quickly and hit 20 mph (17.4 knots) in 5.8 seconds and reached 30 mph (26.1 knots) in 8.3 seconds.
Ride and Handling
If there’s 8 inches of water under the keel, this boat can jump up on plane. Once there, the hull design can channel water flow up to the prop to keep the boat underway in less than 3 inches of water -- according to the builder (we didn’t try it!) -- just don’t come off the throttle. In a heavy chop, don’t expect the smoothest ride, but that’s not what this boat was designed to do. Its mission is to take anglers into the shallowest of places, where few boats dare to go.
We ran this boat across the flats on Biscayne Bay to see what its shallow water capabilities really were. At rest in 8 inches, we were still floating, with the wind able to drift us along without grounding. Running across that same 8-inch flat on plane, we did not leave any wheel ditches, the prop was not starved for water, and there was no cavitation.
Understanding the limitations of a flats boat, it’s not a boat we would take offshore and troll for dolphins. But if stalking a fish in ultra-skinny water is the mission, this boat could open up access to the backcountry, where fish get very little pressure simply because other boats can’t go there.
Test Result Highlights
Full Warranty Information on this brand coming soon!
Test Results - Change Measurement Unit
All fuel consumption numbers are the total for all engines in the boat. Speeds are measured with Stalker ProSports radar gun or GPS. Fuel consumption (gallons per hour) measured with Floscan digital fuel-flow meter or by on-board factory-installed diagnostic instruments. Range is based on 90% of published fuel capacity. Sound levels determined using Radio Shack digital decibel meter on A scale. 68 dBA is the level of normal conversation. Time to plane is measured from start of acceleration to formation of rooster tail behind boat.